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My First Rear Naked Choke

"Being that you've never done this before, you may have a sore throat tomorrow," says my longtime friend and new jiu-jitsu teacher.

Sitting on the mat inside his barn-studio, heavy bags hanging from ceiling joists, a pull-up bar on chains, and air conditioner roaring in a fight with the 90 degree weather outside, I'm preparing to be introduced to the rear naked choke (RNC).

MMA is misunderstood

The further in love I fall with jiu-jitsu and mixed martial arts in general, the more need I feel to articulate how the sports, and lifestyles, impress me.

While finishing the book, Into The Cage: The Rise of UFC Nation, written by Nick Gullo, I read the following passage that sums nicely MMA as a sport.

Miesha Tate Podcast Interview with John Morgan on The MMA Roadshow

On The MMA Road Show with John Morgan, episode 173, former UFC Bantamweight powerhouse Miesha Tate gave a great interview not just by checking the boxes on routine questions, but for giving praise to current UFC fighters, especially Rose Namajunas; the sort of praise that speaks well to the recipient and the giver.

First Jiu-Jitsu Class

In the past, I've found a way to do a thing -- let’s say, stack firewood. And that way worked. Perhaps it wasn't the most efficient way to stack firewood but the result was good. The means, however, were predicated on will, effort, and/ or strength -- whatever the task called for.

New to playing cigar box guitar? Start with Shane Speal's beginner lesson

Shane Speal -- the driving force behind the modern cigar box guitar movement -- got called out on his video lessons... they weren't basic enough!

So Shane responded with this 6:33 minute video...
How to Play Cigar Box Guitar - The very BEGINNING lesson!

Serving the Homeless: A Lesson in Dignity

At the end of December 2017 and beginning of January 2018, some of the coldest temperatures on record in my hometown threatened the lives of the homeless. The thought of anyone suffering through dangerous weather breaks my heart. Perhaps my ego crafts a flawed story of unfortunate souls who may not ask for, but are in need of, help. Perhaps the plight of winter homelessness clouds my judgement as someone shuffles by me on the sidewalk on his way to God knows where in ruthless winter weather. My pity, it seems, is not in short supply. Knowing that I cannot turn my head away from someone else suffering, I joined local efforts to support the homeless during that deathly cold weather, and in those volunteer experiences learned that of the things the homeless need, pity isn’t one. Rather, I learned if there’s something homeless men and women need, other than support to survive, it’s to be treated with dignity.