Jeu this morning! We didn’t do too much new stuff which was a bit of a drag, but I did work out a stage combat piece with The Clown that was nice. We kept it loose and left room for improv, regarded the audience a fair amount, and he was happy as well. He asked “Hey man, you want to be my partner?” Talking about Europe this summer. Don’t know yet, because of the possibility of work in the States. It would be nice to get performance training under my belt, but also performance and teaching experience at the Masque is nice. Two first years collided hard with their heads today in their stage combat piece. One had a huge bump on her forehead. I gave her antiinflammatories and a drink of my water. She seemed okay later in the day.
I started work on my independent conditioning program. I’m really used to training all alone but here people always seem to come up to you when you train. I really am beginning to appreciate that sort of support in the gym. The help me stretch, keep me company, etc. I have been working on my hollow-backs and came up with a new exercise just for that.
I also found out that The American and one other first year are unhappy with the school and are not planning on finishing school here. I guess because they do not like how generallized everything is here right now. Wish they did their research earlier! There are other people who would have killed to be in their spot. They are thinking of going to the San Francisco school instead.
Trampo was cancelled, so I did another hour of equilibre with Byamba. The pike presses and handstand pushups at the end were funny. I did 5 and 10, and When someone asked how many, Byamba said 25. When I was done, everyone came over and pretended to eat my muscles. Weird, but flattering, I guess.
Fil de fer was fil de fer. Need new shoes.
Then came Russian Bar. It was much better today, and a lot of fun. I feel the jumping motion a lot better, The key, really, I think, is to stay relaxed. My goal is a good salto by the end of October.
Another hour of equilibe, and then planche! We did Korean style this time, which means that you neeed to land back on the planche. Easier and harder than it seems. It is really all in the timing and the placement, and it takes a lot out of your quadriceps. There is some precision involved, and when you send someone, you really need to press that sucker down. I want to be doing double backs off of Korean plank by the end of October or so.
I was hanging out after Planche, and Alexander the ITA coach came over to me and said “Tanabe, you coach acro.” He was the only one teaching the preparatory kids since Caroline was out, and wanted help. So I taught 45 minutes or so of acro, making it a fun class for the kids, and then hung out with Alex for a bit. We watched kids jump from the blue padded wall into the pit. They were all so scared! Alex said “No, is okay. Mostly, they are interested in playing.” So it was a fun class for them all. The little girl wanted us to come see her jump into the pit. After she went, Alex said, “Tanabe, show them double salto.” I’d never done one like that from standing before! Even into a pit! So I was a little apprehensive, but I wasn’t about to show my Russian coach, the “torture monster,” that! So I jumped right up there, and he shouted to the gym “Toutlemonde! Toutlemonde! Regarde Tanabe!” Thanks Alex. Off I went, standing double salto (well, 1 ¾). After that, Straps Guy and The Trapezist joined me. She was a bit of a chicken. I did also a gainer back and synchro front with Straps Guy and a strong-looking kid from the high school program. Also a double front in synchro, and saw Straps Guy do a back full.
My side summies are coming along well, and I can do them easily on the trampoline, now. Straps Guy had me do them looking at him and making a face. To relax, just scratch your nose!
I talked with The Trapezist asked me if she was any good at equilibe. I said “Yes ,” without hesitating and asked if she could work harder. She said that she worked as hard as her body would allow, and I said then you are as good as you can possibly be. This bothered her for some reason, but what more can a person ask for? There is only tomorrow for improvement. Your maximum potential must be met at every moment. “You don’t need to be so strict with yourself,” she commanded me when I insisted on teaching the preparatory kids, “you can have fun.” She had offered to take over for me. I don’t know what she means by that. Self-discipline is something you work hard to obtain, but is really hard to lose.