Day 1 - Unboxing, and the Trouble of Hubris
I had been checking the mail impulsively other the last two days... many times a day. Today, when I opened the box and saw that USPS priority box, I almost cried from pure relief and no small amount of childlike joy.
Unboxed my baby-blue YYJ KickSide, redid the string just to make sure it was on right, threw it down, let it sleep, and brought it back a few times to just feel the sweet weight of the device, then got right down to business.
Now by right down to business, I mean I tried to throw into a Trapeze. Watching the videos for about two weeks, the Trapeze seemed one of the most simple and basic introductory tricks, a required concept for many others. In my great arrogance, I had somehow refused to notice that even throwing a simple sleeper, something wasn't quite right... I thought at LEAST I could do that not only on day one, but right out of the damn box, right?
I throw for the Trapeze, and my smile of joy quickly turns sour as my yoyo goes immediately sideways in some horrific abortion of a UFO. My joyous naivete not completely shattered, but a quizzical quirk to my lips, I try throwing a simple sleeper again... Only accidentally UFO again (which I will henceforth call a Roswell
"What the crap? This is a yoyo, not <needlessly complex conceptual image here>!" I thought to myself. "Assuredly,something must just be off!"
So I break the KickSide down, unscrewing it, checking to make sure everything is on right, everything is lined up, it is properly threaded... I reassemble it, reattach the string, and try again.
From my first throw, as I said, something was slightly off, but in my joy to be throwing again, and my incredible hubris, I couldn't or wouldn't see it. As I throw again, it becomes more obvious:
My yoyo was tilted to the side as it slept. Sometimes more, sometimes less, sometimes not at all, but usually it was tilting ever so slightly. Or turning on the string, a slow mocking rotation.
"Hmm..." said I, "Mayhaps I should try this for a while and see if I can't just straighten it out!"
If it didn't tilt, it Roswelled. if It didn't Roswell, it tilted. My frustration and embarrassment mounting, I come to a hard realization: I was doing something very wrong.
A quick Google search with a blush colouring my cheeks for "yoyo tilts" returns a familiar website that I had been frequenting over the past week or so, YoYo Wiki: http://yoyowiki.org/wiki/Throw_Down
And that was when I realized this was going to be a long journey. I had no idea how to properly THROW a modern yoyo! All the videos I had watched, the videos marked "Beginner Tricks," I had always skipped the ones labeled "the throw." "Surely", my inner voice laughed, "surely I can THROW a yoyo properly!"
As it turns out, my arrogance had gotten the better of me. After studying the article for five or ten minutes, reading and re-reading, I tried again.
And have been trying. Now, about 1 or 2 out of every 5 throws is acceptable. The yoyo is usually not straight-on to my body, but it is at least a throw i wouldn't be embarrassed of. About half the time, it still tilts though. And occasionally, I still get a Roswell, usually followed by a long string of language that would make a Russian sailor blush.
My finger hurts awfully, my arrogance is shattered, my joy turned to something resembling determination, and my throws still mostly suck.
But I am on the right path now I hope. More updates to follow :D
DAY ONE UPDATE: I seem to be having a HUGE problem with string tension (too tight). I've tried throwing an actual UFO to help it unwind, but... well. I can't do it right. Any advice?
UPDATE 2, END OF DAY: Significant progress to be had :D I'm managing to land the occasional Trapeze! It's usually crooked, or doesn't stay on long, but it's a mount regardless!
Binding still is beyond me. I can get into a bind from the Trapeze mount, but it usually just makes the yoyo stop spinning, or go crossways. I'm guessing I'm not sleeping it strong enough, but am unsure.
Thank you guys for your support in Day 1!
Day 2: Hindsight, and No Small Amount of Confused Rage
I practiced so long yesterday, and gave it so much thought, that threw my yoyo in my dreams last night. One of my first thoughts of the day today was throwing. So after breakfast, I started to.
Now, a quick update from yesterday. I can land the occasional Trapeze. My throws have gotten a lot more solid. But my sleepers are apparently not too strong (especially from the side-throw) because when I do land the yoyo on the Trapeze mount, it's really not spinning for very much longer. Not sure if it's my KickSide or if it's just me, or a combination of both, but I'm already making a wishlist for my next two paychecks, which I will post now ;D
Also, yesterday, I started to get the first-day blister on my my middle finger, but that was to be understood. What was unfortunate however, was on my index finder, where the string rubs as I re-wind my yoyo, I managed to straight up just remove a small comma-sized flap of skin. I now have a tiny, very painful hole. I have my index finger bandaided and not my throw finger lol
So I have only thrown a little bit, so far today. My middle finger feels sunburned. But it's a good pain, a pain of progress, a pain that lets me know my callous will be forming soon. I will play until the pain increases, then I will pop on another bandaid. Will keep you guys updated.
DAY 2 UPDATE: This day has been made of FRUSTRATION AND RAGE. My throws don't feel as solid, my sleeping isn't nowhere near as pretty as it was yesterday, the few trapezes I land immediately stop spinning...
I don't know if I am tired, if my bearing already needs cleaning, or if I am just sucking on the fail titty.
I will say that my string already DEFINITELY needs replacing. Problem? I can't just throw some string on an order and send it. If I had bundled it with my yoyo originally, I could have afforded it! But separate, the shipping would just be too much. So,my first truly important lesson is this: GO AHEAD AND ORDER SOME SPARE STRING WHEN YOU FIRST ORDER YOUR YOYO. Even if it's only a 5 or 10 pack.Day 3 - Slow Going and Tired Strings
A quick update for the day- work (counselor at a residential summer camp) has left me drained and fatigued, spent much of my free time napping. Progress has been slow if any.
A few more landed trapezes (not many) but my throws are still a little off. My yoyo has been tilting pretty bad, makes me feel like I'm not throwing right again.And if it doesn't tilt, then it's at an angle to my body instead of perpendicular like it's supposed to be.
Sleepers still weak. My Walk the Dogs are all really bad (the yoyo doesn't go straight, it turns, or it "jitters"), and my landed trapeze mounts still stop the yoyo pretty quick.
I'm starting to wonder if a large part of it is that it IS a KickSide yoyo, on the best of days I have heard they only sleep about 30 seconds.
Really want to clean my bearing.
More than anything though, my string feel really... tired. It is obviously worn past it's prime.
Would sell a pint of my blood for some new strings right now. Kicking myself hard for not ordering them from the start, but I just didn't understand how quick the string would wear.
Not much else to report, other than one or two attempted binds semi-succeeding. Kinda. Not really. They WERE binds, but the yoyo simply wasn't sleeping hard enough.
DAY 3 End of Day Update: I had a small epiphanic breakthrough. I'm suddenly landing more of my trapezes, about one out of every three or four as compared to one out of every ten!
Hell, I even managed a half-way passable Rock the Baby earlier... after many, many tries that is :D
Good night, my yoyo friends. Tonight was a good night.Day 4: Same Story, Different Day
Throws have been mixed so far today. Still a lot of tilt or the occasional wobble, still can't throw perpendicular to my body most of the time.
I've also started missing my trapezes again, a lot different from last night.
But when I DO land a trapeze, it's definitely more solid!
String tension is starting to be a problem again. Nothing takes the fun out of the process like having to take the string off your finger and untwist it.IMPORTANT UPDATE
: Holy crap! Suddenly I'm landing good trapezes (though still missing a lot)... and I managed to do Brain Twister a bunch of times! :DDD Also almost managed to do a Stop and Go, but wasn't quite sure how to restart it once it stopped.Day 5: Nnnnnnnnng D:
Still working on Trapeze and Brain Twister mounts. Brain Twister is easy enough (I do a good one about once out of every four or five) but my Trapeze mount still needs serious work.
I feel like my Breakaways aren't straight enough? That's problematic, but I can't quite seem to pin down what I am doing wrong. It's part poor Breakaway, part my non-throw finger not being in the right plane.
I can already tell, learning to keep EVERY motion in the same plane is going to be problematic for me.Day 6: The Return of Frustrations (with no small amount of swearing, and a growing headache)
Today was a slow and frustrating day. I've gone from landing maybe one out of every five trapezes, to one out of every ten.
I can blame it on my yoyo, and my bad string all I want. In the end, I think I may just be pushing myself a little over hard today, or my heart just wasn't in it.
I need to learn that once I get frustrated with it, when it stops being fun, to take a break. The whole point of it is to be fun.
I just feel like the road to getting to where I want to be (and away from trapezes I can barely land, and brain twisters that are only passable) is going to be a very long one indeed.
But that's not a bad thing. Anything worth doing well is worth spending time on. No one throws a White Buddha after a month.Day 7 - END OF WEEK ONE, PLUS VIDEO!
I've decided to try doing a video of my progress at the end of every week. Thanks to yomagic and NKessler for the idea! I think this will really help point out my strengths and weaknesses.
This is after exactly one week of owning my first yoyo in over 12 years, my first week ever doing string tricks. This isn't the first video I recorded tonight, but I think it's the one that best shows the full range of my current strengths and weaknesses, so it's the one that got uploaded.
Let me apologize, I'm not trying to be rude by not speaking, but I sounded particularly southern tonight and got embarrassed D: lol
Also, sorry for the quality, I forgot to change the default settings in my recording program. will work on that next time.
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mKOpkiRZ6iQ[/youtube]Day 8 - Negative Progress
I've had an absolute CRAP day yoyo-wise. I can't land a single trick properly.
My breakaways have gone from at least semi-straight, to me trying for a trapeze and hitting myself in the a.s.s., the back, the shoulder, the thigh. I can't do ANYTHING right today and have no clue why :( It feels like my first day throwing all over again. Pretty depressing. I've been told "it happens" though, so we'll see tomorrow.Day 9 - CHRISTMAS CAME EARLY! :D
The Hitman and strings from SkareCrow arrived today,and let me just say: The if the KickSide was an MRE, the Hitman is a fine steak dinner cooked just right, the new polyster strings are like good wine.
The Hitman is in a completely new league. The sound the dry bearing makes causes my heart to race with anticipation of tricks yet unlearned, possibilities untested.
Also, I've managed to start hitting tricks again :D Between the wider gap, the new string, and the excitement of a new throw, I've been doing pretty alright today.
Except I can't do proper binds to save my life D: Will be working on those over the next few days almost exclusively.
Thank you, SkareCrow. This is a beautiful piece of equipment.Day 10 -15 - Slow Going, Busy
Been busy lately, moving back to the town I attend college in, catching back up with friends, haven't thrown much, just been working on my mounts and binds lately. Should pick back up soon!
I spent most of today packing, but worked on binds and my current mounts (brain twister, trapeze, split-bottom) almost exclusively.
Binds are problematic for me. The ones I can easily do are technically "wrong", as they enter the gap opposite to the direction of the spin of the yoyo, causing snags far too often to be effective. The ones that don't cause snags are difficult, but I am learning them... slowly.
Heading home tomorrow, so I may not get much accomplished, but I expect to be working on binds and mounts almost exclusively for the next week or more (though I do expect to try Split the Atom and Ripcord at some point soon).