Polite (ish) notice – relationships & love affairs

I am about to start some fictional writing with a friend that might well involve a love triangle.

For clarity – I am not in one currently so will not be based around my current life. I do not generally talk about relationships and whatever classic love is as I do not hold hugely high moral opinions about such things. 

That said in 2017 I wouldn’t get involved with someone if I knew for sure they were in a relationship which is not flexible and that monogamy is important.

I learnt most of what I know about relationships spending summers in Bodrum (when it was kind of the ‘Ibiza’ of Turkey) and a failed marriage that should never have happened. Itching to give examples but won’t!

Will see where the pen leads…

Untangling Koryo

Koryo is required for our 2nd Dan grading.

Practising in Cornwall with my friend who runs Macaw so we went to find a suitable grassy patch for a dojang and he picked up several errors and some refinements on stances. I showed him some yoga stretches & will be doing 8 section brocade in return.

Great way to spend a summer day

Caffeine & sugar update 

Still have the odd caffeinated coffee but have mostly given up and they increasingly taste strange. No further side effects from stopping. Having decaff with a sugar substitute but hope to kick that too (so does my dentist!)

Tried decaffeinated tea but have not liked any so far. Easier to have green / herbal / fruit teas or hot water with lemon & e.g. ginger (in autumn/winter).

Sugar is harder – overall improving, especially last month but not as much progress as caffeine removal. Hardly ever used to eat any sugar / chocolate / desserts but they crept in when I lived in Oxford.

Online sugar (notifications & social media) harder too but some incremental improvements. Have turned off all yellow notifications & social media icons from mobile phone home screen. Inoreader is enlightening in showing the temptation to continuously consume news but notifications now off.

Have a friend who is ex pharmacist and trains smoking cessation trainers. She has a poem by Portia Nelson (below). We discussed a 6th hole/time & my friend said the 6th is others who pull you back in. Probably same with many types of addictive behaviour and self discipline. 

For example family and friends who only want to share their life using online tools – peak Facebook has probably passed and technology companies will not be able to implement anything else without excessive coercion and force. It won’t be solved by anything manufactured or coded. There are better things to do & focused self discipline the only route.

There’s a hole in my sidewalk – Portia Nelson
I walk down the street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I fall in.

I am lost… I am helpless.

It isn’t my fault.

It takes forever to find a way out.
I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I pretend I don’t see it.

I fall in again.

I can’t believe I am in the same place.

But, it isn’t my fault.

It still takes me a long time to get out.
I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I see it is there.

I still fall in. It’s a habit.

My eyes are open.

I know where I am.

It is my fault. I get out immediately.
I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I walk around it.
I walk down another street.

Gitanjali and mind without fear

A friend mentioned last night that his grandfather had given him Rabindranath Tagore’s poetry book – Gitanjali, but he had not read it yet.

We read Mind without Fear which seems very appropriate:

WHERE THE mind is without fear and the head is held high;
Where knowledge is free;
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow domestic walls;
Where words come out from the depth of truth;
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection;
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way into the dreary desert sand of dead habit;
Where the mind is led forward by thee into ever-widening thought and action-
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.

Glutes stretches

I’m running senior tkd session next Saturday.  We will do some gluteus maximus, minimus stretches which attempted to show in the video below. I forgot to say, once stretch is too comfortable, move the band above knees. We can use partners to hold legs for the resistance. There should be a good squeeze in/out. Slightly dodgy positioning but gives the basic idea. The squats one could be done in pairs with bands to try and do a basic dodge of opponent. I’ve been recommended both glute ‘cheeks’ in and out depending on types of squats. To see proper ones, I’d recommend Eric Cressey Performance videos and astanga yoga videos for the bridge positions.

For a piriformis stretch, currently attempting astanga pigeon 

Russian tonight – projects updates

Due to unforeseen circumstances I will not be seeing niece and nephew tomorrow so we decided to leave Arabic for another time and we did Russian instead.

They picked up the characters quicker than I did and mostly remembered yes, no, I /my name is and thank you. We watched some Cossack dancing (they had not heard of it) and listened to some beautiful Orthodox then folk music.

Thanks to Russian friend, I managed to get some vellum paper (albeit lined but my nephew liked the smell), no birch bark:


Great summary in this IJOR article (En)


They used fountain pens today. Proud of them both, no prejudices just interest and willingness to learn. They may forget everything for a while but we’re hoping to visit Chinatown, a Russian cafe in Westminster and tbc re Arabic, Hindi and Urdu so they can see characters again etc