Getting my kicks

Meh,  writing. It’s not the only thing y’know.

Last weekend I spent in St. Louis at a martial arts tournament. In 1995 I joined a martial art call Kuk Sool Won. It’s a traditional Korean martial art, with kicking and weapons and grabbing people in uncomfortable places and knocking them over. Through eighteen years and three different states I’ve somehow managed to keep up with it, to the point where I’ve managed to reach the rank of fourth degree. Which means I didn’t compete at the tournament, I judged. Which is better, IMHO. When you compete, you might get a medal. When you judge, you are guaranteed a sandwich.

Martial arts has been a great thing for me over the years. I’ve kept in shape, learned some cool things, and met some great people. No, I’ve never gotten to beat anyone up, but I’m actually pretty happy about that. And I can say that all my practice has actually saved me from serious injury/death, not at the hands of ninjas but on various mountains when I was foolish enough to strap a board to my feet and hurl myself down steep, icy slopes. We learn how to fall in Kuk Sool, so that we can throw each other with out hurting ourselves. I fell a lot snowboarding, and never hurt myself. Even the time I did a front flip over a giant granite boulder. No, not intentionally.

So how does this relate to writing? Not at all, really. Except that it’s important to have something in your life besides writing, so you don’t end up in a garret screaming dialog at your cats and huffing toner cartridges. And it’s also useful to do something that makes you move, so that your back doesn’t twist itself into an ampersand over your keyboard. Oh, and it’s cool to know what it’s like to have a swordfight with someone, to throw a knife, or to have someone chase you with a spear.




Also, you can do this. Which is totally metal. Yes, that’s a sword. No, I have no idea what the hell is up with my hair.


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2 responses to “Getting my kicks

  1. Sandwiches ARE better than medals.
    That said, Kuk Sool Won seems way to much like hard work for me. I’ll stick to Aikido. No competitions and in general one doesn’t risk breaking people’s arms 😛

  2. Gary Kloster

    Well, I’ve managed to go this long without breaking anyones arm– including my own. The hard work mostly comes from practicing jump kicks. The feet, they do not like going so high.

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