July 10th, 2009



So after karate class, Shihan tells me that there's going to be a black-belt promotion in October, and he wants me to be ready for it.


Honestly, I didn't think I'd be even considered until next year. There are two black-belt promotions per year, one in March, one in October. I didn't think I'd even get consideration until the March 2010 one.

But Shihan thinks I'm ready now. Or, rather, that I will be in October. There's a bunch of training to go through above and beyond class, including building my endurance and running a lot, and I have to get even more serious about fighting class now.


I did see this coming. For the past week, Shihan has been quizzing me on tons of things, plus at the end of class, he'll have everyone but me sit down, and then have me do a kata or three alone in the center of class. Last Thursday, Shihan had me do Tensho kata, a deep-breathing form in a stable stance. Five black belts surrounded me and hit me with pads, kicked me, tried to destabilize me, and so on. That was just a taste of what I'll be going through in October. But usually when folks go through that sort of thing, it's a prelude to prepping for the black-belt promotion.

And, sure enough....

This has been such an amazing journey. But, I hasten to add, that this is just one milestone of many. Becoming a black belt was never the destination, just one of the many many stops on it.

And, it should be added loudly, I ain't there yet. Being told to get ready for it is not the same thing as doing it. I haven't been formally invited for promotion yet, I'm just preparing in the hopes that I am ready.

  • Current Music
    "You Angel You" by Bob Dylan & The Band

Schott's Miscellany 9 July 2009

In New York, the Declaration of Independence was read aloud to George Washington's troops (1776)


The profession of the juggler, with that of the minstrel, had fallen so low in the public estimation at the close of the reign of Queen Elizabeth, performers were ranked, by the moral writers of the time, not only with "ruffians, blasphemers, thieves, and vagabonds"; but also with "Heretics, Jews, Pagans, and sorcerers." In more modern times, by way of derision, the juggler was called a hocus-pocus, a term applicable to a pick-pocket or a common cheat.

---Joseph Strutt, Sports & Pastimes of the People of England, 1801

The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616)
  • Current Music
    "Solo le Pido a Dios" by the Mammals