You Can’t Say That


You Can’t Say That

The following is the beginning of an actual text conversation I had with my sister a few days ago (emojis included)

Sister: Bro… I love you. But you can’t say “dick” in your book! :-0

Me: Sure I can. 🙂

She is referencing a section in the end of the book where I am discussing the role of self defense instructors, and I quote an old article I wrote titled “It Takes a Village… So Don’t be a Dick.” It happens to be one of only few swear words in the entire book (which is a miracle if you know me Hah!

Now technically she is right. Most people scoff at poor language. To the vast majority it makes you seem unprofessional  or unintelligent. If I were trying to write a textbook on human relations that would be found in schools… well it wouldn’t go over well. I’m sure my credibility would be challenged because of some word choices.

However, the textbook I wrote is on a different topic. A textbook on surviving a person or persons, that decide to murder people. A person that comes into a place of worship and shoots members of the congregation after sitting with them in prayer. A person that enters an office building a slits the throat of a fellow co-worker and cuts her head off, before moving on to attack others. A person that ventures into the foyer of an arena and blows himself up murdering children and adults as they leave a concert.

If words like dick, fuck, shit, and the like, turn you off so much, how the hell can we even talk about violence, murder, and rape? How do you expect to handle the real world outside of your imaginary bubble of safety? If you expect discussing or training self defense to make you feel happy, you may be missing the mark a bit.

Should it build your confidence? Absolutely. Should you feel great after spending a day with friends hitting shit? Absolutely. Should you feel happy talking about the fact that if things go poorly you or your loved ones could get seriously injured or die? Fuck no.

It’s uncomfortable to talk about.

Sometimes we instructors get emotional. Sometimes, you can’t truly get the emotion across by saying “Don’t be ignorant”… sometimes you legitimately have to convey it by saying “Don’t be a Dick!” It makes you pay attention.

Sometimes when you’re trying to express just how messed up a situation is, like the killing of a child, you have to say Fuck! Or scream! Or write it in CAPS! If your instructor is missing that emotion, you might be learning from the wrong person.

I am sure there are plenty of great instructors out there that express that emotion without swearing. I am not one of them. When I say Fuck it’s because I mean it. It’s because I care about this material and about you so much that it actually fucking gets me worked up.

So yes, when I see some of the shit “experts” try to pass as self defense I get angry. When I see instructors in our community budding heads over dumb shit instead of working together, it pisses me off. And yes they are being dicks!

That emotion isn’t going to change anytime soon, not from me. And if it does, well that’s the day I hang up my hat and move onto something else, because if you’re not passionate about what you do, you sure as hell shouldn’t be in this industry.

Stay safe, train hard, one love,


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