Journal Entry: Tue Nov 10, 2015, 8:47 AM
I've been doing a lot of sitting and watching and reading while my leg heals and I expect I'll continue to sit and watch and read for a few weeks more. No choice if I ever want to bend my ankle or run without collapsing. As it is, I think what I tried to do on Sunday has strained or torn something in my calf.
I think part of the problem we have retaining people in martial arts is that it requires a certain type of person to enjoy it, basically the exact opposite of the person in Hollywood movies. Rather than the aggressive defender of justice always moving to the next adventure, we need the geeks and nerds. The people who can sit and focus on a problem until it's resolved, who get lost in minutia and details and perfectionism. The book learners with imagination. These are the people who understand that walking back and forth and swinging a stick for three hours isn't the boring stuff, it's all the stuff. It's body mechanics and power and distance and endurance. Magic tricks with simple movements.
We've been getting new people but they don't stay, they get bored when they aren't Kenshin after an hour or a day.
You don't join a martial art for self defense or to win fights. There are no kidnapped princesses and you are not the chosen one. There's no career in wandering the countryside as a sword for hire. So if you show up, expect reality: sweat, sore muscles, and repetition.
Fun is what you make of it. If you look hard enough, it's precisely as much fun to stand and cut or walk and cut as it is to learn how to defeat enemies coming at you from three different directions. Probably because there's basically no difference between those two things.
Join to be a better person. Join to get some exercise. Join to be part of a massive organization that stretches across the planet and back through time. Join to be calmer, more mindful, and silence the screaming of all your electronic notifications.
Do not join to be an anime character. You'll be disappointed.
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