Some posts on 11/11

Favorite 11/11 posts:

November 11, 2006 Columbus, Ohio. Exactly one year after my stroke I won my first gold at Blue Belt. A nice accomplishment, but it was a email I received a few days later that changed my outlook on life. Enjoy


11/13/06 at 8:53 PM

I watched the match, and you deserve the 1st place as a fighter, as a friend, and as an overall person. The first place is just a symbol of the hard work and dedication you put into your life not just jiujitsu. It represents the personal challenges and hardships that you had to work through. I’m always proud to be able to say that I was there to witness and hopefully be a part of and contribute to your success. It was a long way getting there from the hospital bed to the 1st place medal. The most important part was the journey. Hopefully you will always take the time to pass on the wisdom you have gained to those less experienced, to those more experienced, but in need of your understanding and support and those who just need someone to encourage them to begin the journey.

Stay strong,


11/11/2009: A word from my human who I love very much: Four years ago I was found on at my kitchen table because I suffered a stroke. Now four years later I am so thankful just to be alive. I sit here with tears in my hotel because I really do live a awesome life. So make sure you tell the people in your life you care for them, that you want to be with them, because one day they may not be there. Urban Legend. 11/11

11/11/2010: Peace, Love, and Happiness! About this time 5 years ago I was on the way to the Hospital. I had suffered a stroke. Yet this past year I am thankful for being alive. I have learned more about myself. I feel I have the faith and desire to become that man I am ment to be. Make sure you tell the people in your life you care for them, that you want to be with them, because on day they may not be there. Urban Legend 11/11

11/11/2011: Today it has been six years from this very date that I suffered a stroke. According the National Stroke Association Stroke is the third leading cause of death in America and a leading cause of adult disability. I am very thankful I am alive. Every day I wake up next to my beautiful girlfriend Melani Schumacher. I am loved by my wonderful family. I work for the best company Farm Credit Services of America and train at the best martial arts gym in Omaha Mid-America Martial Arts. On this magical date of all elevens that could be just a coincidence or a phenomena of everyday life. Make sure you appreciate the life you are living because you only get one. In the fight I remain. Urban Legend

11/11/2014: Today is the 11:11 where I think about my life. 9 years ago this day I suffered a Ischemic Stroke. My words of advice from this past year is do not allow fears, doubts or concerns hold you back from living. I love all my family & friends. You are all so important in my life. Plus I got a nice little bump on my martial arts journey today.

11/11/2015: On this day of November 11, 2005 I suffered a Ischemic stroke. These last 10 years have taught me a valuable life lesson that I will share, in any bad situation, You can come back. You have no idea your capabilities if you just give up. So to my family, friends and everyone else I have crossed paths with. It was a long way getting from the hospital bed to staying up past midnight today to just celebrate being alive for the past 10 years.

2012 IBJJF World Championships

On June 2, 2012 I competed at the 2012 IBJJF World Championships. My reporting time was sometime between 9:00 a.m. & 10:00 a.m. Pacific time. I was there because I dream of being a champion. When you commit to living the champion’s life and dream. To dream big dreams requires going outside of the normal comfort zone. The challenge & tribulation of my daily life allows me go into this competition with the support from my beautiful wife Melani Carlson my wonderful family and the best martial arts gym in Omaha, Nebraska Mid-America Martial Arts. When you realize all this winning or losing doesn’t really matter.

My Good Samaritan deed was done on that day. Outside of the Pyramid in Long Beach California where the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation worlds are. I went up today to do my weight check. While walking back to my car there were these two men wondering up the sidewalk. The one in the white shirt asked for help. The spoke very little English and were in distress. So using a form of broken English, Charades, pointing and I even called my good friend Matt Meyer who has not been working on his Japanese. I was able to figure out the one in the white shirt left his Kimino (GI) in the Yellow Cab from the Super 8 where they were staying. I was able to find a phone number. I then Called Yellow Cab which transferred me around until I made contact with the driver. He came back to the Pyramid with the lost GI. This took about an hour. These guys were so thankful they took pictures with me, invited me to train in Japan and bowed as I left.

First Sweep I ever Learned

In 2004 I traveled to Ann Arbor, Michigan to compete in the 2004 Wolverine Classic. Now in 2018 if you ever talk to anyone that competes. You might hear the scissor sweep is never hit in competition. That was the first sweep I ever learned. Here is a video from 2004 as a white belt to prove the scissor sweep works. I also won my first gold medal ever in BJJ!

Recommending a Martial Arts Gym

Martial Arts are supposed to make the community you live in better. In the Omaha area there are many dojo. Doing a google search is the fastest way to find a  dojo. Remember no matter what dojo you go. The most important thing is you. How are you treated? How does the instructor help you become a better person? How do you fit in the culture? How are you valued as a person. Not everyone wants to compete. Sometimes influence or reputation puts a perspective before we ever step foot in a place. There is not one place that I will mention to anyone that I don’t believe can help someone out.