Reasons and Drive/Life Balance
Since Furious Styles Crew Anniversary 23 I decided to retreat back to my foundational beginnings in Texas. Although comforting, I easily diffused into a non active state. It was the first time in a while I surrendered to life and I had to face what I for a long time considered my nightmare.
I kept a low-key profile in town and decided to return to my very first Job I ever had. I worked in a kitchen at a Tex-Mex restaurant. At night on the weekend I bartended. The scene I had left was completely dissolved and no one hardly fathomed me being a performing artist Bboy. The only conversations I would have would be about when I would want to have kids and why i didn't have them already. I translated all of this into a reverse culture shock. The way I felt was very lost and things I had accomplished so far within breaking was not credited by my immediate circle. I however still managed to see the love and blessing in the situation. This may sound funny and humiliating but with every Vegetable I cut, or Dish I prepared I figured I was making my life better.
Eventually work got me back into the mix of my practice. I found that the best time for me to train would be before I had to work. So early mornings were necessary. I would get up at 5 am and hit the local skatepark which was empty during these hours and I would do my training by myself.
I knew in my heart and mind what I wanted to do. Basically, a plan to get back out there and into the scene, surrounded by people that knew my language, and understood and challenged me within the realm I have sought out to conquer.
Spending time with my family back home was great but at the same time was almost too comforting and I know I need and want more. I was soberly reminded that being and staying busy is not a bad thing. So I wrote, and painted a picture for the future. I hit the drawing board literally.
I researched cities in Europe just to motivate me. I researched flights and stayed connected with peeps from the places I love. I began to be more vocal of my move, and stayed very adamant towards the goals I developed. I invested what money I made into not only a move but created a Tour visiting the scenes in U.S. That I feel created me and would help prepare me for the Europe Scene.
I spent a Day in Dallas, ate lunch with B-Girl Bout it of Femme Fatale. She showed me the great city of Dallas
and took me out to Deep Ellum for some live Funk. I touched base with certain friends in the scene I had known before who had influenced me prior.
next day- a flight to a home town of mine,
It's the middle of July and I'm flying into some heat! The people I know here said it was the coolest of the season
( monsoon) I arrive and immediately Hit a day time session with Conrad and our new current Future Style members Manny styles, Wolfy, and the one they call BGirl Skittles.
I honestly think my gums ruptured from the heat and found them swollen. Needless to say I pushed through and I think we trained twice a day, and if we weren't training .. we were party rocking, or eating a healthy delicious meal. S/0 to Stuntman and Miracles for their culinary expertise.
Bonding and sharing our goals, Hiking, Breaking, an unforgettable or forgettable Pool party, and more training. The crazy thing for me was seeing the kids, master Mace and his brother Weapon X grown a bit. Infact Mace can already give me his hand me down clothes at this point. This time we had was priceless because the relationship we have as a crew is rare-to take the words right from Conrad.
I had not battled in 10 months so I competed at Worth the Weight 10.1 I only made it to the second round, and I had lost to Komik. A talented young individual from Az. He shared that he was surprised. I only shared that I was happy to see him still doing it and that he looked in great shape. I rather lose to someone than that person not even be around.
Hydration (taking care of myself), and pacing myself were the lessons taken from this. Conrad lost to Weapon X who is just killing it. As I watched my crew-mates I was just amazed. It pushes me to train more and to know that I have to work hard to keep up with my squad on and off the floor. Later on that night, myself, Wolfee, and Conrad head to San Diego to compete in the Octagon the next day.
We awaken at the beach and head to the Jam thrown by Cypherstate and featured MzK/R2R member Seize (HowmanyRoundsb) It was my first Octogon and I came in with hype, but I unfortunately fell to that hype and in all fun tapped a cone in that tiny shaped space. I forgot the kid who won that jam by default but he was wearing Nike and addidas so... good luck in New York B. haha nah just kidding good for you. Learn some.
We Enjoyed some time with a real good friend of mine and former roommate. Took us out to Eat and enjoyed the evening. Plad Rompers, and challenging people how many rounds for their Kinjas Jackets. sheesh.
We decided to head back home to Phoenix. I bonded in conversations with Wolfee a bit on the drive home.
I got to enjoy a few more days of consistent training and family bonding with the squad. This was the first time my crew told me to just stay. I think they were joking but TBH it jerked some tears within, but I just ate my carne asada fries one last time and got on my plane to stick on my mission.
New York City
You are the X girl I can't quit. Still exploring you every time I am around. I just hit the spots I hit when Im in ya.
As soon as I landed in the itty gritty it was non-stop. I am happy the way everything went and also for the consistency of dancing and building/catching up with folks.
BCone/ Rocksteady 40th Anni was Legit. I personally respect the scene and the competitors. I would most definitely have to Shout out the cypher heads and party rockers too. For myself, I got the experience I expected for me. It was a confirmation of my dance and myself. Existing, passing love and receiving it. I got called out by a dude from Italy named Alfredo. What a Battle! From rocking, to single Top rock rounds, and then to the Floor! He had a sharp angular style and I adjusted and the response was incredible. I love it when peeps bring the best out of me. I gladly take this experience over a competition win anyday. Congratulations to Bgirl feenx for stepping to her plate in Rock Steady Crew.
My homie Prince Caspian (Tito) out of Flohio had joined me on this portion of the tour - We look forward to seeing him and his squad at this year's FSC 24th anniversary!
Master Mind Rockers Anniversary
Although I was there for the actual event briefly because of a long commute to the next and conflicting in time jam.... I did manage to break bread and share love with MMR. It is real special to find good friends in a city with so many many people.
Rockaway Beach Jam thrown by Prevail.
I think this Jam is genius. We on a beach! I came through feeling myself hardbody because the vibes were so pimp.
But real talk, the exchange in conversation with those I had there were highly beneficial.This is why I came. The encouragement and empowerment from good brothers and sisters. The concrete cypher was lit. Especially once my good friend Flash showed up, for no reason I got Lit af in the Cypher and so did many others. I was honestly planning on chilling and just watching. but nah son... DEADASS
Next Day - Tompkins Square Park 9:30 AM but I was on Bboy time so 11:30 with Tito, Yan an Ill Bboy/Model from Belarus, and the Break Fresh heads. Tompkins Square park never gets old for a real one.
The next morning I picked up an early class in New Jersey so my commute from Queens started even earlier! I stuck around after my portion of the program to check out the rest of the elements Bboy Rival was teaching. Parents in the area check it out!
I was Hella tired so I got layed out back in Astoria with a brief international call with my brother during downtime. I toughed it out and made it to Tools of War in Harlem. Although I only made the last half hour, I still accomplished some building with others. Jamaican Food and catching up with Quest. He has a dope Jam called the Beacon coming up in October 20th upstate NY. Good panel and a dope DJ look him up for the Info!
Then I got in my feels, probably from fatigue and lack of rest. I had to go somewhere and just think. Union Square. Within a short amount of time, I ran into about 5 people I knew and it is interesting because they harbored good memory and the well wishes which I appreciate.
Super Big S/O to my friend Richie for putting me on solid for my stay. He was very busy with work which I was happy to see but I know next time we will kick it!
My East Coast Visit as a tourist was crazy dope. I got love for NYC! Thanks for loving me but also thanks for the tough practicality too. The extremities actually bring balance in a crazy DEADASS way. Other shout outs I can't fail to mention goes to the Locker from Osaka, Maya Ichikawa for just being an awesome support meeting me for coffee and that slice of pizza. Also Honerable mention to the Treacherous 3 representing AZ out of state in NYC. Arizona Girls on the rise -Bgirl Arizona who left it all on the floor during her Pre-lim and B-girl Ruby stylin' out more than me. I thought that was dope. B-Girl Jazze (AZ) get's an honorable, honorable mention for her Duet Skills at Karaoke.
Till Next Time NYC'
My Brain be on some... I didn't sleep yet even if I felt like I might had in a routine sort of way. One second I am leaving the Airport off the coast of one land and Descending with a brand new emotion looking out of a window of an jetplane seeing another. Green. Iceland was so green although they told me in school, It's something you don't quite give a f*ck about until you see it from the sky. The couple next to me we're on some basicness, reading into their money chasing sheep career field (I'm talking noise) They were totally envious of my degenerate looking youthful self taking the window seat and all that is was worth. I mean to even it out I was starving- they didn't share their snacks with me. I know it was my fault for not preparing ( WOW AIR charges for food FYI)
After 6 dollar pringles ( the small kind) and Water I landed in Iceland where I received my first stamp in my new passport. That cold air hit me and everyone else noticeably. it was a 30 minute layover switch to another plane. Do tell me why every flight attendant on WoW air looked like a James Bond movie female, like they must have some kind of physical standard to work their. I was just like WoW, WoW! My Europe trip was about to be pretty dope visually I suppose.
It was too easy to stay up with a positive form of anxiety. On the next flight I was more fortunate to sit with this older woman the Netherlands who was adamant about a good vibe from me despite my fatigue. I got sucked into this conversation about myself as usual. She bought me coffee. Shortly afterwards I had passed out. Franchesca you are the real MVP.
To be honest nothing significantly really went down in this city this time around at least. I was more concerned about making schedule for my commute southbound . Puncuality ended up being my friend whether I favored it or not. I drank European tap water and the hardest crispy sandwich with some kind of pepperoni in it and still loved it because F*ck it, I'm in Europe. This is dope!
All of a sudden I was American. Highlight moments for me was passing by Mercenary looking females w/ AK47 type rifles and armed to the T. In my lack of serotonin I had inserted an imaginary scenario where everyone at the station had suddenly dropped to the floor as a fire fight commenced.
But NAH that didn't happen.
So I admit that I missed my first train as I viewed my phone seeing my ticket on E.Mail, failing to realize I was staring at a screenshot I snapped from 15 minutes prior. After sprinting to the station clerk he informed me that It didn't matter and that I only found myself 30 minutes behind.
As I boarded my train car I took a seat and as my journey had begun, I was astounded by walls of nonstop coverage. European writers flourished. I had that feeling like -yeah mother*cker , you are at the right place and you wen't the right way in life. I eventually fell asleep with an alarm set for 90 minutes give or take. My face covered with my new BREAK FRESH T-shirt.
YO - I wake up and peel the shirt off my head and groggily come to realize - All of a sudden I was surrounded by nothing but Ladies in the Car. Yawning looking around with some nonchalant attention on me. In my head I was like WTF. but, I played it off intentionally like this shit was normal. Obviously some kind of moment for me to note. I was thinking maybe the part of Europe I woke up in had some type of off ratio in favor of a male. IF YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN.
So I get to Aachen and meet with the homie Huy who by the way is having his BREAK 2 BEAT 10TH ANNI in Dussledorf, Germany.
Aachen is an old WWII battle zone rebuilt into a chill college town. I settle in and make time for some recreational relaxation getting my mitts together. Rendezvous with VoVera a bboy/performing artist whom I known from Arizona as well-returns from his day trip to Belgium and we get some some doner. Huy introduces me to this Drink known as Raddler- A german beer mixed with sprite- to easily explain. I is favored by cyclists, so it couldn't be too bad for a B-boy, if not Great!
After all this travel thus far- Sleep for me has been sectional- for whatever reason we are down for practice including myself. Huy has keys to an awesome ball room close by, although most are out on holiday at this time we meet with a local bboy(?) which added more unnecessary hype for my session. I wen't through my arsenal some. I'm sure this is where my current injury birthed. (with lack of rest and stiffness from travel) The next day I could not even do a regular chair or stab without my shoulder feeling it.
It didn't stop the fun in fact, it just begun. We had German Brunch. Myself and Vo head back across the border to Heerlen for Day 1. Which included a free open practice. It was packed with many breakers from across the area and others from around Europe. I saw a few familiar peeps from U.S. however, my Immediate attention was naturally gathered towards everyone else who were new to my eye.
Ofcourse, I would be the only one to get called out. A young kid in his 20s from Israel had stepped to me. Although I held some back because of my little energy and gauging for myself for the rest of the weekend, I feel I was still able to give the kid this work! All love dude!
Fun Times - There was some breaking meets soccer event ahead but some Girl from England with Almond Eyes had invited for Coffee and Ice cream so we wen't into town with the U.K. group of dancers. We all took pictures, broke bread (see Instagram) I drank some Holland Beer with a New friend Young Choi, I had met right off the train stop in Heerlen - Who's sister I actually knew from New York - B-Girl Sunni. LOL
We re-grouped with now the larger group of U.K. dancers and Taiwan Breakers because we ran into B-boy Cha Cha, his student's and colleagues. It's crazy seeing people you met in other parts of the world, this feeling really doesn't get old.
The waiter never brought my french fries and ice cream so I decided to drift to a cypher we could see from across the square near the old church. On one side there was a bunch of cats from Asia and the other a mediocre but hype drunk Netherland dude battling everyone. I decided to Jump in.
As that cypher became more of a spectacle some BGirl got hype and asked for my shorts so I gave them to her so she could get down and So I continued the rest of the evening Cypher as B.Boy Brief Rock. It's I.B.E. Day 1.
Some other mentions of that Day 1 were running into Step One from Dallas Texas whom I had known for a good minute. He was there with his soon to be Fiance'. Congrats guys!
B.Boy Switch from Taiwan did some things that made me want to up my footwork game x10. That kat was dope AF with the downrock movement.
So the next day was Highlighted with meeting my brother Chucky at I.B.E. We mostly spectated for I wasn't planning on battling until the next day. We got some good Sushi and watched some dope battles. (See Undisputed I.B.E.)
Another highlight just personally was meeting with Bgirl Lerok of Tru Rokn Soul and Timoh of Escaflo Crew.
It was dope reunion since I had made good friends with them a year prior in NYC. I would give credit for having that helping hand in my inspiration to work towards being in Europe. It felt good in my heart to keep my word and maintain the connection. They informed me of upcoming jams in Germany. Ghetto Soul 9.
The Pre Party this day was also real dope for me. To see my brother join me along with new and re united friendships. I stayed in the cypher and although we left a bit pre-maturely, It was my best friend named punctuality causing me to balance the care of my comrades who were tired and also looking forward to battling tomorrow. So we retreated from the 'B-Girl' Scene to head back to Aachen to get proper rest and recovery since we still had more to go. Young had favored his place to house myself and my brother so special shout out for that! **His roommates had every German Cereal- I think I tried a little bit of every kind. Cereal Heaven.
Statistics - Vovera was back at 100%, 6th day experience eating Doner and Creative energy and spirituality level at an all time High. Huy was fresh from his studies and ready to join along today and ready for party. Myself : well I had one arm but this is what months, decisions, sacrifices - Blood sweat, and tears was for. So with all that I am Furious and born for this. As soon as we get to Heerlen, it isn't long before the prelims for the Focus on Footwork battle to begin. The setup was a non-controlled order cypher of nearly 200 contestants or more and Bboys for one cypher. The Cypher was immediately full of Pihrannas so I decided to take my time on the music of choice and opportunity come up. This made things quite strategic. I noticed Kosko from Top 9 had just gone real early and did his thing simply, which gave him the most rest time before main select battles. Smart.
After staying warm and social enough to keep me from not being too damn anxious or serious I decided to hit the prelim cypher. I saw how tiny and agitating the energy had become. I reached in with my arms and voiced people to back up and as soon as heads Did I entered the cypher and noticed just the entrance itself was a good attention from some of the judges of my slyness. My immediate perception was that I felt Strong, wild, unique energy. But even with the impression I did not make top 8. After seeing their selection and also Bboy Focus' reminder of what they were judging my mistake was lack of more foundation an my personal basic form which I felt hindsight I had left out. I think I leaned towards the feeling of impressing and lost the path of displaying all of my self completely along with what they were looking for. It is definitely a balance and glad to have been enlightened. aka schooled. It definitely was not an easy cypher.
Two days prior to this day Me and Vovera were gauging the possibility of entering the Open your Heart : 2v2 Experimental Battle. Since Vo had felt good and ready I was of course down to represent with him. For this battle I had more of the feeling of freedom and nothing to lose. If you know this guy it would not be a surprise for us to work on the ensemble concepts and we even meditated back to back prior to contest. As we watched the other showcases we were a bit taken back because we saw twins doing pre meditated work that looked as if they had been preparing all year for this battle. For my self I had not entered any all style or open style competition in a good minute. I am however a bit brave when it comes to the party so I was ready for anything. Our Round came up and even as it was playing which was Beauty and the Beast Philharmonic Instrumental score. The reaction we got was real dope and definitely made it's way as a high point I believe for myself and Vo. One thing I want to state here is that although I was in a different place I intentionally did not want to shout USA or say I did it for my country upon celebration. I think with my peers in FSC I am a bit lead to transcend the nationalistic views of our society(s). I believe we have enough events going on that juice up the pride in that so why bring it here. So I just yelled YOOOOOOO in pure joy. Speaking Americanized english was attention enough and I believe people knew the deal. It was all love and everyone was there for Hip Hop Culture.
We did make the Top 16 out of 40 plus teams and battled which was dope for our premier to I.B.E. and also the fact that we came out of nowhere with the first difficult music selection.
The wind down was real and me and my brother had still a 3 hour commute ahead of us. After departing the now fully opened heart Vovera , Huy and the rest of the Break 2 Beat fellas , We went back to Aachen with Young and hit up this dope Mom and Pop's Ramen noodle Shop. It was a perfect finish to a well handled trip. After that we said our good bye's and my brother and I set out for the final road trip heading to his Home in south west Germany where I would conclude this great migration.
State Side I plan on working towards a return visit before the year end!
I hope to see you at Furious Styles Crew 24th Anniversary!