We had a belt test last night. Neal and Jeremy were getting their first stripe on their whites, and I was their grappling dummy for the presentation part. Both have come a lot farther than it seems to them. They always have to grapple with people who have been doing this for much longer, and Neal has the added baggage of being small.
And I tested for my blue. I didn't have a lot of demonstration things to do, and that was fine with me. Klint had a line of blues and purples waiting in the wings, but he did have me do one thread: double leg takedown to side control, switch base to mount, attack the collar, when they grab for the upa and roll trap their arm with your chest, slide your leg behind their shoulder, s-mount, armbar. I love that finish, going from the choke to the armbar. It has a natural flow to it, and if they decide not to stop you from choking them because they like their elbows too much, you still win. So I did that twice. I was much more nervous than I expected to be. Brenna came to watch, as did two of her cousins, Andy and his wife came, and a few of my friends from school were there. So it might have been the small audience. It might also have been a building trepidation for what I though was coming next. Because I was right.
After that one thread, Klint basically had me roll with Tony. Then Brady. Then Ed. Then Tony. Probably five minutes a piece, no rest in between save to retie the belt. To be fair, I don't know exactly how long he let us go--time is pretty fluid during a roll, and struggling to survive tends to take precedence over counting the seconds. I did not perform as well as I would have hoped, but I did not embarrass myself. I got tapped only once at the end by Tony in a shattering kimura. Talking with him afterwards, he said he was laying on my face just to tire me out a bit more, and then went for the arm. I thought he was going for the armbar, and he thought about it, but decided just to end it there. Merciful, that guy.
So now I'm a blue belt. I'm the first one at our academy. And I have to miss this morning's training to keep up with school work. Good start.