Thursday, March 13, 2008

What to do with the other hand?

In response to Eileen who asks, "what do you do with the other hand as you take down three baddies, Michelle? Sip tea? With pinkie delicately pointing to the sky?".

It's always that hand that you're not paying attention to, that makes everything happen. In this school we concern ourselves with the masculine and feminine sides. In this case my dominant hand the right one, is the masculine energy, where I hold the weapon, my power hand as it were. The left hand is the feminine hand, the ones that guides, directs, manipulates and counter balances the right hand.

But in this particular instance, the knife, what we consider a feminine weapon at least in the way we use it, is in my right hand. The Female Knife, what we call what I'm doing, isn't the Psycho-movie slashing or jabbing that you see in movies which is more masculine. The Female Knife is hidden. And in this case, it is hidden and protected by the left hand.

And here's the part that I think will be the most fascinating aspect...Tuhan described these hands once not has male and female, but as mother and son. The Son being the knife hand is being fed and protected by the Mother, the empty hand. If you watch closely, it's this open hand that makes contact and feeds the baddie to the knife hand. You see this when my hands are relatively close together when engaging the baddie. The Mother feeds her Son. While not engaged with the baddie, the Mother protects the Son by hiding him. So you see the knife disappear behind my left arm often. Then at times, the Mother allows the Son to venture off on his own but always nearby. You can see this when my knife hand shoots to the baddie's throat and my other hand is left behind clearing the baddie's punching hand. The Mother still tries to ensure the Son's safety even when she allows him to venture off. Afterall, can't have a cloistered Son, especially when baddies are around. The Knife must do what the Knife was meant to do and the open hand must encourage and allow that for it to be effective.

In any case, lately I've become quite taken by the fan as a weapon, which my sister had been practicing with for a while and had used them in her kali wedding demo. I didn't learn the fan explicitly. A couple of weeks ago Tuhan had me use it. (This is a typical expectation for black belts to be given a weapon then just use it and use it well, simply based on what you understand of weapons and what you've observed so far) I found myself quite into it and that especially when I got into really using it, I could feel the fan enter my body as I formed to the fan. I danced Singkil fan one year in PCN and have always loved the movement of the fans. There are still many things for me to learn about the fan, but it's so much fun to learn a weapon that feels rather natural.

Now, Fan, is a weapon where you can sip tea and hold out your pinky on, not only is it allowed, it is encouraged because it's what the fan wants you to do. You see, they often talked about how the Barong Tagalog was made so the Filipinos couldn't hide weapons, but how could they ban a Donya's fan? Pocket fans aren't as popular in the Philippines now that alot of people have electric fans and there is AC in malls, but I remember grandmothers would whack kids with those fans. Don't tell them a fan can't hurt you! There are weapon aspects to the structure of the fan, but I think what I like most about the fan is the weapon that it brings out of me: seduction.

Having said that, I'm still not sure what it means, but am intrigued to find out. Besides sticks are so unwieldy when traveling.

And wasn't bodyguard on that list of things Ninangs were entitled to along with computer tech support?