Monday, July 18, 2011

How I Dislocated my Shoulder Fencing

Finally, the day has come to be able to walk around without my dreaded arm sling. In honor of this moment, and because Don Gosney wants to know I’m going to tell the story of how I re-dislocated my arm while simply fencing.

It all started last week on Tuesday when I made one of many bad choices that led up to my injury. The first occurred early that morning when I decided to play Kickball out of a pool of at least 5 other safer activities to do during our recreational period. I couldn’t wait for the game for the game to start, and when it began I wanted to play a pivotal position that influenced the game. “What could be better than the outfield,” I thought because I’d be able to directly make outs by catching the ball. I totally ignored the fact I’d have to throw the ball in especially in crisis, so when I dropped what was usually an easy catch, I just thought I’d throw it back in like any other kid, but as soon as I let the ball ago I was reminded that I as indeed definitely different from the others. I wrenched my shoulder, feeling all the ligaments straining to hold my shoulder in place. The pain gripped my shoulder as I knelt down thinking about how lucky I was to still have my shoulder in its socket. I made another great decision to continue playing. I had been lucky this time, but I wasn’t sure what would happen in the future I realized I wasn’t unbreakable anymore.

The next day in my Arête class was the last place I’d thought I’d ever be injured. Fencing is the world’s second safest sport and that day was the first in which we were to actually fence. I was feeling pumped and ready as we put on our assortment of gear. As I faced my appointment, I had no idea about the events that were going to take place. After my opponent took the lead 4-3, the pressure on me to comeback was beginning to grow. On guard! Ready! Fence! We began our battle, the match was fierce we were attacking and parrying constantly. Then finally while was backing up from an attack, I noticed my opponent was getting ready for a chop, but I had to time it perfectly otherwise he would be able to fake the hit leaving me vulnerable elsewhere. At the last possible moment I shot my arm into position. What was this though? Another intense feeling of pain, the sound of my ligament not being able to hold my shoulder, I had dislocated my shoulder fencing. My body immediately went into shock causing me to fall to the ground, and in my conscious mind I didn’t believe what happened until I tried to move my arm. The pain was then unbearable. Recollecting these moments still send shockwaves through my body.


The Islamic faith was the center of focus in class today.

I think it is amazing how the three Abrahamic religions all stemmed from one another-- many ideas and principles of each one can be linked to another. Despite the history and similarities that Judaism, Christianity, and Islam share, there are numerous distinctions between them which often leads to conflict and war, even within different sects of each faith.

Disciples of these faiths, however, all share one certain thing: their belief in God.

You may be thinking, “If they all want to worship the same God, why do all these separate religions exist?”

The explanation is extensive, but it all essentially boils down to the fact that people have different opinions, which leads to different views and standpoints. Christianity was born from Jesus Christ, who was Jewish, and his followers, who were also Jewish. Followers of Islam, called Muslims, view Jesus Christ as simply a prophet, not the son of God. They also believe that Islam “encompasses” the followers of the other two Abrahamic faiths-- since is often understood that Christians and Jews worship the same God that Muslims do, they consider those followers to be Muslims too.

Tonight was Proctor Night, and our proctor group decided to go out to eat Thai food for dinner and swing by a frozen yogurt shop for some dessert.

On our way back, we were bombarded by a thunderstorm. Luckily, most of us brought our umbrellas with us, and were able to share with those who didn’t (although some girls ran off in the rain to get back to the dorms faster).

I think umbrellas are a great invention, and hopefully, the skies will clear up by tomorrow so we can enjoy yet another sign out night and explore a bit of Nashville again.

"Y'all Know We Have the Best Proctor Group?"

I like that my roommate is a heavy sleeper like me. It’s a common trait that is good to have. I learned that we share this amazing ability because I woke up early to take a shower and accidentally knocked over something loud and heavy. I froze and made a petrified face, ready to severely apologize the second she woke up – but she didn’t even twitch. I did a silent dance around the room in happiness and made sure to quietly close the door on my way out.

Class started with our professor handing out an article comparing violent scriptures in the Qur’an. The author of the article refers to actual passages in the Bible that tell of God instructing Samuel to use an act of genocide against the Amalekites. He said that violence in the Bible is often minimized or excuses are made for it, which we experienced firsthand, since a few kids in class started to unintentionally make excuses or create a nice explanation for the murder in the Bible. But violence in the Qur’an is always interpreted differently by people. Some believe that Muslim radical attacks are interpreted as jihad by some, which is holy warfare, and irjaf, which is outright terrorism. But the author admits that the doctrine is aggressive. As we read actual texts of the Qur’an in class, we did recognize that Allah preaches to defend his word, and fight non-believers or those who threaten their faith.

We watched a John Stewart video clip about the opposition of those towards building a mosque near Ground Zero. The protestors claimed things like all Muslims were terrorists, they’re all out to get us, and that by building it “those crazy people” would win. Honestly, it’s amazing how ignorant some people can be and how disrespectful people are towards others. Just like how not all White people are KKK members, not all Muslims are radical terrorists. You can’t judge an entire group by the bad seeds. The show also included an interview about an incident in Nashville where a mosque was also trying to be built. But again, there were huge protests. The woman in charge of the opposition, Laurie Cardozza-Moore, said ridiculous statements like they had Muslim terrorist training camps and that all Muslims were trying to take over the world. When asked where she got all these “facts”, she stated she found them all online, and told the interviewer to Google it like she did. Incredible. If you would like to read her other "justifications" you can Google it (haha) or go to

In class we went over the history of Muhammad, and how the Islam religion split into Shi’a and Sunni. The explanation has so many twists and turns with caliphs, relatives, civil wars, and murder. It boils down to the fact that Shi’a’s believed that leaders should be chosen through dynasty, and Sunni’s who believed that the leader should be chosen democratically.

I find it interesting that the Qur’an gives rules towards every aspect in life, ranging from what clothes woman should wear, to the mourning period length before a woman can remarry, and the economic policies one should follow. The Qur’an truly dictates how a Muslim should live and behave towards one another. It also actually has reasons explaining why Allah is saying all this to Muhammad, explaining why Christianity and Judaism has it wrong. I’ve never heard of a religious text blatantly disproving the validity of another.

My arête class this week is step and stomp. It is extremely difficult to get all the patterns and gestures right. There’s a lot of smacking of body parts involved, and we ended up getting red patches where our hands hit our arms and thighs. I think I burst some blood vessels in my leg, but I’m too scared to look up online if that’s what it actually is, because I do not want to be haunted by gross extra-graphic images. Mine doesn't hurt or look gross and graphic, but it’s just interesting because I’ve never seen this before. Maybe I should ask a VSA student who is taking the Med101 class.

Tonight was proctor night which allows our group to go anywhere as long as we’re with our proctor. Although many groups went out to the mall, we decided to walk to a local Thai restaurant and then get some frozen yogurt for dessert. This frozen yogurt was absolutely the best frozen yogurt I have ever had. I decided to order the shop’s famous Nutella flavored froyo. It was delicious, and low in calories too! This place, Tasti D-Lite, has over 100 flavors ranging from the normal vanilla and chocolate flavors, to angel food cake, coffee ‘n cream, piña colada, and pomegranate.

It started to pour on our way home, so we sought refuge in one of the deserted dining halls. It was nice to have so much time to have great girl-talk with everyone. We’re becoming a close-knit family, and learning more and more about each other every day. As my friend Michal says, “Y’all know we have the best proctor group here? I love you guys”.