My body has traveled a long way and some of the roads weren't paved

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Nice, very nice

Haven't posted much about the wrestling season of late........

'cause it keeps you pretty busy.

Most of the Saturday tournaments have us dropping him off at school by 7AM, leaving for the tournament at 8 and then not home again till usually around 8PM. Long days in bleachers.

At the individual tournament in allendale 1/9, Cole and his buddy Joey Cullen both placed 6th place in their weight classes out of 18 teams in attendance. (last year I believe he placed 5/6th in JV there).The team total score (based on individual points for wins) garnered them an overal 6th place as well. Quite good considering Hamilton is a division 3 school and there were several division 1 & 2 schools there as well.

More often than not Cole is beginning to win his matches and more than not those wins are by pins.

The coach takes them to some pretty tough tournaments as that will get them prepared for conference finals as that's what really what counts for season records and going to State.

A lot of the local teams will have good records and placings in tournaments but it's because the tournaments they attend are not that tough or only a few teams.

Here is Cole's first match Saturday morning where he performed well showing good techniq and form. the first near pin is his reverse cradle. (we're still working on a name for it, he has a one armed one he calls "The Bleeder"). the final move is a double arm stack that the best wrestler on the team is infamous for doing over and over (that kid is ranked 2nd in the combined 4 divisions for his wt). For Cole to pull it off is pretty Kewl.

"The Bleeder"

The only downside was that in his final match he once again got nailed in the nose (by a knee). Last Saturday this happened twice in two different matches and in Whitehal in Dec it was a crossface that saw him bleed for 10mins. First one last week was a headbut, second one was an elbow when he was puttting a guy in a spladle. I'm telling ya, wrestling is way more injurious than stickfighting!

Oh, and after the injury timeouts, Cole tends to comeback and win the bout anyway which he did again saturday. The headbutt he won with an armbar.

Monday, January 18, 2010


I don't take credit for this but it is worth posting

Since we're now living in the time of e-mail (and blogs
and texts and Tweets) and the more common use of the written
language, it is time for an English lesson.

So, with tongue firmly in cheek, here are some rules to keep
in mind when using the Queen's Engerlish:

1. Verbs has to agree with their subjects.
2. Prepositions are not words to end sentences with.
3. And don't start a sentence with a conjunction.
4. It is wrong to ever split an infinitive.
5. Avoid cliches like the plague. (They're old hat).
6. Always avoid annoying alliteration.
7. Be more or less specific.
8. Parenthetical remarks (however relevant) are (usually)
9. Also, too, never, ever use repetitive redundancies.
10. No sentence fragments. No comma splices, run-ons are bad
11. Contractions aren't helpful and shouldn't be used.
12. Foreign words and phrases are not apropos.
13. Do not be redundant; do not use more words than necessary;
it's highly superfluous.
14. One should never generalize.
15. Comparisons are as bad as cliches.
16. Don't use no double negatives.
17. Eschew ampersands & abbreviations, etc.
18. One-word sentences? Eliminate.
19. Analogies in writing are like feathers on a snake.
20. The passive voice is to be ignored.
21. Eliminate commas, that are, not necessary. Parenthetical
words however should be enclosed in commas.
22. Never use a big word when a diminutive one would suffice.
23. Kill all exclamation points!!!!
24. Use words correctly, irregardless of how others use them.
25. Understatement is probably not the best way to propose
earth shattering ideas.
26. Use the apostrophe in it's proper place and omit it when
its not needed.
27. As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "I hate quotations. Tell me
what you know."
28. If you've heard it once, you've heard it a thousand times:
resist hyperbole; not one writer in a million can use it
29. Puns are for children, not groan readers.
30. Go around the barn at high noon to avoid colloquialisms.
31. Even if a mixed metaphor sings, it should be derailed.
32. Who needs rhetorical questions?
33. Exaggeration is a million times worse than understatement.
34. Proofread carefully to see if you any words out.

Thursday, January 7, 2010


What’s that saying about experience is something you don’t get ‘till after you need it?

You could say the same of perspective. It’d be nice to have sooner I suppose.

But I feel l gained some good perspective on something last year.

Growing up I never spent much time around older folks or interacting with them.
Being a rather uptight community with a CR Church around every corner (there’s a joke about spitting in there) there always seemed to be some barriers between kids and adults and elders.
It was very strongly implied (and spoken) “Kids are seen and not heard”
So I never really developed good conversation skills when it came to my elders.
Plus it was always implied that any adult knew what was best for you. That caused a rude awakening when I got my first college summer job working in a factory with lifers.

I’ve always been a bit envious of friends who could instantly develop a relaxed rapport with older adults and knew how to treat them respectfully. Just never developed that as a kid where I grew up.

A) Back this spring when I was recovering from acute appendicitis I had a follow up appt with the surgeon. As usual the office of the urologist had a high concentration of elderly.
By the time of this appointment I had recovered from the collapsed intestine and resulting bloating (caused by the pain meds) but the massive treatment of antibiotics was kicking my ass (found out at the appointment that why I was so exhausted and not hungry was from the Antibiotics).
I can very clearly remember looking at the distance from the truck to the front door and not really being ready to summon up the energy to cover that distance (say 90feet), and just then noticing an elderly gentleman dropping his wife off at the door. Ah yes, an “Aha moment” of shame. See, I will recover before too long (I hoped) but that’s a daily realization for them, it won’t get much better.
Once I made the trek inside, seated at the waiting area, I was in pretty rough shape (comparatively). Out of breath, cold sweats, nausea. I wondered, is this common for them too? And wondered how many of them graciously hide it.
Upon leaving I saw yet more folks making that “long” walk to the door. I resolved later that day during my slow time of convalescence, I would try to remember as often as possible to stop (or race ahead) of the elderly or infirm and geez at least hold the door for them for Pete’s sake. And try to get better at it as time passes. I do think I have managed to keep that resolve for the most part. My old childhood training that created that wall jumps up but I override it as much as I can.

B) Shortly after my shoulder reconstruction, another “Aha Moment” occurred. I had just reached the point of being able to go part of the day without my brace on during the day (about 3.5 weeks post op). That particular day we had gotten one of the first early freezes/light snows and upon arriving home from work the driveway was still covered with a thin layer of snow and some hidden black ice. I was being careful and I still didn’t spot the ice. Now remember, after years of MA training I’d like to think I’ve got pretty good balance and rarely fall. And in those instances where I have fallen, my Hapkido training has saved my ass pretty well.
So, I didn’t fall this time. Caught my balance pretty well but unconsciously jerked my shoulder back pretty fast (not the hand as that would result in a break for certain) to regain balance. Interesting fact is one of the highest incidences of hand breakage is due to snowboarders falling backwards and breaking the metatarsals due to the bad instinct we all have to put that hand down. They actually make wrist braces to prevent it for snowboarders.
But I can tell you that shoulder sure hurt like hell and I was really worried I had hurt something for certain. After the pain subsided with my daily snuggle with the icebag I had another realization. If I had fallen, it would have been REALLY, REALLY BAD despite my previous training. I was really not being as carful as I should have been. And here’s the aha moment. I will get better but to be elderly is to be in fear (or at least conscious) of this possibility at all times, when leaving the house into unfamiliar territory and OH MAN especially during the winter. Talking with my Physical Therapist when there is severe weather predicted, due to his large percentage of elderly clients, he sees a dramatic increase in cancellations, they just don’t want to go out. Oh hell no, I wouldn’t either.

C) Doors that are hard to open. Now that I have the use of both arms, I really don’t have much strength in my primary arm. Surgeon limited me to 5lbs lifting (yeah, I break it). But as I build up the strength through PT to use the arm properly (due to the previous condition I had developed some bad compensations), I’ve become very aware of just how hard to push/pull open a great many doors are. I constantly have to stop midway and switch hands. It’s really something I think many people take for granted. But again, I will get better and stronger. But eventually, I will get weak too(hopefully a long time away). I don’t have a solution for this one but I think my resolution from A is a step in the right directions.

So please remember when you’re rushing up to the door at the store, look around for someone not quite as physically capable as you and just spend the few extra seconds to hold the door or make sure they make it safely inside.
The time spent is really not that significant and the good karma earned sure can’t be a waste. They might not appreciate it (but probably will appreciate the offer) and after all, character is what you do when no one notices (or something like that). Soon enough we’ll all have that same perspective.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Beautiful Buried Bonsai, Batman!

Attn Steve Perry, THIS is snow.

Since the snowmobile trails here go through the State Game Area, the trails don't open until Jan 1, when the late deer season ends. Since i just spent way too much $$ having one of the sleds tuned up and did some repairs myself, Jan 1 was eagerly anticipated.
Weather guys predicted a heavy snow starting around 10PM New Year's eve. Perfect!
Well, probably not perfect for drunks heading home at 3 AM.
It did start falling around 10PM but didn't really start heavy till much later.

All done we got 8.5" of beautiful powder. No blowing, no ice. Just a nice blanket. No real traffic problems either.

So after a quick breakfast we headed out and hit the trails.
Surprisingly, we were the very first ones on the trails for the year. What an amazing ride to have the trails like they were your own private trails on the back 40.
I let Cole do most of the driving as my shoulder can't steer too well on the larger sled.

My little angel Cole