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Boyd
3/27/2003 10:06pm,
Thoughts? Right now, I'm on page 254, where Robert Twigger just fumblingly attempted to explain the UFC to the reader. It's pretty embarassing, but outside of that it's a great read. Colorful characters, lots of great little anecdotes about Japanese culture (did you know that the Japanese are, well, somewhat xenophobic? I sure didn't!), and suprisingly coherent writing for a martial arts book (I know, I know, the whole hook of the book is that Twigger isn't a martial artist but an Oxford-educated poet, but I don't care. It's still infinitely better than the same stick-up-the-ass "style" every single other martial arts author adopts).

Actually, aside from your thoughts on the book, what do you think of the course itself? Do you think it actually produces good aikidoka, or just an army of people with permanently knee injuries and chronic back pain? It's interesting how absolutely grueling the training is, how much focus is put on building speed and power and reactions, and how at the same time it actually features karate chops to the skull.

They don't call it the Nazi PARTY for nothing!

The Wastrel
3/27/2003 10:10pm,
(did you know that the Japanese are, well, somewhat xenophobic? I sure didn't!),

Damn Boyd, first the Time comment and now this. You're on a roll!! I almost believed this one!!!

**The most miraculous power that can verifiably be attributed to "chi" is its ability to be all things to virtually all people, depending on what version of the superstition they are attempting to defend at any given moment.**

Vapour
3/28/2003 5:10am,
I enjoyed the book. The book became a bit boring at the end because the Twigger has less and less social life as the course progressed.

I'm not sure how good the course is at teaching aikido techniques but anyone who made it through the course must have **** load of fighting spirit, which was the main idea of the course.

SamHarber
3/28/2003 5:40am,
Thats the sort of training that produces both excellent aikidoka AND permenant injuries.
Thank god I have a progressive instructor who's trying to avoid having crippled students.

sanchin
3/28/2003 9:37am,
Agree with Sam; One of the main reasons to take MA's is to prevent someone else from injuring you, so it seems pretty daft to train in such a way that you cripple yourself. My instructors knees are totally shagged from bad training techniques back in the 70's and 80's, but fortunately he's making sure we don't make the same mistakes.

Loved the book, and I should think that those guys could handle themselves pretty well (if they're not too injured that is).

Fighty McGee
3/28/2003 10:35am,
That is a great book! I also recommend "Lost In Place" and "Iron and Silk" by Mark Salzman. Jackie Chan's 'autobiography' is a pretty interesting read too.