In the end, everything is a
weapon. My teacher never stopped reminding of that
fact. He expected us to employ everything in our
immediate environment, without hesitation, to defend
ourselves. Please enjoy this brief exerpt from my
training journal, along with a video introduction to
Handkerchief concepts, followed by Sifu Chris Entus in a
humerous improvised demonstration.
"Remember, everything is a weapon...," he spoke,
eyes darting toward the handkerchief as he wiped sweat from his
forehead. On that sultry August afternoon, we had already
finished an exhilarating warmup. Showing defenses, he
ordered I attack with the mid-sized stick. As I did, he
flared the handkerchief, dropping it onto my head. While I
struggled to regain my bearings, he grabbed the corners of the
handkerchief and launched a front choke, driving me to the
"My computer's working!" laughed Sensei as I bounced in
the dust. I attacked again, coming for the top of his
head. He blocked upward, using the handkerchief as a snare
against my stick. Suddenly, the snare snapped outward,
launching my stick into space.
We continued for hours.
I attacked with a knife, and then a sword. He responded by
snagging me, strangling me, smothering me, lifting me off the
ground, and blinding me...all using the handkerchief.
There seemed no end to the multitude of techniques he improvised
on the spot.
Sometimes, he did the same with other common objects. One
autumn, we snacked on nuts while watching TV. He reached
over, took an acorn, a pecan, a brazil nut, and a walnut.
For over two hours, he showed how each could be employed in
unique nerve attacks against incoming aggressors. Each
held its secret. What worked for the walnut did not
necessarily work for the acorn. What one lacked in
maneuverability, it gained in hardness. The brazil nut may
have been awkward, but its shape allowed for nerve crushing
attacks not available to the rounded shapes. They almost
seemed to have been designed by a gifted craftsman, giving each
its strengths, and each its limitations.
(with a chuckle)
These clips are
and Useful Bits
(currently out of print)
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