T Nation

Do Meatheads Dream of Iron Sheep?


Friday 6/29/18

Bouncing 300 min

I’m not sure that I’ll have any noteworthy bouncing encounters to log at this new job. I’m basically a cheerful and polite Wal-Mart greeter who checks ID’s, makes idle chatter and maintains the flow of people at our capacity limit. It keeps me quite busy and it is a LOT of fun, but I’m sorry to tell my log readers that the knuckleheads and dumb-fucks just aren’t showing up at this place.

I’ll see what I can do to spread the word among my town’s seedier element, but the lack of cheap options to get wasted on is a hard sell to those types. Even if I don’t start encouraging area low-lifes to come drink, I’ll probably have to deal with some monumental asshole at some point.

If I do, I’ll be sure to log it.


Saturday 6/30/18

Bouncing 180 min

I’m really sorry guys. I had a lot of pleasant conversations with people who wanted to have a good time and did. Like you, I was holding out for a coked-up drunken hooligan to make a scene and try to fight me for the pettiest of reasons, but it just didn’t happen. I’m really sorry guys. Maybe next time.


Well this is no fun atall!


@ChickenLittle I know, right? I guess I’ll have to get by on play-fighting in jiu jitsu until an area knucklehead decides to seek local fame by taking down a grey-haired doorman.

Monday 7/2/18

BJJ 80 min

Mount is the position for July. Escapes were the name of the game today, and we’ll be hitting these a lot.

Trap-and-roll escape. Collar choke variation. Ezekiel choke variation. Clear the arms and posture up once you’re in their guard. No new details today. but nevertheless a good chance to get better at what is probably my second best escape.

Next up we did the knee-to-elbow escape. No new details here, but another escape I can put plenty of polish on. I pull it off a fair bit in rolls, but I often just get to half guard. Plenty of room to improve.

Finally we did a high mount escape. Shuck them off of you, keep your arms stiff and put in their armpit, hip UP hard and swing your legs to a side, rolling your opponent. This is another one I do to good effect, but often just send them forward and turn it into a scramble. This is an escape that can earn you an armbar, but it’s still generally better than just hanging out when someone has you in high mount.

It was HOT. REALLY HOT today, so I only rolled once. I finally tapped a very good blue belt who came over to our school several months ago. I’ve got a big size advantage on him, but he’s also 26 and in fantastic shape. He’s probably the best guy I’ve gotten an honest, technical, non-goonish tap on. I kept working my kung-fu choke as I’ve been for a while, which he defended well but flattened his arm out for a moment. I kept it flattened with my forehead and then worked the americana. This is a good back-and-forth from side control that I will keep working on good guys.

Of course, he reminded me that he’s still got my number afterwards, getting me in a fabulous arm triangle from his guard. Nobody’s gotten me in one of those before. This guy is really fantastic to train with. Awesome attitude and a real challenge for me.

I was done, DONE after that. Soaked!


All that play fighting is going to make for a real Dalton/ Roadhouse scene when said, knuckle head tries to take down the grey haired doorman!
Can’t wait to read that :rofl:


We still like 'ya. Stay careful.


@ChickenLittle I doubt that but we’ll see. I had my Roadhouse moments back at the dive bar and I may have them here. If you work at a bar long enough you’ll eventually cross paths with an even bigger asshole than the last guy who held the biggest asshole title belt.

@biker Thanks! I’ll stay careful as long as it doesn’t look like reckless might pay off better.

Monday 7/9/18

BJJ 100 min

Continuing with mount for July. Escapes for warm-ups. Trap and roll + variations. Knee-to-elbow escape. High mount escape.

Chokes were drilled tonight. Cross-collar. Chainsaw. Ezekiel. Arm Triangle. No new details but I need to work harder on arm triangles. Note the details next time.

First roll was with a seasoned white belt. He’s getting better and defended my attacks well, but was miles away from any escape. I saw the clock ticking down and mounted, then easy Americana from there.

Second roll was with a senior blue belt. He’s a great guy, but I’m beginning to suspect he doesn’t really want to roll with me. It has been probably four or five months since we rolled and I finally locked eyes today and asked him to roll. Right away he goes into coaching mode, like I was clueless about how to pass his guard. I was going to work a knee slice pass because it was right there, but he coached me into some strange position I’ve never been in before and don’t even remember. That’s how the whole round was, him giving me almost step-by-step instructions for techniques that aren’t even stuff I’m working on, so I just went easy and played along.

This bugged me quite a bit after class. I’m not sure I’ve ever felt patronized by an upper belt like this. It’s one thing when I was new and completely clueless about what to do next, but he knows damn well I’m perfectly capable of applying what I know in live rolling without being coached through it. That’s what rolling’s for, to pressure test your stuff and make it work on someone resisting, not learn some new guard pass that I’m not even going to drill right afterwards.

I’m over it now. I’m pretty sure I can tap this guy out right now, which I’m also pretty sure he knows, making me pretty sure he turned our roll into a private lesson for me so it wasn’t 5 minutes of pressure for him. Maybe not, who knows. I’ll wait for him to ask me to roll for our next go. Maybe he just doesn’t enjoy training with a guy who’s a lot bigger than him. It’s all optional, after all.


Cynical perspective from an old dude: what you’re describing is not that atypical -in an environment where “bottom line” results are the only thing that matters (who wins mano a mano, who brings in more profits), guys like this try to turn it into something subjective, or into a nebulous rather than clear cut goal. Happens in martial arts places (especially when the “senior” guys are dealing with a bigger, stronger young buck like you), and it happens in business (we’re a team, individual results are not really that important blah, blah…).

And, from what you’re describing, that dude is by definition not a great guy.

(hope I was clear as mud lol)

edit to add: otoh, you sound like a great guy, no homo, not that there’s anything wrong with that, etcetera, etcetera… :wink:


@punnyguy Thanks! I think you’re right about everything except I still think he’s a generally great guy who wasn’t being all that great in that particular moment. We’re the same age and he’s north of 200 and plenty strong, so he’s only senior in rank (a four-stripe blue to my three stripe white). I’ve got more grey hair than him too, so there’s that.

But yes, back to the importance of results. This behavior certainly indicates that he’s not interested in learning what the results are with me, which is a pretty basic description of rolling. You try your stuff and either succeed or fail. You do the thing or you don’t, and in both cases you should be asking “why?”. It goes both ways and it work that way with upper belts, lower belts and peers. It’s a huge part of what makes jiu jitsu great.

Whatever this thing is, it is. I’m not going to give him a hard time about it. That’s why I’m just going to wait for him to ask me to roll. Maybe it’s next class, maybe it’s another five months. Then I’ll roll with him like I do any other blue or higher belt. He’s a big boy and knows what we do in jiu jitsu class.


Thursday 7/12/18

BJJ 90 min

Warm-up with escapes. I’m competent enough to walk new students through these, and that’s what I did today with an inconsistent but still-sticking-with-it white belt in his 50’s. He’s a big guy like me and a pleasure to train with. Trap and roll + collar and Ezekiel choke variations. Knee-to-elbow escape to replace full guard. High mount escape with a bench press in the armpits and a huge upward hip-out and roll to the side.

We moved on to a choke series from technical mount. Mirror choke + 2 variations. Bow-and-arrow choke + 2 variations. Drill drill drill drill drill. No new stuff on these, pretty straightforward.

First roll was with my black belt instructor. I won the takedown and held side control for a good chunk of the match. He escaped and put me in trouble with a choke, but I defended and escaped back to side control to end the match. 5 min draw.

Next roll was with our new young blue belt. He’s a great roll and got me in a triangle. Afterwards he asked me if I was holding back my strength a little. I told him yes and explained some of the reasons why, and he assured me that I never need to do that with him unless I want to for technique purposes. Really cool dude. That’s gamesmanship.

That’s it and that’s all.


Friday 7/13/18

Bouncing 240 min

I, sentinel, stood watch at the door. The fellas inside really run a great business, and I’m glad to be part of a winning team. They pay me pretty damn well too. We’ve got a high-end speakeasy vibe going on, and I think they like having a large, polite and well-spoken doorman with some bouncing credibility from one of the area’s roughest bars.

I was hoping to rough up one or maybe even two customers, but it just didn’t materialize tonight. I’m really sorry guys, maybe next time.


Tuesday 7/18/18

BJJ 120 min

I took a trip south to an affiliate school about an hour away. My instructor was guest-teaching while the instructor there is recovering from an injury. It was a small class with all new BJJ students, but two guys with wrestling backgrounds.

Technique for the day was armbar from guard, fast armbar from guard, kimura from guard, armlock series from side control - Americana -> Figure 4 -> Kimura.

I rolled with the two big guys with wrestling backgrounds. They were both no-gi and I was in my gi, which doesn’t generally work in my favor. I like the challenge. There was one 20-something guy who was huge. 6’3" and probably 270-280. I let him have top to begin. He wrestled the hell out of me for 5 minutes and none of my escapes worked on him, but he wasn’t anywhere close to submitting me. 5 min draw.

Next up was another 20-something guy who coaches HS wrestling, not as big as the first guy but still a very stout lad well north of 200. He also wrestled the hell out of me for 5 min. I managed a few escapes that turned into scrambles, but he won those, putting me back on my back. But he was also nowhere close to submitting me. 5 min draw.

I rolled with the really big guy one more time. Caught him in an armbar from guard pretty quickly. I got the shit wrestled out of me for a few more minutes before I finally got an escape to work. Once I took side control he felt like any other new white belt. Easy prey. Took mount and feasted on the Americana he served up on a platter to me.

Overall I’m pretty damn pleased with how I did. I’ve only rolled with one wrestler before and that was about a year ago. He demolished me with top pressure and submitted me with a choke. These two guys were really valuable rolls for me. Wrestling may not teach a very complete suite of submissions, but those guys were absolute bulldogs on top. High energy, high pressure, high mobility and great control. Both were miles away from submitting me, but still an eye opener about weaknesses of mine for a real fight.

On the plus side I’ve now made my shit work and successfully submitted someone who outclasses me physically and has some real grappling training. This dude was at least 10 years younger, definitely a serious lifter and probably close to, if not greater than my strength. Jiu Jitsu works. I’m still a no-gi novice and very unaccustomed to the grappling style of wrestlers, but I made it work against the biggest, strongest guy I’ve ever had the pleasure to roll with. Go me.

He was a good sport too. If my instructor has to guest-teach again I’ll try to make the trip.


Monday 7/23/18

BJJ 90 min

Summer’s been getting in the way of training as much as I’d like, but what can I say? Sometimes the siren song of beer, water and sunshine wins out over a sweat-drenched shin digging into my face or loading up my spine with hundreds of pounds. I guess that’s why I’m not a champion.

Last night we continued with July’s work from mount, but not before some basic drilling. We drill movements called “snakies” (also referred to as “shrimping” or “hip-out” movements). Some of us were moving particularly sloppy on one of them, so coach took a little time out to show why they are important. This led us to a guard replacement drill where someone clears your legs and pins the nearest one, so you need to step over with your other foot, get your hips off the mat and then pull the trapped leg out while replacing your guard. Do it right.

We then went on to a drill for holding the mount position. Swim your hands when they try to trap. Clear the hands if they try to shove off of your knee. Ride up into Russian mount if they get on their side. Keep pressure on but float when you need to.

Technique was a recap of our choke series from mount along with the two armbars we’re working this month. Cross-collar choke. Chainsaw choke. Ezekiel choke. Arm Triangle. Simple armbar from high mount. Armbar working off of a shove.

First roll was with a new-ish and somewhat older white belt. He’s a big boy so it is a great opportunity for me to work escapes, so I let him have top position to start. It took about 10 seconds for me to escape and tap him out with a kung-fu choke from side control. Next go he had some kind of pain materialize, so we slowed it down and I just let him work.

Next roll was with our judo brown belt. He won the takedown and got me in the same damn armbar that his student did a few months ago. Not one we cover but I should have seen it coming. I understand exactly what these guys are doing now. Next go I had him in guard and scissor swept him, took mount and then got one of his arms pinned with my shin in high mount. Bad bad news for him but he was saved by the bell! He’s a great match-up for me. My jiu jitsu is probably a little better but he’s got a real big bag of tricks from his years of judo.

It’s been so damn humid lately that’s all I had in me. Drenched in sweat big-time!


Many moons ago in Japan my Sensei would, unannounced, have us take off through town, running on foot, sometimes several miles, to another dojo. There we’d kumite(spar) with the other school. Kept the sparring pool fresh and us from getting too familiar with our dojo mates strengths and weaknesses. This is especially a problem in small classes. On a side note, I went to a traditional dojo far from the base were I was stationed. Refused to attend the belt factories outside a lot of posts/bases. My sensei later admitted he loved it when we showed up at the other dojos and the 6’2, 220 American entered their dojo. Said he told one of the students from another school, “What! You only train to fight runts here”! Ah, the good old days.


@hel320 That sounds like a lot of fun. I think the karate you did is a lot different than the limited amount of karate I’ve been exposed to. Perhaps I’ve been in the presence of some “belt factory” products, but who knows? I’m in no position to judge that sort of thing. The karate dojo I trained at tonight has at least one younger guy (karate brown belt) who seems pretty rugged, and I know for a fact the head instructor there has some legit bouncing chops at one of the area’s roughest bars. Good times for sure.

Tuesday 7/24/18

BJJ 70 min

My brown belt instructor is back teaching Tuesdays at the local Karate school. No-gi. We covered a sequence beginning with head control while standing, grabbing the same-side wrist with your other hand and stepping backwards with the leg opposite your head-controlling arm. Then pivot and swing your opponent around and try to make their hand touch the floor. This can open up ankle-picks, which we went ahead with to see how the sequence can play out.

Passing the guard starting on your feet was the meat of this class. First up was the basic throw-by pass. Just toss their feet to one side and move past them to side control. This works fine against untrained or low-level guys, and it can also open up more technical passes against guys who know how to play guard.

If they’re trying to upkick, push your hips forward and keep your head high so they can’t connect. Grab a foot with both hands, keep it straight and stack them up on that side, moving past once their leg won’t go any further. Another basic pass with a lower percentage against skilled guys.

Sometimes they try to get up and put a leg out straight. Step right over it and go to knee-on-belly. Another basic pass that probably won’t ever be there against a good guy.

One more basic pass is to step on their foot and then step on their thigh, hopping right over and going to knee-on-belly.

You can also go over. Stuff their feet in between your legs and put forward pressure on him. Then hop over if they give you the window, squeezing your legs together as you clear their knees so they can’t regain a guard.

On to more technical stuff, sometimes the throw-by pass will open up a knee slice pass. Pin the leg you’re passing with your hand. Then slide your knee over their thigh, scooping the opposite side leg up on to your shoulder. Then pin your passing side hand on the opposite side of their head. HUGE step-around with your non-pinning leg to get your base solid. Then let go of their leg and control the hip with that hand, wrapping them up in side control 1 next by getting hour other hand in between their legs, straight and strong so they can’t kick it out.

If they shift their weight to try and stuff that pass, just float your knee to their other thigh and slide over, making sure to get the far-side underhook as you’re passing so they can’t escape and take the back. Yet another situation where battling for that underhook is key.

Lots of technique and I wasn’t feeling like rolling a lot, so I took my obligatory ass-whooping from my instructor and then called it a night. I didn’t really put anything together on him, but I’m still really new to no-gi and he’s using some kind of sorcery I think.


Thursday 7/26/18

BJJ 150 min

I helped teach the kid’s class today, which was a lot of fun. All new students so nothing but the basics. Shrimping and breakfalls (ukemi), then a little game at the end.

The adult class was a wrap-up of mount maintenance and the choke series we covered from technical mount. Mirror choke, variation behind their head, variation through your arm. Then the bow-and-arrow variations from technical mount. Leg over the shoulder and knee in the back of the head.

First roll was with our younger blue belt. He got me in some kind of arm triangle from north-south. I need to ask him about that. I did manage a good sweep and a good knee-slice pass, the exact one I was working on with no-gi Tuesday. Works fine in gi too!

Next roll was with one of our newish white belts. 18 year-old probably getting close to his first stripe. He’s a ball of energy for sure, but pretty easy to control. He’s getting a lot better though and escaped my cross-collar choke that was pretty damn close before my grip gave out. He passed my guard and then played some decent side control before I escaped and tapped him out with a kung-fu choke. He’s gotten a lot better since the last time we rolled where he spazzed out and gave me a fat lip.

Good times!


It seems as though I’ve forgotten to train lately. I remembered today.

Tuesday 8/7/18



My abductor felt off, so I opted against the drop set. Over to the machines I went.

Leg curls
Leg extensions
Leg press

Strict press


Feeling a little iffy where I had the sports hernia a few years ago. Probably just weak!

Lat Pulldowns
Lateral raises
buncha light shoulder work

20 min sauna
10 min hot tub


No they dream of sheep with altered myostatin gene.


Excellent journal, keep up the good work.


Come on Dalton! We need some action in this thread! :rofl:


@loveneverfails Thank you for the kind words and I like your answer to my long-standing question!

@ChickenLittle My local forecast only calls for a 5 percent chance of an actual fight, but I did train jiu jitsu this morning. There’s a good chance I’ll end up meeting some people out at my old stomping grounds for a few drinks tonight. Maybe I’ll run into a local knucklehead who doesn’t like me and wants to hurt me. Who knows?

On a somewhat related note, a young man I once bounced for fighting somehow got himself shot in the face playing disc golf the other day. I heard it was accidental and he’s going to be okay. I can’t say I’m entirely shocked that this happened, but he’s a generally good kid. He’s actually one of the few people I banned and let back in after he apologized to everyone involved and owned his asshole behavior. That was a year or so ago. I’m glad he’s okay and I hope getting shot in the face turns out to be a useful life lesson for him down the road.

Edit: I just googled it and it’s in the news! Anyway it sounds like he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. He’s okay though!

Wednesday 8/8/18

BJJ 90 min

My brown belt friend invited me over to train in the morning. Nobody else showed up so I got to dive into some great details. We rolled a bit first and I’m pleased to be recognizing more of his attacks and defending them. But it’s always just a matter of time before he gets me. I almost escaped high mount on him, but almost only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.

Technique was more work on tight passing and switching from one side to the other. Building off of the pass we did the other week, we looked at the key control mechanisms, starting with a leg pin and an underhook. The aha for today is that the underhook doesn’t always mean arm. Leg is better, and you can battle for the leg even if they shift weight and you slide your knee across to pin the other leg. Pin and scoop, then post your free arm on the opposite side of their head. I like this pass a lot already and I pulled it off on a very good blue belt in my last class. This is one I want to get really good at. Add it to the list.

One thing I love about training under this guy is that he’s good at finding big holes in my game and helping me patch them up. I’m generally good at escapes, but he pointed out that I’ve got no escape from kesa gatame (a type of headlock on the ground). So we worked a fairly simple one that’s pretty high percentage, especially for larger people.

Take your free hand and frame it against their jaw, pushing hard. Walk your legs away from your opponent’s legs, then you’re doing heave-ho with your legs in the air to generate momentum while you twist towards them, pushing on their face and get the elbow of your trapped arm to the floor. From here you’re halfway to their back as soon as you clear the controlling arm. Gotta remember this one and definitely need to cover it again with him.

We flow rolled a bit after that, doing a sort of give-take exchange of technique at low levels of resistance. It’s nice to slow things down a bit and watch what’s happening. Details, details, details.

That’s it.