Friday, August 10, 2018

My Week in Stick Chicktivity - 08/10/18

Friday, Friday, Friday!

Great week this week - how was YOUR week?


Saturday we had some big fun at The Kansas City Presas Arnis Meetup.  We worked on policing techniques from Kombatan.

Later that day, we drove out to our friends from Kapatiran Mandirigma down in Spring Hill, KS.  They're from the Kombatan side of my martial arts family, and they showed us drills they do from their "Freestyle" drill.  We don't do things exactly the same, but it's close enough that Mr. Chick and I were able to keep up and not completely embarrass ourselves (or at least, our KM friends were nice enough not say so if we did!). Spring Hill is a haul for us but we'd like to make it down there every once in a while!

Sunday I went to the Kansas City Chiefs training camp.  If you martial arts guys are my tribe, Chiefs fans are my OTHER tribe. It was a blast!

Monday we went to karate class and I got in a whole lot of work with the nunchaku.  I was given fine-tuning to the form and while I certainly am a long way from perfecting it, I know it well enough now to work on all the little details.

Tuesday was election day here in my area, and I didn't get to vote because somehow the DMV screwed my registration up (Mr. Chick and Older Daughter were able to vote just fine)!  Arrgh!

Wednesday I would have trained, but it was my pre-birthday dinner from one of my favorite restaurants in Kansas City - Stroud's. OM NOM NOM NOM.

Thursday I celebrated my 50th birthday by attending a Kansas City Chiefs preseason game.  We tailgated all afternoon and it was Older Daughter's first NFL game.  We had SO MUCH FUN!

Me with the statue of Lamar Hunt, founder of the Kansas City Chiefs and chief architect of the
 American Football League (he was also the guy who named the NFL championship game the Super Bowl).
He was also instrumental in the creation of Major League Soccer in the US.


Blog posts I wrote and shared via social media this week:

You can find and follow or like or whatever on MANY social media platforms! I'm on Google PlusFacebookMeWeTumblr, and Twitter


You empty hand people can take things a teeny bit too far...

Some great content from friends of this blog this week:

  • Brian Johns:

We were some busy bees this week, huh?

There's SO MUCH MORE on the Facebook page. If you're on Facebook, please do like and share it with your friends!


As far as I'm concerned, when you hit the 50th, you can celebrate for days on end.  So I plan to celebrate with ARNIS on Saturday morning at our meetup, some kobudo practice and probably a nap or five.

Be good, people!

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

The Big Five-Oh

I turn fifty years old tomorrow, on Thursday.

That's right, I've inhabited this earth for half a century, fifty turns around the sun.

I started training about ten years ago just before I turned 40, because I was in the middle of a mid-life crisis, and if I didn't do something quick, aging was gonna suck, and suck hard.

Of course, I don't know what the consequences might have been if I hadn't started the martial arts. It's possible I'd have found some other way to try to keep my body moving and my mind busy and engaged, I guess.

But surely it wouldn't be as so darn fun as being a martial artist is.

It's hard to list all of the ways the martial arts has made my life better over the last ten years.  It's not just the personal benefits of mental, emotional, and physical health - although those are certainly important and not to be underestimated.

It's enriched my family, and as a whole, given us something to bond over other than just the normal family stuff.  It's given me close friends that I value so very much. It's given me a sense of belonging and purpose, of being part of a big tribe of weirdos that I fit in with.

Hey, training in the martial arts spurred me to write this blog, and via this blog, I've met a lot of really super-awesome people from all over the world, both online and in real life.

Back in my youth, the age of 50 was such a far-away and arcane thing, something that I didn't believe in my heart would happen to me.

Y'know, kind of like the black belt rank is to orange belts.

Of course now 50 doesn't seem that old.  In fact, in some ways, I still feel like I'm a newbie at life itself.

Just like I felt after I promoted to 1st Black a few years ago.

I'm always learning new stuff, not just in the martial arts but in other stuff I'm interested in doing, personally and professionally.  I don't see myself as being near "retirement age" because I don't intend to retire, really.  I'd rather be doing stuff that keeps me engaged and busy and keeps me connected with other people in my community.

In the martial arts, I still have a LONG way to go to get good in Arnis, much less other styles I study. And I still have to carve out the time to add a ground game into my skillset, which is a major goal I plan to address... eventually.

So, to close out this post, I'm posting this video (link in the comment on the image below) on my personal profile tomorrow, but you guys get to enjoy it a day early.  Tomorrow I plan to eat favorite foods and go to a Kansas City Chiefs pre-season football game, so you know it's gonna be a great day for the Chick.

Watch the skit HERE.

I hope YOUR 50th is as great as mine!

Friday, August 3, 2018

My Week in Stick Chicktivity - 08/03/18

Friday already?  Wow!

I got in a little bit of good martial arts work this week. How about you?


Saturday we played some with the staff and walking cane as well as sticks at the The Kansas City Presas Arnis Meetup.  We played sumbrada - aka the "6 count drill" or "3-8-12" with the bo and cane, which is always really fun.

Sunday I stayed home and did chores I needed to do that had been backing up before Older Daughter and I hit the road for a short road trip.

Monday and Tuesday I saw a WHOLE LOT of Kansas as I took Older Daughter to orientation at Wichita State University.  WSU is a pretty fantastic campus, I have to say.  The dorm she'll live in is nicer than anywhere I've personally lived.  She made some new friends, and we got our ducks in a row for her to move down there for the school year in just a few weeks.  You may not realize this but WSU has an... interesting... mascot.  Google WuShock.

Wednesday I got to karate class and we worked on Naihanchi Shodan, Naihanchi Nidan, and I started learning Naihanchi Sandan. We were also introduced to the suburito (a heavy wooden training sword) and worked with it a while (and my arms are sore... again...).  This is what the suburito we were working with looks like (there's lots of different kinds):

Image found HERE, where you can buy one of these bad boys.

Thus begins my very, very early introduction to Japanese sword.


Blog posts I wrote and shared via social media this week:

Monday: Nuttin'. I was somewhere in Kansas at the time.
Tuesday: 3 Tips For Parents to Choose a Martial Art
Wednesday: THAT GUY: The Dandy

You can find the Stick Chick Blog on most social media platforms! I'm on Google PlusFacebookMeWeTumblr, and Twitter


The truth. This is the real consequence of training, y'all. AND aging.  Harrumph.

Yet more cool stuff from Coleman Fink again this week.  He is IN this video. Wow!

When I grow up, I wanna be Ninja Nan.

Finally, where was this advice 18 years ago, huh?

I got lots more martial artsy stuff over on the Facebook page. If you're on Facebook, please do like and share it with your friends!


"Normal" weekend planned, with The Kansas City Presas Arnis Meetup. Mr. Chick and I also plan to visit Kombatan friends down in Spring Hill, KS on Saturday, so yay!

Sunday... I'm going to Chiefs Training Camp.  YAY! 

Have a fun weekend, everyone!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

THAT GUY: The Dandy

It's time to work takedowns, and you and your partner get ready to begin.

You realize your partner looks like someone who just competed in the Miss America contest.  Full makeup, lots of hair product, perfectly manicured and painted nails.  There's also a lot of jewelry - rings, earrings, necklace(s), ring(s), and maybe even an anklet.

Like this, but wearing gi.
So you get to work on the technique, but you get makeup smeared on your uniform, you get a cut from a nail, and you get annoyed looks whenever the hair gets messed up.  Oh, and your partner is also wearing enough perfume/body spray to supply the entire state of New Jersey with scents for a year, and you look forward to getting a nice lungful of fresh, perfume-free air.

You've been paired with THAT GUY: the Dandy.

Note that I was careful not to assign gender in the example above, because the Dandy can be any gender, just like all of the other THAT GUYs featured here.  I would add, outside of class, I think it's fine to be the Dandy, even if it's not my personal cup of tea.  Hey, whatever makes you happy is good by me.

But on the mat... yeah, the Dandy is NO FUN to work with.

The Dandy gets annoyed when they get too sweaty. The Dandy gets distracted checking themselves out in the mirror in class (partly to admire themselves, partly to check the state of their hair/makeup/jewelry). If it isn't makeup, the Dandy will ruin your gi with bronzer smears.

The Dandy practically jangles as they move around because of all the jewelry.  Which is really bad if the Dandy is studying ninjutsu. Just sayin'.

Looking good while training is more important to The Dandy than being good AT training.

Let me admit that I, personally, am a jewelry nut.  I LOVE jewelry, and off the mat I wear lots of jewelry most of the time (especially rings). But ON the mat, I take off anything that might hurt my partner or get me in trouble, like rings and earrings.

I learned that lesson the hard way when I got hit in the hand with a stick, and had to cut off my wedding ring as my fingers swelled.  Now I wear a silicone wedding ring.

The Dandy's nails in particular can be a huge problem. Nail cuts are always a risk even when we keep them trimmed but MAN, it's like working with someone with 20 little knives on their hands and feet. You're lucky if you don't get cut at least once or twice every time you work with the Dandy.

The Dandy leaves a scent cloud as they move around the room, so you can trace their path through the dojo.  You feel like you need a gas mask when you work closely with them and your eyes water from the cloud of chemicals.

If you spend any time the gym, you know exactly who I'm talking about, because yes, the Dandy will be the one admiring themselves as they work out.

From this really funny commercial by Planet Fitness 

Do you have any stories of training with the Dandy? Are YOU the Dandy or have Dandy-like tendencies?  Let us know in the comments!

To see all of the THAT GUY posts, click HERE.

Friday, July 27, 2018

My Week in Stick Chicktivity - 07/27/18

It's FRIDAY!  Yay!

Struggles this week. Didn't get to train like I wanted to. The mind was willing, the body, not so much.

Hope yours was good!


Saturday was our (now) normal session of bangin' sticks at Happy Rock Park at the The Kansas City Presas Arnis Meetup.  Lots of fun playing with some cool concepts, even if my right arm/shoulder is still hinky from the epic day of nunchaku training from the prior week.  If you're in the KC area on a Saturday morning, come play with us!  It's free and fun!

Sunday I joined the Overland Park Shindo Muso Ryu Meetup. I have to take it easy with my right shoulder healing, but I did get some work in, and a little Arnis after (working mostly with my left hand, which is, after all, something I'm always trying to get better with).

Monday I attended karate and worked on Naihanchi Shodan and Naihanchi Nidan, then worked just one specific portion of the nunchaku form I'm working on - a pretty tricky catch that puts the weapon in reverse grip in one hand.  NOT EASY.

And then... the migraine swarm started, and I struggled with it for the rest of the week. Had a big one hit Wednesday just before karate class.  Ocular migraine, vertigo, fuzzy brain, fatigue... everything except pain.  In that state it would be a very, very bad idea for me to handle weapons.

So I took it easy. Nothing else for it.

So I didn't get as much work as I wanted this week.  Sigh.


Blog posts I wrote and shared via social media this week:

Monday: The Gift of Fear
Tuesday: Three is a Magic Number
Wednesday: The Big P

Connect with the Stick Chick Blog on your favorite social media platform! I'm on Google PlusFacebookMeWeTumblr, and Twitter



It's not real.  But damn, it still amuses me every time I run across it...

This list ISN'T EVEN COMPLETE, if you can believe it... 21 things women who train in martial arts are tired of hearing

This is SO COOL.

And finally... damn straight, it does.

As usual, other neat content, stories, and funny stuff can be found on the Facebook page. Join us!


Really hoping this migraine swarm disappears because I have stuff to do this weekend.  Plus, Mr. Chick will be gone all weekend attending this:

I'd tell all y'all to be good, but I know lots of you on a personal level, and I know it's a fruitless endeavor.

Train hard, train smart, and have a great weekend!