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About Me

I was born in Victoria ,BC, Canada, on the first day of spring in the year 1974.  My childhood was fairly normal, I would say.  My father is from England and my mother from eastern Canada.  After they married, they moved to the west coast of Canada; where the fabled stork mistook them for a couple who were ready to have children and dropped me off with them.  So for the next four years i did as other kids do; I spent the days with my parents and learned to walk, talk, question, laugh, cry, and all kinds of other exciting things.  I had even been to the happiest place on earth in those first 4 years of life. (i suspect Disneyland is where my love for animation and drawing was born.)

After I turned 4 I went off to preschool to enhance my mind and learn the necessary skills of politicly correct socialization.  One of the first things I learned in preschool was jealousy, I remember it very well.  There was a girl in my class that lived down the road form me. The teacher asked, if anyone in the class could read and she put up her hand.  She was the only one who did.  I distinctly remember thinking why does she know how to read and I don’t?  Well, I went home and asked my parents about reading and they explained to me that you learn how to do that in school.  But that night we all sat around and made little books out of construction paper and other paper cuttings.  Complete with an industrial class staple binding courtesy of my Dad’s tool chest.  I remember the red and black construction paper and the loud clunking sound of the staple gun as my dad bound all the pages.  I think i learned an important lesson that day.  If you want something, then you have to make it happen.  I wanted to learn how to read so we made a book that had the alphabet, words and some fun pictures and shapes.  we started working on how words worked so on and so forth.   Looking back on it now (which I am for the first time I suppose), that is where I learned about doing things for myself and not waiting for others to do them for me.

After preschool, grade school was going to be a snap.  Well, that was not exactly true.  I got my fair share of the name calling.  I was called things like jaws, carrot top,  and other  silly words that were very hurtful at the time.  But i made some life long friends in that time.  People who will be reading this and saying something like “what is this jackass up to now?”

The infamous stork visited my family again when I was in grade school.  So then I also assumed the role of big brother.  For the most part i think i was a good big brother.  I mean I made my sister laugh, cry and taught her all the things a brother is supposed to teach a sibling.  You know like how to sneak stuff without mom and dad knowing.  All the good stuff.

During grade school my dad also enrolled me in the canadian scouting program.  I learned some super important things in boy scouts, let me tell you.  None so important as self reliance.  I suffered all kinds of bumps and scrapes in grade school.  Both mentally and physically – who didn’t?  Other extra curricular activities I did during grade school were sports.  I played on a competitive baseball team and competed on the school cross-country running team.  During grade school I also learned that I had a learning disability, dyslexia.  So during my grade 5 year, I spent the mornings at a different school learning how to deal with dyslexia and the afternoons in my regular school.

Grade 6 and 7 were spent in a school where i learned about discipline.  There, my teacher would make us march up and down the halls and in the May day parade.   We were required to sit attentively in our desks with good posture and our hands clasped and on our desks in plain view if they were not being used to make notes.  I joined the school patrol at this time where i was required to march up to the main road with other patrollers and control the traffic and provide a safe environment for our fellow students.  We were armed with crossing flags, white uniforms and orange vests.

In high school, I got my first real job, grew my hair long, discovered heavy metal music, art, girls and a sense of who i am today.  I read thousands of comics and lived to ride my mountain bike (that I fondly refereed to as my “machine”) and experienced my first love.  I experimented with alcohol and when I went to see Pink Floyd, I smoked my first joint with two of my best mates.  In 1991 I signed up for a class that would change how I looked at the world forever,  Tai Chi.  Of course this lead to me joining the Reynolds High School Karate Do Club and later all kinds of martial arts and sciences.

In 1993 I joined True Vision Karate Do Dojo with my “brotha” Grayson.  I made a commitment to the Dojo to train my hardest and walk the “path” to the best of my ability.  In the first 8 years of training I missed 7 classes, and three of those I sat in and watched class.  I literally put my blood, sweat, and tears into that Dojo.  I lived with other martial arts students and together we strived to better ourselves as often as possible.

In the year 2000, Grayson and I achieved Shodan.  We were the first students of Sensei Chris Bogusz and of True Vision Karate Dojo to obtain that honour.  I also came across a life companion, a black lab by the name of Zephyr.  i rescued him from the SPCA, he came from an abusive home and suffered seizures every time I held a broom or cooking pan.  After two years of building up trust and companionship he stopped having fear-induced seizures.  He was super happy, well adjusted and many of my friends referred to him as “wiggle bum” because he would wag his tail so fiercely.  Sometime after that I went to computer technical school where i graduated with honours.

I then started a career at Shaw Cable.  I have been with Shaw since October of 2001.  I currently work as an installer and linesman for Shaw and have no plans on a career change at this time.  At some point during my time at Shaw (2004-ish), for too many reasons to discuss here, I discontinued my training with karate and other martial arts.  I became lazy and unmotivated (although I did sample other martial arts between 2002 – 2008, yet truly dedicated myself to nothing).

In early 2009 Zephyr was killed by an impact wound he received.  I suspect he was struck with a golf club (judging by the shape of the bruise that was revealed by the vet performing the examination).  This incident happened while I was at work and to this day it remains a mystery to me as to how he got out and back into the house to get his injury.  Although I have theories, none of them can be proven. 

I got quite a severe lung infection in 2010.  After being ill for several months, I made my recovery and decided that I was tired of living the way I was.  I was going to change, try to connect with the part of myself that lived to be healthy, and experience life rather than dwell on the short comings i had been finding in it.

By the beginning of 2011 I had brought my self back to 178 lbs. and was feeling great. I had been training Kendo for about 6 months and was in full Bogu (Kendo Armour) getting beaten up buy the everyone in the Dojo. I was having a great time. About 4 months into 2011 I started to feel really run down. I was having trouble going to work and still participating in hobbies and exercise.

I started to see my doctor on a monthly basis and was forced to take a medical leave from work. As time went on I started losing more and more energy and seemed to get a new cold a day or 2 after recovering from the one before. I spent most of my time sleeping. It was not long before all I was doing was getting out of bed to eat and use the washroom.

This went on for the better part of a year and I was seeing specialist after specialist. I in the beginning they said my problem was because I was a Pescetarian (a sort of vegetarian that eats fish as well as milk and eggs) and I was a little low in iron. So they got me eating meat three times a day.

Up un-till they started me on meat I was maintaining a body weight of 178-185 lbs. With in a month of starting a meat eating diet, I became super constipated and started gaining weight. When they tested me my iron levels had not changed. So they also started me on an iron supplement (telling me that if I was feeling constipated now that it would only get worse with this supplement). So in an effort to help they also prescribed me a laxative to help me poop. I was now only having a bowl movement 3-4 times a month. I am suffering form abdominal pains as well as all my previous symptoms.

At this point I started to receive Acupuncture treatments from Kristy Gary in Victoria B.C. Her treatments were helping me deal with the abdominal pains as well as the only way I was able to have a movement, as the medication seemed to do nothing for me.

After further investigation from the specialists they found a nodule tumour on my thyroid. They said this was likely the cause for my weight gain and possibly weak immune system and fatigue. However I was to keep on the iron supplements as well as the laxative and recommended to continue to eat meat. I was also to start taking a medication for hypothyroidism as well.

After this did very little to improve my situation I was passed off to another specialist which of corse took several months to see. He tested me and I got put on two puffers as well as a CPAP machine for sleep apnoea. He also said i should continue to eat meat. After several months of test and different medications the specialist eventually could find no way to help me and send me back to square one.

By this time I have gained 50 more lbs. putting me at 250 and still suffer from constipation and cramps as well as extreme fatigue and prone to getting ill.

During that entire process I was constantly battling my insurance company to get my payments on time and was eventually forced into going back to work even though my family Doctor recommended against it.

I am now working a reduced shift and spending almost all of my other spare time sleeping. My life seems to have come to a roaring halt. I am in the process of waiting to meet with another specialist and see what else could possibly be wrong.

So here I am, writing a brief history as to who I am and what brought me to this moment in my life, thanks for reading!

MARTIAL SCIENCE & ME…

During high school I discovered Tai Chi which piqued a curiosity in me for oriental martial sciences.  Wanting to do something a little more structured and with more tangible consequences to mistakes, I found my way into the Reynolds Secondary School Karate Club, where i trained under Sensei Chris Bogusz (Sempai at the time).  Shortly after high school ended I was asked to stop training until I was able to make a proper commitment to karate.  I did not make that commitment until almost a year later when my friend and brother Grayson, coerced me into coming back to karate.  When I did, it led me down a long and arduous road which I spent many years on, in the True Vision Karate Dojo.  Working through many injuries, jobs, challenges inside and out of the martial arts community.  I trained under Sensei Chris Bogusz for approximately 7 years before achieving the shodan rank (black belt) in karate.  In the 2 years following I obtained expert rank (black sash) in kung fu.  (These ranks are are certified by NAKA and CFCMAA)

After experiencing some challenges in the martial arts community that eventually led to me stopping my training at the True Vision Karate Dojo, I ventured out to explore other types of martial sciences, such as:
- Aikido
- Tai Chi (revisiting)
- Kenpo
- other systems of Kung Fu
- Qi Gong

I did not spend any more than 13 months (nor did i grade) in any one of the sciences listed above. I do, however, try to use what I learned in my personal expression of the arts.

For the last six years or so I have not been walking the path of the warrior. I have become a lazy over-eating consumer of “too much.”  By “too much,” I mean everything from food to trinkets.  I have been indulging in the convenience of modern life and spending money because I could; playing video games instead of living.  I have not been unhappy but I am certainly finding life lacking in some way and I am definitely unhealthy.  I find my self feeling distant from things … sort of detached.  I have grown fat and weak. I aim to change that and I think that Zen might be the path I need to explore to make that change.

The martial science that I have chosen to embark on now is kendo, or japanese fencing.  I have chosen this system of martial arts as it is totally different from anything else I have ever done in the past and I felt that starting on a clean slate would be the right way to approach martial science again.  Oh, lets not forget Kendo is super cool, they fight with swords!!

From right to left Sensei Chris, Sensei Grayson, myself
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Welcome , today is Saturday, April 21, 2018