A terrorized child, I was fearful, and thought myself fearful. The impression of a crucial dozen years remains. I still think myself fearful — mistakenly.
The practice of aikido became part of me and changed me without my notice. Daily I stepped into attack to deflect it.
The suppression of fear, the confidence of movement took hold, became habit.
I remember fantasies of violence-power. I grew up with the experience of violence and rich depictions of magical violence-power beyond the dreams of any gunslinger.
I had precociously aging college athletes as incompetent PE instructors, excepting one who sported a paunch with almost pride. I took some solace in not being the fat kid, though he gotten beaten not at all, and did not then appreciate the unique cultivated paunch.
Randy did many things well, had many attainments and ranks along with his paunch, and to him I owe aikido along with a quiet utilitarian approach to the weight room.
He also helped cement an aversion to more stereotypical expressions of testosterone and all manifestations of adrenaline.
Quietly without notice he began the undoing of all notions of strength I had received at the end of a fist and the end of a cathode ray tube.
The ideal of aikido comes in both the aggressor and defender experiencing no harm. We may interpret harm broadly. Ahimsa.
Thank you Randy.