Monthly Archives: April 2012

Friday Failboat 1

Hey guys, Brent here, welcome to the first Friday Failboat, where I share with you a story about one of my life’s failures. Today’s failure is the story of how I talked with a girl every day on the phone for two weeks and then abruptly stopped calling her.

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And now, the story.

She Thinks I’m The Nicest Guy

So in high school I went to my JROTC banquet with a chick in ROTC. She asked me so I went, I didn’t really talk to her and didn’t know what it meant to go to a banquet with a girl. So I go there wearing the greens and all that bullshit and we have dinner and I dance with her. THEN. THEN. THEN. I see this chick there wearing some punk rock black dress and striped socks and a lip ring. She was a classmate’s friend, not date. I ask him who she is and he introduces us and pushes us to dance together. We’re both real shy but I think mutually interested? She seemed to enjoy dancing with me but we didn’t really make a whole lot of eye contact and while she was interested in talking with me we weren’t terribly good at making conversation.

Couldn’t tell you what happened to my date to the JROTC banquet. Probably hated my fucking guts after I ditched her.

I find the cute punk rock chick at lunch a few days later and say, “Hey, I uh it was – I liked dancing with you at the – ”

“I LIKED IT TOO.”

” – I liked dancing with you at the banquet and I was uh I was wondering – ”

“Yeah?”

” – I was wondering if you maybe wanted to uh give me your number?”

“Sure, yeah.”

So I get this chick’s number. My friends counsel me and tell me, don’t call her right away. Wait two days. Make her wonder. So I wait two days and it feels like I’m on a fucking countdown to a catastrophic event. I’m pretty stressed about it. I haven’t talked on the phone with a girl before. Is this what being a man feels like?

On Thursday I call her and the conversation could not be more awkward. BRB long periods of silences BRB what’s your favorite movie BRB well I gotta go but I liked talking with you so ttyl?

This continues more or less everyday for a week or two. She never called me. I was always calling her. Probably every day. I probably called her more than once when she didn’t pick up. … Probably left a few voicemails. She seemed OK with it? This was back before cellphones by the way. So I was leaving voicemails on her family’s answering machine hey it’s Brent just wanted to call and talk, call me back.

She was an artist (she drew anime, be still my heart).

One fateful day I call her and we have a typical awkward conversation where we hear each other breathing because we’re both on the verge of having anxiety attacks. I’ve compeletely run out of things to say. Desperate to say something I ask, so what’s your dream house?

“… my dream house?”

“Yeah like, do you have an idea of the house you’d like to live in when you’ve got a grown up job and stuff?” But I already know the damage has been done. There’s no coming back from this. There’s awkward and then there’s moderately high on the autism spectrum. And then there’s me. Setting world records on the autism scale.

I consult with my friends about this devastating operational failure. They agree that this is a failed mission. I’m not gonna make it through selection. This is me washing out. Just fucking pack my shit up and don’t apply again. Have fun shoveling shit in regular infantry. Making E-3 might be in my future? At best?

So I never call her again.

Later in college we meet again through a mutual friend (who she is now dating) and she thinks I am the nicest guy.

* * *

The only thing I want to talk about re: training is I pressed the 70lbs dumbbells for 5. That’s literally all I want to share. Fuck everything else.

Last night I worked on tack-and-stretching my anterior hip structures with the PVC pipe, focusing on extension of the hip + internal rotation. Was unpleasant, but seemed beneficial. I’m still trying to improve my hip internal rotation + extension (i.e. split jerk) and the only things I’ve done for the anterior hip are couch stretch and joint approximation with a band. Seems like addressing soft tissue relationships would be a good move for me. I’ve also tried tacking-and-stretching my tris on the PVC pipe and I think I prefer this to using the lacrosse ball now. My IT bands and gastrocs don’t hurt as much to roll on the pipe since I do them pretty regularly. Post your mob progress/experimentation to comments.

Today I walked into the gym wearing my gay attire and a female trainer there who isn’t on anabolic steroids and seems pretty nice happened to be entering at the same time and held the door open for me. She makes eye contact with me and says,

“Hey man I’ve been meaning to ask, do you lift with a team?”

“Oh I uh hrm derherp — I lift on my own but I do compete.” Then without warning I veer into the bathroom (it is right next to the entrance/exit).

I wasn’t trying to avoid conversation. I was fixated on going to the bathroom so I just went into the bathroom.

Neither of us pursued further contact.

I missed some snatches and some dude who is being trained by a guy on steroids says, “HEY MAN THAT’S PRETTY GOOD.” Confusingly, he wasn’t being sarcastic.

Unsure how to respond to positive reinforcement for sucking at lifting I say my typical “thanks…” and pretend to be busy drinking water. BRB can’t feel normal sitting/standing still and have several nervous habits/behavioral patterns to mask that fact.

Later during my clean-and-jerks he says “SO HEY MAN YOU GOING TO THE OLYMPICS OR WHAT?”

“I’m not gonna go to the Olympics but I do like competing.”

“Why aren’t you going to the Olympics?”

“… because I’m not on enough steroids?” <– his trainer loled at this.

Mark writes:

Seeing as you ignored me on facebook, I’ll ask again here.
How do feel about Real Dolls?

I can think of cooler industries to support.

stankrom writes:

glad to see you look like christian fucking bale in the machinist peesus titty fucking christ how much do you weigh?????

Oh look a libertarian history teacher who doesn’t lift commenting on my bodyweight you don’t happen to post on startingstrength.com do you? Tell me about homeownership Pete do you take umbrance with any of the taxes you pay in relation to it?

Derek writes:

Whoa whoa whoa…since when do you have a gf? Is this perhaps VPVG?

For all you know she might be fucking imaginary.

B writes:

what does your gf think of your log and your legion of devoted betas?

She follows it and gets some low-grade entertainment out of it, same as the rest of you guys.

VPVG writes:

heyy brent,
was wonderingg when you are gonna come overr and let me fuckk you with a strapp on like the littlee beta you aree.

live.laugh.love

Legit story, she agreed to do a short video where I interviewed her but we haven’t gotten around to it. It seems like a bad idea so I’ll discuss with her the disadvantages of doing an interview but if she still agrees thisgunbegood.gif.

This oughta be good.

So my girlfriend and I find ourselves in the gay part of Ft. Lauderdale. It’s raining and we want to walk around and people watch so we look for places that may carry umbrellas. We find a plaza with parking and she points and says, “Oh, a gay mart, they might have umbrellas.”

I laughed, thinking she was making a joke about a store in the gay district, but no, she was being serious, we legit found:

So we go inside and they don’t have umbrellas, but they have some pretty legit tanktops and shorts.

So I’m in the changing room checking out these sweet new threads and loving it. My girlfriend tries to convince me to invest in a thong but I don’t see the utility in it so I decline and instead stick with some new workout attire. When we get to the register, we find a display case full of male sex toys and lube.

“Do you want to get a jelly cockring?” my girlfriend asks.

“What would we do with it?” I respond, much to the amusement of the guy ringing my wares up. “Are they edible?”

“It’s a one-size-fits-all thing,” he explains, as if he’s explaining the difference between a rectangle and a square to a first grader. “They’re not edible.”

“I’m sorry,” I say, “I’m kinda new at this.”

So we leave the store, I’m in a great mood because I’ve got some new threads that will probably become the new 70s big trend, we’re about to eat some Thai food in Wilton Manors, and then this gay couple walk past us.

“Great,” one of them says with utter disgust as they walk past a store, “Just what we need, more gay clothes.”

The guy totally shits on my parade. I’m young, it was new, I was having a great time – no. I’m just a tourist.

I deadlifted 405lbs for two doubles on Friday, about the only thing of note training-wise, did some light snatches and cleans (no bumpers at the gym in Ft. Lauderdale). AJ helped me with my deadlift a little bit and I think they were productive changes to my start position.

Alex writes:

Can we be best friends?

Did we just become best friends?

Penn writes:

Dude when are you gonna get Yoked again? Or is that just too two thousand and late for you? I ask because I watched your USAPL Nationals video again.

I wasn’t yoked in 2010, I was on the tubby side. It would be beneficial for me to get back up to 170-180lbs at some point.

aghsdhgf writes:

i would like to read the stories about getting a girl’s number off of facebook and calling a girl everyday for two weeks then stopping.

I’ll talk about them in the next post.

beonick writes:

I wanna hear more about the times someone has walked in on you taking a dump at work. lol wut?

This wasn’t at work but I was at Central Market doing groceries and had to take a sudden dump. So I go to the bathroom and LOCK THE STALL DOOR. I sit on the toilet and start unloading my payload and then this fucking guy opens the door, fails, then tries again and the door comes open because the lock is loose and apparently can be shaken apart if you rattle the door enough. I say, “UHHH THIS IS OCCUPIED” and the guy says “oh god I’m sorry” and slams the door shut. I get up with my pants around my ankles and re-lock the door, and I can’t help but notice that the crack between the stall door and the frame is large enough that everyone out in the bathroom can look through it to see me dropping a major deuce.

She knows everything.

So Sunday I go to work at VPVG’s clinic and guess who is there?????????????????????????

Look guys, the jig is UP. She knows everything. EVERYTHING. She read the blog BEFORE I was writing posts about her. She was making inside jokes with me FROM the blog every time she saw me.

These are all conversations from several months ago when she was picking up shifts at my clinic:

Brent: Hey VPVG, What’s your favorite episode of The Office?
VPVG: I liked the episode where Erin is freaking out at lunch with Michael and pushes her hair in front of her face and says, “In the foster home, my hair was my room.”

(I had linked that scene in a post talking about another girl at work.)

Random Front Desk Girl: How are you doing?
VPVG, frustrated at work: I’m going to kill myself.
Brent: lol that’s my line, I say that all the time.
VPVG: You can’t claim that, everyone says it, it’s not “your” line.

(SHE ADMITTED HAVING SAID IT BECAUSE SHE READ IT SO MUCH OFF THE BLOG.)

Brent: When I was in ROTC I went to the ROTC banquet and saw this punk/emo chick there and thought she was pretty.
VPVG: Brent, what is with you and …
Brent: WHAT’S WITH ME AND WHAT? GO AHEAD? THIS OUGHTA BE GOOD.
VPVG: What’s with you and these unfortunate situations where the girl never reciprocates?

(NO CAPTION NEEDED.)

SHE KNOWS. EVERYTHING.

BRENT: WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE POST ABOUT YOU?
VPVG: I LIKED THE ONE WHERE YOU TALKED ABOUT ALL OF US GOING OUT THAT ONE NIGHT, THAT WAS FUNNY.

EVERYTHING.

No but really it’s fine. No restraining order, no complaint of sexual harassment at work, she is still talking to me as opposed to getting real awkward around me and not making eye contact. She thought it was flattering, and that I am hilarious and weird. Which is exactly how the posts were intended to come off. Clearly this is yet another testament to my skills as a writer. For the record – she loled at the haiku. She doesn’t even think I’m creepy – though she likes to joke about it because I get upset when the word is used to describe me.

VPVG: I only say it because it bothers you.
Brent: Of course it bothers me, I’m very self-conscious of being creepy.
VPVG: Why are you self-conscious about it?
Brent: BECAUSE I USED TO BE CREEPY. Do you know how hard it was for me to learn to socialize normally?
VPVG: /thinks I’m joking
Brent: I was real creepy in high school.
VPVG: No you weren’t, what makes you think you were creepy in high school?
Brent: WHAT ASIAN GUY ISN’T CREEPY IN HIGH SCHOOL?

So after she confronts me about the blog we talk about more embarrassing things that have I’ve done/have happened to me in my life. I talked about the time that I got a girl’s number off her facebook and started texting her, and also about the time that I got a girl’s number in high school (this is the chick from the ROTC banquet), called her every day for a week or two, then couldn’t take the pressure of making conversation and stopped talking to her without explanation. After that we talked about how our relationships – when she asked to see another picture of my girlfriend I referred her to my facebook, to which she replied,

“Let’s be real here, like I’m actually going to look at your facebook.”

If you guys are interested in the stories about those two girls I mentioned, remind me to tell you about them in the next post in the comments.

In training I’ve –

– squat 405lbs x 3
– benched 250lbs for 4, 3, 3
– snatched up to 230lbs
– c+jed 285lbs
– pulled 385lbs x 3 from a 3″ deficit
– dumbbell pressed the 70lbs dbs x 4, 4

I’ll talk to you guys here in a little bit.

beonick writes:

Next time someone asks if you need a spot, act like an FOB Asian. As you decline the spot, give a professional bow and hand him your business card.

OK.

Tom writes:

Brent, when I try to overhead press, my arms can only get about 60 degrees from horizontal (pi/3 if you understand that better since you’re Asian) with my shoulders in the neutral, stable position that everyfuckingone except me can press in. To get my arms actually vertical I have to hyperextend/weirdly pull back my upper back or whatever and it looks really retarded and messes up my balance when trying to press and is overall just a pain in the ass. Tell me exactly what to do so that I can half-heartedly do it but accumulate 6000+ posts on an internet powerlifting forum without ever actually squatting more than two plates while simultaneously hating on guys squatting 600+ pounds raw because they were an inch shy of depth. Butnoactually, what do?

This describes my overhead position perfectly from about a year and a half ago. These three >were pretty useful in improving my shit, I’d also work on anterior structures like pec and pec minor as well with the lacrosse ball and if you’re missing glenohumeral internal rotation I’d work on that too along with shoulder extension (i.e. getting your arms behind you).

Jake writes:

What’d you do for your shoulders in order to bench pain free? I could use some of that. Thanks!

See above. I’ve talked extensively about my shoulders in about 10 different posts. You’re a real dickhead if you aren’t reading mobilitywod and your shoulders hurt when you bench.

What else do you guys want to talk about?

In the past week I’ve:

– snatched up to 225lbs, 230lbs
– c+jed 280lbs
– pulled 435lbs for a single
– did 3 kipping muscle ups on the rings without a false grip
– 5 sets of 3 ring handstand push ups
– benched and pressed like shit

I’ve been rolling my IT bands, particularly down past the knee joint, and it’s been pretty awful. It’s been productive, though, I’ve got some better knee flexion in my left knee (which has been my problem knee as far as knee flexion) and it’s definitely helped my bottom positions because of that. This also seems to have helped my couch stretch a lot and I’m feeling less tightness distally and more of a stretch higher up the anterior thigh which is probably a good sign.

I used to do the banded wall squat stretch pretty regularly for hip joint approximation, I haven’t visited it in a while since I’ve been focusing on working on soft-tissue stuff along my anterior and posterior thigh. Reincorporated it last week because a gradual impinged sensation in my left hip has been creeping on me; the approximation took care of the weird feeling and also made my pulling and squatting feel a lot better. Snatching has progressively gotten better as I’ve hit my calves and IT bands and looks like the approximation was another key piece in improving my bottom position overhead squat.

BW’s coming back up, I’ve been without waxy maize as part of my pre-workout shake (in fact, have not been using a pre-workout shake for a few weeks/months) and got some today and had a pretty decent workout for having deadlifted and done RDLs on Saturday.

I need a better reaction to when people pay me compliments for my lifts. This isn’t me saying I’m worthy of compliments – I’m just saying there has to be a better reaction than me saying “thanks” flatly and dismissively without making eye contact, because someone telling me, “nice lift,” “that’s a lot of weight,” “that’s impressive,” only reminds me of how fucking shitty I am as an athlete. My immediate thought is “this wouldn’t medal at a meet, but thanks for reminding me of that fact. If you need me, I’ll be the guy at the dumbbell rack – smashing his fucking face in the mirror.”

Went to the gym on Saturday. They were hosting a meet. It was packed. Walked up to the front desk, owner looked at me and said, “You’re not lifting today.”

“OoohKAY,” and I turned to drive to a globo.

The above has not been embellished in anyway.

At the globo, a dude saw me with 265lbs on the bench and without any provocation on my part asked if I needed a spot. I did, so I said in a minute. I can only guess what made him approach me. Did I look lost? 155lbs Asian kid pretending he can bench more than 225lbs? Did I look lonely? Did he take pity on me, seeing the misery scrawled on my face and in my awkward seated position on the bench, staring at the floor and periodically pushing my glasses up my nose because I don’t have the social skills to look comfortable in any setting? After the set he asked, “Do you always go all the way down and touch your chest? Doesn’t bother your shoulders?” He wasn’t being a dickhead – he was pretty friendly and was legit asking because the thought of that much shoulder extension in the bench press seemed painful to him.

I said, “It used to hurt, then I did some stuff to make it better,” not really interested in talking to this 40 year old guy about mobility when he was honestly fine without it, not like he’s gonna compete or anything. Excuse me sir you just want to bang your wife and play ball with your kid, let me tell you about the importance of restoring scapular mobility.

“Used to hurt … huh,” he said. That ellipsis in the middle is him waiting for me to elaborate, but I was too busy being an autistic dickhead unloading the bench so I could go deadlift.

I sent an email to this lady who’s the organizer of a storytelling meet in Richardson so I can do an open mic and read some kind of depressing erotica (I’ll post it here for you guys when I’m done) but she hasn’t gotten back to me, probably because she googled me and found the blog and doesn’t want me there.

beonick writes:

Brent doesnt write any mobility erotica anymore. I havent been this depressed since highschool.

SOON MY SON. SOON.

Chris writes:

eat more

k get fucked.

Powers writes:

Brent you’d love Paranormal Activity.

Saw the third one, whimpered and covered my eyes for most of it. Screamed the loudest in a theater full of teenage kids. People were laughing at me. Was too terrified to give a flying fuck.

Stroup writes:

Explain to me the progression scheme to singles across?

lol what the fuck are you, new?

Peter writes:

Brent how are the girls going?

My girlfriend asked me to wear bunny ears a while ago, my thing is to send her shocking/unexpected pictures so last week I sent her a picture of me wearing pink bunny ears and taped a lacrosse ball to my sacrum to act as a bunny tail. It may or may not have been a nude pic look guys don’t ask just take it for what is and let’s move on NEXT.

Oldman writes:

Diablo 3 out soon. Thoughts?

I don’t play games, I quit school because of recess.

Alphanitis writes:

If u had to marry any of the oly lifts or powerlifts, who would u marry? I’d marry the squat but cheat on her with the snatch

I’d marry the one I sucked at the most so it would stop talking to me. Hopefully we’d have kids and I’d lose custody and the house AND the corgi. I’d have to find a run-down studio apartment, where I’d listen to Radiohead at night – not because I’m depressed, just because that’s what I do at night. Later I’d see some other dude deadlifting and he’d be real good at it and I would try to be brave and hold it together and just keep trying to train but eventually I’d just lose it and start sobbing hysterically in the middle of my squatting. Becky would ask me “are you OK?” and I would say I WANT YOU TO NOTICE WHEN I’M NOT AROUND YOU’RE SO FUCKING SPECIAL I WISH I WAS SPECIAL and squat to failure then leave the gym without unracking the weight. I would drive to Austin and show up on Jacob Cloud’s doorstep to ask if he wanted to hang out. He would be completely unaware of the heart break I was experiencing and more or less brush me off, “No man this is kind of a surprise and I’ve got plans, maybe next time.”

“Alright,” I’d say, and I’d drive to to Corpus Christi and sit with my knees to chest watching the tide.

Justin would call me but I wouldn’t feel like talking so I don’t answer.

I’d drive back and the deadlift would tell me, “By the way, when I say we’re done that means no RDLs, either.”

“That’s fine,” I’d say, and I’d do 5-8 sets of GHRs.

Saul would ask me, “How do your hamstrings feel?”

I would say more wistfully than I’d like, “They won’t be the same.”

I’m a fan of Silent Hill.

True story, maybe four years ago I got into the Silent Hill series – by “got into the Silent Hill series” I mean I wikipedia’d all of the games and read the plots and character bios, watched the complete YouTube playthroughs of the first and second games and some of the third and ended up buying Silent Hill 3 from GameStop. Usually whenever I get the urge to play a game I just watch the YouTube playthroughs and end-game cinematics and I’m good.

“Oooh, Silent Hill 3,” the girl behind the counter said, “One of my favorites. I liked the second one better but three’s pretty good too.”

Girl with common interest making conversation with me? 21 year old me says, “Kseeyabye.”

Anyways I play Silent Hill 3 and I’m freaking the fuck out at everything, I get to the part where you’re in the subway and the ghost pushes you into the subway, shortly after that obese creature comes after you and you have to light his shit up with a shotgun, and I was done. Just done. Heart rate 110 to 200bpm instantly? No thanks, I’ll just watch a YuYu Hakusho marathon for the rest of the night.

I get legit creeped out pretty easily. Watched the Blair Witch Project. Almost finished the movie, but just fucking lost it at the end when the dude is just standing there in the corner of the cabin. Just too much shit for me. Watched The Ring, the American version, to completion. Had trouble sleeping for like two weeks (as in, I had to open my eyes every few seconds in the dark to make sure something wasn’t in the room with me, about to freak the fucking shit out of me). “Oh those movies weren’t even scary Brent you’re a fucking beta jelly-dicked virgin” k get an over-active imagination then go fuck yourself thanks.

My cousin got Silent Hill 1 and 2 remastered on the PS3 and we played through some of the second game – graphics still look like they’re from the PS2 engine. Game is pretty pointless problem-solving with limited action, cut scenes weren’t even really re-worked. I still squeal in terror when those straight-jacket bad guys come after you. I’m not even playing the game, my cousin’s got the controller and when the radio starts to crackle with white noise, I become frantic, sputtering “THERE’SAMONSTERTHERE’SAMONSTERTHERE’SAMONSTER” over and over until she kills it with the lead pipe.

“You want to know why Brent works out?” my uncle says. “It’s because he’s afraid of things. He wants to be prepared for them.”

If that were true, I’m woefully unprepared for the challenges I’d face in the Silent Hill universe, the past couple training days have still kinda sucked,

– snatched 225lbs
– c+jed 275lbs
– benched 250lbs for 2, 3, 3, 2
– pulled 430lbs for 4 singles

So I’m in a rut, fucking sue me. This is the main reason I haven’t been blogging as much, my training has fucking blown recently, though I’m progressing from where I was. I wish I was joking but I’ve actually PRed my cheat curls, getting up to 135lbs x 5 for a few sets, and honestly? Honestly? Honestly? This makes everything else not feel as bad. My squats are slowly getting back to the level they used to be (405lbs x 5 is the bench mark I need to surpass), in three weeks I should be PRing my deads for singles across, and my pressing has been the easiest to improve since my deload.

The deads at 430lbs weren’t PRs and were pretty difficult, but I feel like my hamstrings have benefited a lot from the weighted GHRs and natural GHRs that I alternate throughout the week. I feel like I’m more capable of grinding through the sticking point and that I’m able to continue squeezing off the floor and past the knees even when the lift feels like 99% max effort, which wasn’t typically how my pulls worked before. Before, if the pull felt heavy off the floor and budged very slowly, it wouldn’t go at all.

MOBTALK, the most I’ve ever done for my gastrocs is tack-and-stretch with the lacrosse ball on some points. The first couple times I did this, there were some pretty painful points along my gastrocs, that, when worked on, would produce some better squatting mechanics. It’s become harder and harder to find painful things with this method, and I’ve finally tried the PVC pipe approach. Promptly found my new pain cave. Rolling my gastrocs over the pipe, planting my calves on it and tack-and-stretching, doesn’t matter, both legs have a lateral banded mass that just fucking blows to work on.