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March 23, 2006


I used to condition my hands and feet so that they would be human weapons of self-defense. I was talking with a friend about this today and she recommended using a shoe instead.

I can imagine the scene: the mugger approaches, knife in hand. I say, "Excuse me; I just need to tie my shoelaces." I crouch down and untie the laces of one shoe while the mugger waits patiently, tapping his foot. Then, in one swift movement I fly up into the air, removing my shoe in the process. And then, with great skill and almighty power, and using one fluid twisting motion, I bring the shoe down, and slap the mugger on the cheek.

Dazed and confused, and staggering backward, attempting to regain a sense of reality, the mugger will be distracted long enough for me to untie and remove my other shoe. Now equipped with a pair of soles, I fly back at the attacker like something from an ancient Chinese monastery, floating horizontally through the air, the camera panning around me. Slap, slap, slap go the shoes. Both cheeks have now met with rubber and the mugger is beginning to feel overpowered.

As I lift my body through a gentle backward arc into the air, I bring both shoes up onto the underside of the muggers chin before completing a full back-flip. I stand calmly and watch as he turns and hobbles away, confounded, and forevermore wary of anyone wearing shoes.

I teach classes in tang-shoe-do, shoekido, and shoe-jitsu. New students are accepted largely on the basis of their foot odor.


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