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  1. bunyip is offline
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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:06am

    hall of fame
     Style: jits with hits

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!

    I've started training at a McDojo! (West Wind Bok Fu / West Wind Kung Fu / Karate)

    A few weeks ago, I discovered West Wind Karate (also known as West Wind Bok Fu, also known as West Wind Kung Fu), a school that offers "the most expensive training in the world". I suspect I cannot afford the most expensive training in the world, but fortunately, I could afford their free introductory lessons. This is my story.

    Disclaimer: To anyone who thinks that I was just stringing West Wind Karate / West Wind Bok Fu / West Wind Kung Fu along and wasting their time, I argue that there should be nothing wrong with checking out a school before making your decision. I visited 2 BJJ schools and a TKD school before I even started martial arts. In college, I visited two jiu jitsu schools before picking one, and in Maryland over winter break, I trained at Yamasaki one year, then tried Evolve and trained there the next. When I arrived in Berkeley, I trained with the Berkeley judo club, then took a free lesson at a local MMA school, where I then began training. Since switching to the MMA school, I've taken a free lesson at Ralph Gracie's (decided it wasn't worth the money and commute) and a free lesson at another BJJ academy (which I enjoyed and now also train at). During my introductory lessons at West-Wind karate / West Wind bok fu / West Wind kung fu, I will be respectful, practice all my forms, and will give them an honest chance to prove that they don't teach utter crap. And if they're worth the money, of course I'll enroll. Anyway, on with the story:
    Last edited by bunyip; 8/05/2005 11:36pm at .
    "I'm offering straight punch, kick while downed to the ribs or head, and of course- the german suplex...which is one suplex quickly followed by another." - Guerilla Fists

    Matt Thornton explains "aliveness": http://www.bullshido.com/videos/sbg2.wmv

    West Wind Karate / West Wind Bok Fu / West Wind Kung Fu thread
    West Wind Karate / West Wind Bok Fu / West Wind Kung Fu archive thread
    (experiment to see if I can boost the thread's Google rank)

  2. bunyip is offline
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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:11am

    hall of fame
     Style: jits with hits

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    On the urging of members here, I gave West-Wind Bok-Fu a call. There are four schools in the Bay area. On the website each lists the same telephone number, which connected me to their "C.O.R.E." office. (C.O.R.E. stands for center of records and enrollment, I assume it's where they talk you into a long term contract.) I told them I was interested in their Berkeley school (open 9am to 9pm), and they scheduled me for a same-day tour. ("We've had a cancellation – can you make it at 4:00?")

    Walking into the school, my first reaction was to laugh. There were about four students there, two practicing kata on their own, while the other two were standing stiffly in front of an instructor. This wouldn't be quite so humorous on its own, except that the instructor was wearing a full three-piece suit. The gym itself was pretty good-sized, with plenty of mat space and a rock garden by the door that was almost the size of the whole mat at my tiny gym.

    I was quickly greeted by a pale white lady in a kimono who introduced herself as Ms. S__, the head instructor. (Actually, I think she used some asian title, but I can't keep them straight.) She told me about the history of the West-Wind schools (in the area for 30 years). This particular school (right by UC Berkeley) focuses more on adult classes, though children are also accepted if they were disciplined enough. Ms. S explained that the school stresses discipline very strongly, and I saw a couple students bow very low as they asked permission to enter or leave the school. Because they cared so much about attracting respectful students, their school was very exclusive and a decision must be made about whether each student is worthy before they are allowed to begin instruction.

    Ms. S explained how the schools hierarchy must be respected, etc, etc. She also asked if I'd had any previous martial arts instruction, so I told her truthfully that I'd been training for about a year and a half, and had experience in TKD, BJJ, and karate (though I didn't elaborate on the proportions).

    Ms. S walked me around the dojo, whose walls are lined with various exotic asian weapons, all of which the students must master before their black belt test. The school teaches a variety of styles, but they want their students to develop a solid base in shotokan karate first. As they become more advanced, they are introduced to tiger style kung fu. Then she rattled off a bunch of other martial arts that I can't remember.

    Part of the reason I am having trouble remembering was that I was being distracted by the two students in front of the instructor in the three piece suit. He had finished instructing them and now they were practicing their new techniques on their own. One was holding a crane stance straight out of karate kid and doing a little hop kick every so often. After every few of these he would kneel down and think for a while. The other appeared to be meditating, but every few minutes he would stand up and thrust his hands out in front of him with an enormous KIA! (Think Asia in the kamehameha video – EXACT same thing.) I can only assume that he was throwing chi balls. I'm just glad I was out of range.

    There are group classes in the evening, but the school is focused on one-on-one lessons. Every student is required to take at least one private lesson a week. (How do they get enough instructors to teach private lessons to 200+ students each week? I think we all know the answer to that.) I asked how long it takes to get a black belt, Ms. S said that it varied based on the individual (because of the private instruction) but the fastest they'd had was 3.5 years.

    Ms. S stopped in front of a pressure point diagram to mention that they did some grappling, but it wasn't really so focused on "just holding someone down". They were more focused on ending the fight instantly. Because they taught such deadly techniques, she said, I must understand how important it was that they could only accept students if the students were worthy. I nodded my head. But, she said, I looked like a pretty good candidate so far. Sometimes students are hindered by their previous martial arts instruction, but she could tell that I was willing to empty my cup and learn their ideas. I nodded again.

    After the tour, we went into the office, where she explained that the first step in the application process was a few private lessons with an instructor. She scheduled me for a lesson in two days with Mr. X, the guy in the three piece suit. Evidently I was very lucky to get this opportunity, as he was their most sought-after instructor. He had been training for 14 years and occasionally did amateur boxing (one point in his favor, I guess).

    She asked if I had any questions, so I asked about price. She said that the instructors here don't deal with billing at all, which is taken care of at C.O.R.E., where I will be sent later if I am deemed worthy to join the school. Instruction is very expensive, but no one is made to pay more than they can afford. For example, there is an Oakland Raider in their Alameda school who paid $40,000 for his whole family, but they certainly wouldn't charge me that. There are also "scholarships" available, but they are very hard to get. (I do hope I am lucky enough to land one. Anyone want to bet on it?) C.O.R.E.'s job is to figure out what the appropriate billing for me is, but the instructors play no part in that, so as not to taint the student-instructor relationship.

    We also had a little discussion about how often I was planning to train. The discussion went like this: I had mentioned earlier that I attended Berkeley, so she asked if I was very busy now. I was. She asked if I was working, because that also takes a lot of time. I just do the usual grad student research stuff. So are my parents helping me out now? No, they aren't.

    So that was about it for my introductory tour. On my way out, I heard a woman behind me say "Salutation." I thought she was saying hi to me, but then I noticed the 12-year old in front of her launching into some sort of arm-windmilling, head-spinning, weird, wild, and wonderful body gyration, so I assume she was talking to him.

    I'm really looking forward to my first lesson.
    Last edited by bunyip; 5/29/2004 12:09pm at .
    "I'm offering straight punch, kick while downed to the ribs or head, and of course- the german suplex...which is one suplex quickly followed by another." - Guerilla Fists

    Matt Thornton explains "aliveness": http://www.bullshido.com/videos/sbg2.wmv

    West Wind Karate / West Wind Bok Fu / West Wind Kung Fu thread
    West Wind Karate / West Wind Bok Fu / West Wind Kung Fu archive thread
    (experiment to see if I can boost the thread's Google rank)

  3. PizDoff is offline

    .

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:23am

    supporting memberstaff
     Style: Grappling

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Can you get it video taped and produce highlights?
    This looks like a very promising school, I hope you have fun training at this respectable acedemy.
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  4. TaeBo_Master is offline
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    Certified Fitness Trainer

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:24am

    supporting memberforum leader
     Style: Judo, Jujitsu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    The only word that comes to mind:


    RIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIGHT.........
    Click To Get My Free Training Newsletter... Do It NOW!


    "You all just got fucking owned.";
    "TaeBo_Master and GajusCaesar just scored 10,000,000 points on all you pawns."

    - The Wastrel
  5. HAPKO3 is offline
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    Marasmos

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:26am

    supporting member
     Style: 10th Planet JJ

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Well, let's hope you're worthy of their instruction...
    You say what about my rice?
  6. PizDoff is offline

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:28am

    supporting memberstaff
     Style: Grappling

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Hey, is that you in your avatar TaeBo_Master? That's really cool!
    You look very fit and atheltic, you must have done a lot of that TaeBo hahahaha!

    This shows women REALLY do come to the internet.


    bunyip - I truely respect your willingness to have an open cup. Many people have their cup tainted and not well washed by other so-called effective styles. These styles focus mainly on non-honourable sport fighting matches that are done for entertainment. I think today's honourable martial artist should focus on personal enlightment, spiritual beliefs and non-violence. The art of martial art has not been emphasize enough and we, as the leaders of martial arts today must change this.

    Blessing to you,

    Piz Doff
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  7. GAB corp. is offline

    Registered Member

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:32am


     Style: shorin

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Oohh, sounds interesting. Can't wait for updates :D
  8. Wounded Ronin is offline
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    ...is THE PENETRATOR

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:57am

    supporting member
     Style: German longsword, .45 ACP

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    That sounds like some kind of evil organization out of a 60s or 70s movie.


    I also like how they teach both Shotokan and Tiger Kung Fu. It makes me think of the newest Mortal Kombat game where everyone switches between 3 rigid styles in the middle of a fight.
    “nobody shoots anybody in the face unless you’re a hit man or a video gamer.” - Jack Thompson
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_Th...%28attorney%29
  9. Antagony is offline
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    Unemployed

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 1:05am

    supporting member
     Style: Filthy Jailhouse Tactics

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Hidden camera videotaping is a MUST!
    MY NAME IS ANTAGONY I SUCK AT COMBAT SPORTS KTHX

    "blahblahblah, but I don't think I'm going to train tonight."
    "Fag."
    "Well if that were true, then I'd really REALLY want to come train!"
  10. Dustdevil is offline

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 1:28am


     Style: Donkey Punch Do

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    HA! This **** is going to be great! This is precisely what Bullshido.com is all about!
  11. hapki_18 is offline

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 2:13am


     Style: Muay Thai, Hapk

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    you'll probably get pwn3d by them.:D
  12. ghostwipe is offline

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 4:26am


     Style: mma

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Be careful--you may discover an underground opium factory and hundreds of mindless servants who you'd have to fight your way past on the way back above ground. But even if you make it to the surface, you'll still have to make it through the hall of mirrors, where the Big Boss will be waiting for you with his detachable metal hand-claw...
  13. Matsufubu is offline
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    To the Bat Pole!

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 5:25am

    Join us... or die
     Style: Judo

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Bull-****, Mr. Han-Man!
    Mr Politically Correct GIJoe6186:
    Fat people disgust me in every way imaginable. I was at Freindly's with my girl tonight and saw a bunch of fat fuckers. I felt sorry for the pavement they were killing and the people who had to see them. .
  14. Te No Kage! is offline
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    Chemist

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 5:32am

    supporting member
     Style: BJJ/Judo

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I really wonder how they take themselves so seriously, maybe because you're in a big city that this kind of nonsense is able to go on.
    "Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration." -A. Lincoln

    Vote your conscience.... Vote Libertarian!
  15. Chupacabra is offline
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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 7:32am

    supporting member
     Style: 5AF & Sub Grappling

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    It's a cult
  16. Beavis is offline

    Registered Member

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 7:37am


     Style: Grappling

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Nice. When are you training again?
  17. Te No Kage! is offline
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    Chemist

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 7:42am

    supporting member
     Style: BJJ/Judo

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    do they at least fight?
    "Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration." -A. Lincoln

    Vote your conscience.... Vote Libertarian!
  18. WingChun Lawyer is offline
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    Modesty forbids more.

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 7:49am

    supporting member
     Style: Muay Thai, BJJ newbie.

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Seems like a cult. Ask them about sparring, sparring rules, or their excuse for not sparring at all.
    That civilisation may not sink,
    Its great battle lost,
    Quiet the dog, tether the pony
    To a distant post;
    Our master Caesar is in the tent
    Where the maps are spread,
    His eyes fixed upon nothing,
    A hand under his head.


    - W.B. Yeats
  19. m4949 is offline

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 7:54am


     

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I have to admit, given that tour, I would have to try a class.

    It does seem like a cult, or a recruitment front for a heroin ring. If some old asin guy with one hand shows up with a white persian cat, LEAVE.

    I am sure we all want to know, was Ms. S hot?
  20. SLJ is offline

    Titan

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 8:04am

    supporting member
     Style: BJJ

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    What on Earth would possess you to stay in there longer than 5 seconds, let alone give them any money ?

    Is this a joke ?
    "You realise the transformations give a man enough strength to destroy a truck with his bare hands!?
    YOU HAVE BETRAYED ME, IN THE WORST POSSIBLE MANNER!!" - KiWarrior

    "Sport ? That kind of thing's not my bag baby!" - Sammy Franco

    "This system was developed with the help of notible BJJ fighter Ribbon Muchado." - "Sifu" Anthony Iglesias
  21. Colin is offline
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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 10:44am

    supporting member
     Style: MT/BJJ/MMA

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Scholarship..
    Bwahahahaha
  22. OneWingedAngel is offline
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    Psi Vampire Bane

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 11:06am

    supporting member
     Style: mma

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Originally posted by WingChun Lawyer
    Ask them about sparring, sparring rules, or their excuse for not sparring at all.
    Didn't they already answer? Their moves are 2 d34dly 4 t3h sp4rr1ing!!!111

    Originally posted by m4949
    I am sure we all want to know, was Ms. S hot?
    That's what video is for(gotta love hidden cams).
    Seriously, most likely grabbing somebodies crotch like that is only going to make your situation much, much worse. Unless the person doing the gullotine has no pants on, then it's okay as long as they bought you dinner first. - Kidnemo

    I don't know about angels, but it's fear that gives men wings - Max Payne
  23. tkdan28 is offline
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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 11:18am

    supporting member
     Style: Taekwondo

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Originally posted by Dustdevil
    HA! This **** is going to be great! This is precisely what Bullshido.com is all about!
    Edit: removing dumbass comment confusing DD with someone else.
    Last edited by tkdan28; 5/27/2004 2:38pm at .
    Seventh: If you think TKD doesn’t work, your right, until you get the side of you face smashed with a roundhouse kick. -- ronin69

    It's just that I carry weapons and have no moral compass anymore. -- JKDChick

    At least until the Wing Chun clown car arrives. --JKDC
  24. CaptShady is offline
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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 11:22am


     Style: Beverly Hills Ninjitsu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Originally posted by m4949
    I am sure we all want to know, was Ms. S hot?
    Oh I'm sure of it. Couldn't you just picture her patting his behind as she said she "could tell that he was willing to empty his cup and learn their ideas."
  25. Omega Supreme is offline

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 11:29am

    staff
     Style: Chinese Boxing

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    "Master" every weapon before blackbelt?

    I'm calling bullshido right now.
  26. Budd is offline

    Professor of Chaos

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 11:38am

    supporting member
     

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    When I was a child and lived in Napa, CA and played judo, there was a West Wind Karate School in town. I never visited there, but the other kids I knew that did judo and TKD all referred to it as "That crappy place".
  27. jaychiu is offline

    Easily Distracted by Food.

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 11:39am

    supporting member
     

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    sounds very much like chung moo do and that was a cult. this just sounds like an extra organized one.
  28. Colin is offline
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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 11:43am

    supporting member
     Style: MT/BJJ/MMA

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Why leave out the name and say the school?
    Cause he's planning on converting the chick to realism after he butt-bangs her, and since he'll be inviting her to the forums later, didn't want her to see him trashing her name.
  29. zenbert is offline
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    $1.50

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:00pm

    supporting member
     Style: golf club jitsu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Kimono and 3pc suit huh? May be tea ceremony and etiquette are part of the curriculum...
    zenbert
    Hold me... :3some:

    I love MA. Unlike many things in life, you get what you put in.
  30. Jenfucius is offline

    Shogun of Long Island

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:15pm

    Join us... or die
     

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    what comes to my mind: "WELCOME TO MY HALLOWED OUT VOLCANO LAIR, MR. POWERS!"
  31. inde is offline
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    wants jade ring

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:48pm

    supporting member
     Style: kung fu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Originally posted by bunyip
    I noticed the 12-year old in front of her launching into some sort of arm-windmilling, head-spinning, weird, wild, and wonderful body gyration, so I assume she was talking to him.
    Left leg cross-steps behind right as right & left hands come across the body. Body lowers into cross-step as hands circle over head and meet at the navel. Hands come up together, as if you were cupping water, as you rise out of cross-step to feet together, hands turn over and press down as you bow.
  32. FledglingTengu is offline

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 12:57pm


     Style: Extreme Ukemi

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    What now?
  33. EternalRage is offline
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    WARNING: BJJ may cause airway obstruction.

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 3:56pm

    Join us... or die
     Style: Bajillion Joo Jizzu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Pay them in Monopoly money.

    Instructor in a 3 piece suit huh. When I was still with TKD, there was this one kid whose father got really into living vicariously thru his son's tkd tournaments. He would dress up in 3 piece suits too when he went to these tournaments with his son.

    However, he was a good 225-250 pounds and was an ex undercover DEA agent.

    Moral of the story: if they are wearing a suit its probably to distract you from all the crazy scars they have underneath from fighting over the last several decades.
  34. EternalRage is offline
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    WARNING: BJJ may cause airway obstruction.

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 3:58pm

    Join us... or die
     Style: Bajillion Joo Jizzu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Unless.... maybe thats the uniform u have to wear when you become an instructor!!! You have to wear a three piece linen made in italy suit. They probably have silk patches you can have sewn onto ur suit too.

    Wow if thats wat instructors wear I wonder what the masters wear. Tuxedos? Maybe if you get real high in the ranking you can earn ur cummerbund.

    Probably cost alot tho. Give them BoardWalk and a RailRoad and ur Get out of Jail Free card...
  35. Miguksaram is offline
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    Day Tripper/Dream Weaver

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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 4:04pm

    supporting member
     Style: Shorei-ryu & Kumdo & TKD

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Originally posted by Matsufubu
    Bull-****, Mr. Han-Man!
    Man, you come straight out of a comic book! ~takes karate ready to fight stance~
    Jeremy M. Talbott

    Quote Originally Posted by Phrost
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    "Which is better, to learn the truth, or to enjoy the illusion of being right when you are not?"
    Quote Originally Posted by hangooknamja88 View Post
    My definition of Ki is our energy. it's rather hard to explain it in words. It's not some mystical type of energy like white people...


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  36. tkdan28 is offline
    tkdan28's Avatar

    Middleweight

    Join Date
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    Location
    2 hours from the beach, 4 from the mountains
    Posts
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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 7:56pm

    supporting member
     Style: Taekwondo

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Miguk... what the hell is your avatar?
    Seventh: If you think TKD doesn’t work, your right, until you get the side of you face smashed with a roundhouse kick. -- ronin69

    It's just that I carry weapons and have no moral compass anymore. -- JKDChick

    At least until the Wing Chun clown car arrives. --JKDC
  37. Chronomorte is offline
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    Lightweight

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    Kansas, USA
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    289

    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 8:12pm

    supporting member
     Style: Jun Fan

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    The part where how much it costs is based on how much you've got is kind-of creepy.
    I've had free lessons when I was broke and paid when I wasn't, but that's different
    than basing it on income-level/profile. Hmmm
    It's hard to fight when you're in a gazebo -- Mitch Hedberg
  38. ghostwipe is offline

    Registered Member

    Join Date
    May 2004
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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 8:18pm


     Style: mma

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    posted by miguksaram-
    quote:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Originally posted by Matsufubu
    Bull-****, Mr. Han-Man!
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Man, you come straight out of a comic book! ~takes karate ready to fight stance~



    __
    --Boards don't hit back.--
  39. Sam Browning is offline

    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    New England
    Posts
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    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 8:27pm

    hall of famestaff
     

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Great reporting Bun-yip! Now for you're first lesson haggle with them up front about the price. I do not have a credit card I must bring the correct amount of cash!
  40. bunyip is offline
    bunyip's Avatar

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    Berkeley, CA
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    1,072

    Posted On:
    5/27/2004 11:19pm

    hall of fame
     Style: jits with hits

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    In response to the questions:

    No, I don't have a hidden camera. No, Ms. S___ is not hot. And no, I don't have any good reason for leaving out their names, but it doesn't add anything to the story to include them, and I don't know anything about libel laws, so they're staying out.

    Anyway, without further ado, lesson 1:
    "I'm offering straight punch, kick while downed to the ribs or head, and of course- the german suplex...which is one suplex quickly followed by another." - Guerilla Fists

    Matt Thornton explains "aliveness": http://www.bullshido.com/videos/sbg2.wmv

    West Wind Karate / West Wind Bok Fu / West Wind Kung Fu thread
    West Wind Karate / West Wind Bok Fu / West Wind Kung Fu archive thread
    (experiment to see if I can boost the thread's Google rank)

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