Masters on the Mountain Goes Mega
By Willem de Thouars
Never so few, and never so great, could Masters on the Mountains in Truckee is of a greater essence of friendship, brotherhood and mostly of training together as a family be in lively expressions of the combat arts. The ladies who did the most of hard labor to make the event successful were for sure Diane, Marilyn, Irene and a few others as talented photographers and video artists (see eurekaproductions.tv on Youtube). Also, my deepest appreciation for Diane Schnurenberger for making the hotel arrangements for all of us who stayed in hotels.
This October’s event put on by Masters on the Mountain and staff was highly successful, and really a joy for being at the Fight Club. Over the years, even since the beginning in the early 1960’s, I attended many other martial gatherings. I found some were okay, some others good, and others quite melodramatic by many of the participants.
There were always too many chiefs and not enough braves. Many of the proclaimed masters of sorts carried a heavy load of overbearing ‘look-at-me-ness’ with pumped up egos. Many who came to attend a so-called gathering actual did not like each other; they just came wanting to be noticed.
This is still the current ceremony everywhere, that many are kissing up to each other like willing sheep to be led by a wolf in sheep’s clothing. And, each wanting to be the wolf to be considered grand poobahs of the martial industry – they are the bizarre Cinderellas. That is why I never again will be showing up to any of those other martial events. I only can handle anything that is in my reach of my comfort zone, full of ‘reality checks.’
The Truckee Flight Club is totally an opposite of so many others. There are not masters but only practitioners. There are all kinds of styles being shared in practice. Masters and students become alike as equals in constant training. That is just the fun of the gathering at Masters – everyone is everybody’s friend with many laughs in painstaking events. We just don’t allow pumped up egos to walk around like their systems are the only way to achieve perfection.
My thanks to guru Frank Broadhead for his constant presence of arranging time schedules for the teachers and his patience and teaching Tai Chi. Sam Edwards is like a kid in a candy store as a participant; though, trust me, Sam has more skills to imagine than lots of grand poobahs. But he likes better to train and participate in any session. He also loves to bite occasionally in defense of his stored actions, but only these days occasionally. Nothing new or nothing old with Sam – only many surprises for staying young. No one trains harder than Sam Edwards, who keeps practicing even when driving a car, which can be a little disconcerting.
It was a happy time for me to finally meet Sam and Don Miller’s Tai Chi teacher, Sigung C. K. Chen, who is a true disciple of the old-school Tai Chi principles. I came to find out through our conversations that the sigung had much in common with me in our philosophical point of view. I like the man, and son, and student very much. I will communicate with sigung Chen often as I can.
A special treat in sharing was with James Painter, Janet Gee, Stewart Lauper, Daniel Prasetya, Keith Moffet, Chuck Stahmann, Mikel La Chapelle, Don Miller, Steve Watson, Eugene Robinson, Santiago Terrases, Sergey Makarenko, and Frank Broadhead. Each of the sessions they were teaching in a way that can only be explained as an effort of magnificence. Each teacher who taught was spiced, experienced, and always in the best of caring. Masters on the Mountain ended up to complete 2014 as a great success.
In closing in grace,
Bapak Willem de Thouars