Roxanne Modafferi

The Happy Warrior

Part 3!! Niko Niko grappling/volunteer trip to Kamaishi

Posted in cultural, earth quake and aftermath, fight, friends, fun on October 31st, 2012 by roxyfighter

recap: Friday night bus to Tohoku’s “Kamaishi City.” Built a park. Handed out food. Drinking party that night.
(btw click to enlarge pics)

I didn’t really mention much about the distribution on Saturday.

After we made the park, we 30 people split into smaller groups of 4. We carried 3 or 4 lb bags of rice, bottles of tea, coffee, and instant packages of curry and Chinese food. We knocked on the door and Ota-san did the talking: “Excuse me! We’ve come from Tokyo to do the Niko niko martial arts grappling competition and volunteer work. We are handing out some goods, so it would honor us of you accepted them!”

We actually went around twice.

We got various reactions. A few people’s faces erupted in smiles and they said, “Oh my, thank you!” happily took stuff, and briefly engaged us in conversation. A few people stared at us blankly, wordlessly took the stuff, turned around, and went back inside. O_O; Brittany told me that one of her occupants just shut her eyes and burst out crying and wailing. :O whoa…

holy crap, I just found this video….and I recognize the place! ;o; This is a video of the tsunami wrecking the town- very disturbing, so only watch it if you don’t mind being sad.
It’s long, so I skipped to different parts.
http://youtu.be/629em0mPpUY

Okay, I just wanted to explain that.

Now moving on to Sunday

AFter breakfast at the hotel buffet, we bussed it past the coast line, where we got to see mountains of rubble again. Everybody on the bus seemed to be unsure if it was right to take pictures or not… a few people did. I didn’t. I don’t want a picture. 🙁

Everybody looked pretty well recovered after the previous night. I was kind of surprised. LOL So it was a small competition: about 25 fights, only one-matches because there weren’t enough to make divisions. I fought some man from the Graaca team!

(pic by Zest Fight Club’s Ota-san)

Brittany and I were the only foreigners! Her fight was a draw! Nice try! And my guy was physically strong. He tackled me…! I thought I sprawled but something happened and I soon found myself on my back, sinking in the triangle choke. I locked it in! He rolled, but no problem. Someone was screaming, “Head! Head!” Pulled down the head and got the tap. YAY. My first time to beat a man in a grappling competition!!! 😀 So excited.

Frankly, I don’t want to know anything about him. I don’t want to know how long he’s been training or where he came from. The division was “super,” so not beginner….so if someone were to say, “Oh we couldn’t find you a match so he’s a beginner” I would have been sad. So I didn’t ask questions. I’m just pleased with myself.

Then they had a “triangle” fight. IT’S THE BEST THING EVERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR~! So three people have a grappling match simultaneously! It’s a Battle Royal! 😀

WATCH THIS!!

just in case that didn’t work, here’s a link:

http://youtu.be/hhq4_IkGlak

So that was fun. Super fun.
It lasted from 9 AM to 12 PM.

Then, we cleaned up…unfortunately, it started to rain kind of hard. People set up tents and had a BBQ! We hired local businesses to set up booths and we invited the people from temporary housing to come!

This guy from an internet TV station interviewed me and Brittany (my new best friend! I’ve mentioned Brittany, haven’t I? HAH) 😀 I translated for her! We gotta work on our team-translating skills, honey. You’re supposed to say like two sentences, pause for me to speak, and then keep going. hahahaa <3

After that, we took the bus home, drove all afternoon and evening, and arrived in Yokohama at 1 AM. Many of us missed our last train, so we ended up spending the night in the dojo. Hah, as if people would sleep.

People cracked open beers. I was anti-social and tried to lay down and sleep. I may have dozed. When I woke up at 4 AM (Monday morning), people were sprawled out, sleeping. I left and caught the first train home.

It was really an incredible experience. I’ve auctioned my fight shorts and given the money to Enson Inoue, who also went up there to deliver goods, but always wanted to do something with my own two hands. Now I can say I have. Meeting people was amazing. Getting to know my teammates better was wonderful.

(Brittany (top) and my new Groundslam bracelets! Thanks for the gift, my friend!)

Thanks, everyone, for your support. Please spread the word about this… we’ll be doing other Niko Niko grappling tourmaments (mainly for beginners) to give those people a chance to compete, and also doing other charitable work.

Part 2: Niko Niko grappling/volunteer trip to Kamaishi

Posted in Uncategorized on October 29th, 2012 by roxyfighter

Recap: Left Tokyo via night bus, drove all night, Saturday morning got off the bus and made a park with our bare hands, all day.

At night, we went to this Izakaya (Japanese style restaurant). The food wasn’t so good, but I had fun socializing with everybody. The group of about 50 people consisted of members from our host Hirano-san’s MMA Gym “Graaca,” my gym Reversal Gym “Groundslam” owned by Katsumura-san, and a few other affiliated fighters.

I sat next to Brittany, other Groundslam girls, and Yamamoto-san. I didn’t enjoy listening to the lude comments of a few people who sat nearby… Man! And when people get drunk, they really let it all hang out. Literally. I was…surprised? I kept asking Brittany, “Do Americans do this, too?” “Do Americans do that, too?” She’s like “Yes. But it takes a lot of alcohol.” LOL See, I don’t drink… Being around alcohol and inebriated people is not my usual habitat…. hahahaha I was averting my eyes quite a lot as the night went by.

I dunno….call me strange…but for me, watching muscular shirtless men trying to beat each other up is MUCH more entertaining than inebriated dancing ones who seem to have misplaced their pants…….HAHAHA am I weird?

(I’m trying SO hard to look up kanji and vocab on Google cuz they weren’t in my dictionary!!!)

Nobody wanted to explain some of the words to me, because they were so dirty! LOL I kept bugging poor Yamamoto-san next to me, saying “What does blahblahblah mean?” and he was freaking out, like “oh oh I can’t say such a thing! Too difficult!” 😀

Anyway. Then our two hour-reservation was up, and some people wanted to go to a second drinking party. Brittany and I stopped in a convenience store first, while listening to Katsumura-san hollering, “AT THE FIVE! AT THE FIVE!” When we came out, they were gone. We noticed a sign for a place called, “At the 5.” Okay, you’d assume that they must have gone in there, right? We went up. We slowly opened the door. We peaked our heads in. There was music. It was dark. There were men sitting around tables smoking. No Groundslam team…. There was some kind of stage and some women dancing….hmm let’s look more….WHOA!

…and we high-tailed it outta there real fast. LMAO
(pic taken the next day)

We poked our heads into another place downstairs that was REALLY seedy, so we backed out as fast as we went in. We finally found them at a place down the street, but I left shortly after.

Let me just say that I was not interested in the entertainment of the night.

The whole thing was just crazy for me. CRAZY ADVENTURE!!!
But choking people > alcoholic experiences.

But whatever, it was a reunion for the two gyms and everyone seemed to have a great time. 🙂 I went to sleep at about 11:30, and then woke up at 6 AM! GRAPPLING TOURNAMENT TIME!!!

…to be continued in part 3…..

Niko Niko grappling/volunteer trip to “Kamaishi City” part 1

Posted in cultural, earth quake and aftermath, fun, training on October 28th, 2012 by roxyfighter

*imaginary convo*
Parent: So honey, how was your weekend?
Roxy: It was great! Well, I drove all night through Fukushima, went to a disaster area, did manual labor, had Japanese men strip and dance naked in front of me, fought a guy and choked him out with my legs, and slept in my dojo overnight. How was yours?

Hahahahaha Allow me to elaborate! 😀

After work on Friday, I hustled to Shibuya. Bus departure time: 11:30 PM!

I sat next to Brittany. We chatted for a while until it got late and we tried to sleep, but the seats wouldn’t lean back AT ALL. So I couldn’t really sleep because I woke up and my neck was KILLING me.

We stopped 3 times at rest areas because the bus didn’t have a bathroom. We drove north, through Miyagi and Fukushima and into Iwate. We arrived in Kamaishi City, our destination, at 8:00 AM. It’s such a beautiful, mountainous area.

(Click to enlarge all photos from here on)

We went to the Disaster support center and met Jin Hirano, Katsumura-san’s good friend and Graaca MMA dojo owner. We split into two groups: one group went, I don’t know where, and another group went to a field near Hirano-san’s house.

It was weird because I couldn’t always understand what was going on. I’ve never been in this kind of situation before, so naturally, they were using words I’ve never heard before. I learned words “disaster relief,” “disater area,” “temporary housing,” etc.

(Brittany by a destroyed bridge)
So some towns got swept away by the tsunami. Kamaishi was hit very hard, but not completely destroyed, so people still lived there. Barely. On the bus ride, we passed the coast with mountains and mountains of colorful rubble. We passed fields of yellow weeds, and our hosts told us that there used to be houses there. They did clean up to a degree. Downtown, there were crippled houses boarded up with danger tape around them. Brittany and I asked about the red “X’s” on some of the houses, and we were told that when search and rescue broke in to help trapped people, they did that mark to check off the building as having been searched.

Anyway, our big blue bus took team 2 to Hirano-san’s neighborhood and we got out and changed into work clothes. I thought we were going to …I dunno what! Clean up rubble? Shift class out of sand on the beach? That’s what they did last time.

Hirano-san said, “See this big area with dead grass and weeds? We’re going to make a park for kids. So pull it all up!”

Okaaay. So for a few hours, we were all on our hands and knees pulling up dead grass with our bare hands. It really makes you appreciate TOOLS. And MACHINES. And ELECTRICITY. In the States, maybe they’d take some bulldozer and it’d be done. But obviously we wouldn’t be there laboring if they had that capability, would we?


Japanese people consider “parks” to have no grass. They’re just dirt or gravel lots…it’s their style, which I personally don’t go for. I want GRASS to play on as a kid, but they think weeds grow too tall, so it’s easier to just yank it all up. Fine…as long as the kids are happy.


Then we had lunch and sat and tried to think, how can we make a part out of tires, fallen trees, a chainsaw and nails? So they planted a tree, put down a bench (which really hurt our tushies.) Oh well?

There were new neighborhoods of temporary houses, and we went from door to door giving bags of rice, tea and coffee to the people and families living there. 🙂
Following that, checked into our hotel and went to a restaurant….and there MORE fun began……!

Coming soon: part 2

“I’m completely infatuated with life.” ~Jason “Mayhem” Miller

Posted in fight, friends, fun, training on October 24th, 2012 by roxyfighter

Now I’m watching Mayhem Miller’s interview with Ariel Helwani!
I love both of them! I’m such a fan of Mayhem as a person, in addition to fighter. Actually, I haven’t seen any of his fights lately, I’ve just watched his interviews. I met him once when I fought in Strikeforce, which was so cool. Please listen to some or all of the interview! It’s really awesome. Jason Miller is really real about things. I never believed he was really insane, lol. I’ll always be a fan. 😀 hah
link to his video interview
He said, in reply to Ariel’s question confirming that he’s safe and well and not doing drugs and alcohol, and Miller said, “I’m completely infatuated with life.” I love it! Me, too!

Monday was super awesome, but super tiring.
I went to pro practice and did lots of wrestling and take-downs with the guys….it was excellent practice and I find myself able to use more and more of what I’ve been taught by Katsumura-san and BJ-san lately…although Katsumura-san’s style matches me more.

I did a few MMA rounds before I strained my neck. Oh well… Then I went to a work-related meeting in Tokyo, which was productive. Following that, I had my orthopedics appointment in Shibuya, and then went to my friend Kozo’s horumon nabe/birthday party!! I feel like I’m catching a cold. I probably should have gone home, but I forgot it was his birthday and I wanted to show up!

oh thanks to Brittany for the Halloween presents! 😀

Yesterday, I did Katsumura-san’s morning class, and it was fantastic! I’m having such success in my training! I hope I can fight soon! I really want to show what I can do!!!

I got Ghost Bread (crunchy cheese flavor!) in Yokohama!

again, here’s the link to the Mayhem interview.
link to his video interview

my new old good bad take-down

Posted in friends, fun, training on October 20th, 2012 by roxyfighter

I used to do this take-down well, so that was good! Then over time, it stopped being effective, and that was bad. So I learned a new one that was good, but I couldn’t do it so well, so that was bad. Roxy was very sad. Then the other day, Katsumura-san taught me a new take-down that was actually my old take-down that was bad, but now it’s good. So I tried the new old take-down that’s bad, but because it’s bad it’s good, so now Roxy is not sad anymore. 😀 😀 😀

Do you understand?

Roxy took down a few different people about three or four times with the new old bad good take-down!! ^_^

YAY. BANZAI!!!!!! XD

I trained with Brittany today. I really love having her as a partner. I can adjust the daily technique to suit me, and I don’t feel bad about forcing her to do it with me because she’s eager to learn anything. XD THANKS! I always have twice as much fun in class when I work with you, my friend! 😀

I’m decked out in all One Piece clothing today! 😀

Good things are coming.