I am full on crashing. I wish there was something wrong so I could fix it………….. I wish I could rip it out of me and physically fight it. I’m just so tired of being tired and feeling like shit for no reason. I’m fed up beating myself up, catching myself doing it, stopping, relapsing. Laying awake, not being able to sleep, thinking, thinking thinking. Going round and round in circles. It’s such bullshit. It’s that feeling of not being able to fight back, I hate it. 

Putting on a brave face, not showing it, hiding it, biting my tongue, I hate it. I want to be able to focus, I want to shut down my emotions, I want to let the aggression boil up, take hold of me and I want to let it out.


The North and stuff.

So I’m going into the untamed wilderness that is Cumbria next week to house sit my cousins place, which is a huge farmhouse in the exact middle of nowhere, worryingly close to the Scottish border. Needless to say one is taking one’s entrenching tool incase it becomes necessary to dig in and hold this far flung outpost of empire against the heathens from the north. Other than that it should be a quiet four or five days. I’m going with C which might be a good idea, or it might be a bad idea. C and I do not have the same domestic kinda relationship that I have with S. S and I can live together for months quite happily mainly because S is a more relaxed and affectionate kind of person; there would be no question of separate beds for instance and she’d take care of breakfast and I’d make dinner. If S was in the country I’d take her.

I always like going to hers for breakfast in the summer; she always looks so glamorous with her long jet black hair, the sunglasses sitting there in her dressing gown sipping orange juice. I’ve come to the conclusion that I need more women like S in my life: calm, intelligent, educated. Not educated in the “I have a PhD” sense either; I mean educated in the sense that they have intellectual curiosity and read widely, which is very rare. I’m actually wondering if it’s a cultural thing; I keep meeting foreign women who are just more intellectual than the average woman here, and less fond of cake too.

Me and C have been kinda rocky recently, I find the friendship quite stressful because she’s stressed all the time. Someone told her that she suffered from anxiety and days later she was still going on about it and if it’s not that it’s someone else in the office who’s given her a funny look or said something innocuous which she’s convinced has a deeper meaning. It’s not like you can challenge what she believes either. I find quite often I don’t have much to say to her; there often isn’t much to be said. She feels that such and such a person is picking on her……I don’t know one way or the other, there isn’t much for me to say. I’m hoping a few days away lets her decompress though.

I still wish I was taking S though.

Here, grab my wrist.

I do wonder sometimes looking at some of the things we do in Aikido. Or rather do wonder sometimes at the observational skills of some Aikido instructors; this also applies to martial artists generally but, I’m not overly interested at this point about what non-Aikidoka have to say about Aikido. For instance, wrist grabs. Given the number of techniques in Aikido, not to mention Judo, jujitsu, wrestling, that involve grabbing an opponent’s wrist, why do we have people saying that wrist grabs are unrealistic? In reality a wrist grab is the opening of a throw and must be dealt with immediately before the technique can develop and this misunderstanding of what a wrist grab is leads to all kind of wanky Aikido.

A lot of the kokyu exercises involving tori moving in such a way as to break the grip and uke moving in such a way as to maintain the grip until they are thrown are ridiculous; they teach a use of the body which is contrary to how the body is used during technique and rather than producing blending and harmony actually produces a disconnect. In fact uke actually has to be on balance all the way through just to maintain the grip. It’s idiotic and yet so many dojo I have seen actually end up not just doing exercise this way but actual technique. If something doesn’t work out right then uke needs to work on their ukemi, not tori needs to work on doing something sensible. 




You know, I genuinely don’t feel like talking about Aikido. I think I might have passed through brown belt syndrome and come out of the other side. Even when I see people from other dojo doing something wrong or being the uke from hell I feel no need to correct them. If they’re in my own dojo, fine I’ll help them out.

I do feel though that most Aikidoka are profoundly ignorant of Aikido, mainly because they never have any use for it off the mat, it’s not a living, breathing thing like say Aikijutsu was for the Samurai, which allows it to rapidly devolve into abstractions of abstractions. I think maybe I feel there isn’t much really to talk about when it comes to Aikido, except to say that people are so hung up on technique when there are no techniques in Aikido. I’m amazed at how many Aikidoka don’t know that O-Sensei was quite clear on this point that Aikido is not a grouping of techniques to be learned in response to various attacks, which is why they’re always inventing more or making new ways of doing the same thing. It’s the martial arts equivalent of realising there are a large number of paintings and thinking the only way of learning how to paint is to copy them all until you can reproduce each perfectly.

I feel like my practice has moved beyond that quite significantly. I’m at the point where I’m thinking about how I’m using my body during the technique, not esoteric and largely useless concepts about connection and extension which, I find, come naturally when you’re focusing on using your body properly.


I had blogs that are just personal whining and the last month or so I’ve been in a moderately bad state of depression so I’ve not blogged but today I feel like it. I realise that this will be largely about my feelings and not about any reality, which annoys me. I think that’s the second biggest problem with depression after the physical exhaustion it causes: you can be in a situation that is very positive and feel that it’s very negative and act accordingly. 

I, at the moment, feel quite lost and quite empty. I feel directionless, even though I’m not. I feel unappreciated. Actually. You know what it is? My male friends are awesome, I feel so appreciated by them and loved. Last friday I was feeling like utter shit and my mate dragged me out and we went drinking and I must have looked like shit because suddenly he just hugged me and you know what? I felt loved. 

Somehow though there’s a difference between male friends loving and appreciating me and feeling appreciated generally. I don’t understand it. Maybe I’ve just lonely. I want female appreciation. Yesterday I was with Rara for breakfast which turned into brunch which turned into lunch and she always makes me feel secure and special. I want that all the time, I feel like most of my female friendships are totally one sided and I suppose they’re friendships and maybe I want something more with someone.