Alex Lawrence wrote:
That sounds like a question of reflexes.
It's not a question of anything, Alex -- it's to illustrate that it takes a lot less physical effort to kill someone with a knife than with a stick or the empty hand. If I want to punch you hard, I have to wind up. If I want to bash your brains in with a stick, again I have to wind up a little bit, so I can build up momentum. Yes, there is such a thing as the one-inch punch from Chinese systems, but there's still a question of a little windup. And no impact weapon can do damage to you while it's being retracted.
But if I have the blade of my knife against your carotid artery, all I have to do is pull my arm back and that's the end of Alex. Even if you manage to hook me in the head, if I sever your carotid, I'm only dead if you hit me really hard; otherwise, you die first. That's all there is to it. No magic, no ki, just a cold hard reality you stubbornly don't want to accept.
I think Larry hit it on the head when he pointed out that an unskilled person will pull a knife to intimidate someone and was not necessarlity prepared to kill you. You might not be here otherwise.
And it can happen very quickly. My Kali instructors like to repeat the story of a little old Filipino man who was found in a park surrounded by some young toughs who'd been cut up really badly. They thought he was covering for someone else when he claimed he disarmed one of the punks and defended himself.
The little old man had a Filipino lawyer, who set up a punching bag in the court room, gave the little old man a knife, and timed in. In one minute, that little old man cut the bag 360 times -- he was making all these quick little cuts.
That's not magic or mystical powers -- it's the reality of the knife. And I know this from having studied Kali beginning in 1997; I took a break through that winter, and picked it up again in 1998, and have done it ever since. I've periodically done knife sparring with Guro Andy (done with a short padded stick), and if it had been a real fight, the slashes to my wrists along would have landed me in deep trouble. And they were almost too quick to block.
And that is why I say you are out of your mind when you equate a knife with the empty hand.