Monday, March 28, 2011

Karate Shopping

So Dylan has been driving me crazy. All he cares about is video games. We limit the time he can play each day, but when we tell him it's time to get off, he pitches a huge fit. On the days when his fits are enormous, he is grounded from video games for as much as a week. So for the whole week, all he talks about is when he can play video games again. When he's eating, he's asking when he can get back on the computer. While he's playing, he's narrating his game: "Oh my gosh, I just karate chopped that bad guy so hard! Look, Mama. Look at how my guy can jump and fly. Oh my gosh, I totally just ran into that other dude..." I'm always like, "Hon, I don't CARE."

Anyways, I've been wanting to get him into a sport for a zillion years, but I've never felt like we had the financial means to do it, but enough is enough. I'll let my grocery budget take a little cut. I've got to get him out and realizing that there is more to life than video games. I need to get him busy. We kind of missed the deadline for spring sports, but I had a talk with him and asked him what he wanted to do this summer - martial arts (he has asked to take Kung Fu before), golf, tennis, baseball... He said he definitely wanted to do martial arts. So I called around, and there were two places that were within our price range - the rest were REALLY spendy.

So we went to one - a Taekwon Do class. Um, all they did was yell. Maybe two kicks and two air karate chops. And that was it. At the beginning, they turned and faced the mommies, siblings, friends, etc., and asked/yelled for permission to start the class. They held up their hands weird - it looked like sign language for "tree" - "Permission to start taekwon do class!!!" And the parents had to stand up and yell back, with the weird hand thing, "PERMISSION GRANTED!" And then again, like, halfway through class, the kids turned around and were like, "I PROMISE NOT TO BACKTALK, AND TO DO MY CHORES, AND TO BE AN HONORABLE PERSON..." It went on forever. I mean, I liked what I was hearing, right? But then the parents had to stand up AGAIN and yell some chant back, something to the effect of, "I LIKE YOUR PROMISE, AND I PROMISE TO TAKE YOU TO TAEKWON DO FOR TEN BILLION YEARS AND SPEND TEN BILLION DOLLARS ON IT." And then again, at the end of class, there was the yelled permission to finish the class, and the permission granted by the parents. It all felt reaalllllllly cheesy.

During the class, I did like that the teacher taught them about strangers, had them define safe strangers and unsafe strangers (safe strangers are police officers, etc.), asked them if they knew their phone numbers, asked them if they knew their parents names... So when he asked who knew their phone number, I was proud of Dylan that he raised his hand and said our phone number. That is soooo not to my credit. He is just really good with numbers. Sadie doesn't have one clue what our number is. I'm bad. I need to work on that. So then, the teacher asked who knew their parents' names. And whoever raised their hand, and he called on, said their parents' names. Well, he calls on Dylan, and Dylan yells, "JAKOB AND BROCK!" The teacher cocks his head to one side, like, "Okayyyyyy..." Dylan turned around and smiled all big at me, like, "I'm so smart." And I mouthed to him, "JAKOB AND BROCK ARE NOT YOUR PARENTS' NAMES." Dylan mouthed back, "He said 'names of family members.'" I mouthed back, "No he didn't." It was really, really funny.

Anyways, (Sorry for the use of "anyways," Patty. It's just how I roll. I know it's not grammatically correct. But I know you love me ANYWAYS.) when I went up to the teacher afterwards, and said we would have to think about it and talk about it, I found out that the per-month price that I was quoted over the phone was only for the first month. Then, it doubles for every month thereafter. I was thinking, "Huh? You are asking to be paid how much? For yelling the whole time? Dylan yells at my house all day. For FREE." And this class only meets twice a week for half an hour each time.

So we tried the other cheaper place, also a Taekwon Do place. Which was for reals cheaper. Not pretend cheaper. It's actually offered at the same gym where I work out. It's four times a week, for an hour each time. And they actually DO stuff. Lots of running, kicking, punching, chopping, sparring, etc. It's awesome.

I picked him up after his trying-it-out class.

"Soooo," I said, grinning from ear to ear,"What did you think??"

He sighed. "It hurt my body soooo bad."

"What do you mean?"

"My leg muscles and my arm muscles really huuuuuurt."

I laughed. "Welcome to exercise, Dylan. That is how exercise feels. Ain't it wonderful?"

"No."

I told him he had to do this, or tennis, golf, baseball, or something else active this summer.

"Will those other things hurt my muscles?"

"You can bet on it."

"Well, then I guess I'll stick with Taekwon Do. I wonder how long it will take me to get my black belt. Maybe a year."

"Um, try ten years. Or fifteen."

"Are you serious?"

"From what I've heard."

"Aw MAN..."

We'll see how it goes. He liked his second and third classes a lot more. Although I mixed up the times and picked him up 15 minutes late today. He was totally crying when I got there. I felt really badly. I just can't get my act together.

I like what I see and hear there. The teacher is very into personal responsibility. If Dylan is late, he has to do push-ups. Even if it's his mom's fault that he's late. His uniform is his responsibility. If Mom forgets to put the washed uniform into the dryer, it's not her fault. It's his responsibility to make sure his uniform is washed and dry. They are constantly talking about courtesy, respect, and self-control. I've already seen a bit of a difference in Dylan's attitude this week. He's quicker to do his chores. He came home today and hung up his uniform nicely in his closet. I've NEVER seen him put his clothes away nicely. So hopefully this will be a really good thing for him.

6 comments:

Mindy H. said...

You are such a good mommy. Kids need stuff to do, especially during the summer. I am looking forward to many fun taekwon do posts. I', sure there will be many fun stories to tell!

Jenny said...

congrats on the class! bentley loves his, but the next step is a multi-year contract and we're not ready for that. kind of a bummer because he'd like to keep going. keep us posted on dylan's class!

Camille said...

Awesome Kar - I'm with you - it's good for kids to get our there and find something they like to do. We've been thinking about putting Josh into something, but I missed the spring deadlines too. Our rec center has some awesome classes and are pretty cheap. I'll have to be more on top of it from now on.

megan said...

That's funny that he was complaining about hurting!:) I bet my boys would do the same thing. I'm glad he likes it and wants to keep going! It sounds like he'll learn more than just karate! That's great! I'm totally thinking about signing my kids up now!!

Aprillium said...

I tried Karate with Goober for a bit... and then the price went up and I went "WHAAAAAA?!?!" and no more. Ya... that was fun. What is up with martial arts being so much more expenzive than other sports? Really?

Lyndsay said...

How funny! You'll have to read my latest post about our Tang Soo Do experience (it was seriously cheap - $25/month for 2x/week 1 hour each time). So sad that it didn't work out for us...

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