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ARMA International Event 2007

I flew in to Houston Wednesday evening and promptly got lost as I completely forgot which hotel I was staying at. I drove all around Humble looking and almost resigned myself to a night in the back seat of a Hyundai until I found a number in my call history.

I got to practice some techniques with the guy teaching the dagger class, which was fun except he stabbed me a bunch of times in the elbow and bruised it all up. But I got to meet a lot of people from the ARMA forums, most of whom were pretty nice guys. I didn't get to fight with many of them, mostly due to time constraints. There were classes in the use of dagger, longsword, sword and buckler, quarterstaff, rapier, and a class on analysis of source literature (the medieval fightbooks), not to mention the grappling class that we ran twice on saturday.

The grappling class went pretty well, ran two hours in the morning and two in the afternoon. I had my elbow messed up from getting thrown around too quickly and it was aching all day which wasn't helped by getting thrown around by it all day. The people picked up on the techniques pretty well in general and nobody got hurt.

There were two 'senior free scholar' prize playings, which involve approximately an hour of straight fighting (think about that) with approximately 100 different people using a variety of weapons against you, all in a square ring about 20ft squared. It was the first prize playing I got to participate in, one for longsword and one for sword and buckler. There were several videos made of these, and if I can I'll link to my part (I pulled a trick that scared the shit out of everyone, which ulitimately didn't work but was pretty funny). I'm rather glad I didn't end up testing at this event as was considered before as I picture myself not quite up to that level yet. Next time, if I work hard, maybe.

We went to a nearby bar a couple of the nights and had some fun there. It was funny to see the strange personalities garnered by an organization that is all about getting into fights with swords. I had a great time with the guys from the Mexico city group surprisingly, and hopefully they'll come up here again sometime.

I also met the people from the DC group, which is a little far away from me, but they seem okay and were interested in having me teach them some unarmed stuff. we'll see.

All in all I didn't get anywhere nearly as injured as I did in 2005, this time just getting a wrenched and bruised elbow, pulled muscles, and stabbed in the eye once. I consider that pretty lucky.

Anyone considering getting into something physical should consider this stuff, it's a blast.

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
floyd_mephit
Aug. 20th, 2007 06:28 pm (UTC)
If you want do do swordfighting, just start with swordfighting and skip TKD, which in my opinion wouldn't do much to prepare you for it. TKD is pretty much just a sport now and not a martial art. But if it's free it won't cost you anything but time, but you tend to get what you pay for. BTW training w/ a lot of ARMA groups is free or nearly so.
wezweasel
Aug. 20th, 2007 05:52 pm (UTC)
If you want to get into the SCA
I have a friend thats deep into it, he makes his own armor an stuff. He has a metal forge. They all dress up in armor and beat the shit out of each other with rattan wrapped in very little padding. All I know is I got hit once, and it almost knocked the wind out of me.
floyd_mephit
Aug. 20th, 2007 06:44 pm (UTC)
Re: If you want to get into the SCA
I used to be involved in the SCA in college, and I saw a lot of guys get dressed up in some version of armor and swing rattan clubs at each other. I can definitely say that those guys are strong and tough (if usually grossly overweight) but they do certain things differently than what I do:

1- they dress up in shimmering satin chemises and homemade modern versions of plate armor; I usually fight in ratty sweatpants and a teeshirt, with much less padding on (it's hard to move with all that metal on and I don't like to mess up nice clothes)

2- they give each other funny pretend names and titles and get angry when you don't use them; I have only a funny pretend nickname and a real title and nobody uses either. :)

3- they really just swing for the moon and hope for the best; I use techniques taken directly from fighting manuals and practice the individual techniques by myself at least as often as I try it in fights

4- actually this list can get pretty long and pretty unpleasant but suffice to say that the things they do in the SCA is way way different than what they do in the ARMA. I have a lot of respect for the stuff they do in terms of brewing and heraldry, blacksmithing and furnituremaking, stuff like that, as well as keeping people interested in that era of history, but as far as historical fighting, not so much.

but thanks, though, for the offer.
(Anonymous)
Aug. 26th, 2007 05:43 pm (UTC)
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( 4 comments — Leave a comment )