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‘Any Other Blade Instructors in Town?’
A Baltimore Operator Wants to Know Where to Find Escrima Instruction: 9/11/2022
© 2022 James LaFond
Yesterday, and the day before yesterday, I received the following texts from two men I coach when I am in Baltimore.
“I am going into East Point Mall to interview a bar tender for an event and I’m open carrying a [steel] pipe. WTF!”
-The Brick Mouse, Saturday, 9/10/2022
“Let me know when you are back in town so we can train at Loch Raven… May, you mean you’re gone forever?… Any blade instructors in town while you are gone? What art does he teach? Did you teach blade under him?”
-The Operator, Sunday 9/11/2022
Realizing that most of the people I work with on combat, are back east for 9 months while I am out west, I thought that I should paraphrase my text answers to The Operator.
Who could I recommend for blade instruction in Maryland?
First, I am not an instructor. I am a coach. I am not certified to teach a knife system. I do not practice a knife system. I have the dubious distinction of having actually cut and stabbed real people with real weapons, have had more blunt knife duels than anyone I know of, over 220 with dull steel and many thousands with non-steel blunts, and have used knives to defend myself from packs of hyena men on numerous occasions.
The last time I defended with a knife was on Thursday night, about 7:50 PM, August 5, at Eastern Avenue and 54th Street, right where The Brickmouse a month later open carried a pipe. I used multiple knife carry to discourage three Bantu hyena men and one Latino Bandito from continuing their attacks upon my aged person.
The above is somewhat informed by the 300-plus interviews I did with other blade users, witnesses and targets, resulting in the book The Logic of Steel and the updated version The Violence Project.
Wherever you are, you can train useful principles with any FMA [Filipino Martial Arts] guru, or in the art of Silat. Kung fu, karate, Aikido, Ju-Jitsu, Judo, all of these arts have a bizarre, unrealistic and deluded view of blades and should not be accessed for blade training. With the FMA crowd, you will be indicted into a cult of blade doctrine that is usually about 30% bullshit. However, considering that most martial arts are 100% bullshit on the blade subject, this is preferable.
Caution: FMA, Silat and the Libra knife art, are all practiced in a legal vacuum. Most instructors will show you to disarm and then kill a knifer, which puts you in prison in most of this nation. They all teach multiple stabs, which puts you in prison in most of this nation. Libra, is actually intended as a knife system that enables a knifer to confront and then murder unarmed people, and is suicidal against guns or in a legalistic society. After viewing the training, I am of the opinion that it is intended for use in Latin America for abduction, murder and torture of unarmed persons, not for survival among armed and unarmed aggressors.
If you are in the Maryland area, I suggest:
[Not the best qualified, as these are two brothers who no longer instruct.]
Sifu Tom Clark of Practical Mixed Martial Arts, Edgemere, MD. I coached for Tom over a 20 year period on and off. He judged some of our agons and was certified under Larry Hartsell, Richard Bustillo and in Lomenko Escrima. All of these teachers are deceased. Tom spent a lot of time and money traveling to train with such gurus. He is also versed in boxing and Judo, was a kempo black belt and is certified under one of the branches of the Gracie family. There are many chances for you and Tom to be on the same page with some art other than the blade, which will help in your cross training.
Sifu Arturo Gabriel, who is on the cover of the book, The Logic of Steel, who has a wealth of real experience with violent crime, has a similar skill set as Tom Clark, is certified to teach in six arts, and has developed his own escrima style.
Erique Watson, a man taught by Tom Clark and Gabriel, who instructed under Clark, and has been coached by myself since 2014, when Gabriel sold him to me, is really, in my opinion, the best man in the region to work with. He is naturally such a good teacher and understands what it is to be an adult novice in combat arts, which Gabe, Tom and I have not been, starting as we did in our early youth. He is less qualified on paper then either of his seniors, but, he has a lot of contact stick experience and has dueled with dull machetes. Erqiue is located in southeastern Pennsylvania.
For blade instruction, these are the men I would recommend in the Mid-Atlantic Region.
Generally avoid the Filipino instructors, as they will always track you on a lower level then their own race, will not fight contact with weapons and generally run a financial grift. There are exceptions, like John Bosch and John Jakoba. But most of the ethnic FMA instructors are cult builders first and foremost. In fact, it is common for visiting FMA gurus to teach a seminar to all, then have a closed seminar for racially like junior instructors to keep them ahead of the Anglo subhumans.
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