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Jiu-Jitsu

VERBAL TAP [Episode 59] with Kristian Woodmansee

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VERBAL TAP [Episode 59] with Kristian Woodmansee

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K Woodmansee1Raf's Recollection | Kristian Woodmansee is a funny guy.  Aside from being a dude who's doing great things on the mat, he also happens to be killing it on the Twitter.

If you aren't following him already, rectify that mistake immediately and start following him immediately.  We get Kristian to play a game of Rep That Tweet that, frankly, I wish could have gone on longer.

Not only does the Robert Drysdale protege get great millage out of inspirational BJJ quotes and training perspectives, but he also happens to have a great sense of comedic syntax and character.

For example:

We learn a little bit about his jiu-jitsu journey, his BJJ arch-nemesis (and if said nemesis is aware they are such a rival), and we even hear a great story about one of his coolest moments training out in Vegas.

Our time with Kristian just flew by, but we will definitely be checking back in with the guy as he continues to progress in jiu-jitsu and mixed martial arts.  Next time I'm out in Vegas, I will definitely be looking to take one of his classes!

Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes

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It's been a crazy week in my life.  Absolutely crazy.

As some of you know, I've had the pleasure of working at The Tonight Show for the past five years.  When we recorded this episode, I had just finished up my final week with the show (in fact, I'm only just now getting around to writing a proper recap of this podcast).

In many ways, it's hard to believe that my tenure with the show has come to a close, but I leave with no regrets or hardships.  It's been an exhilarating ride that has given me some of the best experiences of my personal and professional career—and, as a student of the genre, I've considered it an honor to work for the most prestigious franchise in television.

Along the way, I've had the good fortune of working with a set of individuals who were exceptionally creative, diligent, and who taught me so much about production value and efficiency.

Wrap Party

If you're a fan of our podcast (and the format and style we do), you can thank the good people I've worked with in Late Night for inspiring a great deal of the practices we have carried over into our podcast.  It's one of the reasons I take such great pride when guests on our show tell us about the wonderful experience they had on our show (especially when they compliment our production value and note how it sets us a part from any other show).  It's my hope to continue taking all of the lessons I learned during my time at The Tonight Show and continue to put them on display on this podcast.  I hope we do them proud.

And while it's a slightly frightening thought of no longer having a regular work routine to wake up to Monday morning, I welcome the change.  Don't get me wrong, I'm a workaholic, so not having a set routine will definitely mess with me for a while.  But this also means I get a chance to do some fun new ventures and to train a little bit more.

Moreover, I feel the end of the show came at the right time for me professionally; for the first time in a really long time, I don't know what comes next... and I'm actually not afraid.  I welcome whatever new challenges and experiences that lie ahead.

But, for now, thank you to all of those I had the pleasure of working with.  I will absolutely treasure the experience and will truly miss you all.

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VERBAL TAP (Episode 29) with Gilbert Jamal Smith

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VERBAL TAP (Episode 29) with Gilbert Jamal Smith

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Raf’s Recollection | Don’t any of you let a word of this get back to Kev, but I might be moderately proud of the guy.

No seriously, not a word to him.  Before we know it, the compliment will go to his head and then we’ll all have that to contend with.  Fortunately, he never reads these things, so I’m usually at liberty to insult him as I please.

Im So Hungry

But this week is a little different.  On this week’s podcast, we talk a little bit about Kevin’s jiu-jitsu game and discuss his experience at a US Grappling tournament in Virgina last week.

Over the past year and a half, Kev has developed and refined his competition game.  And under the fine direction of the folks over at BJJ and MMA Training Center, he has been able to meet and surpass a great deal of his competitive goals in a relatively short time span.  It’s a testament to both his team and his own dedication to the craft—and, while I might be speculating here, I think we may just be hearing the beginning of it.

We spend a great deal of time insulting one another on the podcast, but when it comes to competition, I don’t kid around.  I’ve never quite been the type that thinks the competition is defined solely by wins and loses, but my overall hope is always that he does well and that he meets and surpasses his own competitive goals.

I will, however, become absolutely get pissed if I don’t get results fast enough.

When I finally got the good news about the tournament, I was momentarily happy to hear how he placed—and then, moments later, really pissed it took so long for me to get a goddamn result (do you not get 4G on the East Coast?!!!)!

Anyway, this week, we rightfully acknowledge his hard work and then get right back to calling him an idiot (that will conclude the one compliment I pay Kevin per year).

1044978_203271166491019_468157311_nBut that’s not all we’ve got this week.  Our pal, Gilbert Jamal Smith, returns to the podcast to talk about his upcoming fight against Jason Lee for Prize Fighting Championship on Saturday, July 13th.

What we like most about Jamal is not only his ability to respond to a joke (he tends to respond to internet trolls on Twitter with kindness), but also the honest and candid ways that he responds to our questions.

He never ducks a question, he’s honest to a T, and there’s always a memorable sound bite or three that comes out of an interview with him (my personal favorite comes towards the end of the interview with his response to a question about a “game plan”).

Not only that, but he’s willing to be silly and doesn’t take himself that seriously—demonstrates as much by playing not one, but TWO games with us on the Podcast (one of which was an entirely new segment, created just for Jamal).

Nonetheless, we wish Mr. Smith all the best as he gets ready for his fight in two weeks and hope that if you live in Colorado, you go support the guy in action.  And if you can’t make it to Colorado, be sure to drop the man a note on the Twitter and let ‘em know what you thought of his appearance on our Podcast.

Until then, we’ll just be waiting for results, Jamal.  And, as I’ve denoted earlier, I’m really bad at waiting for results.  So I’m gonna want to hear from you how it all goes down.  From your pals at Verbal Tap: Best of luck to you, good sir!

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VERBAL TAP (Episode 22) with Adam Cella

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VERBAL TAP (Episode 22) with Adam Cella

NOTE: For whatever reason the Skype/Podcast Editing Gods were against us this week, so be sure to listen to this Podcast on your headphones.  And be forewarned the transitions may be a little loud. 

Kevin's Description: Raf and Kevin celebrate Cinco De Mayo with Professional Fighter Adam Cella from The Ultimate Fighter Season 17! They also talk a little Jon Jones, UFC 159 Payouts, Tito Ortiz vs. Jon Jones, Anderson Silva vs. Jon Jones, and finally end with your questions from twitter! Visit VerbalTapCast.com right now and get daily MMA coverage!

Raf’s Recollection : The first thing that strikes you about Adam Cella (aside from those dashing baby blues) is the fact that the man tells a mean story.

There's an inherent politeness to the timber of his voice that makes the punchlines to his stories both hilarious and friendly at the same time.

That's a rare gift.  So that even when he's having a little bit of fun at the expense of his close friends from the show, it's never mean spirited.  It's similar to that of a little brother playfully ribbing their older brothers—and really makes it easy to see why he was so popular within the house.

On the latest podcast, we get Cella to open up about some of the lighter moments in The Ultimate Fighter—including a few choice gems about roommates, cut scenes from the house, and maybe even an impression of a certain fellow cast member who may or may not have celebrated their 30th birthday this weekend (we apologize in advance Mr. The Menace; Happy Birthday!).

Among some of the other topics we touch upon with Mr. Cella in this interview: which current UFC fighter is afraid of spiders, what the future holds in store for the TUF vet, and what does Cella have to say to all of those who thought Jon Jones let him tap him out with this guillotine.

We hope you'll join us for some fun on the podcast and then drop us a note in our comment section.  And after that shoot our friend Mr. Cella a nice note over on his Twitter at (@AdamCellaMMA) to let him know what you thought!

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