A story – cont..

“Ye hit Trevor you Git!” one yells down at the now obviously not feeble old man.

“Nothing more than he deserved” the old man says in an even tone.


The young boys peer out from under the bushes, amazed at the scene before them.  What seemed to be the regular beatings of the three squires has turned into something a lot more interesting, and if Brandon’s gut is feeling right, a lot more dangerous.

The three squires, Trevor, Hallon, and Guilliame came from the castle in the distant hill.  Sir Evor, the hereditary knight of the county lived in a small castle on the hill above the main town.  Married several times, he still had no issue and it looked like one of his three squires would be formally adopted and given the lands around the town.  Evor, never a hale man, was rumored to be very ill and therefore did not rein in the activities of his idiot squires.  Thankfully, Eston the chamberlain and Canus, the castellan kept the castle and grounds running smoothly in the absence of the knights influences.

The boys in the bushes were waiting to see who would win the race between the squires.  For the most part, the formal pages consisted of 2 boys, Calin and Tanis, but most of the young boys in the castle had taken to being ordered around by the three squires and by default had become pages as well.  Calin, the oldest page by several years had been ordered to this spot every third day to measure the winner of the race.  Brandon had been ordered with him, at a dead run, and threatened with a beating if he had not made it to the appointed spot before the squires.

The two boys were under the impression that they would judge the winner of the race.  It didn’t take Calin long to realize that the squires intention was not for them to judge, but to take the blame for their sport.  The problem was, their prey had turned on them, and as they watched, they saw Hallon struck from his horse as he tried to sweep the old man in the head with his lance.  Instead of completing the arc along the ground, they saw the staff come down angled to catch the tip of the lance and drive it into the ground.  The impact stopped Hallon, but not the horse.


k, real life is intruding again 🙂  Please let me know if anyone is reading this.

A story

Everything that I have read about writing a story, boils down to one basic premise – write about what you know. So that’s what I am going to do.


What is martial arts? It’s the study of forms, movements, and techniques that have been passed through the ages, refined, changed and added onto to the result of which is what you see today. 95% of which is total crap. Why study these styles? Do you really think that if you are faced with someone sticking you up for your wallet, that you’re going to do some fancy move and disarm them? Please. lose the 20$ in your wallet and get home to your family/loved ones.

Why do I study? I study because of how it makes me feel. I like to think that I don’t ‘do’ martial arts, I live them. I have taken many styles, some longer than others, some with more enthusiasm and effort than others. I am a perpetual student and feel like I am on a constant journey. What is the issue with me, or is it an issue with martial arts today?

I’d love to blame someone else, but I think it’s a combination of things, mostly all my fault. I think I’ve definitely watched too many movies and want to do it all. I’ve decided to have a family and a career which definitely puts things into perspective. You can’t have the ultimate training and have kids and actually spend time with your wife and excel at your job.

So here I am, sitting at my computer, about to embark on what might be something unique, or might be the same lame attempt of a guy who starts a lot of stuff and doesn’t finish much at all.


The old man walked down the road. (all martial arts stories have an old sensei/master figure) Leaning heavily on his staff, the shuffling of his feet kicking up dust, he makes his way along the tree lined dirt road. His shoulders are stooped, his clothes old and dirty, and the light in his eyes fairly dim as he uses every bit of his strength to continue on his way.

(so, can you see him?)

“No, seriously. Can you see him?” a boy asks the younger one as they hide in the bushes by the side of the road. Lying on their stomachs under the bush, they peer out down the road seeing the man walk down the road, a dust cloud growing in the distance behind him. The younger of the two shivers in anticipation of what he knows will come next.

“Calen, why do I have to watch this?” he whispers, barely audible.

“Because if you don’t Brandon, they’re beat you, and you have to be able to tell them what happens!” his brother says emphatically, his hand covering his own mouth as he realized how loud he is talking. The figure is about even with them now, the pace of his shuffling still even. Slow, but even. The boys can hear the hoof beats in the distance, getting closer. Brandon strains as much as possible to see the men on horseback, long flag tipped lances beginning to lower as he sees them crest the rise and begin bearing down on the old man. Brandon and Calen watch as they draw down the road, their whoops and cries spurring the old man on further. His pace picks up slightly and he begins to veer off to one side of the road, opposite the boys.

As he passes them, the old man looks at Brandon. His eyes are no longer dull, but sharp and determined. Nodding slightly, he whips around, bringing the staff up suddenly, deflecting the lance aimed for his back. The strike is accompanied by a yell, throwing the horseman off balance. Yelling again, the old man reverses the staff, bringing it over and smashing it into the head of the horseman. In the blink of an eye, the three menacing horsemen are now only two, and very confused.

“Ye hit Trevor you Git!” one yells down at the now obviously not feeble old man.

“Nothing more than he deserved” the old man says in an even tone.


and now my eyes are burning and I need to sleep. Please let me know if I should continue.

Old/Kendo/Doing things with Sonnyboy


Or should I just say – OOOWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!

Aidan I started taking a kendo class , well, yesterday and I quickly realized several things.

  1. I’m out of shape.
  2. I’m old.
  3. I can get hurt a lot more easily than I did before.

I had always thought I was in decent shape and could jump in with both feet into almost anything physical.  Well, okay, I was wrong.  SUE ME! 😉  My shoulder blades, my left elbow(was hurting before I went in), and most especially – my left calf.  That’s simply a block of wood.  Walking around with a nice little limp today.  If that doesn’t make you feel older than dirt, I don’t know what does.

The studio is in a firehouse, but it doesn’t lack for anything as far as training and expertise.  Church Sensei is about 4’10” and MAYBE 95 lbs and there is NO Way I would cross swords with this lady.  I’ve always been someone who believed in energy/power/ki/chi that is possible if cultivated and practiced.  I’ve come across some sensei before who oozed out of their pores – she’s definitely on the list.

It was a good class tho – lots of higher and middle ranked people.  Church Sensei made us watch two classes before signing up, and it made me feel better – they want to make sure you’re serious before you start.  So last night was really interesting for me.  Of course, I started sweating within about 5 minutes while my son was mostly dry by the end of the whole thing.  We did some warm ups and broke down the basic cuts into really simple drills.  One, where you drive off the back foot, swing, drive back off the front foot and repeat 20 times is when I felt my calf fist up into a solid mass.  F&*K it hurt!!

I didn’t want to distract Aidan from his practice, so I managed to soldier through the class.  Yeah, I didn’t want to totally embarrass myself either, but so what! 😉  Learned the proper stance, steps and a few cuts – just enough to give us stuff to practice at home until we go back next week.

I have to say I’m really excited to do this with Aidan, not only because I think it’s cool and so does he, but I think we’re both pretty excited about doing this together.  Looking forward to going home tonight and practicing soccer with Gillian and Kendo with Aidan.

Who’s the Boss?

Go Bruce!

On his website, Bruce Springsteen has endorsed Barack Obama for President.  Gotta love his not so subtle dig at Clinton for taking words said and using them for her own purposes.

My Fae

Who is she? What did I do to deserve such a perfect partner? Is she perfect? Not in the general sense, no one is. She is perfect for me. She is who I need her to be, she is how and what I need her to be. As I said, she is the perfect partner.

In February of 1993, I was playing a roleplaying game on the computer at school. It was interactive and people from all over the world were playing. It was all text based:

Matt says “Hello” as he enters the room.
Fae says “Hi Matt, how are you” as she does something in the room.

It was all possible to talk in character, and out of character. I saw her name on a list of people and I knew there was something special. I started talking to her online and I was sure there was something special about her. I finally met her face to face after talking on the phone for hours every single day and I was absolutely I loved her.

And I had no real idea what she even looked like. Truthfully, I didn’t care.

I found my soulmate. I found the partner that I have spent multiple lifetimes with, shared experiences with, lived, loved, and died multiple times with.

Ever feel right when you’re with someone? Ever see someone or hear their voice and know? That’s about how I felt from day 1. Not everyone understood. Not everyone will ever understand.

How do I love thee?  Lets count the ways 🙂

  1. I love the way you look at me, period.  Mad, Sad, Glad…
  2. I love the way you feel when we hug, how your head goes in under my chin.
  3. I love the way you giggle when you tickle and play with the kids.
  4. I love the fact that my uber intelligent wife likes to escape into bad reality TV.
  5. I love the way you make me feel when I wake up in the morning and look over at your peaceful face.
  6. I love the person you’ve helped me to become.
  7. I love the person that you’ve worked to become.
  8. I love taking trips to ‘Fae-ville’ and watch you make peoples eyes roll while they smile at you for being you.
  9. You are the center of my universe and I love that I have put so much love into our relationship.
  10. I love going downstairs to make you tea because it makes you feel good to have me get it.
  11. I love your smell as we fall asleep and I smell your hair.
  12. I love watching you play and have fun with the kids.
  13. I could go on, but the most important way I love you, is because you are you, and because that person makes me be the man/husband/father/person that I am.

You are mine and I am yours and that makes me feel infinitely  safe and calm.  Having you in my life has helped me achieve things I have never dreamed or hoped for.

You are still, and always will be,  my favorite.

Happy Birthday Baby.

Your Matthew.