Krav Maga Demonstration

I get asked a lot about Krav Maga, both online and off. The short version is that I’ve been training for almost 5 years now, and hope to one day become an instructor. It started as just a way to lose weight, but it’s turned into something more than that for me.

I could go on and on about it, but here’s a demonstration I recently saw of Eyal Yanilov, the head of our organization (and the successor to Krav Maga founder Imi Lichtenfeld).

I’ve had the great pleasure of training with Eyal on several occasions. I have to say, it’s pretty cool that this guy signed my instructor certificate.

It’s not a flashy martial art by any means, which is one of the things I like about it. React and counter attack quickly, using the shortest distance available between any of your weapons and the target. It’s an aggressive practice, wherein you switch into a different mindset to defend yourself and become the attacker.

The two things I really love about Krav Maga: first, I think everyone should know at least a little bit about how to protect themselves. But second, you learn some really interesting things about yourself when you are pushed past what you thought you could handle. Your body and mind are capable of a lot more than you think they are. It’s cool to see both of them develop.

O Hai

I always said I didn’t want to be a blogging cliche, where I don’t update for months on end and then write a post about how I haven’t written a post for months on end, but here we are.

Last year turned into one of the busiest years on record. Besides spending a few months working on this pretty huge Red Vs Blue book project, I also did my first Krav Maga instructor training course, prepared for a marathon and decided to jump back into Leet World. In fact, I probably did too many things. Especially considering the fact that we have another kiddo arriving any day now.

This is a problem I have. One of the first things that always goes on the chopping block when life gets like this is the part where I write about it. I really want to stop doing so much and start reflecting more.

But mainly I just want to write things about Legend of Korra and link to funny videos, so that’s probably what I’ll end up doing.

John Green Nails the Writer’s Life

John Green, the author of the wonderful book, The Fault in Our Stars, which sits on the precipice of a huge, huge opening weekend, offers an apt metaphor for what the writer’s life actually is: a game of Marco Polo.

The sandy-haired author said the process of writing a book is like a long, lonely game of Marco Polo.

“In which you’re in your basement alone for years and years, saying, ‘Marco. Marco. Marco. Marco. Marco. And then if you’re lucky, someone writes you and says … Polo.”

Rooster Teeth’s Burnie Burns Talks 11 Years

It’s no secret that Rooster Teeth, creators of Red vs. Blue, are pretty much my favorite content producers online. The company recently hit their 11 year anniversary, which is an even more impressive milestone when you consider that they started making online videos in a time before YouTube.

This week, Burnie Burns, creative director, wrote some thoughts on what it means to him to hit this mark, and what it was like the first time Rooster Teeth realized that it had a global audience, thanks to the web. Touching and inspiring stuff.

“Waiting is a huge part of a writer’s life. And I hate it. When I’m waiting, those thoughts creep in. That I’m not a very good writer, that no editor would want my book, that I’ll never have another idea as good as the last one I wrote…So, for those of us who can’t handle the waiting, here’s my thought: Stop waiting. Stop saying you’re waiting. Stop thinking about it that way. If you want news to come to you, make the news happen.”

Kate Brauning

The Scorpio Races

One of my favorite books I’ve read in recent years, Maggie Stiefvater’s THE SCORPIO RACES absolutely blew me away. Built on a simple, strange and interesting premise, this is a book about a girl who decides to enter her island’s annual horse race with her pony. The catch is that the other entrants are man-eating horses.

Filled with stunning language, captivating characters and some real emotional hooks, THE SCORPIO RACES is one of those books that totally catches you by surprise and doesn’t let go. I read the book in just a couple of sittings and cried like a baby as I read the last few pages on a plane. It’s an instant favorite. And hey, it’s about horses, so there you go.

From Amazon:

It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line.

Some riders live.

Others die.

At age nineteen, Sean Kendrick is the returning champion. He is a young man of few words, and if he has any fears, he keeps them buried deep, where no one else can see them.

Puck Connolly is different. She never meant to ride in the Scorpio Races. But fate hasn’t given her much of a choice. So she enters the competition – the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen.

When You Reach Me

I’ve always had a soft spot for time travel. Particularly when it’s done with as much precision as Rebecca Stead employs in WHEN YOU REACH ME, a high-concept middle-grade novel about a young girl who starts to receive mysterious (and quite frankly, creepy) messages from the future.

Set against the backdrop of 1970s New York, WHEN YOU REACH ME is a book about game shows, young love, losing your best friends and how to treat people. Spectacularly written, the book winds to a riveting conclusion that ties together all the book’s many threads in a way that’s a joy to see on the page. If you’re into time travel, check this out.

From Amazon:

By sixth grade, Miranda and her best friend, Sal, know how to navigate their New York City neighborhood. They know where it’s safe to go, and they know who to avoid. Like the crazy guy on the corner.

But things start to unravel. Sal gets punched by a kid on the street for what seems like no reason, and he shuts Miranda out of his life. The apartment key that Miranda’s mom keeps hidden for emergencies is stolen. And then a mysterious note arrives, scrawled on a tiny slip of paper. The notes keep coming, and Miranda slowly realizes that whoever is leaving them knows things no one should know. Each message brings her closer to believing that only she can prevent a tragic death. Until the final note makes her think she’s too late.

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