Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I Want to Be Like Mr. Miyagi...

I talk too much. Always have. Always will.
I also tend to speak before I think. I have gotten better about that as I've gotten older, but not much.
I have not really stuck my foot in my mouth causing major embarassment to me or others. I have not given away top secrets of my job. It's nothing like that.
I just want to talk about martial arts all the time. I just can't help myself. I started this blog to help with this obsession, but you know what? It has not worked so far! I STILL end up segueing martial arts into almost every conversation in which I'm involved. And you know what? That's fine on Tuesday nights when I'm in weapons class, or Thursday nights when I'm at regular class. It's fine on the phone with my friend from karate and it's fine here in our martial arts blogging community.
But it's not fine in line at the grocery store. It's not okay to just mention that I have my bo staff in my car from last week during our "roles and responsibilities" meeting at work. It's not okay when I bring up how I'm missing karate class for the PTA meeting I attended tonight - to my son's gym teacher. (And then because he mentioned that he hurt his knee in basketball, I had to launch into how my chest and arms were so sore a couple of days ago from two days of escrima & bo staff rather than the usual one day of weapons per week.)
It's actually embarrassing. I bring it up and then I realize I sound like I'm flaunting it and try to wrap up the subject. I remind myself of the painfully nerdy kid in school who tells how their dad is a famous movie star and he gets them all the other movie stars' autographs and has dinner with famous people. Everyone knows the kid is full of...vinegar...but they let them ramble on and embarrass themselves.
Stereotype are not usually something one strives for, but I want to be like the stereotypes we see of wise karateka...you know- I want to be like Mr. Miyagi...the strong, silent, wise type.
My question is - Is this something you can learn in your journey - a trait you can assume over the course of your martial arts journey? Or did Mr. Miyagi and those like him already have that calm demeanor? That wise character trait that enables them to know that being silent is the better route to take?
And I'm very serious about this. I have learned to keep my mouth shut in some cases - just since I've started my martial arts journey, but is there a way for me to cultivate this to make it more natural for me as a lifelong "motor mouth"?


Meg said...

I think it's natural to want to talk about it. (Just to share this with you...I've been accused of being "obsessed" by it here at work!)
You want to have people recognize that you're working on something that women typically do not choose to do.

Martial Arts Mom said...

Yes, it really is a matter of pride for me...to be doing something that nobody would have thought of me - least of all ME! I've said a million times how I love that look of shock when I tell people. And I think it has that same effect on me when I hear myself say it! Sounds like a joke, but I'm serious! I think I feel better about it now. We need to work together - but then again, nothing would get done now, would it? : )

Michele said...

Karate is something you are excited about. Talking about it can only be expected. You should be proud of your accomplishements!

I do think that after a while you will talk about it less. When people(not karateka) find out that I am involved in karate, they immediately want to know my rank and the style. I usually answer by telling them how long I have been training. The longer I train, the less likely I talk about it.

minivanninja said...

It will fade in time. About 6 months ago or so, it seems like every time I opened my mouth, it had something to do with TKD. I didn't notice how often I did this until my husband mentioned it. The kids always did, but you know, they don't want me to talk about anything but how wonderful they both are.

Not sure what changed, or if anything did, but I don't find myself mentioning it as much unless I bump into another martial arts nerd. I think you are still at a stage where it is exciting for you, and you feel powerful because of it. Both great things, but as it settles into a normal part of your life, it starts blending in again.

Martial Arts Mom said...

I'm glad to hear it will start to blend in, but then again, that kind of makes me sad too. Going through a pretty tough time right now and karate is the one thing that almost always makes me feel good about myself. (and other than karate, I'm not feeling very good about myself lately...thus the sparse, far and inbetween posts lately.)

m.a.l.s. (him) said...

I'm just the opposite, I'm very self-conscious who I talk about it in front of. I don't want people to think I'm bragging or some psychopath who is always talking about ways to inflict pain on others.

I've instructed my daughter to not talk about it at school because I know some kids will take that as a challenge and if she ever has to defend herself at school she won't automatically be labeled the aggressor just because they know she's into karate.

Luckily for me, my wife is intyto it as much as I am. So I have her and a few friends I can geek out about it with to get it out of my system.

Martial Arts Mom said...

m.a.l.s. (him) - I know what you mean - I don't want them to think I'm bragging either - especially since I'm not THAT good that I have reason to be bragging in the first place! LOL!