I am so fortunate that I get to train with people like Michael “The Killa” Aquila (aka Tumbleweed) at Lincoln BJJ Center! Not only is he a great partner for me because he’s close to my size, but he’s brilliantly technical, and he’s able to explain things in a way I can understand. He also doesn’t take it easy on me, or patronize me, and he helps me learn from my many mistakes. I don’t call him My Mentor for nothing!
I worked with Mike for the entire advanced class on Monday, including all of the rolling, and we had a great time. At one point when we were grappling I accidentally caught him with an elbow, and when I apologized, he said “It’s fine, do what you gotta do!”, so I said “Okay.”, and started feigning punches to his head! Sometimes Greg doesn’t like it when Mike and I talk a lot during class, or have too much fun, but we really are working hard the whole time. Since we’re small and fast we sometimes do twice the reps!
During “16 minutes in guard hell” on Monday, Mike destroyed me in almost every way possible, and when he passed my guard it was often directly into a submission! Mike was also the first person at Lincoln BJJ to use worm guard on me (I think that was the very next day after everyone first saw it), but at least I prevented him from using that on Monday! I don’t know how many times he ended up submitting me (yeah, damn those wristlocks, too! ;), but I certainly don’t feel bad about it. Mike is something like a phenomenon, and I’m just lucky that I get to train with him, and that he even wants to train with me.
Mike (and a few other phenoms from LBJJC!), will be traveling to Chicago in August, to compete in the IBJJF Open. I also believe that The Professor is planning on making his long-awaited return to competition at this tournament, and Lincoln BJJ Center is currently in preparation mode. The advanced classes have been getting a little tougher (and I probably won’t roll with Greg again until the tournament’s over ;), but it also feels like there’s a high level of excitement in the air. Even though I won’t personally be at the tournament, I’m looking forward with great anticipation to our first entry into the national competition scene!
“I needed to switch up and get it in gear. It’s a whole new movie, a world premiere.” -LL Cool J