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Where do Babies Come From


August 5th, 2021


New Hellos

What do we have in common with the Mets? We both welcomed a new part of the team named Javier (If you are Mets fan, this is a great reference. I am so as a Sensei Prerogative, we have Mets trivia in my letter) I want to welcome back Javier (not to confused with Javier the tattooed). He joined shortly after the Covid reopening and had to take time off for 6 months due to work. Everyone please welcome him back.


Nothing Will Change, Except Everything will be Better

That was my slogan when I took over the roll of Sensei at ASNJ almost three years ago. Wednesday night was very exciting, I would teach every other week and Lehrman Sensei would do the others. Guess what? Heeeeee’s back. Lehrman Sensei is returning to teach again at ASNJ. The world is right again. The last time he taught here was March of 2020. Ahhh, the world seems a little brighter. The class was great. He ……………………….


To Do’s

žSummer Fling: NJ Dojos Day of Aikido Fun Sunday, August 15. We, along with five other dojos, will host six classes as follows:

ž 9 am – 10 am: Jay Tall Sensei, Aikido Schools of New Jersey – 2nd dan

ž 10 am – 11 am: Paul Manogue Sensei, Aikido of Raritan Valley/Ren Sei Kan – 5th dan, Shidoin

ž 11 am – 12 pm: James Soviero Sensei, Aikido of Red Bank – 6th dan, Shidoin

ž Noon – 1:30 pm: Lunch

ž 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm: Karen De Paola Sensei, –Skylands Aikikai – 6th dan, Shidoin

ž 2:30 pm – 3:30 pm: Jerry Zimmerman Sensei, Aikido of North Jersey – 6th dan, Shidoin

ž 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm: Hal Lehrman Sensei, Aikido of Park Slope – 7th dan Shihan.

ž Potluck to follow. Please bring a dish or a beverage and expect to have a good time.

žKyu Tests Saturday, August 21. We are having the Wheel of Ukemi Class, Kyu Tests, and our summer BBQ / Potluck party. If you wish to test, please speak with Danny, Derrell, or Frank for evaluation.

žHakama Class – Sunday August 29, 11:00 am. Open to members 3rd kyu and above and mandatory for instructors.


My name is Inigo Montoya.

Do you remember the line from Princess Bride when Fezzik asks Wesley what he was wearing a mask? "It's just that masks are terribly comfortable -- I think everyone will be wearing them in the future," said Westley. Yup. He was right. On July 30, the Governor issued a recommendation for mask wearing indoors with many specifics. I am not going into detail, but I am asking all students to wear masks when on the mat and in the dressing rooms when possible. They might not be terrible comfortable but Wesley was right, everyone seems to be wearing them. If you love that movie, the book is actually better.


A Dojo Story

Many of you have noticed the upgrades, repairs or small changes to the dojo. Recently we have changed the lock on the bathroom (the old one was rusting from all and Covid bleaching) and the slide lock is gone, the new light by the stairs, the glass block on the side of the mat is gone. But, also, we have cut the trees causing the roof to be damaged, fixed the gutter (hopefully the leak by the window is gone) patched the roof and will be coating it with aluminum oxide. We are planning a painting party (we buy the beer and pizza) to spiff the place up (my wife and Venessa are working on picking colors) and talking with a company to replace the mat canvas (Zachary is spear heading that one. Since he sews a lot, he is the closest we have to a canvas expert.) If any one wants to help or has any ideas, please let us know. Helps is always welcome.



Where Do These Come From

I was asked that question. Not babies, the things I write about in this letter. The answer is three fold. One is a question, not by me, to me. A student asks a question and in my usually self-contained manner. I answer shortly with brevity. My version of that is half an hour. The second is something comes up for me when teaching that I think needs clarification. I try to recreate that in these letters. The last is a conversation, usually with Lehrman Sensei who I call Hal during these conversations. And those conversations are usually sparked by either the first two on this list or something in our lives.


The point? Yes I have one. The point is the commonality is I am always questioning, exploring or asking my own questions. You remember the great conversation I had with Jeff and Harold last week? It came form a question I had about all latim Masses. I heard about it but I wanted to learn. So were in your like was there a question that you let go, an idea you did not explore? Don’t miss those moments. They are the key to growth. That being said, if you have anything you want to ask, explore or comment, drop me an email or a call. I would be happy to communicate and maybe that will be the next letter.



--Sensei Jay

"Aiki is love. It is the path that brings our hearts into oneness with the spirit of the universe to complete our mission in life by instilling in us a love and reverence for all of nature."

- Moihei Ueshiba, the Founder of Aikido

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