Good talk on blocks

Sensei Canna offers insight into the real world of self defense!

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:36 pm

Panther »

david wrote:
Boston's Chinatown was built around around "Ping On" alley, where the Chinese first settled in tents. Look for the three foot wide entrance on Beach St., next to the old Golden Gate restaurant.


I think I know where you're talking about... close but not the place. Closer to the theatre district...


I haven't mentioned this here before, but I think it's something you (david) might find "interesting"...

When I was "questioned" afterwards, a police officer asked me for a description which I gave to the best of my ability. (I could give an excellent description of shoes/boots and can still see in my mind different pants/jeans with frayed backs at the bottom from dragging the ground... anyway)


The cop's response to my description was, "you mean they weren't chin*s?" {sorry, his term, not mine} I looked at him and said, "No, they aren't asian..."

He seemed genuinely surprised and said that they had just assumed that it was one of the chinese gangs. Another example why we shouldn't "ASS-U-ME". ;)

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:43 pm

Panther>>

I've moved on from it... Things are good now and I don't spend too much time in the mental hell... it creeps in sometimes at night, but not the way it used to.

My biggest reasons for not feeling like going through it all over again are mainly because 1) getting it out and being able to go through it before were {selfishly} for me, 2) we'll just hear the same old attitudes from the same old martial arts types all over again.

IOW, those that "get it", like you, GEM, david, etc already "get it" and understand and those that don't get it will sit there and read it and have the same old thoughts of "I would have used my super wauke", "I'd have stopped them with my superior chi", "This guy is just a wannabe loser who couldn't hack it when the going got bad, not ME",

"I met him once... look at him, no wonder he couldn't defend himself", ad infinitum... (forget the fact that quite a bit of the physical condition that I'm in has been an ongoing battle starting with the trip home from the hospital

and that prior to going to Margaret & another physical therapist I had spent a long time working my way from walker to crutches to cane to painful walking and that after spending months being worked on by those two physical therapy angels - sometimes I felt like they were devils, but it worked -

I finally got up the nerve to look into going back to a dojo for the first time in years...)


Can you post a map of where it occurred?


I could walk you right to it... I'll have to look at a map sometime and see if I can figure where exactly it is. I walked right to it last summer... It's been "cleaned up". No graffiti on the walls, no dumpster, no trash all over, no stench... I kept flashing between the then and now, it was weird.

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:46 pm

Panther>>

What excuses were you given?

"We didn't realize you cut through there" (I was talking with them right up to the appearance of the "interviewer")

"I went to get help and it seemed like it took forever to get anyone to stop and listen" (It seemed like I was laying there forever...)

"I started to jump in and help, but didn't want to get in your way when you started kicking @$$" (This is one of the lamest ones of all, IMNSHO)

"I have kids! I couldn't risk getting myself hurt and not being able to take care of my kids! Besides, I thought you could handle yourself" (OK, I can understand wanting to see your kids again, but I thought they had my back!)

" You hesitated, so I thought you were going to run, so I took off."

(True enough, I hesitated... I was thinking about the fact that in a prior altercation I'd done some punks some damage and been told that I could have been charged and that I was lucky that they didn't sue/press charges against ME... so I hesitated.

That is ONE mistake that I can guarantee will NOT happen again.)

There were some others, but the rest kind of meld together into a hodge-podge of comments meant to help me pack my bags for a guilt trip. No thanks, I'll stay home.

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:52 pm

And if "they" were martial artists, why did they freeze in fear?

Same comments as above... Oh, one other one I remember...

"Fercryinoutloud, you out-rank ME and YOU were getting your @$$ kicked! I wasn't going to get into THAT!" (Thanks for nothin'... Even the "sensei" can have a bad day and need someone to cover his back... :roll: )


Alright, the condensed version is this...

I was a former martial arts instructor cross-trained in a few styles (including karate & ju-jitsu). I still worked out with folks, but for various reasons had stopped teaching.

One beautiful day, the (ex)missus and I decided to go see a show in Boston with some friends.

Of the people that went, four were trained martial artists (not counting me).

Went out to dinner, warm evening, parked at a lot on the edge of Chinatown where I've parked lots of time, walked to dinner, walked to the show. After the show, we were all comfortable, confident and living too much in Condition White.

I was pretty much at ease because of the folks I was with and made the mistake of letting my guard down. I have a license to carry, but because of the folks I was with and the fact that one of the women (interestingly enough, one who had never done any training) had specifically asked that noone carry a gun, I was unarmed. (Another one of those "never agains" in my life)


Walking back to the car, we were laughing and chatting and I may have been the one who suggested it, but for some reason we took a "shortcut" through this alleyway.

As we started down, this figure steps from the shadows and starts with the interview. You know, "Got the time?" I glanced at my watch and said the time.

There was some other comments going on, but they're not important anymore. I said something about the women going to the car.

Anyway, When I looked again, there were three guys in various positions in front of me. I stopped and felt like, this was a time for "us" to show we weren't afraid.

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:54 pm

Panther>>

The one that was talking stepped toward me and rather than take action, I stepped back and to the side.

When I glanced back, I saw only one person from my group and he was standing back at the beginning of the alley just watching.

As I started to move, I can remember thinking that I didn't want to hurt these guys and just wanted to get out of there, but I was hit from the side.

Next thing you know, I'm on the ground, tasting blood and realizing that I had taken a pretty good shot to the face/head.


I could tell that my initial thought that there were three was off. (Where'd that blow come from the side? I had the ones in front in view and was moving to put the wall behind me...)

Everytime I moved, it just hurt. I just started covering up. My back (especially lower back and kidneys) took the brunt of it and somebody started kicking/stomping on my legs/knees.

I moved a couple of times to try and kick back, but everytime I went to kick out, it opened up my abdomen and I took a couple of kicks there.


I grabbed a leg during one of those times, but almost ended up with my head stomped in, so I let go and curled back up and just kept thinking "I will survive this... I will!"

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:56 pm

Panther>>

I could smell the concrete and urine and garbage. I stopped trying to get a peek at them for obvious reasons. Someone started trying to find my wallet, but I only had a few bucks in my back pocket, they got POed.

They got my drug-store Timex... big deal. After what seemed like forever, it just stopped.

I couldn't move. I don't have all the details just right. Things/memories change over time. I'm no longer associated with anyone that was there that night.

A little bit because of me, but I think it has a lot to do with them not being able to handle it/me/the way I became afterwards.

I've been called a lot of things because of it. It was after that when my "nickname" changed to the one I use here. It helps me to realize why I am who I am now... It fits... if you know the history. ;)

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Tue Oct 23, 2018 11:04 pm

Mark W »

Thanks for posting your experience Panther. I can understand how tough it is to share these stories because I had a similar experience around 15 years ago.

I know what it’s like to hear the "I would have done this or that" from people who weren’t there and have no idea what it was like.

When I was 19, I used to hang around with a group of friends who were all connected with a church me/my parents attended.

One night after a youth meeting a few of us decided to go to the city and have a drink. We went to one pub and had a couple of drinks, but it was a bit quiet.

After that three of us decided to walk to another pub on the other side of town and see what it was like there.

The three of us were myself, (5’11”, 120lbs soaking wet, no MA training), ‘R’, the “tough guy” of our group, and another guy ‘F’, who also fancied himself as a bit of a tough guy.



As we walked between the pubs we cut through a mall. A street that had been paved over and had shops up either side which were shut at night. A big alley really, I suppose.

It had been a good night so I was in a good mood, talking with my friends, not paying much attention to my surroundings. There were a lot of people around and I didn’t pay any attention to a group of lads walking toward us.

I was walking along with my head turned talking to R and suddenly realized he was walking very wide of me.

R had seen what was coming. A lad had broken from the approaching group and was running right at me from my blind side, and R had put a bit of distance between me and him, but not warned me.

Then I was hit in the side of the head fairly hard. Not hard enough to do any damage, but enough to shock me (“What was that?!”).

When R and F saw me get hit they just started running. They ran for 30 yards or so then watched the proceedings from a safe distance, leaving me surrounded by the group of hostile lads.

I asked the guy who I thought had hit me “What was that for?” and he started swearing at me. I was then kicked hard in the stomach, I think by the same guy, and badly winded.

I fell to my knees and then the others in the group came in from either side and started kicking and punching at me. I don’t know how many there were, I think only three or four. After 30 seconds or so they just stopped and walked off.

I wasn’t too badly injured, but my face was a mess, pouring blood from cuts, swollen, and I had had two teeth chipped, one knocked out and a cracked jaw. It was fairly busy in the city that night and there were lots of passers by, but no one intervened or even asked if I was OK afterwards.


After the lads were out of sight my ‘friends’ came back to check out the damage. I told them I think I needed to go to the hospital, so they told me to walk there by myself while they went and got R’s car. Nice friends.

So off to the hospital to have my teeth wired up to try and save the loose ones.

I asked F and R why they didn’t help me or even warn me but they wouldn’t say much.

Some of our other friends asked the same questions later on and F and R claimed to have not even seen the beating and just kept walking, saying “we didn’t even know he’d stopped walking with us!”

Later R also tried to explain it by saying F had run off first so he had gone to get him!

For the next couple of months I got to hear what “I would have done” from all my workmates and friends.

Even my church friends were saying you should have done this or that. F even called me a wimp behind my back, even though I’d taken the beating and he’d run off! I haven’t spoken to him since that got back to me.

After the beating I was pretty down for a long time. I felt worthless and it was hard to accept the fact that F and R hadn’t even warned me when they saw what was about to happen.

R’s reputation as the tough guy in our group was pretty much over after that. I tried to stay friends with R after that but it was hard, especially when he still tried to act the tough guy occasionally.

Over the next year or so I drifted away from that group of friends entirely.

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Wed Oct 24, 2018 6:18 am

Real violence

Student Sarfraz Najeib is struggling to rebuild his life almost two years after he was attacked in Leeds city centre. The 21-year-old still bears some of the physical scars of the attack as well as suffering psychologically.

In court he told how he feared for his life during the incident in January last year. Now fear of repeat attacks has forced him to restart his studies at a new university away from Leeds.

Upside down "I am always paranoid when I go out. I don't have much of a social life," he said. "When I go to university I always come straight back home."

His life was turned upside down when he, his brother and three friends were chased outside the Majestyk nightclub.

The former Leeds Metropolitan University student, then aged 19, told in court how he was knocked to the floor from behind by one of the group. He said he got up quickly to see the man coming towards him again "with his fists clenched".

Mr Najeib hit the man above the eye, before fleeing with his brother and their friends towards Mill Hill where they had parked their car. I used to be more outgoing but I am more irritable now - I prefer my own company.

Sarfraz Najeib:

"I thought they wanted to beat me up so I was running away from them," he said. "I was running for my life. I was really frightened, really scared," he said in court.

The student told the court somebody then tripped him up from behind. He said he thought he hit his head on the wall and fell unconscious.

Mr Najeib's spent seven days in Leeds Infirmary with injuries including a fractured leg, broken nose, fractured cheekbone and a bite mark to his right cheek.

Cuts to his eyebrow had to be glued together and a head wound needed 12 stitches. Almost two years later Mr Najeib has become something of a recluse, preferring to spend time in his bedroom alone.

Even when they had finished kicking and hitting him, they came back and stamped on him, breaking his leg



Muhammad Najeib:

"I used to be more outgoing but I am more irritable now. I prefer my own company." It is a stark contrast to the day some months before when his parents,

Muhammad and Zubaida, were overjoyed when he earned a place on an Information Technology course at Leeds Metropolitan University in September 1999. It meant he would be close to the family home in Rotherham, South Yorkshire.

Following the attack Sarfraz continued to suffer from post-concussional syndrome, with sleeplessness and headaches.

His leg was in plaster for six weeks, and a year after the attack he underwent surgery for the removal of a piece of nasal bone to allow him to breathe properly.

"Even when they had finished kicking and hitting him, they came back and stamped on him, breaking his leg. They were animals," said Mr Najeib's father.

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Wed Oct 24, 2018 6:23 am

Panther
When I glanced back, I saw only one person from my group and he was standing back at the beginning of the alley just watching.

I have a license to carry, but because of the folks I was with and the fact that one of the women (interestingly enough, one who had never done any training) had specifically asked that no one carry a gun, I was unarmed.


What “rank” was the one watching?

Why did the woman request that no one carry a gun?
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Wed Oct 24, 2018 6:26 am

Mark
For the next couple of months I got to hear what “I would have done” from all my workmates and friends.
I felt worthless and it was hard to accept the fact that F and R hadn’t even warned me when they saw what was about to happen.

R’s reputation as the tough guy in our group was pretty much over after that.

I tried to stay friends with R after that but it was hard, especially when he still tried to act the tough guy occasionally. Over the next year or so I drifted away from that group of friends entirely.


Comical in a way, about notions of being a tough guy, after what he did. In the movie “the incident” you see this phenomenon at work.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Wed Oct 24, 2018 6:36 am

Panther »

Van Canna wrote:

What “rank” was the one watching?

Shodan

Others ranged from go-kyu to san-dan...

Why did the woman request that no one carry a gun? I would have told her to mind her *** business and stay home.

Same reaction I have now... In fact, this past holiday season we were at a small gathering put on by friends of my wife and one woman learned that I had paid for the hostess to take the Basic Pistol class at GOAL (something I do for people who have an open mind, but "aren't sure" about guns...


I tell them to at least learn about the subject from a professional before they take a stand one way or the other... my only requirement for me to pay for the training is that they have to go through with getting an LTC... they don't have to get a firearm, just an LTC).


Anyway, this woman had heard the hostess mention it and how much fun she'd had and was "appalled"!

So this woman approaches me and asks me if I have an LTC. I tell her that I do and even show it to her.

Then she asks me if I'm carrying a GUN... Now previously in the evening I had mentioned that I was uncomfortable for part of my recent business trip because I felt naked because I was "as unarmed as a Jew at Aushwitz". (That comment always seems to make the sheep stop and think. ;) )



I told her that 1) it was none of her business and 2) it's a rather rude question at someone else's house or in public, if she wants to ask me in her own home that's one thing, but not in public or at someone else's house.

She pressed the issue, so I asked (loudly enough for everyone to hear/respond) "Have I made you... have I made ANYONE feel unsafe here tonight?!?!?" 8O She (and everyone else) responded that they had felt completely safe and comfortable.


So I replied that whether I had a firearm or not must be a non-issue. This woman then had the nerve to say that IF I DID have a firearm, she'd THEN feel UNSAFE! :roll:


I was able to be quiet at that point and let others berate her for her hoplophobia! (And THAT is why paying for others to learn about firearms is worth every penny! They KNEW this woman was off-base and THEY pointed out her flawed logic, not me.)

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Wed Oct 24, 2018 6:40 am

Panther>>

Anyway, back to why I wasn't carrying and made the mistake of listening to the woman who (knowing that I have an LTC) requested that no one carry...

Her hubby, who was with us that night (he was a "green-belt") had convinced her that he needed to take karate to "defend the family".

She agreed he could train, because he agreed to "no guns".

Because that was HIS situation, I made the mistake of being "comfortable" without "equalization". After that night, I never saw either one again and from what I've heard, he dropped out of karate.

Arrogant conceit of some people is unbelievable.


Couldn't agree more. But to answer that question, all I have to do is think about the folks here...

Look at the folks who have won tournaments, won NHB fights, and walked away after being attacked on the street. They are GOOD at this!

Train with them and see how easy you are for them to take out if they wanted to... Then realize this...

They've each LOST to someone who happened to be better on a given tournament day... they've each LOST to someone who happened to be better at a given NHB fight... they've each gotten the bruises (and more) from having come up against someone "bigger, badder, meaner, tougher" with anger somewhere...

THOSE folks are ALL Martial Arts Champions and they can ALL kick my @$$! WHY would I even contemplate dreams of being invincible on the street?!?!

Not to mention those creeping little facts such as age differential and those who are "in their prime" vs. those of us who win "by age and treachery"! Therefore, the "realist" in me choses to "even the odds"...

Image

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Wed Oct 24, 2018 6:56 am

The Alleyway

Akil Todd Harvey »

The Mystery of the Alleyway has as much power as the alleyway itself.........

I moved to the greater Los angeles area in 1999 (Most folks make a vast distinction between Orange County and LA, although I recognize the differences, I still consider them higly intertwined)......

I had seen so many movies in my lifetime shot in and around LA, and one of the most common things in all these movies is the alleyway. Are there as many alleyways in LA as you see in the movies and tv? Nope, there are more.

My first apartment had an alley on the back in which 5 or so cholos lived for much of the more seasonal part of the year. They drank, pissed, and slept in that alley much of the time, to the point that I felt more than a little uncomfortable, not just for my safety, but for my wife's as well.

When I first moved in, if I had to go out for a walk in the evenings, I wouldn't go out without my trusted five foot stick.


Despite my worst fears, we came to live among the cholos with little discomfort or disruption. Sure, there were the stolen bicycles. I miss my first trek mountain bike. I probably had three bikes get stolen in two and a half years, but never threatened or otherwise bothered by our homeless Mexican laborer neighbors.

On one occasion, on the street, not in the alley, I had an encounter that resembled "The interview" and I think I was kind of lucky because I immediately sensed it (and he did not have a posse with him and by now I had already stopped carrying my trusted stick as I now felt safe.

I knew enough Spanish to immediately demand of my approaching interviewer, "What do you want?" even before he fully closed the gap between us _
on the street (anyone closing the gap, especially if they do so quickly and for no apparent reason) must be challenged before the gap is closed.

This aint about self d, this is about making the other guy worry that you might try to take his wallet.

Make them worry about their safety, if even for an instant, and they may (note: this does not represent certainty) find an easier victim.

This is not a negative critique of how others have handled certain situations, this is how I survived the streets of LA.

I have had my moments of doubt and insecurity and lack of proper action. I was lucky in those situations, luckier than some who have posted on this forum, but this is not about comparing.

What minimal success I had in my two south Boston encounters were easily overcome by my own self criticisms, self doubts, and post encounter self criticism. In my case, my ego was hurt far more than my physical person.

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Wed Oct 24, 2018 6:58 am

Akil>>

My martial arts training, while arguably problematic in some areas, helped me come through the encounter, both emotionally and mentally.

One of the reasons that I support the K bash thread is that some of the bad habits that I made use of, were, IMHO, learned in the kumite.

My first two encounters in south Boston involved the other guy striking me in the face while I waited for someone to yell "go".

Despite criticisms of aspects of my training, though, I am indebted to those who took the time to teach me skills that I do believe were of very high value.

Panther. I realize that the outcome of your alleyway experience was not a positive one, but let me say, if you will, that I, for one, am glad you made it through if only for the reason that we can razz each other over the other's obviously wacky political ideas :twisted:

I do most appreciate your sharing your experience with us. I might like to tell you that I would do this or that in your situation, but let us instead be honest with each other and admit that I have no idea what I would have done in your shoes and anything I say I would have done is just bs bravado.......

I moved from West LA to Koreatown (pretty close to downtown) in 2002.....The alleyways of Koreatown made the alleyways of west LA seem safe and sanitary.......I lived there for just shy of a year, with my car parked in the alley behind my apartment.....I have a few stories about that alley, too, if anyone is interested in hearing further......

Be well dudes and dudettes........

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Wed Oct 24, 2018 7:03 am

Akil wrote

One of the reasons that I support the K bash thread is that some of the bad habits that I made use of, were, IMHO, learned in the kumite. My firset two encounters in south boston involved the other guy striking me in the face while I waited for someone to yell "go".


So many people seem to be coming forth with the inherent limitations of the standard kumite practice.

Nothing wrong with the kumites, really...

It is all about how kumites are understood and taught by the sensei as applicable to self defense on the street.

Food for serious thought.
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