When writing about my Kempo years and my old Sensei Werner, I remembered how he used to tell us stories when we were stretching after class. One in particular stuck with me, the story of a smaller man’s quest to defeat a most imposing foe. You could say it shows how important martial arts can be when one has no choice but confrontation…
There was once a man named Norman, who worked as a bus driver in a small village. Norman was a nice man who enjoyed his job. Every day he drove the same route, and always greeted his passengers with a heartfelt smile. All passengers – except one.
There was a Native American man that rode the bus every day, as punctual as the rising sun. He was a giant of a man, one of those oversized brutes who could probably fell a tree with his bare hands if he set his mind to it. His name was Megedagik, but everyone just called him Big Mike. Every day, the same scenario would take place; Norman would stop at the same bus stop, and Big Mike would board the bus (causing it to heavily tilt in the process). In a booming voice, he would look down at Norman and declare ‘Me Big Mike. Me no pay.’ and then take a seat. This arrogance drove Norman crazy, but he was too scared of the giant to confront him.
This constant insult to Norman’s authority continued to happen, until one day Norman couldn’t take it any more. He swore to rise above his despicable fate and one day make Big Mike pay! He took a long term leave of absence and dedicated himself to learning martial arts. He travelled to Asia and studied under many masters. After years of training he had several black belts and was a formidable martial artist. He could kick a door to pieces and smash bricks with his bare hands. He was ready. Norman returned to his home town and took up his old job.
Sure enough, on the first day back, Big Mike stepped on the bus and declared ‘Me Big Mike. Me no pay’. This was it, the moment had come! Norman jumped up from his seat, took up his strongest fighting position and yelled ‘HEE-YAH! And why the hell is that?!?’ at the top of his voice.
Big Mike opened his jacket, reached in, held a card up in his hand and said ‘Because Big Mike has monthly bus pass’.