Author Archives: Karen Vieth

Attitude is Everything

It was the end of a rewarding class. We were lined up in order of rank after an evening of learning, drilling, and rolling. As was the custom, we all awaited the instructor’s closing remarks. These words were interrupted by … Continue reading

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Never Too Old to Train Jiu Jitsu

I sat across from him, nervously clutching my cup of coffee, hoping the first date wouldn’t be too incredibly awkward. When he turned to the side to adjust his chair, I got my hopes up. Cauliflower ears. “He must be … Continue reading

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My Life in Tattoos

I recently received Tools of Titans as a gift from a friend. This book is a compilation of the great thoughts, habits, and ideas of successful people. Each person’s chapter is accompanied by a thumbnail of their spirit animal. While there is … Continue reading

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Un-slumping Yourself

Next episode in 10, 9, 8… I hit the play arrow quivered in its red target, committing to another 48 minutes of living my life through the eyes of an internet detective while my own is placed on pause. How … Continue reading

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With the flick of a switch, my life changed forever

I strode into the darkened room and reached for the light switch. I groped around and tried again. Then, I stopped myself. Months before, I had moved into a new place after living in my previous apartment for five years. … Continue reading

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Be a Lady — No Acting Required

Going to the gym is the equivalent of engaging in a sociological study. Today, my lens was gender. I glanced around the changing room and cringed at the curling irons, make up, hair spray, and accessories. Women were in many … Continue reading

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James Street Footprints

Sitting among half-packed boxes and the rubble of moving, I find my mind and emotions vacillating. Transitions are hard; they are full of goodbyes and half-closed doors. Just as we leave our mark on each place that we visit, it also … Continue reading

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Never Again “Just a Girl” (Why I train Jiu Jitsu)

I stepped off the mats on Friday night with a grin on my face and my head held high. I paused in surprise as I passed the locker room mirror. The person looking back at me had an unfamiliar glow. She … Continue reading

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Live. Write. Grow.

Write something every day. These are words I live by and it is a message that I feed my students. These words are met with resistance, occasionally by myself and regularly by my students. In my classroom, each class starts with quiet … Continue reading

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The Perils of Conjecture

We all have shortcomings. Mine tend to come in the form of emotional tantrums. Thanks to Isabel Briggs Myers, I can explain away this personality deficit as being INFP. After all, these deep thoughts and feelings can be a lot to … Continue reading

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