Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Behind the Belt

Does anyone out there get Blackbelt Magazine?

I picked up a copy at the library today, and read an article that I wish I'd written! (That happens to writers sometimes.)

The article was "Behind the Belt," by Jim Morris, who's a freelance writer and martial artist (Karate), and it was in the March 2007 issue of Blackbelt Magazine. I wish I could provide you an internet link, but I can't find it on the mag's website--perhaps they don't archive all their articles.

In the article, Morris addresses questions that people often have about martial arts. Most people have odd notions. Morris says early on:

. . . when I tell my friend I'm taking karate, he mocks me. He assumes a karate stance, gets a kamikaze look in his eye and "karate chops" me, complete with a banshee yell.



Morris goes on to answer some questions people ask, like whether he could "take" a 280-pound ex-con who lives on his street. Morris's answer--no. "I'm not learning karate so I can beat people up." When pushed, he points out that even a thug has tender shins, eyeballs, and ears that could be attacked if necessary. Karate isn't needed for street fighting!

Another question: "Even if you're good, what are you going to do against a gun?"

First Morris points out the way the media tends to overplay the danger of violent crime in an ordinary person's life (a theme I've written about before, too). Then he says:

I took up martial arts for one reason: physical activity, but stayed for a host of reasons. People have noticed a difference in me, too. Several friends have said, "you seem different." I ask them how.

"Just more . . . relaxed. Calm."

I so enjoyed this article--it was a nice contrast to so many of the magazine's other articles--about MMA, "survival fighting," and phrases in ads like "transform any man into a walking, breathing weapon of mass destruction." (really) To its credit, the mag also has some reasonable columns and good advice about martial arts . . .

I hope you have read this article, or will read it--and I hope you enjoy! If you do, let me know what you think.


Kenneth said...

Interesting, i hope i can come across this article. It's funny how people look into martial arts as the same thing they see in action movies=)

Kenneth Gibbons LLC said...

Martial art is not a action movie. It is a way of life. thanks, Kenneth Gibbons LLC

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