Tuesday, October 27, 2009

New video up!

There's a new video on youtube of Grand Master Seong performing Set Gi (Earth), Cut Number 1. This is the first maneuver you learn after getting through all the basic cuts. It is a diagonal-downward cut, from left to right, ending in the center.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Samurai Exhibit at the Met Museum

Check this out! There's going to be a fantastic exhibit at the met all about Samurai! I'm definitely attending this on November 8 for the panel discussions and especially Okisato Fujishiro, "Japan's leading sword polisher and connoisseur."

Let me know if you're interested in going with me!

Art of the Samurai: Japanese Arms and Armor, 1156–1868
October 21, 2009–January 10, 2010
The Tisch Galleries, 2nd floor
View images from this exhibition.
Learn more about a special one-day lecture and panel event.
Search the calendar for related programs.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Class is NY PRESS "BEST OF 2009!"

From the NY Press. Click here for the entire list.

Best Way to Feel Like a Stud: Samurai Sword Class
The Workman’s Circle, NYR Studios, 45 E. 33rd St. betw. Madison & Park Aves.
You need a physical hobby and yoga isn’t butch enough and Karate might involve getting hit, right? So what’s left? There’s always swords. No we’re not talking swallowing or any other sort of swordplay (such dirty minds!) Raab Rashi offers a class in “Siljun Dobup,” or “the art of the Samurai sword” for only $15 bucks a class. We’re not endorsing any sort of Kill Bill antics, but how often can you learn how to kill a man for cheaper than what it costs to buy him a decent dinner? We’re in. Visit swordclass.blogspot.com to learn more.


Friday, October 9, 2009

This is an amusing anecdote from my friend and student, Sarah. She has the uncanny knack for attracting people on subways... Enjoy!

"I'm not sure exactly why, but people on the subway always come talk to me (or do other things at me... but that's not what this note is about). I suppose I generally look pleasant and approachable, and I have this really bad habit of looking at people directly in the face. In any case, I wasn't terribly surprised when on my way home from sword class last night, a guy sat down next to me and struck up a conversation.

"I know this is going to sound really strange if it isn't the case, but... is that a Katana in that bag??" he asked.

"Well... no, technically it's an Iato, a practice sword..."

*inhales sharply* "Oh my god. YOU STUDY."

"I just started," I said. "I'm actually just coming from class."

"Okay. I swear, I SWEAR I'm not hitting on you. I'm REALLY NOT. I have a girlfriend, I love her, I'M NOT HITTING ON YOU. But, THIS is the sexiest thing I've ever seen. I really hope that there is somebody that appreciates just how AMAZING all of this is." *he makes a sweeping motion toward me*

I blushed and thanked him and reiterated that I have just begun studying and that I'm not very good... but, that he had made my night.

"No," he said "you made MY night." And then he got off of the train.

If I haven't mentioned it before now, I love my sword. Though, should I be worried that I'm still approachable enough for someone to come talk to me on the train when they think I'm armed (and actually am armed)???

OH!!! Come take sword class with me! First class is free, and it's $15/class after that! Thursday nights @ 6pm on 33rd between Madison and Park! I can guarantee the presence of at least two very attractive women with swords... if you're in to that sort of thing. :-)"

So there you go. I loved this story because I remember what it felt like the first time I held my practice sword. I had always liked swords, and have, through various times in my life, had a impressive if not alarming array of historical blades, wall-hangers, and other sword and dagger-like accessories. But nothing ever felt like receiving my first practice sword. This was MY sword, and it was the sword I was starting a journey with. It was my traveling companion, my comrade, my peer. It's a feeling unlike any other. I hope you will have the opportunity to experience it!


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