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Bon Jovi rocks! On occasion.
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Need to post this quick because I need to start writing at 8:00... which apparently is not happening because it's now 8:00 am. Okay, fine, will start writing at 8:05 am, and I will only get a 5 minute break in between 20 minute sessions. If I try really hard, I might be able to get all of my writing done, or at least the vast majority of it, before I go to TKD.

I'm hoping that either there will be a lot of people in class today, or just me and D. Mostly I'm hoping for just me and D., because then we're more likely to do review and less likely to do sparring. Because the more we do it, the more I hate sparring.

But anyway...

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Work opened late today - 9:30 am. I am not there. Why? Because I would have needed to leave around 8 am in order to get in there for 9:30 am. At that time, my road was still not plowed.

Oh wait... it's 10:30 am and my road is still not plowed. This is honestly unusual, but when I called in I didn't even pretend that I was calling in sick. I told them that there was literally no physical way for me to get to work. And there isn't. Driving over an inch or two of unplowed snow, maybe up to three, sure... My car has all wheel drive and presumably the larger roads would be a bit better. Driving over somewhere upwards of 4"? Not happening. Not even in a Subaru.

Although the snow seems to have mostly stopped, we're holding off on shoveling for a few more hours because I really don't want the sleet/freezing rain on the pavement, creating sheets of ice. Also, as mentioned, they haven't plowed, so if we shovel and then they plow... we have to go shovel again. We may end up just doing the driveway and front walk, and leaving the other sidewalks for tomorrow. We'll see.

Snow Day To Do ListCollapse )
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I didn't sleep well last night; I kept waking up for seemingly no reason. So even though in theory I got eight hours of sleep, it wasn't particularly restful. I kept having nightmares about something going wrong with my car.

Not too much to do today...Collapse )
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Today I have to do one of my most dreaded, hated chores: taking my car to get its oil changed. I hate driving into the garage over the pit. I hate them asking me to turn on this thing or that thing and fumbling to find the controls. I just... hate it. For a long time I would always making Riki take my car for me, and then the last couple of times I've had to have other stuff done to my car so the dealership has just done it. But I'm not driving all the way to the dealership today, especially since they'll likely find something else wrong with my car that will cost me money I don't have at the moment to fix.

If I had the cash, I might make Riki do it for me again today, because I'm really not sure I'm up to it, and it's already past due (not by a lot... a couple hundred miles).

Stupid cars.

And then there's all the rest of it...Collapse )
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Having gone to sleep rather early, I find myself awake and attempting to be productive at 7 am on a Saturday. I guess there are worse things. Going to post this, then go make breakfast. Mostly I just want to stay in bed where it is warm, although apparently it's actually supposed to make it all the way up to freezing today at some point.

I really wish I had more than one day off, but sadly, I don't. I don't even have chat/email time tomorrow; it's just all phones, all day. I really, really need to get out of there.

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I forced myself to wake up around 6 am today, since tomorrow I'll have to be up at 5:30 am to go back to work. I've been getting up around 7 am all along, so it shouldn't be too hard an adjustment, but still. At least I only have to get through two days of work before I have another day off.

My stomach is in knots and I'm fighting off panic, so I suspect it's going to be a long day. On the plus side, we got a lot less snow than they were originally predicting, although other parts of the state were hit hard. On the down side, it's still brutally cold, so going out and dealing with it is still a less than ideal situation.

I'm off to a slow start. I just need to focus and get rolling to hopefully keep the panic at bay. I skipped TKD yesterday because of snow; hopefully going tonight will help get me back into a better mental place.

I keep telling myself it looks worse than it is...Collapse )
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I need a vacation. Yesterday wasn't relaxing in the slightest, and today isn't shaping up to be much better, although maybe if I can get my writing done early I'll be able to just chill out this afternoon. I know that I need to back and get rid of a lot of what I wrote last night because I was tired and just trying to force words to happen, and I decided that part of it I would rather have happen later, so I have to figure out something else to have happen. Or maybe it will just be a shortish chapter.

Anyway... this is what I'm up to today.

Once more into the breach...Collapse )
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I slept a little later than I'd intended, but then I went to sleep a little later than intended last night as well. So time to get things rolling for the day. On the plus side, I actually have two days off today, so maybe if I'm super productive today I can relax tomorrow.

It's mostly stuff I can do from bed...Collapse )
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Yesterday I tested for my high brown belt. Once again, I was the only adult testing, due to other obligations (work, a class that couldn't be gotten out of). I'm kind of used to it by now, although Amy did actually test with the group the last couple of times. This time around it wasn't so bad; when we did stuff with partners the kid I ended up facing was at least roughly my size.

We started with warm-ups, then basic skills (kicks, strikes, blocks) and somehow that ended up taking half an hour. Mister L., who does our testing, spent a lot of time talking for some reason, and over the course of the hour (which ended up being closer to an hour and ten, fifteen minutes) we probably lost ten to fifteen minutes to that.

A lot of it was having the younger kids get up, then sit down, then get back up, because they were slow and didn't say 'yes, sir' (which granted Master Paul doesn't enforce, like, at all in regular classes, so I tend to be the only one who says it) and whined when they were told to do something they didn't want to do (push-ups).

Which actually led to an interesting moment, where Mister L., who had been talking about saying 'yes sir' added, "Or 'yes ma'am' for a female instructor," to which one of the kids commented that we don't have any. Mister L. said, "Not yet," and then looked over to the side of the room where the higher ranks were sitting and said, "There are future female instructors here," meaning, presumably, me, Danielle, and Audrey, who are three of the four brown belts. (I guess it's a good thing that I've figured out how to tie other people's belts as well as my own. One of our littlest guys only had his belt wrapped around him once, so the ends were hanging way down. Master Paul was busy with his brother, so I went over and said, "Let's fix that," and managed to get it right. You wouldn't think it, but it's a lot different doing it on someone else than on yourself.)

Luckily, my group (which was four brown belts and a red belt) were better about getting up quickly, remembering to say 'yes sir' and generally treating it like testing instead of like fun time. So we mostly just had to sit through the lectures... or sometimes stand in ready/fighting stance for extended periods of time while he talked. And in my case, I got to be called a 'big stinky pumpkinhead' repeatedly (because he knew I wouldn't get upset) while he discussed how being told that you were not doing something well is just an opportunity for improvement and not to take it personally. At least I think that was the point of that particular tangent.

We did a little (very little) step-sparring (for the higher ranked students) and self-defense (for the lower-ranked students), and then we did our forms. He had the brown belts also do the yellow belt form, since next time around we'll need to know all of the forms when we test for our black belts.

From the way he was talking, it sounds like he actually expects us to be testing for black in the next testing cycle. I had honestly expected that it would take six months, and we would test in June, but that might not end up being the case. I'm pretty sure I can be ready by March anyway, but I'm not as confident about two of my beltmates. (Danielle will be fine; she knows the forms better than I do, although she's not as solid on step-sparring and self-defense all the time.) Audrey and Alan don't train as often, and are younger, and I'm less sure they'll be ready. But we'll see.

He had Master Paul, along with his son (who had apparently decided this morning that he wanted to come along with his dad for the testing, resulting in Mister L. having to cut down one of his old black belts to make it short enough for his son to wear; his own belt was at the school) do one of the black belt forms, and then he had Master Paul do one that we've actually never seen before, and holy shit... It seems impossible now that I'll ever be able to remember anything like that, because there was a lot of moves. (It was called Banya or something like that.)

After testing was over, Mister L. shook my hand and said something about how I wasn't upset by being called a pumpkinhead, right? To which I responded of course I wasn't. He's such a nice guy, there's pretty much no way to take anything he says (especially something that silly) personally.

He also asked about knife defense, and I said that Danielle and I knew 1-6. He said that maybe he would have us do it next testing, but sometimes it made parents nervous. Juniors don't do knife defense, only the adult class, so it's not as if they have to worry about their precious darlings wielding plastic knives at each other... but I can kind of see why it might make people nervous in general, because in addition to their being weapons involved, several of them involve takedowns, and are just generally violent overall. (Which is kind of why I love it... the more dramatic a thing is, the more I tend to like it.)

Overall, it was probably one of the easiest testing sessions that we've had, at least for the higher ranks, because so much focus was placed on managing the behavior of the lower ranks. Some of them just aren't used to the process, but others really should know better. But like I said before, Master Paul doesn't really enforce the responding to commands with 'yes sir' and all of that, so that's part of it. I really wonder if some of the behavior that happens would be tolerated at all in another school. It got to a point where it was embarrassing to me that these were the students of my school. Hopefully next time they'll be better behaved.

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