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No Categories -- A Mugger

This is a story.

A Karate student who had trained for only a couple of years was walking down a deserted a street on a dark night (you know this is bad already). Out from behind some bushes, a mugger jumped out and demanded the student's money.

"Wait," said the student. "Let's talk first."

Since this is just a story, the mugger agreed.

"First," said the student, "I weigh 140 pounds and I'd guess that you weigh 225."

"250," said the mugger.

"So you see, we're in different weight categories. You can't mug me."

"I don't follow any rules," said the mugger as he prepared to punch the student.

"Wait," said the student. "I have been practicing Karate for a year and a half. How long have you been a mugger?"

"About 10 years confessed the mugger."

"So you see," said the student, "I'm just novice. We're in different divisions. You can't mug me."

"I told you that I don't follow any rules," said the mugger. "I don't care about your weight or years of Karate experience."

"Well," said the student. "You can understand that I am not ready for this mugging. Can you give me a couple of weeks to prepare and then mug me? By then I'll be ready."

"Nope," said the mugger. "This is not some tournament or test you can prepare for. I'm mugging you exactly because you were not ready for it. What an idiot you were to walk down this street on a night like this."

"Well at least let me warm up!"

"Forget it," said the mugger.

"This is so unfair," exclaimed the student.

"You think that's bad," said the mugger, "I've got a knife in my pocket and two friends standing behind the bushes who are even bigger than me!"

There are no categories, divisions, set times, or rules in self defense. You have to be ready for an unexpected attack from someone who might be bigger, stronger, more skilled at fighting than you, and even armed. And there may be more than one of them!

It is really unfair, but that is how it is. That is why when Karate is used as a last resort, anything goes.


Charles C. Goodin