Today was a long day. Jack went to see his daughter because she just gave birth, and that makes him a granddad. He was gone. Chloe too since she no longer works here, and Jesse ran errands for a good chunk of the day. So the office was quiet. I had a few job applicants come in and ask me questions.
There is an agent, and her name is Lulu - that's her real name, and her "thing" is finding placement for pretty Hispanic ladies who don't speak much English. She is one of the more annoying people I have encountered. I may not understand Spanish, but I sure understand that tone of voice. Some things carry across culture chasms, and unfortunately rudeness is one of them. She answered over top of the person I was quizzing and if her charges started to give an answer she didn't like, she prompted them in Spanish to give me a different answer.
On top of that, she tried to negotiate a raise at the six-month point for a charge who wasn't even close to being hired. (Her charge hadn't even interviewed with Jesse the ops manager.) Lulu's ballsy; I'll give her that.
But my day got better after seven. That's when my kickboxing class starts. I work out, my heart rate goes up, and before I know it, class is ending and I feel relaxed again.
Our teacher is Art Derman, the man, the legend. It seems that everywhere I go in Dallas, people smile and nod when I say Art's my teacher. "Oh, I know Art," they say. Know Art. Know Art? How do they know him? Does he know them? Does he know who they are? But he's like that, real personable and stuff. So I think people could have a conversation or two with him and feel like he's a nice guy and they think they like him and they know him.
Personally, I sort of have a crush on the school's nineteen year old assistant instructor. Yes, I know that's never going to happen, but look at the bright side. He's fun to look at.
In fact, sometimes I commit the lie of omission when I go visiting other schools. I like to visit other schools, for bench-marking and to learn new stuff. When I visit I sometimes neglect to mention that Mr. Derman is my instructor. "Oh," I would say when questioned, and then provide the name of the assistant instructor who is virtually unknown. "I don't know him," the teacher at the away school would grunt, with some satisfaction. It's not a complete lie. Even though Derman owns the school, Mark Burr has been my primary teacher this past year; that is, he taught the most hours.
Mark's a tallented teacher and I appreciate him. And Art is over the top good.
I don't think I could stand to be that good. Sometimes with Art, I'm waiting for the cracks to show. Whenever anyone has a good game face, I wonder what they're really like and if they're dying inside. Perfectionists are usually hard on themselves because of things in their childhood.
Enough analysis for now. I appreciate Art and his high standards.
On Sun May 22, written on Mon. lunch
Mom had me wash the cars and go poop scooping after the dog in the back yard. I went running in the morning, before church. I went to Darby's Sunday school class with Mom and Dad. I don't know why I keep ricocheting between churches.
I had wondered in fact if I was to attend the church of a Baptist preacher who used to run his own martial arts school. It would be sort of hard to do, because I disliked the way he conducted himself when I first saw him. Maybe I'll check it out anyway.
I played a game of Scrabble with Mom and broke the 300 mark for the first time. I had accidentally picked up too many tiles the turn before I played "Faqirs" for 50 points, so I guess in reality; I didn't win (or break the 300 point mark) after all.
Mr. Derman had told his adult kickboxing class that he was going to spar them this Tuesday, so in preparation, I practiced getting up off my duff. I hit the floor and got up again 100 times.
Recorded at lunch- Tue, May 24
My folks are leaving today. They'll stop back in one week, but then they will be gone again, for 8 to 10 weeks the second time. They do that fairly often. (Leave for the summer.) It's my job to keep house and cook for nearly three months.
I'm not very attuned to those tasks, or at least, I haven't had much practice. I tend to get thinner and eat bland foods during the summer.
Keeping my mother's flower garden alive is one task that is especially dear to her heart. Mom got lawn service for the summer, and Dad didn't say much about it (she thinks he disapproved). I was extremely grateful; because that is one less thing I have to worry about. I will have to turn the sprinkler on and off every day. Shopping for groceries is something I dread. That is one task that I hope Brett will help shoulder.
Dad had volunteered for an unpaid security walkabout at the campus where he works. He was going once every other week. I went with him sometimes for the company and the opportunity to talk. I went on the walkabout yesterday. I didn't really have much to talk about, but he was leaving for the summer and I wanted to be around him.
Jaime and Cassandra are away for a week since it is their first anniversary.
Jesse and Bob hired a new girl yesterday and she starts this evening. My first impression was favorable.
I did my first lockout today. Vinny the restaurateur was locked out. I don’t feel badly now, but I will if he comes to the office crying- or aggressive.
The new girl didn’t show up. I am disappointed. The work at the office will pick up, and I won’t have the help I was waiting for.
Today they started sparring at the school. Art didn’t participate. (In the long run, it’s probably better.) I am excited to see sparring start there, because I did miss it. The folks were ready. They just needed a kick-start.
Jennie was supposed to call me yesterday but she didn’t, so I called her. She seems to be making progress.
I’ll keep praying for her.
She prays for me too.
I ran again this morning, but tomorrow I plan to take a break from running. I called Jennie yesterday and she agreed to phone me on the mornings where I have to work out extra hard to avoid expected mood swings. I'm betting the endorphins, dulled senses, and tired feeling will carry me through to the end of the day so I don't freak out about one thing or another.
It's a long shot, but it's worth a try.
I sort of miss my folks today. Brett works the third shift right now, so I get the house to myself when I get home.
I'm going to make some spaghetti. And check on the front yard since the lawn service was here and I want to see how they did.
Oh! That new girl started today. Brianna, the one I wanted to come work for us. I have to say though - she came across as a total idiot. I gave her one simple task and she didn't know what on earth she was doing. She was upset by things like the computer screen being crowded.
Ha ha! I hope she does better.
(MMmm, that spaghetti was good. The lawn service did a very nice job. My brother Brett and I are going to go on a walk. )
Brianna worked today and I was relieved. Already she's impacted (for the better) how we interact with two of our vendors.
Jesse in particular had a very hectic day. I was remembering work orders I was supposed to have put in two days ago, and when a deadline changed, my boss Jack took over my data entry. He was three times as fast as I was! I watched him for six minutes and asked questions so I could learn to input data more quickly.
Bob called and asked that we work late today so we could get off tomorrow at four PM. It seemed like a fair trade-off, with it being Memorial Day weekend and everything. So I missed my kickboxing class and stayed at work.
Jesse was asked to go on collections calls in person and by herself, which is bad, because she's about five foot tall, and wears heels all the time.
Well, our tenant, the great designer John Bouchet, who is the First man I have ever seen carrying a Louis Vuitton bag, came in and asked to see Jack. Jesse had served him a letter telling him to pay up two grand or get socked with late fees. John was civil to me but looked shocked. I announced Mr. Bouchet and told him to go ahead to Jack's office.
He started down the hall, and as he did I could hear his footsteps fall faster and harder with each step and I realized he was going to assault Jack- verbally as it turned out, but I didn't know that. I got up in a hurry and headed down the hall, embarrassed that I hadn't seen it coming. I wasn't there in time to see the initial interaction. He was yelling and Jack was telling him to back down. John had already stepped back from a more aggressive stance by the time I got there. I stood there watching the two of them until John calmed down considerably.
Just think- if he had thrown a punch I would have missed the whole thing.
I went to visit Mr. Kaufman's school yesterday. Mr. Kaufman bought the school from Mr. Carson, and it used to be my school. I hadn't been there in a year.
After class I sparred BJ Williams. He's about three times better than he was when I left Mr. Kaufman's school. He is a badass. Always was, but now he can EXECUTE. Very scary. He told me about Mr. Guthrie coming to the school and laying him out with a stiff sidekick. BJ is not young, and Mr. Guthrie neither.
I have to call BJ "Mr. Williams" now because I offered him next to no resistance as he pounded me up and down the mat. I was running backwards the whole time, and when I wasn't, I was being thrown to the mat. There's a little piece of my elbow (inside) that is broken, but is minor, and I expect it to heal stronger.
Finally Mr. Williams put an end to the foolishness with a right cross to my solar plexus. I was done sparring for the night.
He worked with me on takedowns, takedown counters, and forms. Then he told me this story, since I hadn't seen him in a year.
BJ works as the manager of some apartments, and the ladies had been complaining of a peeping tom. One of them called him and whispered: "He's right at my back door." BJ told his wife to call 911, got his .45 and slid out quietly. He moved alongside the building. When he got to the corner, he had his back to the wall, slipped the .45 around the corner and stretched his neck around to see.
At that exact moment he felt cold steel pressed to his temple.
It was a woman police officer responding to the call. (That was quick.) "Drop your weapon!" she hollered. BJ slowly put his weapon down, explaining that he was the building manager. She made him lie down on the ground, and when his wife ran out yelling, "That's my husband!" the officer pointed her pistol at her and told her to keep her distance, then drew a bead on BJ again. It took them 45 minutes of explaining to clear things up. The officer chided him.
"Never go outside with a weapon," she told him. "I didn't know when you were going to get here," BJ protested mildly.
I laughed and told BJ it was the best story I'd heard all month.