Betsy gets scolded


(This title is a throwback to “Betsy gets silly,” but since this Jiu-Jitsu post will obviously not be as pleasant, I’m adding happy pictures to take the edge off. You’re welcome. πŸ™‚ )

At the start of class, I was standing near Jack the Black (belt) when it was time for Instructor to pair people up.

“I want Jack,” I said, sort of quietly, since demanding your partner isn’t done. But I did want to work with Jack. I hope he was flattered.

Unfortunately, at roughly the same time, Instructor was calling over Enthusiastic Teen (ET) to partner with me. He knows we’ve worked together in the past.

We also give each other a hard time for kicks, so I said, “Ugh, I got ET.”

ET didn’t even flinch as he stepped up next to me.

Instructor changed his mind and put me with someone from the old days. My first impression back then was that this guy was worse than Indifferent Man and more like Trying-To-Ignore-My-Presence-Man. Or maybe Uncomfortable Man, as in, he didn’t like me being there. But whatever. He seems more used to me now, and we got on alright, except for him being a bit Drake-like in the squashing me department. Fortunately, no lasting damage, but I did say, “Oooff,” a couple times, and some “Urggh”s, and various assorted painful groans.

When there’s a soft fuzzy furry kitty on your lap, all’s right in the world.

I was quite surprised I hadn’t been paired with the newbie, a teenage girl, since that’s usually Instructor’s M.O.–put Betsy with the kids and the females. Instead, he assigned Lopez to her, which, not gonna lie, was a good call. (In case you’re wondering, I inquired. Lopez has been too busy at work to do daytime classes. :/ )

After class, Instructor followed me outside to talk. In my stupidity, I thought I was about to receive good news, something along the lines of, “You’re doing so amazingly, Betsy, I’m ready to bump you up to the advanced class!” It wasn’t a fully formed thought; ie, I didn’t get a chance to realize how ridiculous that was before he said, “Please don’t say, ‘Ugh, I got ET.'”

“Oh, ET and I just like to mess with each other. He knows I was kidding.” I thought it had been obvious. I was looking right at ET and smiling when I said it. Wouldn’t others hear the smile in my voice? Apparently not, because…

“But other people heard it.”

“Okay,” I nodded. “Sorry about that.” And I was, mostly because now people think I’m a jerk. So that’s why Instructor swapped ET with the other guy. Clearly, the joke was not obvious. Dang it.

But things got worse…

Or if you’re more of a puppy person…

“And the groaning. You were kind of freaking [New Girl] out.”

“I am so sorry,” I said sincerely. “That was totally involuntary.”

“If you’re having a hard time working with someone, let me know, and I’ll pair you with someone else.”

“Of course. And I’ll try to keep the noises to myself from now on.” I couldn’t help the grunts, but maybe now that I’m aware, I can try to keep them under wraps. But also, how do I go to Instructor in the middle of class and ask to be reassigned without totally being obvious and jerky to the person I’m working with?

Toward the end of the Drake class, Instructor had walked by when I said, “Ow,” and had swapped me with someone smaller. Maybe “Ow” is okay, but, “Urgh,” is not.


But seriously, I was shaken by the whole conversation, which was a little more extensive than the above. I’m not used to getting in trouble. I was mortified and wondered if I could show my face in the next class.

Kitten bliss.

Fortunately, by the time the next class day came around, I was so excited to go, all other considerations were muted.

I walked in and looked to the right where Instructor normally stands at his desk. Empty. So I turned left toward the cubbies and heard, “What’s up, Betsy?” Instructor waved with a big smile from across the room.

“Hey!” I called back with a broad smile.

And all was right in the world.

When it was time to pair people up, Instructor was occupied by someone, so Jack said, “Let’s go, Betsy,” volunteering to partner with me.

This was an easy class. Nevertheless, I didn’t mind Jack nodding and saying, “That was legit,” after I did a move.

That happened twice. When I told Hubby about this, he said, “So what you’re saying is, you’re ‘two legit’ to quit?”

Chuckle, chuckle.

Also, part way through class, Jack said, “It’s too cold in here.” Later, after he was confident I knew the moves well enough to go full force, he wiped his brow, and said, “I’m sweating now.”

That’s right, folks. I made the black belt sweat!

Someone make a note to have that chiseled on my tombstone.

So, what would you guys have done in my situation? Wilted like a dehydrated flower? Brushed it off? Texted a friend or two for comfort? (That’s what I did.) And more importantly, which would boost your spirits more: kittens or puppies?

I know I owe you T-shirt results and a more thorough mention of this interview. Stay tuned!

76 responses »

  1. Oh my goodness, I would have been mortified to be scolded. Honestly? I probably would not have ever gone back! I guess I’m a big baby?! That puppy is so darn furry I could pet him all day! Thanks for the cute pet pictures to tone down the post. Hahaha!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I feel like Instructor’s concerns were a little over-the-top, but that’s probably because I’m just like you: I would totally make a sassy comment like that to my partner. After that harsh scolding, I’d do exactly as the situation warranted and challenge Instructor to a duel to the death.

    Either that or I’d walk out of class and never return.

    Kittens, duh!!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Two legit?? Pretty funny, Hubby! I totally honor your toughness. Going back after a physical injury is hard but going back after a scolding — way harder! And although think the instructor could have been a little more Zen about understanding that your self-expression isn’t his to control, you handled it marvelously!

    The kitty/puppy pictures are so cute! You are hilarious for interspersing those. I love the puppy but the one of you with the two kitties – your smile is so infectious!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hubby was quick on that one for sure. πŸ™‚ I’m so grateful that my mindset happened to be where it was at the time to enable me to go back no problem. Other days, when I’m not necessarily feeling like going in general because I’m tired, it would’ve been much harder to push myself. Plus, if I had taken a class off, it would seem like I did so because I was embarrassed, and maybe that would be worse/compound my mortification. So, I guess you could say I “lucked” out.

      Oh man, those kitties were so adorbs. As were the puppies, TBH. And thanks for being one of those people who comforted me that night. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Intersting.

    Tough call – from my view on the sidelines.

    I’m sure your Instructor had good intent and reason, he didn’t seem upset then (from what I’m reading out of your post) or when you returned to class next.

    Jiu-jitsu is a sport and martial art so fostering a team environment is crucial. I don’t know this for sure, since I wasn’t there, but the others who heard, including new girl, may not have seen your smile or understood immediately that it was just a good ribbing between teammates – which can erode the team environment. Just a thought.

    Jiu-jitsu is a hard sport, so grunts, groans and the occasional “oofs” are going to happen – but usually during rolls, not just the repetition portion unless one is purposefully applying pressure.

    That said, you CAN and should verbalize to your partner when they are going too rough during the repetition/practice part of class. Practically everyone I’ve ever trained with who goes too hard during repetition/practice time misses a step, an element, a concept and “makes” the technique work through force… but then has a hard time actually doing it right or getting the same results in live rolls.

    Even after 5yrs in this, when learning something new or a new variation and my partner and I up the tempo during practice after “getting it down”, I’ll find myself needing to dial it back because I will find myself missing a key grip or step.

    And if the partner won’t stop going hard, then yes, you should speak to the instructor.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I wasn’t upset at Instructor by any of this. I completely understand him calling me out for the ET comment. I thought I was making a harmless silly comment and that somehow everyone would know that, but obviously not. I’ll keep my snark to myself. I really don’t want people to think I’m a jerk.

      The guys are always nice, if sometimes clueless, so you’re right, I should just tell them to ease up if it’s too much. I guess I hope that the other person is clued in by my obvious noises of discomfort, but, again, I guess not. :/ So many of the guys have intrinsically, it seems, been gentle. Maybe I got too used to that.

      Liked by 1 person

      • My pleasure, Betsy. Just trying to do what I can to help without being some sort of a know-it-all lol, we’re all on the path learning. πŸ˜ŽπŸ‘ŠπŸ»

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’ve never gotten a know-it-all vibe from you. And let’s be honest, do you really think you know it all? I doubt it. Everyone is still learning. πŸ™‚ And I’m totally happy to learn from the 98% of practitioners who know more than I do!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Lol I’ll have to live vicariously through you for the time being, because I hopped into an MMA sparring session the other day and I think I bruised or separated a rib. Either way, these rib injuries take quite a while to heal, so thanks for this jiu-jitsu story to tide me over. And drilling partners are important, aren’t they? Get paired with someone you TRULY don’t like and it’s going to be a long class.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve been injured and outof class a few times, Stuart, and that’s more painful than the injury itself! I’m sure you must miss it. Thanks for reading! Hope you heal up soon! πŸ™‚


  6. I guess I kindddd of guess why he spoke to you on the side about E.T. but I don’t understand why you can’t grunt!? I’ll be honest with you, when I think of Jiu-Jitsu, the first thing that comes to mind other than ninja kicks is the loud grunting lol I never imagined Jiu-Jitsu to be a “quiet” sport lol… Also, I’m sure he meant well and nothing too serious but yea, I am the type to take something like that personal as well… I’d overthink everything from OMG he doesn’t like me as a student to maybe I should move out of State! LOL


    Liked by 1 person

    • “OMG he doesn’t like me as a student to maybe I should move out of State!” I’m DYING from this, BB. Move out of state! Hahaha! Wow. THANK YOU for that. You make me feel so much better. I mean, sure, I flipped out a little about it, but at least not as much as Bossy Babe would have! ;P That was the best.

      The puppy is to die for! Look how snuggly that little guy is.


  7. Truthfully, back in the day I would have worried it to death. Gotten upset, etc. I am a little perplexed though….I understand part of his comments to you. But the noises while being tossed about and physically exerting one’s self….that happens. We had all kinds of noises going on during class. Including ‘oofs’, ‘owwww’, etc…. in addition to our power/spirit yells. Just as a side note about noises….the bathroom in our dojang (unfortunately) was literally built on a corner of the workout floor. One day a dedicated student had to GO and was afraid of what it would sound like due to the meal they had had. They asked that everyone PLEASE make extra noise to cover any embarrassment. So we oofed, owwwed, and grunted to cover any embarrassment that might otherwise have been very obvious to us. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • That is SO funny. What a dedicated group you were that this person felt comfortable enough making that request and that you all complied. I probably would’ve run the water full blast to help cover, though it probably wouldn’t have been as effective as the verbal noises from you all. (And a waste of water, but desperate times!) The confidence for that person to say that. So great.
      Maybe Instructor thought I was being a little over the top? I certainly wasn’t trying to be, but perhaps it came off that way. Shrug.
      Thinking about it now… if my TKD instructor scolded me, I would be mortified. That one would be harder to live down. Different dynamic, I guess.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I hate being scolded, Betsy. My feelings get hurt, especially when I wasn’t trying to be offensive. Ugh ( (oops, I mean “Ow.”). But I’m glad its all better. πŸ™‚ And, oh, my, I love both kittens and puppies!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. The grunting/groaning thing confused me…

    When I started to practice martial arts as a teenager, my instructor encouraged me to make those “grunting” sounds. He said it’s important to help focus the breathing at crucial times. I explained the non-ladylike aspects, and he listened carefully, and said that that’s something I’m going to have to get over, given that getting beaten might be ladylike, but I’m here to learn how to not get beaten, and possibly beat others up in the process. He encouraged me to yell, not just say, but yell a word gave me until such time I felt comfortable with the grunting. So… Isn’t the grunting good? πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • I guess, given that most people remain professionally quiet, at least as far as I can tell, this is a non- or low-grunting establishment. Maybe I was unwittingly being obnoxious with it. Or perhaps it just seemed that way to Instructor because he witnessed the new girl looking aghast at my noises? That’s all I can figure. Nonetheless, I will attempt to respect the rules and keep my grunts as quietly to myself as I can.

      Liked by 1 person

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  12. Everyone makes noises in my classes. Well, we try to keep it to a minimum. In my opinion, if new people are scared by it, they need to kinda get used to it. This is real self defense. 🀷

    Liked by 1 person

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