A very good essay. I ran into the Toxic Monkey after Swordfish last year. Read Joe’s encounter with it after PNW 2014.
Two months ago I was in a Historical European Martial Arts tournament. For the sake of a bit of background, I have been studying these arts for approximately six years as of this September, though I’ve only been able to do so regularly and with vigorous dedication for about the past two.
I’d fought in three tournaments prior to this one, and while I’m not exactly the baddest boy on the playground, I can’t call myself inexperienced. I trained hard for this event. In addition to the normal work, for almost every day two weeks prior to the date, I was meeting with my most advanced and regular sparring partner, making the school training hall ring with our steel. I got badly bruised several times preparing for this, and aggravated my wrist. I thought that I’d put enough time and effort into my fighting to perform well. And I did……
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