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Old 02-15-2005, 06:09 PM   #45
Dojo: Messores Sensei (Largo, Fl.)
Location: Florida
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 1,267
Re: Women and Everybody Else in Aikido

Mary Kuhner wrote:
A month or so ago I spent a whole class watching while a (male) student much junior to me took all the demo ukemi. Afterwards the teacher offered me a ride home, so I took the opportunity to ask him. He said, "Well, he was sitting at the right end of the line." Pause. "Actually, I like the beginners to see a small person like me throwing a 250 lb. gorilla like him. It shows what aikido is capable of, and it makes me look good."
Yeah. It's often not about you (or me). The teacher has a lot on his mind--how the trainees are handling what he throws at them, what he'd planned to do next over and against what he sees in front of him, safety, his return flight, his hangover...

Then again (as you already know too well)...

Meggy Gurova wrote:
I'm prepared to work harder than everybody else just to be considered to their level. But to work harder and still be considered to have lower level, that makes me very angry
In Blink, author Gladwell relates the experience of some orchestra whose cadre of grayback decision-makers conducted a blind audition and unanimously found the best wind player to be a woman, much to their surprise. They knew that women weren't strong enough to do winds. They'd never had this truth contradicted when they did visible auditions, i.e., their eyes saw more than their ears heard. The author himself was surprised to discover he possessed a certain bias against blacks having taken an internet test for that propensity--his mother is black.

It's a tough row to hoe, but GANBATTE. There're numbers of us rooting for the likes of Mary Heiny, Patty Saotome, Pat Hendricks, Penny Bernath... More than there were 10 years ago.

Don J. Modesto
St. Petersburg, Florida
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