There is something highly satisfying about a bleeding injury. I'm not saying one should seek these things out: they hurt, they're inconvenient, in some cases you can die, et cetera. But still.

  1. They're apparent, to you and everyone else. Pulled muscles require explanation; lacerations really explain themselves.
  2. There can be an odd sense of connection to the rest of the world, as something normally "inside of you" meets directly with what is "outside of you". A barrier breaks down.
  3. If you stay engaged and aware of the situation, you realize that the pain does not make you go away. You still exist, you still think, conceive, believe, trust, and act. If you're bleeding and still yourself, who knows what else you can go through and still be yourself? If you can act while wounded, you can probably take a punch; you can probably make decisions in the middle of a car accident; you can probably keep your mind clear in any crisis. And if you already knew that about yourself, great! You're still right!
  4. Chicks dig scars.

I'm fascinated by the way my body keeps changing. Despite the spare tire, I am actually becoming somewhat wiry: my muscles bulked up for a little while, and now they're shrinking a little bit but becoming denser and more supple, and I feel them working more easily with less resistance. (Well, I don't know if "wiry" is the right word, since even if I lost the spare tire I'd still weigh a solid 180 pounds, but you get the idea.) It's nice, and kind of amusing, because as I focus more getting closer to my test, I'm more grounded, which makes me even stronger, so when people at aikido try to move me by force without breaking my balance, we both feel like they're trying to move a brick wall and failing.

I'm excited about this weekend, heading down to the Santa Cruz Mountains to try out blacksmithing. I'm also signing up for a Caboose Restoration class at The Crucible, which I may or may not be qualified for, but what the hell. I just noticed the first class is October 2nd, which is Love Parade SF, for which I may be doing some technical stuff; but that's okay, I'll work it out somehow.