The truth shall set you free, or piss people off

Friday night and the weekend has never looked so good to me.  Worked 30+ hours at work, with a pulled hip flexor, a gimp leg, and constantly hoping i’d heal enough to train. Lucky for me  I got my wish last night.  Went straight to class after work (it was gi) with the intentions of being productive and making the most out of it. Plus i got my new fight shorts in the mail today *uber fist pump* so I really wanted to break them in :).

fighter girl fight shorts-" Zebra "

I decided to treat myself and ordered this pair of fighter girl board shorts and I’m really surprised with the fit, and how the design compliments me.  I’ve trained in my yoga gear, which has been fine except for feeling a little exposed.  Their store actually has options, yes that’s right, options.  So no settling on boy shorts that are too big, bulky, or have extra space in that ‘special area’.  I ordered a size up and they fit perfect, except i have a REALLY small waist but there’s a drawstring so I’ll live.  Overall i’d give it a 9/10 (if the waist was a bit tighter I’d give it a full 10 but we’ll see how they hold up).

Any who. It was another small class. Only a few more than Tuesday.  I’m not sure if it’s the weather but I’d love for more to show.  Warmups kicked my junk food eating butt.  We did the pummeling, armbar drills, triangle drills, and my hip held up for the most part (couldn’t lock my triangles in but i could reach for them). The Gentle Giant showed a few gi  chokes.  I’ve never done a gi choke but I learned last night I have a pretty good one.  No like a really good one.  Didn’t have to use any muscle, just technique.  It kinda makes me want to do gi more often just so I can have an opportunity to try it during live rolling.  I’m getting better at gi, when I started training it was my  favorite but I didn’t attend it as often.  One thing that really surprised me was the fact that certain chokes didn’t aggravate my “Ex-Husband” aka my “carpal tunnel syndrome.”.  I’ve nicknamed it that because it’s aggravating, irritating, and an enormous pain in my butt, much like an ex 🙂 .

Me in my new shorts!!

Got to roll, a lot tonight.

First roll: She’s a feisty one.  Pummeling for farside underhooks has done me wonders. got the side and transitioned to mount, then finished with a really funny looking armbar,  tried to finish while on top and she reversed so i finished in the air.

Second Roll: Rolled with a very technical marine.  I haven’t rolled with him much but he’s always crazy helpful during drills.  He controlled me of course, but let me work and actually gave me a tip that i executed correctly when i later rolled with the gentle giant.  He told me that when i’m on the bottom and im shrimping up instead of reaching in with my near side leg to recover half guard, turn to my side (facing him) and hook in my far side leg this will immediately put me in butterfly guard. A great roll with a very technical person.

Third roll: Rolled with my newly belted friend, i’ll call him “the family man” mostly because he’s always bringing in his “little man” to come to train (who i happen to ADORE).  We rolled hard and tough, by tough i mean me trying to survive most of the time.  I did happen to survive so that’s a plus.  My turtle and neck defenses saved me a few times, and i’ve noted how much better it feels to be on the bottom but on your side as opposed to lying flat and having all the air smashed out of you.  Afterward he said, “Man you’re a tough S.O.B” which made me laugh but was tremendously appreciated.

Fourth/Fifth Roll: I rolled a few times with the Gentle Giant, and man oh man do we get caught in some funky positions. With my flexibility and his thirst for attacking legs we usually end up jumbled some kind of way.  I’m not sure exactly how many times we shook hands to go but there were a few continuous bouts, and he’s figured out my precious turtle as well lol .  He showed me a few things with armbars, being on the bottom, and control in general.  I’m enormously thankful for all the extra help.

Overall had a great class.  But of course in true fashion when you’re having a great day something happens to ‘rain on your parade’.  Found out that I’ve offended some people with some of my posts and it was even suggested that I “censor” some things, & remain “politically correct”.  Which translates to cookie cutter, guy friendly posts with rainbows and flowers because every class is perfect, everyone is always nice, and me being a woman has never once affected a single one of my rolls.

One thing I will do is stop naming names unless they give permission. But all in all I’m thoroughly offended. This is the number one reason I didn’t advertise it, I didn’t want everyone delegating what should and shouldn’t be said, written, & publicized.  As much as I love brazilian jiujitsu and the guys/girls i train with, I’m a journalist at heart, I live to document things.

So i’ve been brainstorming how could i be more user-friendly, or  male chauvinist-friendly??

–Male Chauvinist-n.
A man whose behavior and attitude toward women indicate a belief that they are innately inferior to men.

After all It’s impossible to accommodate everyone. For starters I could NOT blog (nope not an option), or I could stop using the word “spazz” and replace it with the phrase ‘flailing heavily’.  But isn’t that why we train to tone down the flailing and replace it with beautiful technique?

I’ve read books, articles, and other blogs about people that train, particularly women, because it’s nice to know that you’re not a freak for thinking or feeling certain things.  I’m relieved to know I’m not the only one that thinks, “The only reason he got out of ____is because he muscled it,” or “is it just me or are all the girlfriends giving me dirty looks during class?”

I’ve read blogs about women that PAY and can only sit and watch the guys train. It’s those type of experiences that need to be written about. I don’t want to read propaganda.  All of that, “No one wants to roll with a girl, so-and-so isn’t female friendly, don’t go by yourself, don’t be dramatic,  don’t be honest, don’t blog about the spazzes, no one will like you if you write everything…” gets nerve-wrecking after a while.  Whether I vocalize my frustrations or skip through a field and pick flowers someone always has a problem with me, the idea of me, or what I say.  I guess some would prefer it if I took a page out of some of the guy’s book and just bitched and moaned about people behind their back.  Yes, yes, that would be so much better.

7 Responses to “The truth shall set you free, or piss people off”
  1. leslie says:

    No one has said anything to me about anything I’ve written, so I’m not quite sure what I would do if they did. But, my coach at one point did let me know that he knew about my blog, though he hadn’t read it. I did do a quick housecleaning and removed names of spazzes or guys that had otherwise annoyed me that night, just in case. I’m aware that the guys might read it, and so I keep that practice of not identifying some guys. (I have found, though, that most guys claim to forget the details of a night fairly soon, so a little obfuscation works wonders.) I usually write right after class, and I realize that I’m sometimes still “in the moment” and haven’t had a chance to really think about what happened. So I choose sometimes to leave things out; some days, my entries are short and have little information. Those days, often the most happened, and I’m not going to say anything nice about anyone, so I say nothing. I have several posts that were written and then set to “Private.” Sometimes, too, I wait a week or two before commenting or asking about something that happened in a more off-hand way, and then I remove even more details. I think it all depends on the situation, and I waffle between saying exactly what I think and trying to be more objective and let people draw their own conclusions about who or what the problem was. This BJJ blogging can be a tricky thing…

    But then, one of the primary things I wanted to find when I started looking through BJJ blogs was the non-flower nights. I needed to know that I was normal. Jiu-jitsu isn’t rainbows and kittens, but I found quite a few blogs where no one ever seemed to have any conflicts or troubles. I, on the other hand, was having issues, and lots of them. Maybe from being a girl, maybe not, but I had nothing to compare myself to to know. So I started including the bad along with the good, and now I’ve found that a lot of people seem relieved to read that I have terrible nights. So I try to balance telling the bad along with the good; I try, when possible, to make it about what I did wrong or should have done differently (though I’m still far too quick to assign blame elsewhere). I also try to think about why I’m including a certain detail; if it’s because I’m angry or vengeful, or if it’s not quite related to the scenario but helps to draw a non-flattering image of the guy, often I leave it out.

    I guess what I mean is, I don’t have an answer, either. I suppose it comes down to why you’re writing and who you’re writing for. I think some selective editing is important — I mean, you do want to train with these people again the next day and not have them mad at you — but at the same time, writing down what happened is often the best way to figure out what actually happened and how to react to it.

  2. I write whatever I want in my blog. It’s there to help me process stuff. It’s also there to let me whine and bitch so I can vent frustrations in a less destructive manner than venting them in class.

    I think it’s paranoid and egotistical to think that everyone I train with is out looking for my blog. I do know that one or two people mentioned within have seen it (although are not reading it on a regular basis). There are certain things in there that I would rather not have certain people see. But since I’ve been honest, I’m prepared to *OWN* everything in there. If someone did see XYZ, I might say, “I wish you hadn’t seen that, and I’m sorry if it upset you, but what I said was my true feeling and perception at the time.” And I’d be willing to discuss it with them, because I own it.

    As far as RANDOM people, my response would be, if you don’t like it, don’t read it.

    I too appreciate the raw, honest blogs. Not that the sweetness-and-light blogs don’t have their place too, but as Leslie said- if it weren’t for the raw, honest bloggers talking about their challenges, I’d think I was a freak. (Well, a BIGGER freak.) I think it’s also important that we can support each other throught the bad days.

  3. shakiaharris says:

    absolutely. I agree with both of you.
    -Leslie, i actually will do the same as far as editing goes, sometimes. Unfortunately just about everyone in my gym knows about it and for the most part are “o.K” with it, it’s when I visit one of our partner gyms where things get lost in translation. Everyone wants their gym to look ‘like the creme de la creme…this isn’t fox news i’m not writing ads, i’m documenting training sessions *double sigh*.. but thank your for your inputs i really enjoyed your comment.
    –savagekitsune:: i don’t deny a single thing that i write whenever someone approaches with the “yea i read that” face. I usually have two reactions, “Oh really” or “oh really,” the only thing that changes is the amount of enthusiasm in my voice. Everyone wants their two pages of fame and it drives me nuts.
    —I’ve edited this particular post many times, you guys can only ‘imagine’ what I said the first time I spurted it out lol but in all seriousness, after being hurt numerous time by spazzes, male-chauvinist that think *caveman voice* “women no know jiujitsu,” being constantly told how this gym and that gym don’t like females training with them, and the final straw was being ask to censor my own blog. My blog. My. Damn. Blog. Oh i could’ve superman punched someone on the spot.

  4. Taylor Swift sometimes writes unflattering songs about her ex’es that turn into huge hits. People have asked her, “How can you…. Why do you…. I can’t believe you…..Do you really think it’s wise to…. write such and such when the whole world knows it’s about (insert famous celebrity ex)!?” Ms. Swift’s response (and I’m paraphrasing here, she said it much more elegantly) was, “If you don’t want me to write unflattering songs about what an a-hole you were to me, then don’t be an a-hole to me- QED.”

    Why do people assume they can treat us badly and we will keep it a secret? How can they treat us like crap and then act all outraged and wounded like *WE* have betrayed *THEM* somehow when we talk about it?When did we agree to be willing co-conspirators in that plan? If someone acts like a selfish training partner, and I later write in my training blog that he acted like a selfish training partner, *I* should feel bad about that??! WTF???!

  5. shakiaharris says:

    THANK YOU. lol one of the things that actually ran through my mind a few nights ago was the fact that it’d be different if i had made everything up, but when I “nicely” explain how a guy who thought he knew everything damn near cripple me, people get so upset. It’s almost like I had pulled him aside before class and said “Hey, I;ll give you $20 if you put me in a terrible position, make me scream loud and uncontrollably to the point where I embarrass myself in front of dozens of people, then i’m going to blog about it, OK?”

  6. Hey Shakia. The only thing that matters is that Ohio State shirt.


  7. shakiaharris says:

    haha thanks jordan, i’ll keep that in mind lol

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