Only For Your Ears
by Keith Pascal
Have you ever worked out with someone and you felt that they were “trying to get you”?
I mean more than the exercise dictated; in other words, you’re going through the exercise, but your practice partner has stepped up the intensity. Probably there is some ego involved, but not always.
In this case of this past weekend, I think my partner felt that if he could overcome “Keith Pascal” that other martial artists would look over, and be impressed by his skill. (He has got the skills already, but you know what I mean.)
So, what does this have to do with the title of the article?
Patience. We’ll get to the principle in a minute, but first … a little story:
As I said, I was working out last Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at a martial arts get together. There was one group there that had a reputation of “playing rough.”
Everyone knew not to mix it with them, unless you were prepared to get hurt during training.
I need to make a quick comment about this: I don’t know why, but a “rough reputation” has never affected me one way or the other concerning training. Not bragging here; it’s just that this has never mattered to me, or caused me to “shake in my boots.”
Now, I wish I could say that it was my emotional mood that caused me to choose them, but in all honesty (not that I’m ever dishonest), the reason I approached them was because what they were practicing interested me.
Of course, everyone else looking on thought I chose the group, to let my internal emotions out. In other words, vent my frustrations on a “heavy bag,” but in this case, the heavy bag was this group of hard hitters.
Anyway, I jumped in when they began discussing what to do if someone resisted a certain lock. I tried the lock, and it worked just fine … even with a little struggle on my partner’s part, to escape.
Then someone else wanted to make the attempt to resist me. So, I started to lock him, and he did resist … and he was good at it.
(This is where it starts to get a little humorous.)
He escaped the lock, which normally makes me want to hit and/or kick. This time, as I made my first punch, the guy started to grapple me, as he was escaping the lock.
What’s so funny about that?
Well, I have about 100 pounds on the guy. He probably weighed 150 lbs., or so, and I weigh over 260.
Now, I’m not saying that big guys always win in a wrestle … not at all. But in this case, he didn’t know if I knew how to tumble with someone on the ground.
Dangerous decision on his part to try.
Let me tell you what happened, so we can finally get to the point of the article hinted at in the title:
I let him take me down, or rather, I “helped him” drop me … and within two seconds, I was on top of him, a knee to either side of his head, and my arm had him in a carotid artery hold.
He kept struggling like a wild man.
I said, loud enough for all to hear, “I WILL choke you out, instantly.”
Then I whispered for him only, “You have about two seconds until you’re gone.”
Then I dug my arm into his neck just a little.
He immediately gave up. Game over.
That was a lot of story to get to the point. Often when something seems to be getting a little serious, I have a special message that I almost whisper. It’s intended for my opponent only.
So far, this kind of quiet communication has worked wonders for me.
Sometimes it’s a small command; other times it has been a private “threat.” But never loud enough for others to hear.
And still other times, I have shared a private joke about the situation that would embarrass my partner if others were to hear. So, I whisper.
Now, would something like this work in a real self-defense situation, or would it be as pretentious as the obligatory movie speech that happens before the hero and the villain engage?
I haven’t had the opportunity to whisper at real enemies, so I don’t know.
Tomorrow, I’ll share an anecdote about this principle … I bet you’re wondering how I used this principle when I PUT A WRIST LOCK ON MY DAUGHTER’S BOYFRIEND. Hehehe.