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Rick Schloss
Tracy's Studio 1966
Wed Jul 30, 2003 02:43
68.63.223.113

I enrolled in Tracy's Kenpo Karate Studio in Menlo Park in the fall of 1966. Harvey Clary was the owner at the time. Back then Bruce Lee had not appeared on TV as Kato, the Green Hornet's sidekick. Karate was still looked at as a black art, something that only Special Forces guys knew and could use to clear a bar of twenty bad guys.

My dad enrolled me because I suffered from a glass jaw (a simple slap and I was out cold). He realized boxing was out and I was entering my senior year of high school with not a clue how to defend myself.

As I progressed through the belts, one day it was announced that a special class was to be held for all instructors, regardless of belt degree. I believe I was green at the time. We arrived, freshly laundered gees, looking for some sort of clue as to what this was about. Mr. Clarey then introduced this guy that stood like a rock but moved like mercury. I was amazed by his fluid motions. He lectured. More that I'd ever heard about philosophical aspects of combat. But the one thing that never left me was the following demonstration.

Mr. Parker asked for the Sr. Black Belt to step up. He then asked him to throw the hardest, quickest punch he could to Mr. Parker's face. When this was done, all we saw was this guy that appeared to be over weight and out of shape guy go into a flurry of moves so fast all we could do was hear the slapping of his hands as he moved around the black belt. Then, Mr. Parker stopped and reenacted his moves for us. He showed us that within less than a second and a half he had effected no less than a dozen lethal blows with just his hands!

I was in awe to say the least! The final part of this lesson was to point out that he had performed this feat against the dojo's best black belt. His simple but to the point comment, "Always remember that no matter how bad you think you are, there will aways be someone badder!"

I left that day with a true lesson that had nothing to do with how to strike, hold my hand, when to exhale, etc. I learned what in later years proved to be the stongest lesson for me. When confronted by someone that intends to do me harm, I truly can be that "someone badder" and it is now up to me to teach this person the same lesson.....without inflicting damage upon them unless it is absolutly nesseccary.

I am now 54 years old and what Ed Parker, Harvey Clarey, and Kenpo taught me has lived with me for all these years.

thank you for the forum to finally tell the story to those that can appreciate my lesson.

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