In which I brave the elements in a steel box for the sake of grace (and am not graceful) - Tactical Ninja
Oct. 15th, 2013
09:18 am - In which I brave the elements in a steel box for the sake of grace (and am not graceful)
I realised this morning that it's been over two years since I gave up smoking. I will be over here feeling pleased with myself.
Meanwhile, Wellington folks - how did you weather the night? I surveyed the carnage this morning and we came off pretty lightly. I've lost one broccoli, one bean and a couple of flower plants. Two of the pots around the deck had tipped over and one rootbound succulent had travelled a few metres. Oddly, one of the little tags that label the herb garden had come out, blown up and over and landed on the windward side of the deck railing. Weird. But no actual damage to anything, and considering how exposed our house is I think we're pretty lucky, it was wild out there last night.
Here's a vid of some people who didn't fare as well as we did. I'm surprised actually, because that wind was northerly so I thought the south coast would be better off than this. And here's an article in which a trampoline ends up hanging from a power line. Gosh.
I was quite pleased to be offered a lift instead of walking - it hadn't even occurred to me that not-walking is a possibility these days, and the fact that I didn't suggest it first means I don't feel like a wimp. But the reality is that the park we would've had to walk down through had enough fallen trees and branches in it that driving was actually more sensible.
Anyway, this class is the advanced class. I don't consider myself advanced even though I've done a few classes before. When I look at the other people there, I am the least experienced flyer in the group. Sadly, I'm also the heaviest. This isn't a self-loathing warped body-image thing, it's the truth. We're currently short of bases so there were two flyers per base, and my fellow flyer is teeny-tiny, as in she weighs literally 40kg. I weigh just under 60, and am much less experienced as well. What this means is that my timing is not as good, my jumps aren't as high, and my helpful positioning (make like a stick) is not as helpful.
So in terms of the poor bugger that has to pick us up and throw us around like we weigh nothing, picking me up after picking her up is about a 30kg perceived difference. Which is not insubstantial.
On the upside, Happy is quite strong. He didn't drop me on my head and I didn't crush his nuts, so we are both keeping to our end of the bargain. It will take a bit of practice before it becomes a graceful exercise in teamwork and communciation. At the moment it looks more like a farmer shifting his spuds after someone overfilled the sack. Complete with spud-like landings and the occasional "Oof!" noise.
We will get there. The first class is always a bit disheartening and I have to remind myself it's been over a year since I did active-style adagio. Handbalancing has made me stronger and more flexible and that is showing, but it also trains your brain in different ways because as an individual pursuit you don't have to think about timing what you do to work with someone else, and you also have to balance yourself. With adagio, as a flyer you aren't supposed to balance yourself at all, your job is to stay as solid as possible so the other person can balance you, and then let them do it. It's harder than you might think.
Imagine this broom is a person:
That's what 'make like a stick' means. Imagine if it were a bit of string or some other wobbly thing, or if it kept moving just when he thought he had it balanced. The kid wouldn't be able to balance it and it'd get dropped on its head and possibly crush his nuts in the process.
Psychologically, it's really hard to be a stick and let someone else balance you, especially if you're upside down doing a new move and you're both a bit inexperienced so the whole thing is wobbling around anyway.
But like I said, we'll get there. And we did successfully achieve several new-ish moves. *fistpump*
I got an email last night from the people who make expanded PVC foam in NZ, and they are sending me a sample to test for its potential as a thermoplastic for making armour. If it works, it's cheaper by the sheet, the sheets are twice the size, and it comes in 4mm and 6mm so I wouldn't have to do the Wonderflex sandwich to get a suitable armour thickness. What this means is that it would cost approximately a quarter of the expected Wonderflex cost for the Cullen costume, and it'd weigh about half as much. Cue sighs of relief from Dr Wheel, since a lot of Cullen's armour sits on his shoulders.
Also, this is not paper mache drying weather and I am unimpressed by that. My sword is ready for the final smoothing with modelling clay on the fancy bits (not the blade, I managed to sand that to shape and smoothness), but I can't add it till the paper's dry and that should have happened already, damnitall. *grumble* On the upside, I was able to do a four-strand handle braid with scarlet binding tape and that makes it look fancy as. Vis:
The problem with handle braiding is that all the knobs and ties and filigree stuff goes over the top, so you have to do it fairly early on and then try to avoid getting stuff all over it as you finish the rest of the piece. I suspect I'll be masking this for the painting process.
Somehow I don't think I'll be shearing tonight either. Maybe tomorrow?