Saturday, April 08, 2006

I finally got my first class where I assisted under my belt today. I had intended to stay for two more classes, but Victoria, aka Miss Plummer, told me that she didn't need the extra help for either of those classes (Bear Cubs or Special Abilities), so I went home after that.

But first, my regular class. It's the few days after graduation, so we really don't learn much with form or anything like that right now, especially since the school's going to be close most of next week for Spring Break. Which is fine. I don't remember everything we did, but rather more about the one kid who is definitely a problem. His name is Malachi. He put the "mal" (bad" in Malachi. He's one of those learning disabled kids who gives other LD kids (like my Drew) a bad name. He's a real discipline problem, and he immediately strikes you from the moment you meet him as a troublemaker. I've seen his parents, and I just get the impression from looking at them that this kid is one of those super "late in life" kids, and while I know they send him to the Lewis School for his education, they strike me as the types who don't discipline him too much, and depend on school and TKD to straighten him out, you know what I mean? Well, it started with him being obnoxious in general. Then, when we were supposed to get our "new" weapon, called the ssang-jeh-bahng (aka numchucks), he said something obnoxious that REALLY got Ma'am pissed by the way he said it, and then he announced that he didn't have a pair, as it got stuck on the roof of his house. Ma'am, knowing what a troublemaker this kid is, told him that he would have to just move his hands or do pushups instead, and that he'd have to earn the money to pay for a new pair, because she wasn't going to have his parents just buy him a new pair or lend him a pair for class. Then, when we all had to spar, he was roughhousing a little with one of the adult men before officially starting our sparring rounds, and he kicked the guy in the groin. Now, first of all, you don't kick anyone in the groin, that's a given, especially one without a cup on. Second, you're not supposed to do that anyway in TKD. Third, the guy he kicked is a black belt and bigger than him, so he should know better! Malachi looked at me when he was done, thinking that I'd find it amusing, and I told him my disgust with it and that it wasn't funny, and he said almost proudly, "I know." When we had to switch partners, he wanted to fight me, and I absolutely refused. I don't need some kid beating up on me if he can't control himself. And I was very clear when I said, "No way, I'm NOT fighting you," and walked away. After class, Ma'am told him that after he got his gear off, she wanted to see him in her office. I don't know what was said, and I didn't see him leave, but I have no doubt that he was given a pretty good lecture. I almost hope that if he doesn't watch himself, he'll be kicked out of the TKD school. He's not a black belt yet, but at the rank he's at, he should know how to control himself and speak to his superiors, etc. I'm sorry, I'm one of those people who see kids who are DS or autistic behave better than this kid, and they DO have neurological issues. I have no sympathy for this kid. He's just a nuisance. It's funny in an ironic way. Ma'am has to be nice to the kids to a certain degree, because the parents pay for her to teach them. Her temper, and her perspective, are not different than mine. The difference is, that I'm not paid, so I can say what I want to this kid, at least for now. Ick-grrrrr.
I did have some positive moments of my own. I was at least a little ahead on the ssang-je-bahng (I'm going to have to find the spelling of that), but hopefully I can learn a lot more this cycle. And I'm still doing okay on the elbow board break. Still took a couple of tries, but not a lot of tries. Even the gentleman holding the board, Ron Plummer (yes, Victoria's dad), noticed that it happened a lot quicker. Ma'am was telling Ron, "Don't let her [meaning me] practice too much on this. She needs to just go." Sure enough, BAM. I think the problem today was that I was stopping, when I really need to visualize my arm going all the way through. If I do that, then I do follow through.
So anyway, after class, I took a quick break for lunch, watched the older kids' color belts (which I could've helped on-- maybe next time I will), and then went for the Tiny Tigers' class. This is the class Drew would be in if he went on Saturdays instead of Wednesday. I think I made a good impression. I did stuff with the kids, and helped some of them understand how they were supposed to be doing a drill with front stances by telling them to pretend they are big fat sumo wrestlers, and that's how they had to walk. Once they understood that, they did it correctly. There was also a new kid named Hunter whose dad was trying to get him to participate. Evidentally, he visited last week and was stubborn about it, and he was just as stubborn in trying it out this week. I worked with him a little, and gave positive encouragement to him where I could, and I think he responded better once he got into it. Some of the other kids responded well to me too, as they really behaved well when they paid attention to me. So, I think I'm definitely cut out to do the kids' classes. I left feeling pretty good.
I talked with Ma'am before class, and she was cool about me helping with classes today, and also with helping me with my form for tournament in a couple of weeks. I really hope I can get into some sort of regular rhythm with classes and eventually learning the business side of things soon enough. Our neighbor Brenda offered to watch Drew after school and such if I needed help. I don't want to take advantage of her offer, but she said compared to some other kids that her son Evan is friends with, Drew is a CALM one. I wouldn't have guessed that for the life of me, but hey, if she enjoys having Drew over, all the better.
I'll need to practice in the meantime.

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