My Inner Child Has Been Replaced By an Inner Rapper

henry hill I don’t claim to be a rap aficionado; I only know the mainstream artists and have a few comforting favorites. Before college I was solidly a classic rock fan. We all listened to the “Dazed and Confused” soundtrack on school trips. I have fond memories of Foghat’s “Slow Ride” blasting through my Walkman headphones as we glided along the vast, cotton field-flanked West Texas highways. I have no idea what music was popular in the 90’s because I listened to the music from my parents’ school days. The Beatles had formed my foundation in junior high, accompanied by Led Zeppelin in high school, and later The Who in graduate school.
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Power Trip

Powerful AND fabulous!

“Stand in your power!” my favorite yoga teacher likes to shout at us during warrior II. I always like to sneak a glance around the darkened room and see people narrow their eyes, purse their lips, and crouch deeper with determination into the pose. He often accompanies that command with the thought that how we approach the mat is how we approach life. We pour our confidence, self-worth, and self-love (or lack thereof) into not only our yoga practice but into our vocations, our interests,our relationships, and how we present ourselves to the world.

The theme resurfaced in a recent taekwondo class.
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Storyteller – The Poomsae Series Part 8


The Poomsae Series is intended to glean lessons from the meaning of each form (“poomsae” in Korean). My school studies the palgwe forms so that’s what I will use for each post. Descriptions are taken from the book “Complete Taekwondo Poomsae” by Dr. Kyu Hyung Lee and Dr. Sang H. Kim.

Everybody has a cross to bear, a story to tell, a lifetime of experience behind a single glance. Sometimes we need to hear the full story to appreciate someone or something. It offers perspective, clarity, and depth that is otherwise not visible.
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Perfection is Perfected So I’mma Let ‘Em Understand…


“Calm. Down,” whispered my instructor for the third time as we practiced the finer intricacies of hand-to-hand combat, i.e., twisting the crap out of each others’ wrists. Even though I was physically exhausted and wrung out like a dish rag from sparring class I was buzzing with manic energy during the red and black belt class. It came to a head when, jittery and frustrated, I flailed my hands and giggled apologies in a shrill self-deprecating tone after another failed attempt to reduce my “attacker” to a writhing heap on the floor.
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Is This the End or Just Beginning?


“Any New Year’s resolutions?” my instructor asked, raising his eyebrows expectantly at the end of class.
“To not write 2014 on my papers,” remarked one of the teenage black belts with a  smirk. Even though his smart-assotry gets old pretty quickly I giggled at that one. My instructor rolled his eyes and bounced his question back to the rest of the class.

“To get my black belt,” said a classmate proudly. Damnit, he took my idea! My mind had wandered off to my usual internal hippie daydreams like meditating more, being more mindful and present (ironically I wasn’t), start swimming in the early mornings again like I used to, juicing when I what I really want to do is get curly fries at Arby’s. I had forgotten what was so obvious and looming for a few of us:
Black belt. This is it. This is the year.
Holy crap.

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