Archive for November, 2005

Do jang day – November 24

Friday, November 25th, 2005

I managed to tear myself away from my book and make myself go to the do jang. I took the gumdo class and taekwondo. I was sooo tired during and after gumdo (I nearly forgot my patterns, kept blanking out!) so I’m surprised I made it through taekwondo. It was funny. I didn’t move unless I had to do some kicking or hold the pads for my partner to kick.

Getting home was a workout too what with the blistering wind and snow. Feels like winter already but the weather is supposed to warm up. Blah… silly weather. Still not digging out my boots yet. Hehe. Because of the snow and how tired I was, I didn’t do any running. Maybe once this snow melts in a few days…

Time to get back to my book.

Cassandrah
Your local webmistress
Brigid’s Flame

A Novel Idea

Thursday, November 24th, 2005

MM,

Okay, I mentioned in another blog that I’ve been reading quite a bit lately.

I finished reading The Silmarillion by Tolkien about two weeks ago. Now, at the recommendation of Nathan, I’m reading Robert Jordan’s serial, The Wheel of Time. Of course, I have to start at book one, The Eye of the World and there is now book eleven released. A long way to go to catch up, but that’s okay. It’s been awhile since I’ve enjoyed great fantasy reading. I’m almost done the first book and will have to run out and get the second one soon. (Nathan only has the hardcover versions of the later books.)

In addition, I will have to read Nathan’s new novel soon (http://www.natesimpson.com/blog/archives/2005/11/21/novelizing/). It’s in the editing stage now, but meanwhile he’s working on his third novel. A novel about a cat. Hehe… he started that one awhile ago actually, but the kittens and I have convinced him to finish it. 😀 It will be amusing to read when that’s done too.

Lots of reading to do – explains why I haven’t been writing lately. Just one of those phases I guess.

Okay, enough blogging for today. Back to The Wheel of Time.

BB,
Cassandrah
Your local webmistress
Brigid’s Flame

The Idiocy Often Called the “Superior Species”

Thursday, November 24th, 2005

MM,

This just in the news recently. City of Toronto is thinking of enforcing animal licensing by-laws and this isn’t referring to animals being kept at the zoo – this is about the “Fluffy” we keep as pets (cat or dog, take your pick). Here’s the news story – Pulse24.com – Dogged Pursuit?

Now what is appalling to me isn’t just that they are thinking of enforcing this by-law but that they have this licensing law to begin with. From an animal rights perspective, cats and dogs have every right to live freely in this city, in this country, on this PLANET – as much as humans do! Whatever happened to enlightenment? Still a long way away for this society, I guess. In addition, the fees for pets is cheaper if they are spayed/neutered and have been microchipped. How’s that for enlightened? Little Fluffy has to give up something of himself just to get a discount so he can live here. Imagine if this was forced on humans, how much of an outrage would there be? Imagine if some alien species took over the planet and imposed a fee on every man and woman and gave a discount if he/she had a vasectomy/hysterectomy. Or better yet, imagine an alternate reality where perhaps reptiles overran the population and decided that humans were procreating too fast, so they made us pay fees just for being here and gave us a discount if we… went under the knife? I say treat animals the way we’d like to be treated. Fairly. As equal living, conscious beings. But I guess, sadly, not everyone can see beyond their hand in front of their greedy eyes. Such near-sightedness, so much for being a “superior species”.

The City of Toronto website says that we can “save” money from the animal licensing (Animal Services: Licensing – Toronto Public Health) How much of a fool do they think its citizens are? Pray tell me how me dishing out money EVERY YEAR for an ludicrous fee will save me money? It seems to me I’d save money NOT paying a fee every year. And what about the pet rescue missions? This certainly makes it much harder for them to keep rescuing the cats and dogs off the streets if they have to pay fees on top of normal pet care needs for every animal they rescue.

For those who are interested in the legal aspects of this, see Toronto Municipal Code Chapter 349. Note sections 349-10, 349-18, and 349-25 as well as footnote 13. The City is planning on enforcing the licensing fees as per the Provincial Offences Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. P.33, s. 61. Just great, nearly every citizen in the City of Toronto would then be considered to be “offenders”. Lovely. Thanks for turning us into “Toronto the Bad”, no longer “the good”.

Cassandrah
Your local webmistress and pet lover
Brigid’s Flame

Training update – November 11 to 21

Thursday, November 24th, 2005

Friday, November 11

I went to gumdo class and learned the rest of pattern #4 and learned all of pattern #5. Because of the demo in December I decided I won’t test for gumdo that month. Too much to work on. Besides I figure an extra two months practice before the next belt in swords will be good. It’s good to work on the basic techniques before moving on.

Saturday, November 12

We had a colour belt test for which the black belts have to attend and help grade. The people testing did fairly well – some better than others, but overall good. We had a short black belt meeting after. I was thankful we did not have any training as I was exhausted that day.

Wednesday, November 16

Okay, so I stayed home Sunday to Tuesday. It’s because I started reading some fantasy novels (recommended by Nathan of course!). I knew that once I started reading these books, I’d be absorbed by them. So, now I’m reading The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan. Book 11 was just released. I have a long way to go… starting at book one, The Eye of the World. And before that, I just finished reading The Silmarillion by Tolkien.

Wednesday I decided I needed to do some running. I ran to Park Road and Bloor Street (approximately a half mile) in 4 minutes 36 seconds. I went to the bank then ran home from Church and Bloor streets in 3 minutes 58 seconds. Pretty good.

I didn’t make it into the do jang. I stayed home and practiced sword patterns, duelling techniques and candle snuffing. I’m working on two candles now (this really works out the biceps and triceps!). I also practiced some taekwondo hand techniques (what a workout!) that we don’t normally practice in the do jang. I switched do jangs and found out that they concentrate mostly on kicking, so I have to make myself practice some hand stuff on my own. I find it peculiar how people just want to focus on kicking and not balance out their martial arts with hand techniques. It’s good to know how to use both your hands and feet (and let’s recall that taekwondo means “the art of the hands and feet”). Keep a balance between the two. There are pros and cons to using both hand and foot techniques. Thus, once in awhile I practice some stuff on my own. I also needed to decide on what techniques to do for the board breaking demo.

I even got Nathan to do some taekwondo stuff… 😀 Our arms were very sore after! But it felt good to get a decent workout.

Thursday, November 17

I went to the do jang to practice some stuff for the demo. I needed to practice the self-defence routine for the demo and some patterns.

Sunday, November 20

Okay, just getting into The Wheel of Time. Book is intriguing. Couldn’t tear myself away and go to the do jang on Friday or Saturday. Sunday, I stayed home. I practiced some candle snuffing (two candles). Giving my arms a good workout this week. I think it’s because I hadn’t been in the gym for awhile. Anyway arms are very sore. I don’t think it’s the biceps really anymore, it’s the brachialis (the muscle that initiates the lever movement of the arm). The brachialis is a very hard muscle to build up. If I recall my anatomy reading, the brachialis does more work than the biceps – but it’s the biceps that gets the attention, isn’t that just the way of life? One does all the work while the other gets the credit for it. Sheesh.

Monday, November 21

Yay! I made it to the do jang just to practice for the demo. I needed to practice the self-defence routine with my partner. I had to show him what to do. It’s a women’s self-defense routine – the guy does all the attacking. I also practiced patterns again. I think I got a third person to do the patterns with for the demo.

After the do jang I headed to the gym. My knee is really screaming at me to go work out my quads and hamstrings.

Leg press
Hamstring flexor
Hip adductors
Hip abductors
Pull-ups (again military and parallel)
Dips
Chest press
Bar pulls (works the muscles next to the scapulae on the back)
Pectoral press
Shoulder fly
Shoulder lift
Bicep curl
Tricep extensor
Leg lifts
Back extensor

My brachiali were still sore from candle snuffing so I only did a few reps of the bicep curl. The muscles still haven’t rebuilt I suppose. I guess I really worked them with the candle snuffing. I do at least a hundred cuts when practicing I think. I lose count, but I know it’s more than a hundred. I skimmed on the pushups – just 10 reps of each kind (I do 4 different kinds of pushups) and did 20 on my fingertips while doing the side splits. Didn’t have enough time to do full stretching so did some light stretching and went home. Gym was closing. My tail bone is still sore – no situps still.

Cassandrah
Your local webmistress
Brigid’s Flame

Training update – October 31 to November 10

Friday, November 11th, 2005

Okay, I know this update is overdue, but just been a bit busy doing other things and I guess I wasn’t in a writing mood. So here goes…

Monday, October 31

I decided to run to the gym then get a good workout and run home. I ran to the gym in 5 minutes 49 seconds (subtracted time at the stoplights) and ran home from the gym in 5 minutes 52 seconds.

While at the gym, I did my standard weight training workout.

Leg press
Hamstring flexor
Hip adductors
Hip abductors
Pull-ups (again military and parallel)
Dips
Chest press
Bar pulls (works the muscles next to the scapulae on the back)
Pectoral press
Shoulder fly
Shoulder lift
Bicep curl
Tricep extensor
Leg lifts
Back extensor

Of course, I did my pushups and stretching. My tailbone is still sensitive, so only can do side situps (good for the obliques). As you might imagine, the run back home was a little harder after this workout, but I still did a decent time.

Thursday, November 3

As I was kind of tired from the Samhain/Halloween weekend, I ended up taking Tuesday and Wednesday off and pretty much did some stuff at home. So Thursday I finally made it into the do jang for gumdo and taekwondo. The cardio was good as always.

Friday, November 4

I had to go the bank so I ran to the bank at Yonge/Bloor and then back home. The run to Yonge/Bloor (short route) took me 4 minutes 46 seconds (not bad, getting better). After going to the bank quickly, I ran home in 4 minutes 47 seconds.

As I was going out this night, I didn’t have lots of time to go the gym or the do jang.

Monday, November 7

Had a good weekend, so I went to the do jang and the gym. We started having a poomse class on Mondays and I finally had a chance to go. It was good. I need to practice my forms too (can’t just teach them all the time).

After class, I decided to go to the gym. My knee was bothering me for some reason, so I decided taking the cardio class wasn’t too good an idea. I didn’t want to do too many roundhouse kicks as they are generally hard on the knees (in the long-run).

Leg press
Hamstring flexor
Hip adductors
Hip abductors
Pull-ups (again military and parallel)
Dips
Chest press
Bar pulls (works the muscles next to the scapulae on the back)
Pectoral press
Shoulder fly
Shoulder lift
Bicep curl
Tricep extensor
Leg lifts
Back extensor

I finally remembered to do the free weights for the shoulder. It works the front and back shoulder muscles. Hadn’t done these in awhile so they were a little sore after. I think sword practice has helped though. Of course, I did my pushups and stretching. Then I headed home sufficiently tired. (Your muscles should always feel fairly tired after a good workout or you aren’t working out at all!)

Tuesday, November 8

I ran to Church and Bloor and back for a mile run. I did this in 7 minutes 45 seconds. I still think this isn’t a full mile. Either that or the run to Yonge/Bloor (long route) is longer than 1 mile.

Then I went to the do jang for gumdo and taekwondo.

I took a break from exercising on Wednesday and Thursday. I was starting to feel like I exercise all the time. (Gee… wonder why that is…?) So, I rested for a two days listening to some music and finally finished reading a book and started a new one. So that brings us to today. Darn… no time to run really as I have to leave in about 30 minutes for gumdo. I’m still eating so no time to digest. Tomorrow is a black belt training again. We have training and a meeting once a month on Saturdays. Tomorrow is also a colour belt testing, so I’m going in to help with the test. I always like to see how well the colour belts are doing. So maybe I’ll do some running later or on the weekend.

Cassandrah
Your local webmistress
Brigid’s Flame