Monday, October 31, 2005

Now with Kung Fu Grip

This weekend I was on the phone with a friend when her roommate’s significant other tooled into the room and asked who she was speaking with. To this she replied, “James,” and then in response to Joel’s look a bafflement she elucidated, “You’ve never met him.” Before I even thought about it, I said, “’Cause I’m a goddamn ninja.” She thought it was all sorts of funny, and when I related the story to RF he told me it was comedy gold, and thus I am sharing it with all of you.

I have also decided it is time for me to come out of the closet and admit to you that yes, I am in fact, a goddamn ninja. As the only male issue in my family (on both sides until my punk-ass brother came along) it fell to me to take up this tradition of stealth and bad-assedness that has been in my family for generations. My summers where not the idyllic respite from school that many of you enjoyed, but rather they were spent deep in training; first at the feet of my grandfather and then, as my training progressed, at the side of many masters. I traveled to exotic lands and learned from many masters. From the savage beauty of Ti Kwan Leep to the subtle minstrations of the Spicy Tuna Handroll, all the secrets of my heritage were poured into my soul.

While the other boys were spending time at church camp, my time was spent in meditation upon a stillness so profound as to appear as death upon those who mastered it. While the other kids went to band camp my summers were spent in hidden refuges high in the Himalayas where a word was never spoken. My taskmasters were harsh, pushing me beyond the limits of human endurance again and again, forging me in to the lean, stealthy creature I am today.

“But James,” I can hear all of you say, “how could you be a ninja? I mean, not to be mean or anything, but damn boy, look at you. And while we’re on the subject you’re not the most graceful of water buffalo, either.”

My only response to this is to quote the French poet Baudelaire, “…the Devil’s best trick is to persuade you that he doesn’t exist!”


Jack Thelen said...


The only tradition that has been in your family for generations is your astounding grasp of the English language.

Congratulations, you can speak.



Anonymous said...

LMAO. Dude, I could totally see you spinning around in the air, seemingly weightless, whilst you delicately slaughter.

...but then again, I just watched Shaolin soccer again. *glee*

~TamiJean some more. They should totally give me an honorary account.

James said...

Shaolin Soccer kicks all buttocks!

Have I ever made you guys sit down and watch some of Kurosawa's stuff? I got Kagemusha for my birthday and I already have several of his movies. While they are not high-flying kung-fu action, they are really good samurai films that you guys might enojy. Maybe the next time S-Monkey is in town we should have a Kurosawa night.

Anonymous said...

What on earth is an S-Monkey? (I so typed that 'monkay' and nearly left it)

And I think that beyond Shaolin Soccer, Hero, the Returner, and that crazy wrestling one, we have not been exposed to crazy James-movies.


James said...

Kurosawa's movies are not crazy James films. This stuff is Cinema with a capital C. We're talking on the same level a Truffaut, Fassbinder, Fellinim, Esisenstein, and Wenders (although Wenders sucks balls, and that is me being nice about it). Many of the great westerns are based on Kurosawa films, including The Magnificent Seven (The Seven Samurai), A Fistful of Dollars (Yojimbo), and For a Few Dollars More (Sanjuro). Kurosawa was one of the major influences on Lucas, with Lucas admitting that Hidden Fortress HEAVILY influenced the first Star Wars film. I have all of these and more if you guys want to see any of them.

S-Monkey is Shawn.

Anonymous said...

S-monkey is almost never in town, the cheap bastard. We go to visit him quite often though.

I dunno've got some pretty good taste in out-there movies, but old old shinobi flicks can be...well...omgbad.

And your website hates me. I get serious lag each time I try to reach it, and it's usually broken the first time.

And I need web updates of this stuff!!! *fist of rage*

~Pie Artist

Hey, do you use MSN messenger?

James said...

That git! It seems like every time I talk to him he was just in town. Him being a cheap bastard is easy to understand though, having a kidlet and all.

Web updates?

MSN messenger? I have it on the PC at the casa, or rather I have Trillian, and I have an account, but I don't really use it too often, mainly because I don't havce any freinds on there.

Oh yeah, trust me, these are good Jidaigeki or Chambara films. Arguably some of the best and definitive films of the genre.

Anonymous said...

"web updates" = "email updates of comments"

*hands you the Tami Dictionary*

and I only use messenger when I'm at work, but you can add me anyway.

Anonymous said...

Oh so glad you wrote about it! It's still funny.

You know I recieved a copy of Shaolin soccer for Christmas in 2003. And yet it is still in it's cellophane wrapper. Thanks brother Matthew for the gift.