That’s the title to one of my favorite Primus albums (Sailing the Seas of Cheese is less applicable to this context). I tried to come up with a Theme of Grand Unification for this week, but in the end I just couldn’t. I suppose throwing my EH around in the forest can be theme enough. It’ll have to be this week!
The founder of aikido, a martial art I’ve practiced for over a decade, once said “Now and again, it is necessary to seclude yourself among deep mountain and hidden valleys to restore your link to the source of life.” I can’t claim that I went THAT far this week (just into the lush lands conservancy area adjacent my work), but it’s always felt good to me to throw outside. Everybody takes inspiration and clarity from different types of surroundings. I tend to throw pretty badly on a stage at a competition, but put me out in the trees and air, and my stuff just feels better. You’ve got to know your element.
Nothing really crazy or new in this vid. A few nice examples of navigating the aggressive response [typically] endemic to wood yo-yo’s, I guess. A lot of people ask me about “the secret” to things like suicides, whips, hooks, and slacky holds on wood yo-yo’s. That there isn’t one is one of the best aspects of throwing fixed axle. I think I’ve narrowed the basic elements down to a few discrete imperatives though.
- Throw in a way which suits the trick.
- Manage your string tension.
- Be in control of where your slack string is allowed to go.
- Don’t be jerky.
Kinda funny to juxtapose those with my dojo’s “4 basic principles of aikido“, actually. Anyway, if you really internalize that stuff, and it becomes a part of your playing, I really think you can do anything you want with a fixed axle yo-yo (possible exception: unassisted flight). I’m still working on all of it, and will be forever. A lot of newer fixed axle aficionados will try to play a woody just like they do their metals, right down to the tricks they try to do. That’s fun, and perfectly ok. Five years ago, hitting every hard trick possible on a No Jive seemed a good and reasonable goal. Over the last few years though, playing wood almost exclusively has taught me that fixed axle has stylistic benefits quite apart from the inherent “bragging rights”. Hopefully, Drew and I have communicated some of these over the past 4 months (as they’ve formed the basis/title of most every Fixed Friday installment).
On that note, I hope you’ll tune back in next week, as Drew and I throw down in a blood & guts battle to the theme of “Creeper”. Yeah, that’s happening. Enjoy the weekend!