What's New? 2006-03-01

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What's New? 2006-03-01

 Wednesday 8 March 2006
  Spent the day getting ready to deploy a Docbook XML + Jade toolchain to generate documentation in both HTML and PDF. Not glamorous, but wanted by most of my clients.

In the getting-back-in-shape arena, I took three Hapkido classes today. The last one, the adults-only class, included more strike variations than I've ever done in one class. A nice note: a fellow hapkidoka, with eyebrow studs and a very powerful punch, said he was happy whenever I was on the mat because he gets a real workout. Funny, I think the same of him. My arms are sore from holding the punching pads for him. I know his will be :-)

 Monday 6 March 2006
  This evening in Hapkido I did randori (two-person attacks) for the very first time. It was limited to four different kinds of attacks, but it was exhilarating! It's been a long time since I've felt that Aikido whirling around vibe, but it was in full force this evening! Ahhhh!
 Sunday 5 March 2006
  The San Francisco Toys 'R Us (among other locations) is closing down. How you can wind up being unprofitable in the middle of a large city, in an old building, with Chinese-made toys, is way beyond me. But they are, or claim to be, and the Bay Area is losing two stores.

The kids have been tracking the ever-increasing markdowns. Today, as we stopped by, we saw the last gasp of the store: the remaining few toys tossed near the enteryway and a few staffers dismantling the shelves. Depressing in the extreme, but the kids don't seem to mind at all. Just another adventure.

San Francisco Toys 'R Us closing down

Now only Mervyn's is left; Best Buy left a few months ago. Such a primo location, right in the middle of the city, on Geary Boulevard at Masonic Avenue.

 Saturday 4 March 2006
  Lila spends an afternoon with the maternal grandparents; in the kitchen with Bubbie & Zadie.

Lila & the Bernsteins

What are they doing? Getting things ready for Pooh's birthday celebration!

Pooh's birthday
 Friday 3 March 2006
  My Hapkido yellow-belt test was such an ordeal: all went well except the specific technique upon which I was tested. I blanked out, forgetting what "one into two" means. I twice incorrectly tried a similar technique, which I might have pulled off with enough elán to pass. Who knows?

Here's Lila and her peers doing their yellow-belt test. Hers went more smoothly than did mine.

Lila's yellow-belt test

From my vantage point, on the corner of the mat, this is what the testing looked like. From right you can see Bubbie, Zadie, and Dziadziu. Pamela is hidden halfway up the row.

hapkido dojang
 Thursday 2 March 2006
  I spend the afternoon at Isaac's school; it's Reading Day. Bata's uncle is reading a Dr. Seuss book. Did I mention that we cooked up and served green eggs and ham to all the students of the school. (It was only after the fact that I realized that our offering was neither Kosher nor Halal. Next year we'll need to add green tofu for the observant Jews and Muslims.)

Peabody / Mrs. Chan / 1st grade

Later in the day, after Hapkido class, Dziadziu joins us at the S & E Café. If you're ever near 19th at Taraval drop in to try the Cooked Coca-Cola with Ginger. Wonderful!

S&E Café / Lila & Dziadziu
 Wednesday 1 March 2006
  I went to both the 4:15 and 7:15 Hapkido classes today. Got my blue stripe and permission to take the belt test this Friday.

That will be a bit of a milestone: through all the years of Tae Kwon Do (in New Hampshire, early 1980s), Aikido (late 1980s, 1990s), and now Hapkido, I've never ever tested. I think it was my half-year on and off travel schedule, combined with the relaxed attitude the Japanese practitioners towards any sort of external badges of rank.

It was Free Day, and the kids went to the Zoo (although I thought they'd be at the Exploratorium). Lila came late to class, but she tested well enough to almost get her last stripe.

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