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Today was a big day for me. It's the first day I've actually been able to practice with the jo.
Our dojo has weapon classes on Sundays but due to conflicting schedules, I've never been able to attend since starting.
*hangs head in shame*
Fortunately, there has been a window for the past month or so and I've been taking advantage of it.
Over time with the regular classes we've practiced with bokken, tanto and shinai but the poor jo has been laying dormant, jealous.
I am amazed at how well the jo blends with open hand techniques. Ikkyo, nikkyo, sankyo and yonkyo - were all applied with seemingly less effort than open hand. Using these controls at a jo's distance feels strange...but almost liberating with the feeling that there is much more space to react and apply.
Now jo to jo is a different story. lol
The first and only time I've been involved in a mugging was in my early twenties.
My friend, his nephew and I were leaving the movie theater after seeing 'Three Musketeers'. It was about 11:00 at night. On our way to the parking lot, two guys joined us and were complimenting my friend on his football coat.
I remember the strange vibe in the air and felt the red flags going up when another guy eased in from some parked cars and slid behind me.
'You best be getting out of that coat,' said one of the hooded guys to my friend.
Almost without hesitation, my friend began taking his coat off as the mugger was pulling at it.
It's funny in those situations how you almost go on auto-pilot.
I recall saying, 'hey hey hey' or something like that as I grabbed the coat from being pulled of my friend.
'Just let them have it Frank,' my friend said. 'It's no big deal.'
Those team coats were expensive I knew, and these thugs...these kids were only 13-15 years old. I couldn't believe this was happening and my friend was just letting it happen to him.
The nephew was standing there in utter shock and scared as they yanked that jacket off. He was maybe 11 or so at the time.
My friend opened the car door and got in, leaving me standing there humiliated, pissed and shaking as the teens ran away whooping and laughing...and they didn't even take anything from me.
The car ride back home was solemn. The nephew was in the backseat crying, my friend was driving and silent and