Sunday, June 27, 2010

Gathering Of The Tribes 2010

2010 Group Shot

This is long over due, I have to say my intent was to post sooner but, I have had a lot of irons in the fire. At least i beat Terry Trahan to the post.

Where do I begin? Chuck and Jeanne Pippin have become our best friends ( the midget chick and I) and it is a joy just to hang with them. Throw in a bunch of martial arts misfits, sharp pointy things, and food and I am in heaven.

I was invited to my first gathering of the tribes by Gilligan's Island resident Bill Anderson. I was a bit hesitant to go as I have had not many good experiences with Michigan martial artists in general. But on Bill's insistence I went and brought a number of my personal tribe to the event. Point is, we have not stopped coming to this event. Some of my tribe have gone their separate ways and some have stayed the course, but it is always a topic of conversation in the best of terms and memories. I have met and crossed hands and sticks with some of the finest martial artists ever. That's EVER. Egos have all been left at the door or the ego monger is not invited back or is shunned. We play, have fun, exchange ideas , and all in all have a good time. This is a family reunion that you want to attend.

Sure there is the usual uncle that over drinks or the aunt who gets a bit too flirty. But, it is an event that I now look forward to. My family is not as close as these people are to me. That is why i proposed to my pixie there. They mean a lot to me and I wanted to share this with them.

They in turn have shared a lot with me. Comradery, techniques, tears, laughs, and many many memories. This year was no different than others past.

The line up of instructors were:

Bobbe Edmonds- Silat, Kuntao

Terry Trahan- Street Smarts Weasel Craft
Sean Stark- Silat Pertempkin
Jay Carstensen- Silat Combatives
Craig Gray- Krav Maga
Ian Robbins- Boxing
Don Young- San Yun Do
Chuck Pippin- San Yun Do
Geoff Bosmann- Kali

This year I had made plans to help the Tink give Chuck a token of our respect by making a shadow box with his favorite saying- "Life in every breath". Little did I know that the lil one was keeping me busy from looking into what she and the crew had planned for me. She has learned well the ways of treachery.....
This was a birthday I will never forget. The love and caring we all share makes it all so very memorable., and the fact that I got my own sharp pointy thing was very cool too.
New to this years gathering were people who just came to check us out and they too were infected with the disease of comradery. A group from Tennessee attracted my attention as they worked off to the side trying to remember what skills they just had learned- so a side workshop ensued. I smiled and stated matter of factly- " where else can i go and have a black guy let me beat him up while he smiled back"

I had hoped for the crew from the movie SCOURGE to show up on Monday morning- but that failed to happen. Instaed I spent the morning working out with various people and generally having much fun doing it.

Bobbe and I spent some time on staffwork and trying to organize how to teach it and what to call it, a mountainous task.

If you are tired of seminars where you pay thru the nose to learn basic techniques or skills. Or if you are tired of so called masters charging you an arm and a leg for the right to share their time- you would love this martial arts playground called the gathering. It is a candy store full of various tastes and sizes, and smells- you find yourself trying to figure out how to touch base with everyone and not miss out on the tidbits that are shared all over the place at all hours.

I admit- I am a gathering Junkie- I don't think they have found a cure yet. Some have tried, but left their shoes at the door.