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Old 07-05-2012, 03:42 AM   #26
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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Matthew Story wrote: View Post
I agree with this as long as we are talking about adults. An adult needs to be able to look at something reasonably and decide how martial it really is for himself. But the vast majority of martial arts students are children, and a responsible teacher needs to be up-front with children.
Agree, however, parents are responsible for their children. Unfortunately, as you know, there are no standards in most organizations or governing bodies that define practices, safety, and child protection within martial arts...at least in the US....so the reality of it is "Caveat Emptor".

I think places like France have this controlled alot better.

One thing we have strove to do in the Jiu Jitsu Organization I am working on and co-founding is to develop standards and instructor certifications, require background checks and CPR/AED training etc.

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Old 07-05-2012, 07:20 AM   #27
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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Selin Talay wrote: View Post
Attacks come in different forms though - I know that when I do aikido I feel more relaxed and resilient in the face of stress or emotional pressure, and my relationships are healthier too...
As do I. Since the thread was discussing the martial effectiveness however I was not considering emotional stress types of situations. Because this was not the topic of this discussion.

Let me be more clear. How many of us are likely to find ourselves in a situation in which a person is attacking us in a physically violent manner and attempting to harm us or kill us? For most of us I would say that the chances of that are pretty low. And yes focusing on the more useful and more commonly needed aspects of handling emotional stress and relationships is going to be more useful than worrying about whether or not you can disarm some dude with a gun or take down a boxer in a fist fight, unless you are the sort of person who finds themselves in such situations frequently. And in that case it might be a good idea to look into martial arts other than aikido.
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Old 07-05-2012, 08:26 AM   #28
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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Matthew Story wrote: View Post
I agree with this as long as we are talking about adults. An adult needs to be able to look at something reasonably and decide how martial it really is for himself. But the vast majority of martial arts students are children, and a responsible teacher needs to be up-front with children.
Are you talking about aikido dojos, or strip-mall McDojos? If the former, are you really seeing aikido sensei telling children (or their parents) that they're going to learn how to deal with a violent physical attack, even if it comes from a larger person (and never mind the idiocy of people who try to deal with bullying or abuse or any other threat by signing the kid up for martial arts training, do you really see aikido sensei going along with this idiocy)? If the latter, is this the forum to talk about unethical business practices at non-aikido schools?
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Old 07-05-2012, 02:01 PM   #29
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Are you talking about aikido dojos, or strip-mall McDojos? If the former, are you really seeing aikido sensei telling children (or their parents) that they're going to learn how to deal with a violent physical attack, even if it comes from a larger person (and never mind the idiocy of people who try to deal with bullying or abuse or any other threat by signing the kid up for martial arts training, do you really see aikido sensei going along with this idiocy)? If the latter, is this the forum to talk about unethical business practices at non-aikido schools?
I think what I said applies to any martial arts school that teaches children, aikido or otherwise.

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Old 07-05-2012, 02:15 PM   #30
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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I think what I said applies to any martial arts school that teaches children, aikido or otherwise.
isn't that the responsibility of the parents? as far as i know, most paper works required parental signatures when the kid is less than 18 years of age.

"budo is putting on cold, wet, sweat stained gi with a smile and a snarl" - your truly
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Old 07-05-2012, 02:41 PM   #31
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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isn't that the responsibility of the parents? as far as i know, most paper works required parental signatures when the kid is less than 18 years of age.
Of course. But chances are mom and dad, no matter what they signed, aren't standing over our shoulders telling us what to teach. That together with the impressionability of children, I think, means we have to be more careful teaching children than adults who are better equipped to make their own decisions.

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Old 07-05-2012, 02:59 PM   #32
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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are you really seeing aikido sensei telling children (or their parents) that they're going to learn how to deal with a violent physical attack, even if it comes from a larger person
Thinking about this subject this morning on my way to work. I have to say that I cannot recall any time or place I have heard or seen an aikido instructor claim that aikido will make a student capable of winning a street fight or into a great fighter other such business. I have never seen aikido advertised that way. It certainly is not advertised that way by my teachers. Not saying that if I have not seen it it does not exist but at least if it does it is not common to make such a claim...
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Old 07-05-2012, 03:23 PM   #33
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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Cherie Cornmesser wrote: View Post
Thinking about this subject this morning on my way to work. I have to say that I cannot recall any time or place I have heard or seen an aikido instructor claim that aikido will make a student capable of winning a street fight or into a great fighter other such business. I have never seen aikido advertised that way. It certainly is not advertised that way by my teachers. Not saying that if I have not seen it it does not exist but at least if it does it is not common to make such a claim...
I think that he's talking about things like this:

From the USAF website - The Aikidoist trains to apply various wristlocks, arm pins or unbalancing throws to subdue and neutralize attackers without serious injury. Such practice is done in tandem with learning the art of falling, or "ukemi", which trains the body and mind to receive such techniques in a safe manner.

I'm not picking on the USAF, most Aikido schools have some kind of similar language in their description. Anyway, the implication is that what you are being taught is being taught in a context that is at least potentially applicable martially.

Best,

Chris

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Old 07-05-2012, 04:14 PM   #34
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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I think that he's talking about things like this:

From the USAF website - The Aikidoist trains to apply various wristlocks, arm pins or unbalancing throws to subdue and neutralize attackers without serious injury. Such practice is done in tandem with learning the art of falling, or "ukemi", which trains the body and mind to receive such techniques in a safe manner.

I'm not picking on the USAF, most Aikido schools have some kind of similar language in their description. Anyway, the implication is that what you are being taught is being taught in a context that is at least potentially applicable martially.

Best,

Chris
Fair enough although I think the quote is not inaccurate. I think that a person wishing to peruse a martial art is responsible to research and find out just what the art they are interested in is about and whether or not it will help them achieve their goal. Like I said earlier in my dojo people are pretty much told from day one that this is not a place to learn how to win fights. If you want to win a fight then another martial art is probably a better fit. But I don't think that it is necessarily something every teacher must spell out to every student. Just because someone is paid for a thing does not mean that they are infallible or an expert. The doctor who graduated at the bottom of his class is still called Dr.

Children are a different matter and in that case the parents have responsibility to make sure that the child is receiving the training they desire the child to have.

Sadly I do see people who just blindly trust the "expert" and never question anything and are then surprised if/when they get a bad outcome. I come across it in the horse world all the time. Horse is crippled by bad foot care and the owner says well I just trusted that the farrier knew what he was doing so even when I thought something didn't look right I didn't say or do anything until the animal was really ruined. People need to get over this "everyone gets a blue ribbon/nobody can ever be allowed to feel a negative emotion" mentality of the world and start being held responsible for their choices instead of pawning them off on others.

I came to aikido with zero background or previous knowledge about a martial art of any kind. And I still was intelligent enough to ask questions and do my research and know and understand what it is I was getting into. I didn't need someone to tell me that I was not going to get a black belt in no time flat and be able to go out brawling and win some fights....

Last edited by Shadowfax : 07-05-2012 at 04:16 PM.
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Old 07-05-2012, 04:24 PM   #35
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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Cherie Cornmesser wrote: View Post
I didn't need someone to tell me that I was not going to get a black belt in no time flat and be able to go out brawling and win some fights....
of course you can get a black belt fast. just order it online and fed-ex overnight. and of course you can go out brawling and win, providing that you know how to pick fight with folks who can't defend themselves. for a low monthly payment of $19.99, i can tell you how to do it.

"budo is putting on cold, wet, sweat stained gi with a smile and a snarl" - your truly
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Old 07-05-2012, 05:39 PM   #36
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

hi cherie. ive no interest in brawling and that would be quite laughable if you knew me. Im not interested in grades and Im under no illusion about what aikido applies to etc. however my original question was about martial context and if i can spot flaws being a 4th kyu it must annoy budoka who see videos banded about which is contrary to any form of aikido.

im more than intelligent enough to ask the right questions. this isnt about my training just delusional training in general
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Old 07-05-2012, 05:40 PM   #37
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

What I always find funny is that a new student of whatever style will, after a few lessons, start espousing all its quirks with positive zeal to his/her friends. So, a new ki aikido student will enlighten all his friends as to the wonders of soft training, and so likewise will new students to Iwama, Yoshinkan, or Aikikai styles explain their style's particular virtues. Of course, new Tomiki students will soon exclaim how good their new art is because it has competition.

Let the buyer beware someone said above. I don't think so. To beware you first have to be aware. New students are easily molded into whatever they fall into. It's just a systemic thing, and I don't think any teacher will enlighten them as to their lot because said teacher is fully into said lot.

Last edited by Rupert Atkinson : 07-05-2012 at 05:43 PM.

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Old 07-06-2012, 10:50 AM   #38
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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Matthew Story wrote: View Post
I think what I said applies to any martial arts school that teaches children, aikido or otherwise.
Ok. Applies how? Where's the fraud that you're concerned with? What exactly do you think aikido schools are teaching children, and how is it fraudulent? Or do you somehow feel that it's a dojo's job to perpetually disabuse its students every fool notion about martial arts that they may have picked up elsewhere and cherish in their secret hearts?
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Old 07-06-2012, 10:57 AM   #39
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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if i can spot flaws being a 4th kyu it must annoy budoka who see videos banded about which is contrary to any form of aikido. l
That doesn't necessarily follow -- if anything, I'd say it's the opposite. You've got just enough experience to spot flaws (or what you believe to be flaws), and it's making you all indignant. Unfortunately, you can't do anything about it, unless you believe that posting an endless succession of righteously indignant comments on Youtube is "doing something". You don't own the word "aikido" and you can't stop other people from using it in ways that you don't like. Your only choice is to go on being indignant about it, or realize that you don't control it and get on with your life. I suspect the large majority of people who keep practicing for any significant time choose the latter.
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Old 07-06-2012, 01:51 PM   #40
Lyle Laizure
 
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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Chris Knight wrote: View Post
Don't teachers have a duty of care to inform students that basically they aren't studying an art with a martial context and that the lessons learned, some of which may be portrayed as "useful" body movements on the "street TM", may just lead the student down the proverbial "delusional lane."

It annoys me, so what do experienced budo people think?
Some things we learn/teach are for specific skills needed in our training and may not be martialy applicable. This should be pointed out. The problem is that there are a lot of instructors that don't understand what is and isn't viable for defense.

This is what is wrong with most self-defense classes as well. (But I am not going to get on that soapbox.)

Lyle Laizure
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:51 PM   #41
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

mary, me indignent? Thats strange seeing as though pretty much all you hear on this forum is from serious budoka Constantly on about the lack of aiki and body skills in aikido. i dont think ive said anything to the contrary. u live in mass, why dont u check it out and then come back with a more educated comment? or are you more concerned with lecturing others? and yes i believe the flaws i see are genuine
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Old 07-08-2012, 08:12 PM   #42
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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mary, me indignent? Thats strange seeing as though pretty much all you hear on this forum is from serious budoka Constantly on about the lack of aiki and body skills in aikido. i dont think ive said anything to the contrary. u live in mass, why dont u check it out and then come back with a more educated comment? or are you more concerned with lecturing others? and yes i believe the flaws i see are genuine
That's all very nice -- has nothing to do with my point, though. The point is that (if we accept as given that everything you say is right) you seem upset at the idea that other people can say wrong things. Well, yeah, they can. People can proclaim that the earth is flat and that 2+2=5. You can't stop them from doing so. So, my answer to the original question, the subject of this thread, "Shouldn't we be responsible?" is -- how can we possibly be responsible for what someone else says?
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Old 07-08-2012, 11:36 PM   #43
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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Let the buyer beware someone said above. I don't think so. To beware you first have to be aware. New students are easily molded into whatever they fall into. It's just a systemic thing, and I don't think any teacher will enlighten them as to their lot because said teacher is fully into said lot.
It is a double edge sword....at least in the US. US commerce and society dictates pretty much that you are free to do whatever you like. If two people want to establish a relationship to teach and learn then they are free to do so. In this sense caveat emptor applies. It is up to the consumer to educate themselves. This applies to everything except where direct harm in concerned, mainly with food and drugs.

Outside of that there are consumer advocacy groups that can educate and inform. I have always felt that people are way too accepting of martial art masters. In physical fitness there are standards such as ACSM and other organizations that cover conditioning and physical arts. However in Martial arts, this seems to all go out the wayside.

For most parents, myself included, my kids did TKD, not to become a lethal master, but to learn basic movement, get exercise and because they enjoyed the heck out of master Kim's classes. My son does Aikido know. He likes it, the teacher follows fundamentals of safety and that it all that is important right now.

For adults, well, I still believe that we have an obligation to inform ourselves. I support the right of the guy with a mcdojo certificate to hang up his shingle. If people like him and want to pay him money to get exercise and feel good, then they should be able to do that unless someone can prove harm in the direct sense is being done.

Contrary, I have the right to set up next door to him and provide enlightenment and inform those what I consider to be the tough questions that should be asked by those that are serious about being effective.

Over legislation and government involvement has not proven to me to solve the problem and tends to force a level of mediocrity and apathy. People should step up and take control and accountability of their own lives.

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Old 07-09-2012, 04:40 AM   #44
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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That's all very nice -- has nothing to do with my point, though. The point is that (if we accept as given that everything you say is right) you seem upset at the idea that other people can say wrong things. Well, yeah, they can. People can proclaim that the earth is flat and that 2+2=5. You can't stop them from doing so. So, my answer to the original question, the subject of this thread, "Shouldn't we be responsible?" is -- how can we possibly be responsible for what someone else says
believe everything I say? Who said that? I know jack shi* and still can sniff out poor aiki principles -
my point is shouldn't this be governed better by some kind of body, or teacher's take responsibility for their students. In my eyes, if we're not trying to replicate Ueshiba's art, what's the point of calling it aikido?
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Old 07-09-2012, 07:59 AM   #45
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

I'm under ASU. ASU, USAF, etc? what is wrong with those organizations?

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Old 07-09-2012, 08:21 AM   #46
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

If someone is interested in personal (spiritual/physical) development and not concerned with martial effectiveness it seems like Yoga may be a more logical pursuit?

While students have a responsibility to try and realistically assess what they are learning, instructors have a responsibility to not fill their students heads with false notions of effectiveness. Everyone just needs to be realistic.
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Old 07-09-2012, 08:23 AM   #47
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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believe everything I say? Who said that?
Not me. I'm not sure where you're getting that, but it wasn't anything I said.

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I know jack shi* and still can sniff out poor aiki principles -
my point is shouldn't this be governed better by some kind of body, or teacher's take responsibility for their students.
I think those are two different things, so let's talk about them separately.

1. Shouldn't this (what is taught under the name of "aikido") be governed better by some kind of body? Some people's answer to this would be a vehement "yes", yourself among them, and I can certainly see where that comes from: the desire (if I'm not mistaken) to have every school that teaches aikido, be teaching a uniform style that meets certain standards. I understand how that can be seen as desirable, but here's where we differ: I'm pretty sure it's not achievable. As a purely practical matter, that level of control does not exist. The power to regulate who uses the word "aikido" and what they do under its name, is a power that no governing body could ever achieve. Furthermore, my experiences with governing bodies and self-appointed guardians of standards leads me to believe that any serious attempts to impose such standards would do more harm than good. It's the nature of the beast.

2. Shouldn't teachers take responsibility that what they are teaching is valid aikido, and that their students learn it effectively? Again, some people's answer would be "yes", and I can see where that is a desirable goal. Where I disagree is with the notion that a teacher can ultimately control this outcome, and also that a teacher can be forced to take this responsibility (see 1 above). Yes, teachers should take the responsibility to make their best effort to convey valid aikido. They should also floss at least twice daily, but we can't force them to do that, either. We also can't force students to accept what is being taught, no matter how correct it is. I've seen a lot of people come into dojos, aikido and otherwise, with their heads so filled with utterly false crap that there's no room for whatever that dojo is trying to teach. I've seen new students who have read up on their new martial art and who know all about it -- more than the sensei that is trying to teach them, apparently. You really can't "take responsibility" for someone's learning when their head's in such a state.

Ultimately, for me, it all boils down to the old adage about leading a horse to water -- for both teacher and student. If I had to come up with a single word for what you're talking about, I'd call it "integrity". It's a fine word and a noble goal. But it's different from accountability. Accountability has its limits imposed by what you can control -- which, in this case, is very little -- and integrity can never be forced. It can be encouraged, it can be nurtured...it can be stifled and choked and thwarted much more easily. One thing that, in my opinion, thwarts the pursuit of integrity is the overzealous pursuit of orthodoxy. It's easy to mistake orthodoxy for integrity, but they are not the same: integrity can and does thrive in diversity. That's why governing boards so often defeat their own purpose: they succeed (to some degree) in enforcing orthodoxy, but they fail to inspire integrity. And so, people go seek it elsewhere, understanding that integrity is not the property of any authority.
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Old 07-09-2012, 09:06 AM   #48
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

Other variables are the student's commitment and ability. Each student approaches the art from a unique perspective: their own. Two Students who start on the same day, practice the same amount of time and in the same dojo will look and feel different because of their own understanding, background and physical ability.

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Old 07-09-2012, 09:44 AM   #49
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

and it also harkens the old philosophical comment on "what exactly is quality, and how do we know when we see it?"

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Old 07-09-2012, 09:58 AM   #50
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Re: Shouldn't we be responsible?

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I'm under ASU. ASU, USAF, etc? what is wrong with those organizations?
hi kevin, nothing whatsoever - i just think that aikido groups shouldn't be able to utilise the name unless authorised by a higher body when they post videos which are absolutely, in no way related to our art, hopefully....

hope the arms improving and you're back in action soon!

chris
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