Sunday, November 30, 2008

Random Things

It is the last day of the Thanksgiving holidays. My family is having another Thanksgiving dinner this afternoon. The house has the girls in it cleaning and cooking. ( I have been cleaning the longest and as I have just finished cleaning up the "Man Cave/computer/fencing stuff" room. I think it only fitting that I sit down a moment and enjoy the fruits of my labor, by goofing off and making a journal entry.)

As I have not fenced this week, this will have to be sort of random

Thanksgiving Holidays from Fencing:

I was looking forward to a break from fencing.....right up to the time I got one. It took one day when I missed a class and I started getting "antsy ". To make up for not fencing, I read everything I can find on the web about fencing. Many for the third time. I watched U Tube fencing. I worked on my en guard in six and my lunge ( with dime). I worked on my prep foot work action, were I drop the point, but my arm is till in a good six.

I have been to the gym every day it was open and tried to make my workouts " total body" , but slanted toward being fencing specific as well.Today if I get to get out of the house, I will do "tri's and bi's" and maybe shoulders. These are small muscle groups that I tend to not pay much attention to. I do not have enough time to get to the gym three times a week and fence ( generally), so I try to lift and do exercises that that hit multiple muscle groups. ( bench press, dips, chin ups, dead lifts, modified squats ....that sort of thing)

The fact that I miss fencing after just a day or so makes me happy in a way. It means that I am not "jaded" yet. It means the passion for fencing has not wavered. I can think of one Thanksgiving not to long ago were we had a very warm day and I borrowed a scoring box and went to the park and fenced. That was really fun! I so wish that there would have been a day like that over the holidays.

Fencing Net Discussion Forum:

When I first started fencing I was ravenous for information. ( I still am, though as you learn, it does not seem to come as fast. That may not make sense....but I understand the meaning.)
One of my main sources was the Fencing Net Discussion Forum. When you know nothing, everyone on this forum sounded like a god or goddess of fencing wisdom. A few still do, though it must be hard to appear god-like, if that is what you are shooting for. It would seem to me that gods would not feel so compelled to show that they were gods. Why would that be necessary?

I have been a member of this forum sense 2005. I have made around 150 post. Partly because I hate the attitude of some people that respond. This is always the case with people on the web They tend to be a bit snotty when some one can't reach out and slap their eye brows off. I have made a note of a couple I hope to meet in person. (You really need to see my predatory smile when I write that.) These people "flame" new and young members of the forum for their repetitive and often goofy questions. I wonder if some one ever gave up the sport after having to deal with one of these pompous a** *****. Kindness and tolerance.....NOT the first quality's you would notice on Fencing Net. Still...on more that one occasion, I want to know something so badly...or so quickly....that I allow myself to post a question there. I just make myself ignore some of the people that reply. ( See list....mentioned above. ~ smiles again ~)

On the other hand, there are really cool people there as well. Greybeard is one. He is a vet fencer about my age. A while back he had a stroke. To make a long story short, he continues to try to find a way to fence. He is an inspiration to me and others. We have had some correspondence of late and if he can, he is going to be at the Atlanta NAC . It is my intention to fence in that one. ( I have not yet decided if I would do Div III or Vet 50...or both. Those 50 year old Vets that have been fencing sense they were 8 are a scary lot.) I want to fence it, as I have only fenced one NAC before....I need to do some fencing shopping....I want to fence....I want to meet Greybeard. There are other reasons as well.

Coaches College:

I do not think I will be able to go to Coaches College again this year. I only have 2 weeks vacation and it would not be fair of me to use the majority up for fencing. I had been working on my previous boss, so that I could finagle another week of paid vacation. Sadly, my new boss is a " by the book " kind of guy and my chances of cutting the same deal with him are nonexistent.

It would take a lot of money and time.....but it is SO worth it!

In truth, if I took Epee I, I doubt I would learn much that Coach Miller has not worked with me on for the last two years. I am sure there would be a lot to learn, but not as much as when I went for Foil I.

It is the OTC ( Olympic Training Center) experience that makes it so great. It is being in the company of so many other fencers from across the country. It is difficult to explain if you have not been there. I would mark it as one of the best events of my life and I would love to do it again.

I know that I want to relive that experience at least one more time, though I do not ever see myself as being a coach. A good helper to a assistant coach perhaps....but never THE coach. I do not have the right drive or people skills for that. I do not have the skills....period. But...I could be a good helper...or sub once in a while...that sort of thing. Plus, having some rudimentary coaching skills is a part of being the fencer I want to be. I want to have skills in all the disciplines. Not necessarily BIG skills....but some skill or knowledge. Plus...Coaches College is just a blast!

Time to get back to cleaning and see if I can work in a bit of gym time before hand.


Meredith said...

Jim...I admire your dedication! I'm afraid my enthusiasm for fencing comes and goes, mostly due to people's attitudes like the ones you mention. The recent clinic at RFC was great...hopefully MM will consider hosting another clinic with a coaching focus! It won't replace coaches' college but it would be a good close-range alternative. Good luck in Wilmington!

The Gray Epee said...

Good suggestion on the MM clinic. I love weekend clinics and I wish more were available.

Thanks Meredith!