Sunday, June 23, 2013

Rolling with upper belts... Wile E. Coyote vs. the Roadrunner

Recently, I had the opportunity to roll with a black belt with whom I don't regularly get to roll. I asked for some feedback afterward and he said, "It's probably just because you were rolling with me, but you are being hesitant and not committing to anything." And it was true. When rolling with someone whose jiu jitsu is leagues above my own, I just don't know what to do. I'm screwed if I'm offensive and I'm screwed if I sit back and play defensively. If I DO anything at all, I'm screwed. So it is safer to simply do nothing.

This, of course, is no way to be. Remember Cyborg vs. Schaub in Metamoris?

Failure to really engage is no way to  learn. After all, it is better to attack and be counterattacked than to do nothing at all, right?

It is not only black belts who can make us look silly. Anyone who is a few steps ahead can lay jiu jitsu booby traps that get us in trouble. While watching me roll with an upper belt this week, one of my training partners laughed and said, "It's like you're Wile E. Coyote and he's the Roadrunner." And it was true - every time I thought I was setting a tricky trap - boom!- another Acme brand anvil came down and smacked me in the head.

But here's the awesome thing about Wile E. Coyote - he always gets up and keeps fighting. Despite anvils, falling cliffs,  and unfortunate encounters with dynamite, he is able to shake off these traumas and try again. I would like to think that even his concussion-laden brain is capable to learning from each attack.

So given the choice between Brendan Schaub and Wile E. Coyote, I'll chose the coyote any day. It is better to fight and get smashed than to never really fight. You can blame the repetitive TBIs, but Coyote keeps engaging with Roadrunner despite it never ending well. I have to admire that. Persistence is a virtue.

A funny side chart on our buddy:

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