Sunday, May 30, 2010
Spice adds the variety in life...
In curry, many spices can be used. The mainstay would of course be coriander seeds, star anise, chilli, tumeric and curry leaves. Then you start jazzing it up a bit with mustard seeds, halba and other stuff like belacan even. The bumbu will require chilli, onions, garlic, and of course curry powder. Add some asam jawa and you're in business. Still even with this surefire mix of spices, get the timing wrong and it'll all go down the drain. I've had miserable curry before. Didn't taste right, so I dumped a whole load of curry powder to get the taste and consistency right. Stomach ache notwithstanding, it tasted ok... until the next morning when the spoon I left in the pot got caught in the curry like glue. Ah, student days...
So there you have it. All the right ingredients are there. You can even have the recipe in front of you. Until you start making the curry though, you won't know how it'll turn out.
Similarly, there is our Aikido. We did a variety of things today. Starting from our basic expansion of the aiki taiso into kihon waza... then we started looking at Goshin from a different perspective. Uke is attacking a 3rd party, and nage gets to do something from the back. We did 5 techniques, ranging from the nicest kokyu where we let go, to pressure points, to half nelsons, and to kicking his knees down and breaking his neck. Interesting.
Where did the aiki go you may ask? Its still there... in your hands and mind. The ingredients are at your disposal. How you apply it is your style, or nature, or prerogative. So don't get caught up with those spices, essentially its how you use it that'll make your curry err I mean your Aikido good or just a mediocre simulacrum of jujitsu.
As a reminder for the goshin applications:
Kokyu - lift yourself like you're floating, drop all your weight on your hands, your hands touch his shoulder like a feather, and lets go of that weight on him. Address him when he's down.
Pressure point - 45 in and 45 down. Weapon side.
Sankyo - free hand, go in to his back not to his side. Elbows up and down. (uke watch your face)
Half nelson - Weapon hand. Touch the face, the other hand cradle the face. Sink and keep his hand extended behind his head.
All out attack - weapon side, 45 degrees push through the knees into the ground, holding shoulder lightly. Other hand grab the nose and twist to the side, the other hand slap his ears and follow through to the ground. Use knees to guide weapon hand down.
In each application, try not to get to caught up in what you're doing. Ultimately you're protecting someone and yourself. That's first. Not fighting for a weapon or bringing someone down.
Lastly, like most curries... it'll taste even better the next day. So hang in there.