Thursday, March 26, 2009

Is it complicated? What do YOU think?

I was at a conference this week when the question of decision-making came up. One person was talking about deciding whether to go to one university or another and he said,
"It's a really complicated decision."

The man listening to him corrected,
"No, actually, it isn't. You decide which is the right thing and you do it."

That sounds good, but sometimes you don't have all of the information. I will tell you what I do know and you can give me your opinions. Please base it on what you KNOW, however.

In a nutshell, the Panamerican Judo Union has been the continental body for North, South & Central America for years and years. They run the Panamerican Judo Championships, select referees for the Olympics and probably some other things. The current president is Jaime Casanova, who I do not know, and Carlos Diaz, from Venezuela, who I have always known to be an extremely honest person with a lot of integrity. Recently, a number (I have heard numbers from five to 26 and have no idea the true number) of countries decided to form their own organization, the Panamerican Judo Confederation. The U.S. joined this organization and the director of development for this new organization is Jose Rodriguez, from the U.S., who has never done judo and had no connection to judo at all until about four years ago when he became executive director of USA Judo. Other members of this new organization are Canada and (I think) Mexico. This new organization is having a senior championships this weekend and the U.S. is sending a team. I spoke with the coach for one of the athletes who had no idea that it was not the PJU championships and asked me if this would be recognizable for points to the Olympics. The fact is there is even conflicting information out on what YEARS count in the Olympic qualification . The PJU is having a junior championships in April and a senior championships in May.

The USJA can apply to send a team to the Panamerican Junior Champonships, scheduled for the end of April in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

There is also a senior Panamerican Judo Championships, including kata, in Panama in May.

We can also apply to be a member of the Panamerican Judo Union, since there is no one representing the U.S. at present.

Here is the question: Is this something you want to support?
This is usually a self-funded event, and would continue to be under the USJA, which means it would cost our organization nothing and give our players an opportunity to compete internationally.

Personally, I have zero interest in being involved in judo at the international level. I have enough to do right here in the U.S., plus I have a child in elementary school and a full-time job that has nothing to do with judo. However, we do have 8,000 members doing judo in this country so it is very likely that there are others in the USJA who would be willing to volunteer to attend PJU meetings and handle whatever other administrative requirements exist.

The USJA Board of Directors passed a motion a while back that the president cannot take any action that would fundamentally alter the organization without getting approval from the membership. I am leaning toward applying for membership to the PJU provisionally and then including a question on the August ballot (in case you didn't know, the USJA Board of Directors is up for election in August) asking the membership if this is what they want.

So.... what are your opinions? Is it complicated or simple? What do you think we should do?

Also, as long as we are sending out a ballot in August, are there other items that you think should be on it that you think are fundamental to the organization?

Monday, March 23, 2009

What I Learned on My Lack of Vacation

Since Wednesday, I have been in California, Minnesota (to change planes), Massachusetts (visiting my daughter & granddaughter, admit it, she's beautiful), Rhode Island (to teach a coaches clinic), Pennsylvania (to change planes), Virginia (to teach a coaches clinic), Maryland (to teach a coaches clinic) and another city in Maryland (to attend a software conference which is why I am actually on the east coast), back to Virginia to attend a judo practice and now back to the conference, and I am not done yet.

What have I learned?

1. We have a lot of wonderful people in the USJA and in judo in general.
A smarter person than me would have thought to have taken pictures at all of those events. Well, I guess there weren't many smarter people than me because no one thought of it at any of them until tonight when at Sport Judo somewhere in Virginia, I finally remembered. Despite their lack of photographic thoughtfulness, I managed to meet and connect again with some of the best people I know. There is Marshall Coffman, a minister who runs a judo club at the Dunkirk Baptist Church and is one of those people who gives Christians a good name. His club epitomizes what USJA Development is all about, building good people, strong communities and great athletes - in that order. Seriously, it was a joy to meet all of the members of his club. These people are intelligent and models of integrity, the people who protect our president, our communities, everyone from the sheriff's department to secret service to jiu jitsu instructors who want to add judo to their clubs to have an offering for small children.

2. There are a whole lot of people who know judo very, very well who you have never heard of. I really get annoyed with this discussion of "the judo elites", especially coming from those people who consider themselves that elite. I was lucky on Saturday to spend the afternoon with Chuck Wall and his club members. Pete Mantel came up and brought some of his students. I can honestly say I know a fair bit of judo. I was fortunate to have the opportunity to train with some great people and I made competing and winning in judo my priority. Chuck Wall, Pete Mantel and others made supporting their country, in the Marines and the Coast Guard, respectively, their priority. Each of them has also spent 20 years studying judo whenever and wherever they could. Not only have they done our country a service in their professions, but they have also learned a lot of judo, which I saw demonstrated as they helped teach at the coaches' clinic. I really get annoyed when I hear people like this denigrated, "Well, he's not an eighth-degree black belt like me."

Rank impresses me not at all. What impresses me is these folks like Mark Smith, Roy Hash, James Wall and a thousand others across the country who are dedicating themselves to judo every week of the year in their community. They didn't have to organize these events to bring judo clubs together. They aren't getting paid, they aren't running for office. They did it just to be nice. Maybe that doesn't sound too impressive, but I tell my daughters all the time that nice is under-rated. That athletic, cute jerk you are so infatuated with now will one day be an old, fat, out-of-shape jerk. The nice guys will still be nice. (Yes, AnnMaria's judo blog and advice for the lovelorn. I try to be full-service. You're welcome.")

3. The important people in judo are not the ones who think they are important. They are the ones who are around at 2 a.m. doing pool sheets, who attend a coaches' clinic until midnight, who drive two hours to pick up a visiting clinician, remember to mail in the paperwork, pay the dojo rent and pay attention to every person at practice. I am impressed with Sofia's dad. He has his own name, I suppose, but I could not tell it to you with any degree of certainty. I think it is John. Maybe it is Greg. Pretty sure it is not Horatio. I hear he has a very important job and is brilliant. I meet ten brilliant people a week on my job, but what makes Sofia's dad impressive is that he was helping with pool sheets at 2 a.m., even though he looked even more like death warmed over than I did, which I did not think was possible, so I was truly impressed. Where were all the people with high ranks, important titles? They were living in the world of "let someone else do it". Who else was there? Serge Boussyou, who also looked as if he hadn't slept since the inauguration, and many of the parents and teenagers from his club AFTER we had just spent 4 1/2 hours on the mat for a coaches clinic. Why were they at the clinic? So they could learn more about teaching judo so they could help kids. Seeing Keenan, Amani & Everett made my day. It's a hard world and sometimes it is hard to stay on the straight and narrow. There could have been a whole lot worse things those guys were doing than learning how to teach little kids. After all of this, Liz Boussyou gets up in the morning, makes me coffee, drives me to the airport at 5:30 a.m. and then thanks ME! Tonight, I went to Maurice Allen's club. Maurice has won national championships, European championships and world championships in THREE DIFFERENT SPORTS! Is that frigging incredible or what? He has a beautiful judo club where he takes the time to teach and speak politely to everyone from the smallest children to the white belt adults. Then he asks me to teach and thanks ME for showing up. Maurice's club, like Serge's, is filled with good people and I don't think that is sheer luck.

What did I learn? I learned that the few people who are all about building up their egos who send me hate mail because they don't like a woman being USJA president, they don't like the fact that I don't believe they are one iota more important than all of the people I met this weekend and I don't believe there are any special rules or special privileges for people who are "more important than others", i.e., them, well they may as well give it up.

There are two reasons, I learned this week. First, the people I have met have given me, what as Harry Potter said, something those poison pen authors don't have, something worth fighting for. All of the people I met this week, from the ADORABLE blonde little girl fighting the black belt assistant instructor at Maurice Allen's club to the men protecting our country, raising families and still taking to time to teach judo to children - all are worth fighting for. And secondly, as someone who was copied on one of those letters commented, I have no idea what they are talking about anyway, because I am not fluent in psycho.

I speak judo pretty darn well, though.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Leave my children alone, damn it! (and other people's children, too)

I have been really busy at work the past week getting ready for a few classes to teach next week, and leaving town for a conference, but I just could not let a few things pass without comment.

If you read the Judo Info site regularly, you might have spotted these two items on the forum. The first one was an interview with Neil Adams, a British coach, world champion and Olympic silver medalist. One of the points he made was the short-sightedness and ineffectiveness of only focusing on competition for our youthful players, say the 14 to 16-year-old group. He said it isn't necessarily good to go to a contest every weekend. I could not agree more. In the U.S., I think our competitive focus begins even younger than 14. A few years ago, after a tournament a number of children from 8 to 12 years old attended IN JAPAN, I overheard a coach wondering why we did not have much success in the senior divisions when,
"We have the best eight-year-olds in the world."

There is something wrong with that statement on so many dimensions. I don't even know where to begin. A few years ago, when my youngest daughter was SEVEN, she competed in a large tournament. She won four matches and near the end, I noticed several "high-level" coaches watching her compete. I was not at all flattered. I was extremely annoyed. The child hadn't even learned multiplication yet, for crying out loud! Maybe she'll be good some day and maybe she won't. For now, her biggest concern is if she'll get accepted to summer science camp, not the junior nationals. Her judo development involves clinics like the one on footsweeps last weekend and the one on counters and combinations the week before that, and the other clinic on counters and combinations in January. It involves going to judo practice and learning throws.

In America, we eat our seed corn when it comes to young players. We take away the greatest gift young children have and that is time. We put kids in the senior nationals at twelve, thirteen and fourteen. I agree wholeheartedly with Neil Adams. We should instead be TEACHING our children at that age. If my youngest daughter was to win a bushel of gold medals by 18 because she had a killer seoi nage and nothing else - what an enormous waste of time and knowledge available to her. Yet, I know players like that, who have won a lot on one or two moves and a lot of physical training. They may make it to the national team, and then they are done.

Let me give an example of why this happens...
I watched nameless player A make it to number one in the U.S. She always attacked with a high grip. She was strong and had a couple of good throws from that grip. The divisions in the U.S. aren't very big and she beat everyone. She competed internationally and just could not win. Why? Because anyone watching her for 30 seconds could see that the key to beating her was blocking that high grip.

Was the solution for A, then, to learn better grip-fighting so that she could always get that grip? Well no, not really. That would have helped some, but if she did, she would still only have two throws and barely any matwork. Her problem was that she didn't really know that much judo. AND she was coached by people who didn't really know that much judo, either. Prior to her competing internationally, her coach's response to any suggestions was,

"We must be doing something right, she's winning."

The solution for A is that, beginning way back at age 10 or so, she should have focused on learning more judo. Then,

  • Even if she didn't win many tournaments at a young age, she would have had the chance of winning at the senior level. Having the best eight-year-olds in the world is actually counter-productive to having the best seniors.

  • Even if she didn't win as a senior, because she did not train hard enough or just didn't have the physical ability, she would still have learned a lot of judo and could be a very effective coach for winning players some day.

  • Even if she didn't win as a senior and never coached elite athletes, she might coach at her local YMCA and do a good job of it because she would actually know some judo

  • Even if she quit judo at 16 or 18 because she decided to focus on school or surfing or luge, she would still understand a lot about judo, have benefited from it and maybe put her own children in it some day, or recommend it to her sister or cousin or neighbor for their kids.

Two pieces of advice,
From me: If you find your happiness really depends on whether your 8- or 10- or 12-year-old wins a judo tournament, you better check yourself. I will be very happy if the two articles I have under review get accepted for publication in scientific journals and if my book proposal gets approved. Grown-ups should have grown-up goals and kids should have goals that include getting their footsweeps to work and conning their parents into buying them an iPod touch.

From another parent:
"Our children are commodities to these coaches. If they get injured, burned out, pregnant, they will just find another one, but these are the only children I will ever have."

Finally, what do I say to those parents who tell me their 12- 15-year-old child wants to compete internationally in senior competition? I say,
"Tell them, 'No'. You're the parent. It is NOT good for their development and if they really do want to do it, they'll want to do it twice as much next year because nothing makes you want to do something like your parents telling you that you can't."

Sheesh, don't these people remember being teenagers?

I said said there was a second point I wanted to make, which I did, about another topic on the forum on how one size does not fit all for training someone to be a world-class athlete, and what an 18-year-old and a 24-year-old ought to be doing right now are two very different things but it is late,and I have a day job, so I guess that will have to wait until next time.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

A Humbling Experience, in a Good Way

We had another fabulous Sunday clinic today at the USJA/ USJF West Coast Judo Training Center. Hayward Nishioka and Kenji Osugi taught foot techniques and I learned an enormous amount.

These two men are a living example of a simple fact that many of us forget, it takes a long time to get really good at judo.

Neil Adams, a world champion and two-time Olympic silver medalist from Great Britain made this exact same point in an interview recently. Far too often we are focused on Olympic medals and try to rush development. He attributes his success to the fact that his father did not let that happen with him.

Kenji and Hayward talked very little about competing today. Like Jake last week, they talked a lot about technique, about the little things, getting your foot right, having your hips thrust forward, pulling your hand toward your ear like you are hitch-hiking.

Kenji covered every little detail about foot sweeps, which was really cool.

As Hayward put it,

"Be proud of your belly-button! Thrust it forward on your foot sweeps."

Hayward showed a foot sweep but he also showed a wide variety of other techniques. So, while Kenji's presentation was deep, Hayward's was broad.

We practice o soto gari to ko soto gari, o soto gari to sasae tsurikomi ashi, okuri ashi barai to ko soto gari.

If you don't know what those words mean, you probably are part of the "looking for a short cut" crowd. Sorry, but it is true. If you do things like go to three hours of practice on Sunday you have time to learn the words for techniques and to learn how to do lots of different combinations.

It made me humble, proud, happy and sad all at the same time. I was humble because I have known both of these men for a long time and I never realized how much they both know. I knew they knew a lot of judo but it was even more than I thought. I was proud because I think part of the reason they did such a good job teaching today as that our team and those visiting were such good learners. I recognized in Hayward and Kenji something I see in myself also. If you really do know a lot about judo, you don't feel the need to prove it. If, as so often happens, someone, usually a teenager or young adult comes to the dojo with an attitude of superiority,

"What can you teach me, old person? Look what I won!",

you just don't bother to waste your time. As the old saying goes, you can't teach Calculus to a horse. It just wastes your time and it irritates the horse. I was proud of all of those who attended the clinic today because they came seriously intending to learn. They were attentive and respectful, as well as being good judo players and good athletes. They were all the type of students who are a delight to teach.

It made me sad because all of those players who don't realize what they are missing. There was SO much knowledge in the room today. The best thing I learned was the opposite side o soto gari to sasae. You step in on the left as if you are going to do o soto but you don't use your left leg. You step with your right and get the opponent to lean forward to stop your throw. Then, you turn, block their ankle with your left foot and throw with right-sided sasae. And, if you don't know what I am talking about now you see why I said you should have learned the words for throws.

And, finally, I felt happy to be there, happy to be having this opportunity to learn more judo, happy to have given this opportunity to our players. When we started the USJA/ USJF West Coast Judo Training Center, one of the hopes we had was that players from clubs around the area would be given the opportunity to learn more and develop their judo. None of us knows as much as all of us.

When I started judo, my instructor was a first degree black belt who had learned judo in the air force. He did a great job inspiring kids to want to learn more judo. In fact, at least three of his students, me, Randall Rhodes in Missouri and Tim Schultheiss in Illinois are teaching judo today. He did not, however, have the experience of someone like Hayward, who has been in judo over 50 years, competed, refereed and coached at the world level. I never had the opportunity to learn foot techniques from someone who was best in the world at them and by the time I was winning national medals I felt like I had to train and focus on winning. I didn't have the time to start something new that would take years to get the timing right.

Today, we had 16 people from 8 different clubs on the mat - San Gabriel, Sawtelle, Pasadena, Los Angeles City College, Tenri, Discover, Guerreros and Hayastan.

I was happy to be there, happy to be doing what I was doing and happy to be doing it with the people I was with. Afterwards, I went for ice cream with all of the youngest players. They had a lot of comments about the clinic.

"I never knew that guy Hayward was so funny. He was great."
"Yeah, that story about how he almost threw the girl with the footsweep when he was dancing with her was funny. He had a lot of funny stories."
"Kenji was funny, too. I can't believe he said that about where ken-ken o soto gari came from. In front of the parents, too!"
"That was gross - but in a funny way!"
"That o soto gari was great. I think I am going to do that."
"I liked that o soto to ko soto, too."

They were great. Even if you were over twelve. (And man, am I EVER over 12 years old!) We are going to have them back. Don't miss it.

============ JUDO TIP ======================

As if those weren't enough... another thing I was happy about. I tried to think about what Ronda had in her development that other people did not. She went to Tenri, she went to Hayastan, she ran, she lifted weights. I think one big advantage she had is a lot of days just like today. We went to San Shi and she threw me on the crash pad with Jake saying, "Pull this hand up, turn your head". We went to Ogden's where she would throw me on the crash pads more with Brian Marks saying, "Push with this hand more. Turn your hip that way." We went to Los Angeles City College where Hayward said, "Try this grip. Now try it like this." We did thousands of repetitions on the mat with me saying, "Lock the arm against your body. You armbar somebody with your hips, not your arms. Arch."

All of those hours and attention paid off for her, and now we are doing it for other people's kids. It is paying off. Sammy no longer gets countered. Julia is doing combinations. Erin is doing counters. Amber is throwing lots of people. Crystal is armbarring people.

It's actually worth getting up early in the morning to be there.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Dr. Jake teaches counters (and is the Manolavich)

Jake is the Manolavich - I have no idea what that means by the way, but Ronda says it all the time.

I am going with it means he does a great job teaching judo and is also a great guy. He definitely did a great job teaching at the West Coast Training Center last Sunday and we were so lucky to have him. He started out teaching counters, by request.

Before anything else, Jake emphasized gripping and posture. He focused on having the grip to control your opponent, to prevent him/ her from effectively entering the technique.

(Thanks to jiu jitsu instructor Sam Garcia, who is also a judo orange belt, for coming to the clinic and serving as Jake's uke.)

Next, Jake talked about body positioning, about using your hips and body movement to block out the opponent. He really emphasized stopping the other player's technique BEFORE the counter. His method of teaching was very methodical. It was a great clinic. You can see from the photos of Yazmin and Rachel below how quickly our players picked it up.

In our family, we were lucky to see Jake two days in a row, as he came by on Saturday for Ronda's impromptu birthday dinner party at Lago. This reminded me of another very important fact about judo. It is too easy to focus on all of the self-serving people, the woo-hoo-shidans - eighth degree black belts who have very little judo knowledge and a hundred other flaws in judo. We forget the people like Dr. Jake Flores, Dr. Martin Bregman, Paul Nogaki, Neil Ohlenkamp, Hayward Nishioka, Roy Hash and a thousand others who are successful professionally, intelligent, articulate and have substantial judo knowledge. These are also people who give unstintingly of themselves. Each one of them enriches our lives intellectually, athletically and ethically and we are privileged to know them.

Thanks, Jake.

==== RANDOM JUDO TIPS =============
Don't miss the chance to learn foot techniques from the best

Hayward Nishioka & Kenji Osugi will be teaching foot techniques (ashi waza) at the West Coast Training Center on Sunday, March 8, from 10 -1

123 South First St., La Puente , CA

Don't miss it !

Interesting blog on cutting weight here --

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

If I'd Known You Wanted a Dead Porcupine

(Note to judo people: this post has nothing to do with judo other than having Ronda's name in it, I just happened to remember this today.)

Ronda has the habit of falling in love with animals that turn out to be high maintenance. As with anything that is less than perfect about any of my children, I blame their father. When Ronda was about three, her father bought her a hunting dog. One might wonder why a three-year-old would need a hunting dog. I was quite suspicious of his motivations, since Ron was big into hunting, but this was the same man who bought the children not one, but two ponies even though our combined knowledge of anything related was that we could both spell "horse".

Spunky, the dog, was actually brilliant when it came to pointing out birds, which was what pointers do. Unfortunately, as a sentient creature, she was a miserable failure. Two of our dogs tried to bite a porcupine exactly once each, got a mouthful of quills and thought to themselves in dog language,

"Well, THAT didn't go very well,"

and never tried it again.

Not so, Spunky. Back then, I was working a LOT of hours, writing grants, lectures for my new classes, articles for academic journals. By the time I picked all three girls up from day care and pulled up to our not so little house on the prairie, it had been dark for hours and I was ready to just sit down for five minutes. But, no, up would come Spunky with porcupine quills all over her face. I'd have to grab her, wrestle her to the floor in the kitchen, because it was 40 below zero outside and I was NOT going to be outside one second longer than possible. With a pair of pliers, I would pull the quills out one by one, blood dripping on the floor, swearing I was going to kill the damn dog while Ronnie would be hollering,

"No. No. No kill me dog."

Where was the dog-buying, hunting father in all of this? Usually away on business. Did I mention that my husband was an amazingly good shot? This is relevant because one night he was actually home and I hear the dog barking outside. I know she is after another porcupine. I shake him and tell him that if he doesn't get up and shoot that damn porcupine, I will.

Since he doesn't get up, I throw on the first thing handy, which happens to be a long red dress, grab Ron's magnum and go out to the bush where the dog is barking. I think about shooting into it but then I am worried by the slim chance that it could be the neighbor's cat. I've read porcupines are pretty slow, so I figure I'll shoot over the bush to scare the thing and if it is a porcupine, when it comes lumbering out, I'll shoot it.

Well, I shoot over the bush and I do not know what the normal pace of a porcupine is but I can tell you from personal experience that when you shoot at them they move like a bat out of hell. So, I shoot again and miss, I notice the damn dog has porcupine quills in its face, and by now I am really pissed. I go back in the house and push Ron out of bed and tell him to go get that damn porcupine. He says,
"I never argue with a lady in a red dress holding my gun.

By now, all three girls are up and they are insisting they are going four-wheeling with daddy, too. So we hop in the truck, throw the stupid dog in, drive around the country until it starts barking, Ron gets out and shoots the porcupine. Then, we all go back to bed and get up and go to work and school in the morning.

I am telling my class about the great porcupine adventure the next morning when one of the students in the back of the room raises her hand and asks,
"Um, Dr. Rousey, what did you do with the porcupine?"

I tell her that, not having any particular uses for a dead porcupine, I left it right there. She asks me if she could have it, explaining that she is sewing a dress for her daughter to dance at the pow-wow and porcupine quills are hard to come by. Since I am a new young professor and want to be friends with all my students, I say sure.

Next topic: How does one carry a porcupine?

Having come from the city and moved out in the country in North Dakota, I take a lot of walks in the fields, to the great amusement of my neighbor, who is an actual farmer and who clearly regards our entire family as three steps over the line from crazy. A couple of times, he has seen me out walking and the conversation went like this:

John: "What are you doing out here?"
Me : "Walking."
John: "Where to?"
Me : "Nowhere."
John : "Well, you see, when I am walking, I am out checking my fences to see that the moose can't get out (he raised moose), or checking my snow fence. What are you looking for?"
Me: "Nothing."

And he would walk away shaking his head.

I came up with the idea of carrying the porcupine in a broken suitcase. As I was walking through the field, I sincerely hoped I did not meet my neighbor. At first, I thought he would think I was even crazier than usual if I had to explain I was just going for a walk with an empty suitcase. Then, I realized, it would be even more difficult to come up with any rationale for walking around a field in North Dakota carrying a suitcase full of dead porcupine.

The next day, I deliver porcupine, suitcase and all and that was the end of that saga - for about three days until my friend, Vivian, comes into my office and demands to know if it is true that I gave a porcupine to someone else. She is a bit put out because she is making a dress for her daughter for the pow-wow, too, and she could have used some porcupine quills and she is my friend after all, where I had just gone and given it to some random student and how could I have done that.

In yet another of those moments in my life of I-never-thought-I'd-have-to-say-this-but , I responded,

"Honest to God, if I'd known you wanted a dead porcupine, you would have been first on my list."

In the end, Spunky and Ron partnered to contribute to the demise of several porcupines and the beautification of several Native American little girls' dresses. After they had cleared out all the porcupines in the vicinity, one day Spunky goes and bites through the neighbor's barb wire fence and comes home with barbed wire stuck in her face and I have to take her to the vet for that. She really was one stupid dog.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Stalked by Captain Obvious

In case you have ever wondered what your life would be like if you went everywhere accompanied by a super hero whose power was stating the obvious, you should have been with me this weekend. For example,

"I'm not whining. I'm just asking you in a whiny fashion."

"Why do I need to learn words in Japanese like 'newaza randori' for when I go to Japan to train, don't lots of people there speak English?"
"No, they don't speak English. They speak Japanese, because, you see, the thing of it is, they live in Japan."

After watching a TV show with vice-president Joe Biden from Wednesday when he had ashes on his forehead.
"Do you think Biden is Catholic?"
"No, I think he is a Protestant who likes to rub ashes on his head. On Wednesdays."

"If it's called a combination when you do two throws together and a counter when you throw the person trying to throw you, what is it called when your counter doesn't work and he throws you anyway?"
"It's called ippon for the other guy.