You are NOT homeless if you live in your car

I recently saw a bunch of videos on Youtube where people sort of said they were “homeless” but lived in their cars. Then there was another video that really looked down on people who lived in their cars/vans after 2008.

But you are not homeless if you have a car and live in it.

On a positive note your mobile and living frugally. It’s not a house but it’s some place to go to that you can also take with you.

There’s a lot of homeless people here in San Francisco that live on the street. They don’t have a car, job or any way of making money.

That is what real homelessness is.

He Doesn’t Pop, Lock Or Do The Robot

Here’s a video that I made that combines some of the street performing that I do as well as some dj scratching.

I came up with the idea for this show since before pushing play many people thought that I was the robot kind of guy. They assumed I did the robot or danced.

Not really, but I do beatbox and scratch. And in this video I mix the beatboxing up a bit and then scratch it.

How to Meditate Using Counting

Here’s a technique for learning meditation that’s simple and practical. In it you use counting. This counting can be done to yourself when you are breathing.

First find a comfortable place to sit. Close your eyes and keep your eyes closed. Make sure all of your muscles in your face and body are relaxed. Set an alarm on your phone for a few minutes if you are just starting out.

You can do longer if you want. I do 40 minutes a day that usually includes 2 sessions of 20 minutes. But sometimes I might do 3 with 10-15 minutes or so.

There are a few different ways to count. Pick a number that seems right for you usually anywhere from 4-9. The first way that I learned goes like this:

  1. Inhale and count to yourself as you do.
  2. Pause and count to yourself as you do.
  3. Exhale and count to yourself as you do.
  4. Pause and count to yourself as you do.
  5. Continue until your alarm goes off.

I started with that way yet found the following worked better for me.

  1. Inhale.
  2. Pause and count to yourself as you do.
  3. Exhale.
  4. Pause and count to yourself as you do.
  5. Continue.

You could also try the reverse of that and just count on the inhale and exhale.

Blu Man Fu Tells Secret Sauce Story Then Scratches It

Here’s a video I made that combines a little of the street performing I do and some of my dj scratching.
The secret sauce is a sort of joke I made that was inspired from a kung fu teacher I had in Taiwan who used to break bricks with his hands.

It was tricky matching the video to the sound. It has quite a few layers to it with the music, the scratching and the video and getting it all to sink together was a challenge.

How much money do street performers make?

Are you wondering how much money street performers or buskers make? I can only speak for myself. I think a lot of people lie or don’t want to tell the truth about what they make.

I asked a few in San Francisco before I started and they didn’t seem to want to tell me, one did and another I think told me a lie. Then I found a video on Youtube with the title “Make $800 a day as a street performer”.

That’s a good click bait title. But obviously a lie if you watch the video and read the comments.

It really depends on you and what you do and how you do it. I make anywhere from $0 an hour to $20 an hour. But really most of the time the average is probably a bit less than $10 an hour.

It’s not lucrative for the most part. I have made over $130 bucks in a day on several occasions, but that came with like 7-8+ hours worth of work.

Some days suck and I might go out there and spend an hour and make no money.

It’s also up and down and erratic. A lot of it can depend on the time of the year, the time of the day and day of the week. Relatively few people tip (a small percent).

The more of a crowd that you can gather, the more you ask for money then the more money you can make.

How To Meditate – Using Your Breath

Here is a simple guide on how to meditate using your breath. This is a basic meditation. One of the first things that you will need is an alarm.

If you are just starting off I’d say it’s best to start with a few minutes. Let’s say 5 minutes for starters or you could try two if that’s daunting.

I have practiced yoga for 16 years and have been meditating about 40 minutes a day since 2009-ish.

I highly recommend that you start it now and remain disciplined about your practice.

It’s like anything if you want results you have to be consistent.

You breath controls your emotional state. Your breathing is different if you are happy vs. angry or depressed vs. calm.

So to meditate:

  1. Sit somewhere comfortable.
  2. Straighten your back.
  3. Relax your body and face.
  4. Inhale slowly through your nose.
  5. Pause.
  6. Exhale slowly through your nose.
  7. Continue until your alarm goes off.

My 2nd Jiu-jitsu Competition – Facing fear

It’s kinda scary. You feel those nerves starting to twitch days before the competition whenever you start to think about it. Come the day you start to think why am I doing this? I don’t have to do this.

But you do it. And it’s pretty intense cause the other guy is probably just as scared and is trying to throw you, choke you or get you in a shoulder or arm lock.

Here’s a video of some of the highlights from the competition.

I got 3 submissions (armbars from mount). If you get the guy to tap out by arm/shoulder lock or a choke then you win.

You can also win by points, but they are secondary to a submission. Certain positions are considered more dominate and you can get points from those like mount, back, side control.

Then you can get points from sweeps (going from bottom to top) and guard passes (getting out from between the guys legs).

I just focus on trying to get the submission as I think that is more martial art like versus a sport.

I won 3 and I lost one by points.

The guy I lost to had a wrestling background. He was pretty athletic. He won because he got 4 points for a mount position, but I got out. I had only 2 points from a hip sweep.

My friends said I was only a second away from winning. I just got my leg out but just a hair of a second too slow as the buzzer went off.

I guess losing is not really a loss. For one he didn’t submit me. So losing by points is not like losing from tapping out and avoiding a broken arm. It’s a game.

It’s still not quite as tasty as a win, but there’s something to learn from it. I saw my technique for guard passing towards the end to be pretty sloppy and there were a few things I would do differently.

It’s more intense than practice. You get tired really quickly if you are going 100%.

It’s cool to watch the matches over and over again. You can see what you did wrong and what you can do better next time.

My judo throw

I did do one judo throw called harai goshi and followed it with an armbar. You can see it in the video above at 1:36.

Harai goshi judo throw

Face your fears

That’s why I did it. That’s what my teacher said was incentive to do it.

It’s a lot more intense than class. It’s more like a real fight with a few rules.

It’s scary, but fun.

I got nervous, but being around your friends makes it fun too. And then after our teacher took a bunch of us out to Chinese. It was a great time.

The Best Advice I heard Today From Gary V.

I have been watching a lot of his videos lately. Today I was watching this one and the wisest words were his last. At least for me.

So wise I have played this 3 times and now I am going to write it down for memory and play it again.

“When you start tripling down on what you are and what you’re good at many better things start happening…

Don’t try to do what you think is the right move. Don’t do what you think is the biggest money making opportunity. Do the things that you have always done since you were a kid and triple down and 10x down on that.”

I thought the last 3-4 minutes was pretty interesting.

CAUTION: My New Street Performing Costume

I have been working on a new costume behind the scenes. I have been in love with caution tape for quite some time. It looks cool and I like the colors. I saw some pics of people making caution tape dresses out of that and duck tape.

My new costume

They stitched it together. I don’t have any sewing skills or a sewing machine. So I had to come up with a different solution.

The other thing was I had been looking for a one piece suite for a long time. I actually had two different flight suits that I only used like once or twice. They were orange and I tried dying and painting on them and only ruined them.

They weren’t that comfortable either. I made this with a temporary coverall suit that you can get in the hardware store for like $14. It’s pretty cheap and like paper.

So how I did it was like this.

  1. I got double sided carpet tape.
  2. I got caution tape.
  3. I stuck the double sided tape to the coveralls.
  4. I then stuck the caution tape to the double sided tape.

It sounds easy, but it was not. That carpet tape is super sticky. There were wrinkling problems when applying the caution tape.

I was thinking the blue would look good with the yellow tape. But to cover the whole suit in that is going to take a lot of time and money – like $50 in carpet tape.

I have been thinking yellow and black for a long time and since the suit was still white I think painting my face white with the white hair looks cooler and more uniform. However, the white paint sucks. The blue paint is from the same company, but feels a lot better and comes off easier.

I haven’t actually been performing much out on the streets. And I don’t know if making a new costume will actually make me want to do that more. Probably not.

It’s cool to make stuff, but I my interest in doing what I have been doing is waning and has been. It’s kinda like…

Plastic surgery

They say plastic surgery has effects that only last temporarily. It might give you a boost in the short term, but you can’t see how you look. You essentially feel the same and you’ll soon feel like you did before you got the surgery which makes the whole point of getting plastic surgery in first place pointless.

Maybe it’s more about the process than the final product. I enjoy making stuff sometimes. Time flew by when I was making that suit.

Press play

I have about 4 of these signs that I have made. That one with the yellow costume there I originally made to put a phone camera in it, so I could capture the goofy things that people do sometimes. But the quality of the footage I got was pretty crappy.

It turned out that this one actually matches the suite, but sometimes I just think of getting rid of the whole push play thing. That’s another story.

I have thought of doing some artwork on mannequins. It might actually be more fun to make, paint and dress up mannequins than it would be to pretend to be one. Then take those out in the streets with me.

I have a lot of ideas for street performing, but there is a practicality and cost issue with a lot of them. If it’s difficult to get your stuff out there then you’re not going to want to do it.

caution tape street performer

Torn meniscus? What do I do?

Wondering what you should do about your torn meniscus? Are you considering surgery? Will it heal? I don’t know what’s right for your knee, but I can share with you what I learned.

I tore my meniscus about 10 months ago. I was in Judo class and a guy (big white belt) jumped guard on my extended knee and hyper extended it. You’re not supposed to do that in Judo. That’s only in jiujitsu.

It hurt and I knew something was wrong as my leg was shaking from the trauma and I didn’t get off the mat for 30 minutes or so. I went and got an MRI and they told me I had a torn meniscus and a bone bruise.

They told me I had an oblique tear or a bucket handle tear on my medial meniscus. Walking was painful.

The doctor said he could do surgery to fix it. Fixing it meant he was either going to cut it out (meniscectomy) – the torn piece or stitch it. When I heard that my face dropped.

He said you could wait a bit to see of it healed. That was around 2 weeks after.

I waited another 2 weeks and it didn’t really seem to change much, saw him again and he said the same, surgery or wait and see if it heals.

I waited.

All the mean while I did some research.

All the results I found on surgery suggested that I not do it. That’s what I gathered. I mean your situation might be different. But most studies out there didn’t show a big improvement with surgery and in some cases they made it worse. More on those studies later.

If you ask a surgeon what should I do with my hurt knee? He is probably going to say “let’s operate”.

Some information suggested surgery based on the degree of the tear. If you had popping in the joint or it’s getting stuck (locking) then that’s probably more severe and might need it.

They say if you had a tear on the edge of the meniscus it is more likely to heal since there is a blood supply. Towards the center of the knee there is no blood supply. They will tell you that cartilage can’t heal there. However…

There are white blood cells in synovial fluid. They don’t tell you that. Later I’ll point out some studies that may oppose that.

I didn’t really have those symptoms. I had pain though with standing and stiffness.

Here is what I did.

That’s what I did. I had pain for a good 2 months plus.

How do I feel now?

I feel pretty good. I am back to all normal activities and feel mostly normal. I returned to grappling a little more than 2 months later. I occasionally get some muscular pain on the back inside of my knee. Massage helps that. I get a little bit of stiffness in it after sitting cross legged forward folding in yoga.

I think that is mostly muscular. Massage is great and in my experience joint pain is often caused by surrounding muscles.

Doctor and other people said a bone bruise could take up to a year or so to heal.

Advice

Your situation is unique. I would not try to “fix” your problem by having a surgeon cut you open unless you’re confident and your situation is severe. When I asked the surgeon if my tear was large he said probably small to medium. He didn’t know if it was in the “red zone” or not.

Wait. It can take a while to heal. I read online that some people said it can take 6 months or more than a year. The doctor told me if it’s not better in 2 months then it might not heal.

You can always get surgery later, but you can’t change what’s been done later.

Do that passive motion exercise with ankle weights unless it hurts. If it hurts then stop and do it without weights. Also you can lie on your back and do a bicycle exercise where you pretend to ride a bicycle. This is also similar to the CPM exercises.

Compress it. Wrap it with an ace bandage.

Massage the muscles around it.

Be disciplined about exercise but don’t overdo it or hurt yourself more. Do what you can stuff like balancing exercises, one legged squats, wall squats, leg lifts/raises, get a isometric band, etc.

More info on surgery