For the last several months, Archie has been taking classes in Kajukenbo. It's a combination martial art (karate/judo/ken for something I don't remember/boxing). It was developed in Hawaii and is considered the first real American martial art. (Also, I call it the Esperanto of martial arts because I'm goofy.) Yesterday, we went to the picnic at a local park and it was lots of fun. Most of the students are kids (and the twins are going to be starting after school starts again) and so there were lots of young people and the girls had a great time. They had a raffle and Archie won a free hour of groundwork with the second in command, which he's very excited about. And it was the Sifu's birthday and all the kids gave him a punch in the stomach, instead of spanks, which was kind of funny.
I was kind of "eh" about the girls doing this as a sport. But I've come around to thinking it's a really good thing. Archie says the kids at the dojo are all really focussed and respectful and have a lot of fun. He said Sifu is really great with kids -- he routinely plans stuff for just the kids (movies and stuff) that give it more of a community feel rather than just a sport or activity. And Archie says the girls at the dojo are amazing and strong and love to fight and he wants that for our girls, which I've decided is a great thing.
Also, Archie found this show on MTV2 called "Final Fu" which is a reality/competition show about martial arts. The contestants are all young adults. I have no idea how good they are, but it's fun to watch all the different disciplines. And, it's really amazing to watch the attitudes of these kids. On most reality shows, there's a lot of bluster and blaming other people and it gets really tiring after a while. These contestants all admit to their own failings and strengths. It's quite refreshing to see a young guy say the only person to blame for his elimination is himself -- and that now he's going to go and work even harder. I just have come around to what a great way of looking at things in this way is -- and martial arts seem to foster this. So, I guess I'm going to be the kara-TAY! mom.
Archie says Sifu says about one of the teenage girls, "That girl loves to bang!" Meaning that she loves to fight. Apparently, even the boys don't want to mess with her because she brings it. And I met her at the picnic and she's adorable and polite and man, I would be completely happy if my girls loved to bang, too.