Friday, April 18, 2008

A Thin Line Between Confident and Cocky?

I tell ya, nothing like a day in training to remind ya to check your ego in at the door before you enter Temple!

So, all week long, I've been basking in my post-testing glow, really focusing on good vibes from others and within. I kept thinking, yeah, I did do pretty well at erluquan at testing, I'm gonna make to Level 2, yeahhh.... On Tuesday, before class, Shen asked me how testing went and I told him pretty good, so he asked if I wanted to buy an orange uniform right then and there. I laughed off his suggestion and told him my balls were not as big as his, but our conversation got me thinking -- is it possible to know for sure where one really stands?

And then during Tuesday's class, I ran out of gas during the last 40 minutes or so, perhaps due to my procrastination in doing and then filing my income tax returns at the last minute, so that worried me a bit. I thought for half a second, am I too wimpy for Level 2? But I shrugged it off -- won't happen again. Yeahhhh...

Wednesday, in my apartment I rearranged on my wall the certificates for chujiquantao and yiluquan that I had thrown in cheapo frames a while ago and made room for a third frame....

Thursday, I went through most of the first half of class feeling gross as a result of some spicy grilled chicken and hummus I had consumed for lunch. Here I was, over two years into training, and hadn't I learned anything about foods to avoid before a class? Argh!

But what really threw me? During lihetui, Shifu yelled at everyone to stop skipping between kicks, and then he saw me, and Blammo! Q. gets sent to kung fu kindergarden! Oh noooooooo! No, no, no!!!! To my recollection, I hadn't been sent to KFK by Shifu since last August, when I had a really horrible class. He grumbled something at me to the effect of you've been training so many years and you still skip?! Unlike the prior times I was sent to KFK, this time I felt no trace of anger. I knew I blew it. Skipping between kicks is something I've struggled with forever. I felt sad and ashamed. Here I was, on the cusp of joining the Level 2 club, or so I thought, and failed in the most basic of ways. *Sigh!*

So for the second half of class, I went through KFK basics, ever so mindful of Shifu's eyes watching me. I felt like it was testing all over again! And thank god, I didn't screw anything up again to the point where I'd need a remedial tutorial. By the time the KFK group for the evening had dwindled down to just me and two other guys, Shifu had us do forms for him. First guy went and got some fine tuning for his chujiquantao. Then it was my turn. And I swear, I felt more nervous doing 1st form this time than during actual testing, maybe because I was painfully more aware of Shifu's scrutiny. Testing was a blur, but all I could think about now was, Man, he's probably re-evaluating more whether Qbertplaya is Level 2 material. We cycled through and then it was time for yiluquan. First guy didn't know it, so then Shifu looked at me, and I went, heart-pounding, doing each gong bu and mabu as low as possible, throwing each punch as though my life depended on it. When I finished, I heard him do an abbreviated, somewhat approving, Hm. (I think.)

So last night I tossed and turned a little over this. Is Level 2 gonna happen for me? Damn. I thought I was over this mind-torture. Gahhhhh....well, I guess I'll know in about 49 hours from now, won't I...tick...tick...tick....


  1. srsly.

    And I get sent to KFK half the time I train level 1. So far sifu has not made good on his threat to send me back to level 1.