Journal 2/8/10

There’s a real post kicking around somewhere in the back of my mind, but it may not make it out this month.  We’ll see.

Meanwhile, yet another motto for me, from Caelia: “Everybody knows you’d fight on a  flaming garbage heap in a hailstorm”  (This goes along with the official motto “Poena stultus corpore digrediens est”, and a couple of others: “Fuck it, there i’s no truce, it’s Wistric!” and probably “Put your mask back on”)

Also in the mental flotsam of this week:

Today's Lio comic strip

May all the awesome ladies of the blade carry the hearts of their crushed suitors pierced upon their steel.

But enough of that, time for ruminations, recriminations, and ructations!

Tuesday brought a surprise visit from Those Who Are to Blame for Wistric, so instead of fighting I went out to dinner.

Wednesday brought my last birthday gift from She Who Must Be Obeyed: Mondschein’s Agrippa translation.  Hypothetically, a Wistric may have been tempted to play hookie the next day and read all morning long.  Hypothetically, a Wistric may read as slow as a blind man with no fingers, so he hypothetically did not get far.  That, and from exhaustion he may have slept the afternoon away.

Form Alterations

Wednesday and Thursday contained, in total, three or four hours of Google chatting with friend-0f-the-Warfare Dante about his particular thoughts on fencing form.  He’s bored at home because the entire month of February has been a snow day for him, so getting him to hold forth, which is normally about as difficult as getting rabbits to fuck, is even easier these days.  I believe saying “Hi” will now get you a discourse on the right and wrong usage of tierca.  I think our discussions at least partly inspired him to make an HMA discussion forum on his site: http://dantedipietrohma.webs.com/apps/forums/

As a result of all this, I spent practice at Thursday working on shifting my weight more onto my back leg (instead of 50/50, as I had been doing, which resulted in the 4″ displacement of my back foot behind my hip).  And damn that hurts.  But holding stance is what telecons and coffee brewing were made for.  Still, I’m thinking there’s got to be a more efficient way of improving the endurance of my left leg for that posture (Dom, suggestions?).

Agrippa (Which your opponent should a-study)

Jauma’s had his copy of Agrippa for about two months now, and has read it through twice, so Thursday we started working through some of the plays (book 2, chs. 2&3 and, I think 8&9).

I think we went from really roughly approximating the play to getting it pretty precise, with a clear understanding of the measure and tempo in which the movements had to happen (as Jauma noted “The timing on this is REALLY exact, isn’t it?”).  We’ll see if it stuck when we review on Thursday, and then move on to the next play.  Jauma, actually, is leading all of this, as I haven’t even gotten through the introduction in my copy of Agrippa (I read the way some glaciers move).

Maudlin about Teaching

My sincere hope is that this process, in addition to improving the entire practice’s understanding of fencing mechanics and theory, will lead Jauma to a serious examination of his own form.  He’s tall, lanky, and quick.  If he can channel that through the lens of solid form he’d excel mightily at the sport.  But that’s a choice he has to make, and he hasn’t made it yet in the two years I’ve known him.  And while half of me is very much of the “fuck this teaching thing, it’s Wistric Time” these days, the other half is plagued by a sense that I’ve somehow let Jauma down along the way.

But Enough About Other People

As for my own fighting on Thursday, it felt really solid.  Too bad it didn’t last through Ymir (and that will be another post).

7 comments to Journal 2/8/10

  • Tom H.

    I’m not Dom, but for (back) leg strength, don’t just hold posture:

    Get in posture, as deeply as is comfortable (and then deeper), then rapidly pick up your legs. Think of it as “running in place as fast as you can while never leaving a deep stance and maintaining good form”

    For static variation, sit against a wall. Without a chair, or using your hands to brace in any way. For several minutes. This one is quiet enough you can use it during telecons, although they may wonder at your exclamations when your muscles do fatigure to failure and you fall on your rear in the middle of the office.

    • I will have to give that running in place one a try (care to come out to practice on Thursday and see me fall on my face?)

      As for wall-sits, I wonder if there’s a way to vary the position on those to more correctly emulate the angles involved in a fencing stance (without sending my left patella shooting across the cube)

  • Is your form perfect?

    Then why can’t you teach him as you train yourself?

  • Dreya

    I’m glad Jauma’s seriously considering Agrippa. It seemed to me that he was just starting to think about refining his form when I left, and I’ve been hoping he’d continue that. It’ll totally change his game for the better.

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