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September 20, 2006 - Image 16

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2006-09-20

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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3B THE JUNK DRAWER
What you should and shouldn't be
talking about on campus this week.
4B THE ART OF FIGHTING
A Daily editor learns to break a
man's bones at Weapons Connection
Society Summer Weapons Camp.
5B IN MY OWN WORDS
A compelling look at a
student's summer in Pales-
tine and the insight she gained
towards the ongoing conflict.
6B HARD TIMES FOR SCIENCE
For the first time in its history,
the NIH has had its funding cut
posing a threat to the University's
young biomedical researchers.
10B FICTION AND POETRY
A short story and two poems
by student authors.

CAMP
Continued from page 4B
a piece of millstone used for
grinding rice into flour. Now
picture the grim reaper, scythe
in hand. The scythe is an agri-
cultural tool used to harvest
grain. A similar tool, the sick-
le, is smaller and less efficient
at the job. The kama, another
common Okinawan weapon,
was originally a sickle.
After asking Carbone which
weapon I should learn, he
pulled a nunchaku out of a
bucket of weapons. Having
only seen nunchakus in mar-
tial-arts films, I grabbed the
weapon excitedly. I smiled
while asking myself, "Am I
actually about to do this?"
SAN: NUNCHAKU KATA
All the students dispersed
into groups on the grass with
several students learning each
weapon. It turns out the key to
learning a kata is repetition.
Mary Carbone, Peter's wife
and a martial artist for the
last 29 years, said the repeti-
tion leads "almost to a state of
meditation."
I can't say I would have said
the same - at least at first.
Learning the kata was hard. I
started to get agitated because
my feet were apparently in the
wrong place all the time. (You
are supposed to get really low
in the knees and spread your
legs like you are on a horse.)
I could have sworn my feet
looked the same as everyone
else's.
On top of that, my right arm
went forward when my left

should have. My arm was up
instead of down, my foot in the
back instead of the front.
It was eventually my turn
to lead the group in counting
- in Japanese. "Uh, Itch? Ni?
Can I do this in English?" I
was frustrated that I couldn't
remember 10 simple Japanese
words, but my group members
didn't mind that I counted in
English, at least from what I
could tell.
My movements were abrupt
at first. But after repeating the
movements 20 times over, I felt
the same way I fondly remem-
bered from my days in ballet
class - the feeling of grace.
After getting more comfort-
able with the nunchaku, I was
able to control its movement
fully, guiding the weapon
and my body in time with the
counting.
It was an extraordinary
release, and at a certain point,
I had memorized the steps and
was able to move through the
kata ceaselessly.
During dinner later that
day, I spoke about this feeling
with other students. A woman
from Long Island, who was in
my nunchaku group, said that
knowing a kata well is helpful
in the heat of battle because
when threatened, it is difficult
to think rationally about your
next move.
That means if I have a
nunchaku in hand, I'm pre-
pared for anything.
SHI: LEARNING TO CIPHER
Most of us have known
someone who took karate as a
kid, claims they can break a 2-
See CAMP, page 12B

Who wants -you
hired or rejected
based on
your skin color?
Accept the challenge.
Go to
RaceFreeZone.com
(paid for by Race Free Zone, 652 N. Adams, Owosso, MI 48867)

ARE YOU AN ASPIRING WRITER?
CONTRIBUTE TO THE
STATEMENT'S SHORT FICTION
AND POETRY SECTION.
E-MAIL SUBMISSIONS TO
CYANJ@UMICH.EDU.

1a a
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