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 » Sat Jan 25, 2020 6:40 am

My wife and I made a trip several years ago to Montana. We had a brand new car and we’re going to visit her mom and dad, whom we had not seen in several years. The trip up from Colorado Springs in the summer was a pleasant one, stopping half way for an overnight made it an easy trip.

We stayed several days with them and decided we would leave Saturday afternoon go home the scenic way through Wyoming, stop half way, see something other than the interstate highway.

My intention was to get to Wyoming and stay there the night, but we arrived there around 10 PM. There was not a motel to be had. So we decided to go on.

We took a highway that I’m sure is a beautiful drive in the daytime, but at night it is very dark and desolate long isolated stretch of road. About 1:00 AM my wife was asleep, I’m not sure where we were, and I saw in the mirror a car coming up from behind.

This is the first car I’ve seen in a long time. The car was a big pickup truck, and it came right up on my bumper, and it stayed right there.

I begin to feel uneasy. Here we were in the middle of nowhere, with no cell phone, no gun, and what does this truck on my bumper want, and why is he following me like this.

What am I going to do if they run me off the road out here, how can I protect my wife? What if there are three or four of them. This went on for 30 minutes or more, and he would not pass me, I’d speed up and so would he, and always stayed four feet off my rear end. She was asleep and I was scared, this is a bad situation.

I have at home an S&W M19 .357MAG. I sure wish I had that gun with me. When we got to Rawlins and the turn-off to the main highway the big pick-up went left and we went right, I slowed down, gave a very big sigh of relief as I watched the big pickup speed off into the early morning on the lighted ramp and wondered what could have come of this.

I have since got my concealed carry permit, gone to the range several times a week, shoot in a bullseye pistol league, and I never will go on a trip in the car without a handgun to protect myself and my wife. I will be prepared next time, I hope you will be too.

—SL, CO
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Jan 25, 2020 4:09 pm

Fast Food, Fast Temper
SB, La.


Survival lessons from the street, home, anywhere!

Several months back, my wife, myself and our two sons were visiting her family. As we were leaving town, my oldest boy wanted to stop at a local fast food restaurant to eat lunch.

The weather was cold and raining, so the family stayed in the van as I went in to get our order and we would eat in the van as we headed down the highway.

As I pulled into the restaurant parking lot, I saw only one spot available to park due to the lunch hour rush. It was in front of a vehicle that was parked perpendicular to the parking spaces and took up three spots.

As I pulled into the spot I saw no one in the vehicle, so I parked there and went inside to get our lunch. While waiting in line for our food after placing the order, a man came up to me and asked me to go and move my van so that he could get out.

I told him that I would be out there in a minute and move it. He got agitated that I would not go right then and move the van for him to get out. I told him that I was not going out into that nasty weather but once and that was going to be after I got our food. He walked outside in disgust.

When I got out to the van he was standing by his vehicle cursing at me to move quickly. I told him that if he was in a hurry that he should not have parked like that.

I sat in the van and handed my wife the bag of food for her to give the boys their meals. I looked over and he was shouting more profanities at me and proceeded to come around the front of my vehicle.

At this point, I did not know what he was going to do, but I knew what I was going to do. I pulled my Glock 19 9mm from below my seat and chambered a round. As I did this it really caught his attention. He did not say another word and went back to his vehicle and waited for me to leave.

In my state it is legal to carry a weapon in your vehicle, as it is an extension of your home and can be defended. I did not have to use my Glock, but I was ready to in order to protect my family.

—SB, LA
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Jan 25, 2020 8:06 pm

Get the Point


Survival lessons from the street, home, anywhere!

The part of town my wife and I lived in wouldn’t be confused with a great neighborhood. So I had a concealed weapons permit and my constant companion was a Glock 23 worn in an inside-the-pants holster.

Well I was driving my daily beater, an early 80’s pickup covered in rust. Hardly the kind of vehicle that would suggest that the driver had money.

I pulled into a parking space and as I always did, I checked out the surroundings before I got out. Well this man comes toward me and my truck on the driver’s side as I’m getting out.

He says, “Hey man do you have a couple bucks?” I replied, “Not unless you take plastic.” He then says, “Well give me your f***ing wallet then,” as he produces a knife.

I had my right hand on my Glock the whole time this was going on and had it halfway out of the holster before the knife showed up.

When the knife came out I told the guy, “Calm down I’ll give you my wallet, you don’t need to use that knife. It’s only money right?”

Well, he dropped his guard long enough after saying this that I pulled my Glock out and for some reason (I still can’t explain to this day) I thrust the gun toward the guy’s face and shoved right through his teeth!

Well he instantly dropped his knife and grabbed his mouth and fell to the ground.

Two cars over from where this happened, there was a woman putting groceries into her sport utility and she saw what I had done and screamed!

The store security guard heard this and came running. I’m standing over the attacker with my gun drawn telling him not to get up.

The security guard is yelling at me to put my gun down while pointing his flashlight at me (he was unarmed security). I quickly called 911 and told them what had happened and in less than 5 minutes the local police were on scene.

After the usual disarming of me, I told my story to the two officers. After which I got multiple chuckles and laughter. A second car took the attacker to the local ER to get him checked out.

As they had the attacker cuffed, I mentioned his teeth on the ground to the officers taking him away. After what seemed like half the night (which was less than 3 hours from pulling into the parking lot to end) I was given back my Glock and told I was free to go.

I said something about the blood and gums on my Glock. The officer handed me some sort of spray, gloves, and towels to clean off my Glock, which he told me was suppose to kill off HIV or something like that when dealing with blood.

While cleaning the blood and gums off my Glock the two remaining officers told me that they were really surprised that I hadn’t shot the attacker.

I told them I was too, but after everything was done and over with I was glad that I hadn’t since I saw no need to shoot or kill someone for credit/debit cards!

Ironically, the next night there was an off-duty uniformed police officer at the location and there still is to this day!

—MD, internet
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sat Jan 25, 2020 10:00 pm

Two weeks ago while driving on the highway, I was about to take the exit to my home when a car passed me on the shoulder, hitting my right side mirror.

Naturally, that gave me a jolt, so I signaled him with my headlights while honking my horn. All of a sudden, he slammed on the brakes, causing me to almost crash into him.

At the last moment I decided to overtake the car on the shoulder to avoid a collision. That’s when the driver tried to run me off the road and into the crash barrier. I skidded but quickly regained control without hitting anything.

My heart missed a couple of beats, and I was steaming mad to have been put in such a dangerous situation. When the driver decided to overtake me again, I yelled at him and motioned for him to take it easy.

He got in front of me again and started hitting his brakes, trying to make me crash into him.

We took the same exit off the highway and he stayed in front of me, driving slowly and trying to cut me off.

He seemed to be trying to guess where I was going, and I didn’t mind because I was really interested in learning the reason for his behavior and getting close enough to write down the make and model of the car, and the license plate number.

Anyway, I wasn’t thinking straight because of the shock of almost having had a serious accident.

I signaled for the driver to stop his car, and my girlfriend noticed that he was on the phone and that his passenger was giving me the finger and waving a beer bottle as though he was going to beat me with it.

Before I could speak the words, “Uh oh, this is bad ….” they pulled over and got out of the car. I did too, because I wanted to talk to the driver and see what his problem was.

Suddenly, a huge guy, more than 6 feet tall and about 260 pounds came out of a nearby house.

Apparently, the driver had called his friend, and they had lured me into a trap, probably to beat me up. I told my girlfriend to stay in the car with the doors locked, the engine running and to call the police if needed.


The big guy told me to be gone “or else.” When I told him I had no business with him but wanted to speak with his friend, he threatened to stab me. Then he lifted his shirt and moved to grab the hilt of a kitchen knife. My girlfriend was yelling from the car, “Knife! Knife! Watch out, he has a knife!”

As fast as I could, I drew my SIG SAUER, which I always carry in a paddle holster on my right side. I ordered all three men, the large man and the two occupants of the car, to lay on the ground, face down.

In a couple of minutes the town police arrived. All three men were arrested for disorderly conduct and menacing (threatening physical violence).

I learned a valuable lesson: Never doubt your doubts. I had a funny feeling when I first looked at the driver. I never should have gotten into the argument and put my girlfriend in danger. Luckily, everything ended well, thanks to the psychological and firearms training I received while working as an armed security officer a few years ago.

I’m not a violent person, and I strongly believe that avoidance is the best option. I’m writing this to tell everyone how quickly things can go bad.
Please use my experience as a lesson, and take your training and your personal safety seriously. Train hard to fight easy.

—KG, NY
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jan 26, 2020 5:47 am

Being Familiar Isn’t Being Safe

Survival lessons from the street, home, anywhere!

I work for an armored truck company in NY. For obvious reasons we go through extensive training before we are put out on the road. During training, there was a phrase given us seemed to stick in my head at the time and proved to be the most valuable thing I would carry with me throughout my career.

The phrase was, (and has certainly applied to my civilian life as well), “Don’t ever confuse being familiar with being safe.”

This leads me to the situation where it may have saved my life. I was on a run that I had been on a hundred times.

Going in the stops that again I had been in a number of times. It was early in the morning and I was entering a convenience store that was all too familiar as I had delivered and picked up money there on a weekly basis for some time.

There were a few people standing in line at the register and, of course, there had to be one idiot that said the words I hear at least 20 times a day, “Hey buddy, got any samples?” As always, I replied with, “Sorry man, I was giving them out at Christmas, you missed it.”


Now what he must have heard was, “Look for yourself,” because that was exactly what he attempted to do. The guy reached to grab the bag we use for transporting money and I was one step ahead of him.

I pulled the bag behind my body, palmed the bone on his left forearm and broke the release on my holster administering a firm grip on my sidearm. Textbook style, my hand was there before I realized my grip.

The drivers of our trucks always park right in front of the stops doors so that he can clearly see every move we make and my driver didn’t miss this.

Over my two way radio, the driver was asking if l needed assistance, the cashier on the other side of the counter was asking if I wanted the police called, and the idiot I palmed was holding his arm whining something to the effect that he couldn’t believe I hit him.

I responded to my driver first, telling him everything was under control. The cashier asked again if I wanted the police called and I told her it wouldn’t be necessary.

She told the idiot, as you can tell I like to refer to him, to leave the store and that he was no longer welcome there. The incident took just a matter of seconds from beginning to end, and seemed like it took an hour. No one was badly injured and no shots fired.

Like I said, I had been to this stop a number of times and it was in fact very familiar to me. Nevertheless, I didn’t let my guard down just because I knew the stop and nothing had ever happened there before.

I have learned over time to watch people’s hands and that’s the first thing I see on a person and absolutely where the majority of my concentration lies.

It seems people get all too familiar and comfortable with a place, and forget that danger and crime revolve strictly around opportunity, not only location.

—RH, NY
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:09 am

What really happens to you in a fight.

http://www.koryu.com/library/camberger1.html

Let's start here
The protagonists in any fighting scenario are living, breathing human beings whose actions more often than not depend less on proprioreceptive conditioning, their mastery of motoric and strategic skills, than on the subjective psychological effect of the situation.

While the outsider may focus mainly on the weapons and biomechanical responses exhibited, combat activity itself is first and foremost a combat of minds and wills.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:29 am

Paralysis of fright
Any fight scenario that involves the actual possibility (if not probability) of injury or death subjects the fighters to a veritable cocktail of competing, barely containable emotions.

These include panic, extreme anticipation, passive and active aggression.[24] For the sake of argument, I will refer to this complex nightmare as "personal fear."

The degree of fear encountered by an individual fighter may vary according to the level of intuitive expectation and possible severity of injury.

The exaggerated focus on the opponent and the opponent's weapon tends to trigger an equally distorted perception of subjective risk.

Ritualized encounters, such as ordeal, duel, or Mensur, maintain and sublimize high fear and stress levels over prolonged periods,

whereas the emotion triggered by ambush and unexpected ("self-defense") encounters is more immediate.


The first thing to accept is the subliminal role of emotions affecting your presumed abilities of the dojo. In many of my investigations of violent encounters in the work place or in public places that created civil exposure as well as criminal; many capable people reported just 'groping' for some effective move they knew they had but would not surface.

A couple of the worst examples involved the total paralysis of a job supervisor, a Vietnam combat vet and trained martial artist, who completely folded when the irate husband[a very large and violent man/drug dealer] showed up unexpectedly on the job to 'punish' him for having sent his wife home because of tardiness.

The husband locked the supervisor in his office, giving him a severe beating, without any 'fight back'...

The emotional damage, worse than the physical, required a retraining and placement in another occupation in accordance with the workers compensation statute.

The other was the killing of the black belt karate champion by a Jamaican gang banger in the darkened staircase...without any 'fight back' as well.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:38 am

The gang banger stabbed the karate black belt more than fifty times before cutting his throat so bad that the head almost came off. His terrible screams and cries for help went ignored by tenants in the building locked in fear and inaction.
Primal emotion


If you have never faced a hostile opponent's sharp blade, you will tend to underrate the effects and influence of personal fear on individual skill level and coordination.

The difference between facing a foil, saber, or blunt practice Schläger and seeing yourself face to face with a live blade is about as dramatic as encountering a black bear safely behind the moat and steel bars of a zoo--and running into the same animal in the rain and fog of a Shenandoah Valley night.

Much like the grunting and growling of the bear is enhanced by the lack of visibility--and the heart-pounding apprehension of a brush with primal chaos--

the eye of the fighter encountering a hostile opponent's steel for the first time magnifies the unyielding, heinously sharp point, or the jagged, wavelike reflections of the edge, translating the impression into instant anticipation of the stinging slice that will change your physiology for ever...


When we talk about real violence, we must consider the fact that a knife might well be pulled on you especially these days.

What makes things worse is the presumption of TMAs abilities to deal with a knife driven by malevolent intent on the street.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:40 am

And we expect that a man (...) shall, in an instant, the twinkling of an eye, divest himself of all restraint, of all caution and hurl himself on the enemy, a frenzied beast, lusting to probe his foeman's guts with three feet of steel or shatter his brains with a bullet. Gentlemen, it cannot be done, not without mental practice.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:40 am

Therefore, you must school yourself to savagery. You must imagine how it will feel when your sword hilt crashes into the breast bone of your enemy. You must picture the wild exaltation of the mounted charge when the lips draw back in a snarl and the voice cracks with passion.[41]
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:41 am

I stated above that fencers who never faced a hostile opponent's sharp blade are prone to underrate the pervasive effects of self preservation, stress, and anticipation on a fighter's state of mind. I also would like to remind you that the cathartic element of antagonistic combat centers on overcoming that fear.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:42 am

The German poet Hanns Heinz Ewers, himself a veteran of several heavy saber duels, countless Schläger Mensuren, and a pistol duel in which both participants ended up drilling holes into the cold morning air of the Kottenforst near Bonn, works his experience during these encounters into his novel Alraune and his short story "Der tote Jude".

In both instances, one of the duellists is unable to control his bowels as he steps up to his position.

Yet both men remain in their places to fire--and in one case, kill--despite their bodies' violent rejection of the situation.

And thus many, if not most fighters manage to have their conscious will overcome their self-preservation instincts in the moment the combat begins in earnest.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:43 am

At that point, the Olympian skill level in using a particular weapon may have decreased by fifty, seventy, even ninety percent.

But it is this moment of the will emerging to rule the body that represents the true victory--and sole purpose--of most Comment combat set-ups.

This state of mind will not only determine the fighter's own retrospective attitude toward the fight, when even severe wounds are discounted as coincidental in contrast to the personal victory, it frequently determines the actual outcome of the bout.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:44 am

Of course, it may work both ways ... and unless a man is actually put to the test, it is impossible to predict when or if this emergence of the will as the dominating engine of combat will take place:

If it fails to occur, every subsequent detail of the fight will further erode the moral foundations of the unlucky fighter until his self is washed away in a flood of uncontrollable chaos.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:45 am

But even a vice couldn't have gripped him tighter than his battle gear and the presence of all these murmuring, whispering, laughing strangers,

who themselves were like tied down, and, with stern or laughing demeanor, represented the Principle that united and dominated them: The Principle of Overcoming Bodily Fear.

There was no escape. To admit one's fear would indeed have required a moral sovereignty that would have counter-balanced any cowardice of the body--

because it would have proved more than an over-abundance of bodily fear, namely real individual courage as opposed to the courage of peer pressure.
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