No styles, no systems, no rituals, no lineages, no masters, no labels, no belts, no katas, no uniforms, no dogmas;

Only the process of self actualization & personal expression of truth through functional combative movement and fitness.

On a purely physical level, we share how to individually and collectively use all of our natural tools as well as extended ones, offensively and defensively in a strategic and tactical manner and in all ranges of combat.

We're put through functional physical fitness training where we learn to push ourselves through our own perceived limitations. We also have much to offer on nutrition, health and optimum performance.

On a more cerebral level we learn about the psychology of violence, fear, stress & confrontation management skills, deescalation strategies and holistic survival tactics.

As the mind navigates the body; by challenging personal self defense dogmas and individual & core belief systems, personal growth and evolution occurs.

On a human level, we learn about the ripple effect and the moral, legal, and ethical consequences of our chosen actions while self examining our darkest emotions. We are encouraged to question everything, to learn to think for ourselves, to be more accountable and research everything we learn and to be open and responsive to life without judgment.

On a personal level, the training can make you face and slay your own demons.

Everything shared here is highly encouraged to be individually researched, to “absorb what is useful, add what is specifically of your own and disregard the rest.”

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The day I got bitch slapped.... lmao...

I am merely human... I too err, screw up and all around fuck shit up for myself... just look at what I made my poor dog wear....but the learning never ceases.... the evolution is the hardest part.... meaning, not just learning from our own mistakes, but making sure they don't repeat themselves often all the while being accountable.

I worked in Cairo, Egypt on contract with International Women’s movements Girls Gone Gorgeous, the Association for Women's Total Advancement & Development (AWTAD) and The Association for the Development and Enhancement of Women (ADEW) to bring forth education and information on the empowerment of women in Egypt from October of 09 to October of 10 before moving back to Canada, out west this time to Jasper Alberta.

In all of my classes without fail, I mention the critical importance of ego awareness, both our own and that of our potential attacker(s).  I teach about the ripple effect of out actions, accountability and primarily working from the higher self through self actualizations, awareness and daily integration. I explain that it is a never ending battle, a daily one, especially when living in an ego driven materialistic societies and that all our thoughts, intentions and actions create a ripple effect therefor responsibility for out thoughts, intentions and actions is important.

I teach to defuse.  I teach to give your potential attacker the benefit of the doubt of figuring out what kind of individual we are dealing with, a good guy having a bad day or a genuine 'bad guy'... giving the person a moral, legal and ethical way out, knowing that if things got violent and you defended yourself, you did so because it was truly you last option.

So I'm in Cairo Egypt... it's early November and I haven't been here a month yet.  I was told that dog's are not exactly 'welcomed' creatures, that in their belief system, for better or worst, they thwart angels away and that a black dog, which my female Labra-doodle... yes... Labra-doodle.... named Punchy, just happens to be, are evil.

Lmao, the Devil incarnate.... lmfao.... some beliefs just aren't functional....

I found this out through first hand experience, and it is truly fascinating the chain events that took place and my very own reactions and awareness of them as they were unfolding and the personal lessons learned for me...

It's a gorgeous Saturday morning and I'm on way to walking my tyrannosaurus rex... ok, my dog... before leaving to a beach house to teach a seminar on the beach for the weekend... I know, hard life... so as I walk down a flight of stairs 4 floors down, I can hear a female couple walking down a flight ahead of me.  The stairs spiraled down in a square format and they were 1 full staircase ahead of me going down.  They were approximately, 20 feet away at least and I had my dog on a short leash specifically because I knew how people felt about them.

By the time the lady (approx. 40 years old) and her daughter (I shortly found out, approx. 16 years old) arrived at the very last step, the young woman slipped on her what appeared to me anyway, to be 27.5 inch stiletto heels and landed softly on her padded ass. Not trying to be mean, just stating a fact, it was more of a humiliating slip and fall on the ass than anything painful whatsoever. With concern I take a couple of steps down the stairs asking if she's ok and the mother flips. 

Literally.... She gets up after helping her clumsy daughter off her butt and begins throwing all kinds of insults at me... I mean all kinds, blaming my dog for tripping her daughter.... while we were at this point, 18 feet away on a completely different stair case.

So I apologize and explain to her in the best of my Arabic at this point which is still rather rusty but I can carry a conversation no problem, that its impossible for my dog to have tripped her as, well... look where the fuck we are.... I mean, unless my dog has Mr. Fantastic stretch man powers, it just isn't happening... mathematically impossible.  Illogical... she had to see that.

Of course, she was in her ego so she saw nothing, and me being in mine, rather than do what I teach, I completely go against my own shit and I tell her she's wrong.... Mistake number 1... lmfao....

So she goes on insulting me, calling me every name in the book you can think of, to which at this point I figure fuck this, she's nuts, I'm outta here and I began to walk away circling her making sure I maintain at least 4 to 5 feet of distance and as much as the lobby of the apartment will allow.  She doesn't let up though... she begins to follow me, hurling all kinds of vile crap and then she insults my parents....

I snap. Mistake number 2.  I turn around, and contradict myself once again by engaging after having cleared the situation and allowing her words and tone to control me like the puppet I became for her... I began insulting her back... mistake number 3 rotflmfao,,,, now I'm giving much better than I'm getting cause, well, I'm pretty creative with my verbal onslaughts because I have had friends my whole life who dished out like champs and I had to keep up, and the ripple effect of that actions was the following:

So we're standing toe to toe now, insulting the crap out of each other basically and what I don't notice is the purse in her hand that she uses to bitch slap me across the face with in the most non telegraphic way you could imagine... lolol.... her hand from her hip where she was holding her purse, just flew from its original position straight up and WHACK across my face.... I didn't even feel it... but man oh man did my ego... my ego grabbed my higher self by our testicles and made him retreat into some dark corner of our mind and out the mother fucker came with a vengeance.... lol...

So I'm literally beside myself now... and in a third person perspective, I am watching my left arm reach for the woman who is right in front of me not even a foot away, and I can hear my higher self just fuckin bellowing at the top of his lungs "DON'T FUCKIN DO IT MAN!!!!!" lmfao... and as I hear this voice, my hand is now just an inch from her and still going and I end up just grabbing her by her lapel.

The voices are now battling inside my head... "DROP THE BITCH LIKE A TOILET SEAT!!!" - "LET HER GO BROTHER, LET HER GO, THIS ISN'T YOU!!!!" and I find myself just releasing and pushing her away toward the wall which was at her right.  She just lightly slammed into it, shocking her much more than causing any kind of pain at all much like her purse slap to me.

It was a duel of the egos lol... right there and then, her husband who entered the lobby put his hand on my shoulder to which I just removed and stepped back telling the whole lot of em to stay the hell away from me, that they were nuts and that I was just leaving and I was sorry for their daughter tripping but I had nothing to do with it.

I leave and as I do, I can hear them screaming and yelling about calling the cops etc. and I just take off only to come back 15 minutes after my dog did her business and only to find my father toe to toe with the woman's husband, surrounded by 40 people and my dad is yelling "My son would never hit a woman!!!" 

So I get there and get to my dad and explain that I didn't hit her, that I pushed her away from me after she smacked me in the face to which I'm feeling like a complete idiot for, completely stunned by my reaction. The cousins of the girl are now involved, 3 of them walk over to me and begin getting in my face abut pushing their aunt and at this point, I've got all my shit together again and I'm handling it quite differently.

End result, they threatened to call the cops, we threatened to call the Canadian embassy, everyone was all of a sudden my best friend.  It seems that foreigners, at the time anyway, were "worth" more than Egyptians to their piece of shit former government due to the financial aspect of it all.  As a foreigner in Egypt, prior to the recent revolution anyway, if you were a man, you had more rights and power than the cops.

Interesting day... I ended up apologizing honestly to the woman and her husband for how I had reacted. I felt like crap about it.  She didn't apologize to me at all but she accepted mine.  That was what mattered anyway.  The very  same day I taught a seminar on the beach in Stella, Egypt.  I told everyone what had just happened to illustrate that no one is infallible, we are all at the mercy of our egos, it is indeed a daily battle, sometimes easier than others, but a daily one none the less... one that I am happy to be winning much, much more often than not and when I do lose, I learn, apologize and grow from the experience and this was a hell of a learning one for me. 

Life showed me once again where my place is in the grand scheme of things... it taught me to look deeper and not to forget the most important thing, and that is to keep looking and introspecting, not get lazy and keep doing some shit! Because no matter who you are, we all have our demons... all of us, like it or not, admit it or not... and the greatest tool we have against our demons is honest accountability.

Much peace y'all.



  1. three deep breaths...let it go. writing is catharsis. firstly, cultural differences can and often do lead to perceptual differences, don't expect an open vision from everyone you encounter, and its ingrained in you as much as the other person (and just honestly examine yourself & you'll see). secondly, the fact that the mother was willing to take on a big intimating tatted up dude like you speaks to the strength of her maternal instincts despite the rest of the garbage that seems involved in this. thirdly, bruised egos or not, the victor is always the one who self controls and remains in control controlling the when and the how. Cheers & take care Rich.

  2. Thanks for taking the time, I appreciate your thoughts but it would be nice to put a name to the words... I honestly expected nothing as my mood was originally very up beat as I was preparing to teach a workshop on the beach, can't get more cheerful then that if you're me lol.

    It is partly due to my state of mind and lack of total control, though as you stated, I managed to control the situation I personally aggravated.

    Maternal instincts had nothing to do with this, believe me, I know the culture well, my parents were born and raised. These ladies were dressed to the hilt... it was vanity and humiliation which drove her to what she did, period. Full on, full blown humiliation... no way HER 'elegant' daughter could ever trip on her own ass be herself. Lack of accountability right there. Nope... and it had nothing to do with the fact that I am a foreigner despite the fact that I speak the language.

    I just happen to be at the wrong place at the wrong time, something I am have been notorious of since I was a child... anyone there at that precise moment would have gone through the exact same thing. That's the fucked up part about it.

    Lastly, I beat my ego down soon after much worst than what that lady could have ever done had she 4 lifetimes to do it and any means available. That day was very educational for me on many levels... it taught me much about my selves ;`)


  3. Hey Rich,

    Thanks for sharing this. I was the cat at the NY seminar you did a few years back whose knee got bent the wrong way :)

    I read this about two days ago and I was thinking smugly "Wow. I can't believe Rich responded like that. How can that happen? I would never go that ballistic in a situation like that..."

    Fast forward two days and I just found myself going commander berserker in something very similar.

    Was doing laundry in the building laundry room. I head down to get the clothes out and as I walk into the empty laundry room I see my machine still spinning and it says 7 minutes left. I'm thinking "That's Odd" and as I look at the clothes I realize they aren't mine. I look to the left and someone had taken our clothes out and put them into a basket and left them, still wet on the floor. At this point I'm like WTF. So I went back upstairs to get my laundry card to pay for another cycle and got a piece of paper, some tape and a marker and was planning on leaving a very angry note to whoever's clothes were currently occupying my dryer.

    I get back down to the laundry room & just started putting my clothes into another dryer and a mousy middle aged woman walks in and goes over to one of the washers and starts taking clothes out. So I say "Excuse me ma'am, but you wouldn't of happened to know who put the clothes into this dryer?" Indicating the one that had been mine.

    She looks up and say "I did."

    I stare at her. She stares at me.

    "My clothes were still wet. And I had forty minutes on that machine."

    "Well you are very rude for leaving your clothes in there when they were finished." she says.

    Un-fucking-real. Impossible. There was no way it was finished and the machine as it currently sat spinning her clothes had five minutes now left on it. She had to have taken my clothes out and used the money on my cycle and added some of her own. I was incensed - especially because there were a handful of empty machines, there had been all night.

    I lost it. Went absolutely ballistic. I told her I wanted her to pay for my load of laundry because she emptied it. Went south from there. And then she told me to go fuck myself.

    I said "Excuse me?"

    "Go fuck yourself."

    Holy shit I went into Berserker mode. If it had been a man I would have put his head into the wall. I ended up slamming a dryer door so hard I think I bent it. I called her every name in the fucking book & she yelled right back at me. Holy shit. I haven't been this angry in a long long time.

    Just..I knew she was lying, she knew she was lying and she kept denying it. And my clothes were wet and I was out $1.25

    And now I'm actually really, really angry with myself for losing my cool now. There were about 100 better ways to handle it then I did, and I'm really really really disappointed in myself, but it was just unreal.

    And right after I'm in the elevator back up to my apartment and I said "I just went ballistic like Rich did. Over something utterly trivial." Instant humility.

    I realized a couple of things - like you Rich utterly disappointed in how I lost control. Have no idea how that happened. Secondly, I got back upstairs and drew out a timeline of the thing to make sure that what I thought this woman did she actually did. I needed to prove to myself that my anger was somewhat justified. And then I realized that that's what I was trying to do - justify it to myself so the over reaction didn't seem so bad.

    Man, so much humbling brain gum.

  4. Life has a way of rattling our cages some when we become complacent.... timely reminders of our humanity, our accountability and our egos... up to us which direction we go when we're faced with such things and falter or not, no one is exempt to a bad day, no one is perfect and it's easy as fuck to become what we criticize and abhor.... and frankly, more often than not, the things we hate in others are nothing more than a reflection of things we hate of ourselves....

    Thanks for sharing that Brian, much appreciate you taking the time bro.

  5. Ok after that title I had to read this....and Rich duuuude, that dog is going to shred you one of these days! :)
    The story does bring up an interesting point, what do you do in this types of situations? Sometimes you want to walk away but they keep on following you often repeating things like "whatcha gonna do about it huh?touch me and I'll call the police".
    Wonder if what my grandfather told me once works..."you should never hit a woman, just grab them and shake the living s*%t out of them"

  6. Lmao Mauro, my dog loves me too much :`)

    As for the situation, well walking away is the most logical, sound and egoless thing to do, responding was becoming her puppet... I allowed her words to affect me as such, me, my fault... my predicament... my choice of actions.... not hers.

    Too many people blame the "instigators" for their own reactions, that's a lack of accountability and personal responsibility... we're a society of puppets blaming, everything, everyone, our predicaments, our states of being, our dis-eases etc.

    There's no evolution in humanity, just in our technologies.

    As for hitting a woman, I'd say only if it meant protecting myself or any other innocent party. Otherwise, you should never hit ANYONE. Man, woman, child nor animal for that matter.... seems fuckin logical too me.