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PostPosted: Thu May 20, 1999 7:58 pm 
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" The staff decided to define "the four wimps of the Apocalypse" as follows : Timidity , avarice, sensitivity and ignorance! " { Jeff Cooper }

And you thought martial artists were immune ! Which one of the above applies to our Dan tests , as an example ?


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Van Canna


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PostPosted: Thu May 20, 1999 8:13 pm 
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Wow, that's a loaded one, Van!

Avarice - definitely a connection there. Dan tests = $$ for some. Glad it isn't as bad as in takeyourdo {hey, J.D.'s editor gives me a lot of lattitude!)

Timidity - by whom? The budo spirit should prevail in both judge and test candidate. As Manny Neves said to me before we did our godan test together, "If we put them to sleep, we deserve to fail!" Yes, he made me smile ear to ear. We had fun....

Ignorance? By whom? This one's got me intrigued, Van-san.

Sensitivity? Hmmm....sometimes too little, and some times too much by the testing board. Tough row to hoe! Context is important, but so are standards!

Somehow I feel like I'm missing a lot here. I'm sure others will help me see the light.

-- Bill


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PostPosted: Sat May 22, 1999 4:19 am 
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Hi Bill ,

Timidity : by the candidates in sparring matches and intensity of form ; by some of test board members who are manipulated , intimidated and influenced by inane arguments of "senseis" whose students are marginal in performance ; by candidates , board members /overseers and spectators who are intimidated by strong sparring performances and who lodge complaints with the "establishment" ! This mentality must change before we can develop strong fighters from our "pool" good enough to earn a spot on a National team and who can command the respect of the Okinawans in future meets !

Ignorance: by candidates and board members alike who have no real conception of the essence of budo ! Dan testing today is more like a business venture than a real measure of karate-do !

Sensitivity : By all concerned ; the utter dejection of the failed candidates [ unrealistic expectations ] , the thin skinned senseis of the failed candidates ; the parents , relatives of the failed candidates who take failure a personal affront !


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Van Canna


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PostPosted: Mon May 24, 1999 3:34 pm 
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Van

Your points are all well taken. I have seen some of what you speak of at very large tests. And when I was a junior instructor, I understood what it was like to feel a few of these vices. Public displays of indadequacy are difficult for anyone to take.

I've always felt that tests are a great opportunity to teach. Ever notice how they train animals? It's usually before feeding time, and food rewards are common. I've often felt that the time just before a test was the greatest opportunity to get new knowledge in a students head, even if it didn't sink in by test time. And the time just before you announce the results is a great opportunity to have people listen to what the concerns are.

And probably most importantly, the time after a failure is a golden opportunity to get student(s) and teacher together to review the problems and create an action plan for change.

So, Van-san, dare I suggest something in Van Canna-like frankness? Are we as seniors (putting you in the senior senior category) failing in OUR opportunities to affect meaningful change? Must we spend all our time cursing the darkness?

-- Bill


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PostPosted: Mon May 24, 1999 8:42 pm 
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Hi Bill,

< So, Van-san, dare I suggest something in Van Canna-like frankness?
Are we as seniors (putting you in the senior senior category) failing
in OUR opportunities to affect meaningful change? Must we spend all
our time cursing the darkness? >

Answer : yes we are ! But then again dealing with imbeciles on a daily basis gets pretty tiring after a while !

Best ,



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Van Canna


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