I haven’t been posting much lately, partially because of a lack of time, and partially because I haven’t had much to post about. Probably no one notices, but I figured I would write an update of sorts anyway.
My training has its ups and downs. My snatch is doing ok, but my clean and jerk has been poor these past two weeks. My programming up until christmas was supposed to be based mostly around technique and pulling, but then my coach asked me if I wanted to compete this coming weekend, so I’ve been doing more heavy singles than I had planned to. Yesterday I tested openers, and I’ll probably open with 90/110 again, which is all I managed yesterday. I’ll see how I feel on Saturday, and might increase the snatch opener, but I’m unlikely to go much heaver in the clean and jerk.
As of last week, I’ve started attending yoga class on Mondays in an effort to improve my flexibility. To be honest, I feel like it challenges my conditioning and balance more than my flexibility. But I also doubt many yoga routines were developed for 125 kg men who can squat 200 kg, but barely hold the plank for one minute. Anyway, my gym has free yoga classes so I’ll stick with it for a couple of months at least and see if I notice any changes.
School’s going okay. We had a Chinese midterm which I got a full score on, so maybe my Chinese is a little better than I thought, but I still need to practice more. Again, if you are reading this and you speak Chinese, hit me up and maybe we can penpal or something.
I applied to move to different student housing in order to save some money before I go to Beijing (I save one and a half plane ticket in two months rent). I’ll live less central, and I’ll share a bathroom and kitchen with someone else, but that’s okay. Maybe I’m lucky and my roommate is Chinese. Also, I’ll live very close to the Norwegian Olympic training center, which I’ve been wanting to see if I could possibly train at (they used to allow anyone to train there, but they closed it for regular people, although I’ve heard they sometimes allow regulars to train there if you ask at the right time.)
Some days are better than others. Sometimes I’m all “I’ll power through this, I am capable of xyz, things will work themselves out” and other times “it doesn’t matter what I do I’m a shitty person and I’ll be sad and alone forever.” There are things I can’t get past and things I desperately want to say to certain people but can’t.
I guess because it’s October it’s October fest all month? I don’t know how this works, but that’s what people in class spend time talking about anyway. Even I know though that Octoberfest is pretty much about drinking. And that’s okay, people can drink if they feel like it. But why does so many social arrangements have to be about drinking?
A (non-mandatory, for fun) part of the Chinese studies is something called “cultural nights.” We had one so far, it was calligraphy and it was fun. The next one is due now, and the theme is “Chinese drinking games” and I get that for most people, or at least a lot, this is fun, so I’m not saying I’m against it, I just feel like it’s a missed opportunity to learn about other cultural aspects of China of which there are so many, especially since there are so few of these cultural nights (one every other month or so).
Drinking is everywhere. Everyone does it. And I feel I’m at a disadvantage for not wanting to participate. Yes, you can go to parties sober. But I’m sure if you tried you’d see why there’s not generally a lot of sober people at parties. It’s not fun. For me anyway. And people say it’s okay that you don’t drink, they respect that, but it very seldom feels like they do.
It’s difficult for me to even talk about because I’m scared that I’ll say something to offend someone, or come across as judging. I don’t mind that others drink, I just wish it wasn’t a part of virtually every social encounter, at least in student culture.
While I’m at it, and because I have a faint hope that no one will read this far anyway, I’m also scared to talk about the casual sex/hook up culture that goes with this. I associate mostly with liberal people, I am in mostly liberal spheres (by choice) and as a result this idea of casual sex of something exclusively good, that everyone should partake in is all around me. Sex positivity is very in these days. And again, I don’t have a problem with this. If you want to have sex with someone who wants to have sex with you, why not, go for it.
However, I often feel as though by not wanting this I’m this old conservative person who’s stuck in the past and shames people for having sex. Of course no one has told me this, but it’s just how I feel. I don’t understand the appeal of casual encounters. I don’t understand how people want to have sex with someone they’re not romantically involved with, let alone are comfortable with having sex with someone they don’t know. But that is just my point of view, I want to make it clear that what other people are into doesn’t bother me. It just makes me feel like I’m somehow limiting myself in life or something because I feel that way.
To be honest, this is probably linked to personal guilt issues. I’m always scared that I’m doing something wrong or offending someone or come across as judging. I don’t mean to blame anyone else for any of this. I just wish sometimes more people would say “it’s okay to drink and have fun with your friends but it’s equally okay not to drink” and “it’s okay to have sex with anyone you want, it’s also equally okay not to.”