Sunday, October 31, 2010

Hallowe'en 2010

"Hey! Turn off that damn light!"

Hallowe'en. My son's birthday, my daughter's wedding anniversary, and my holiday from forever. As usual, I carve a jack o' lantern. This year's, I was kind of in a hurry -- we had somewhere to go, and I cranked, so this is about an hour and a half from start to finish.

Not my best, but not bad.

"Who you callin' 'Slick?'"

(Addendum: After three days ...)
Other business:

Rory has weighed in with his comments on one of my earlier posts, and focused on that area between what I thought he meant, and what he thinks he meant. 

It mostly works for me, since he's closer to his mind than I am. Mostly -- I still think it's been so long since he was a civilian that his memories of that time are maybe a bit faded. Soldier, bouncer, deputy, armed contractor in an active war zone, author of books on, and  teacher of ways to deal with violence -- I think he has to reach way back to dredge up what it felt like to be a civilian. Got scars he doesn't remember where they came from? Been in so many dust-ups he lost count long ago? 

But even that? I can go with it. So I learned some stuff, and we're good, Rory and I.

We always were. 

(And those of you who feel the need to run to his place and tell him I said something about him -- Ooh, Rory, Rory, didja hear what Perry said? Didja? -- can save yourself some trouble. He's got a link to my blog on his, so what I post shows up there and if he wants to read it, all he has to do is look.)


Rory said...

Happy Samhain, Steve. A time to tip a glass for the honored dead.

I understand the point about not remembering what it was like to be a civilian. Not sure I agree, or that my memories would be any more accurate than the average eye-witness or someone reminiscing about childhood.

But I do remember, clearly, how different bad things were from the way I was taught. All the things that made me say, "Why didn't somebody ever tell me?"
There is other stuff that took time and exposure to see, partially due to memory distortion under stress, largely because it takes multiple exposures to see patterns and even more exposures to test and make sure the patterns weren't imaginary.

But the differences between what I was taught and the reality... those haven't changed in the martial world. You are a well-trained and experienced martial artist, and sometimes you say things or express a confidence that I had when I was a well-trained (and somewhat less experienced, I'm younger) martial artist. Things that got blown out of the water when it became real.

"Somebody should have told me!" That's the gap I'm trying to fill, Steve.

Stan said...

Thanks Rory. As one of the martial artists who also worked in a mental health (institutional) setting, I was able to recognize some of the differences between "class situation" and "work situation." I also recognized that my population was not in the same league with hard-core cons.
My training has allowed me to develop a program to emphasize verbal tools and a calm/controlled presence when engaging.... Not anything like the tools you need and described in your population setting.

I guess I'm just saying, thanks for the opportunity for me to expand my awareness, without having to go "toe-to-toe." At first, I was really depressed to read your thoughts about MA students and MH techs, because it felt like you were putting down everyone who wasn't walking in your shoes. At the end, I was just absorbing the information I could and I was grateful that I never had to walk in those boots!

I don't understand why readers feel a need to instigate "arguments" between writers. Maybe they don't believe there's enough drama and conflict already in the world?

Blessings of Samhain onto both of you, gentlemen!

J.D. Ray said...

Lessons learned, such as, "When dancing at a wedding and carrying a concealed .45, secure it."


Happy Samhain, all. It's the time of year when the skeletons in the closet rattle!