Of Wolves And Crows and Broken Bones.
#SevenThings you may not know about me.
Over on Google+, +Dave Bartlett asked us to write seven little known facts about ourselves. Here’s mine.
1, When i was ten (October 1987) i was skidding on some ice in the school playground, i took a long run up for best speed and distance, i hit a dry patch, my feet stopped i didn’t and i face planted on the concrete. I chipped an arch in my two front teeth. After serval attempts by my local dentist to cap them i was sent to a children’s hospital in the city, London, i then spent the next 4 years getting a root canal every 6 weeks, I have no idea why. The left front tooth had separated from the root and was removed, i had a plastic replacement until i was 17, apparently that’s when my mouth stopped growing, i then had a bridge fitting, across teeth 2-1-1, the two in front and one to the left.
2, The same year as above, 1987, i started karate classes, i passed every grading and when i was 12.5 years old i went for my black belt. 100 students arrived and the top Shotokan karate folks were there. I run through the basic’s and the Kata, all three of them, i won my kumite with a strike to the head, instance win, yayy me, but i was pulled to one side, told not to join the others, i thought i had failed. But, as it turned out there was just an add number of students and i was placed in again to fight the last kid (remember i was 12.5 years old, a kid too), i won that one as well, one kick the the chest, then a spinning back kick to the chest. Back then i was so fast with my feet, quick enough to kick away other people kicks, and being left footed gave me the element of surprise. 100 students entered, only 33 passed, i was one of the 33. I found out later, after my sensei bought me my black belt that he asked the judges to make me fight twice. In my club i was the youngest ever black belt, a record i held for another 3 years. It did feel good that everyone had to bow to me. And i taught the woman who became the European girls champ. I was very proud. I had my first tournament when i was 11. In my third fight, we were given a 30 second time limit to score a point, i punched my opponent 3 times in the face then kicked him in the gut. I broke his nose.
3, I have extreme difficulty developing an emotional connection with people.
4, I hadn’t read my first book, cover to cover, until i was 21.
5, I had my first drink of beer when i was ten. At 16 i drank 11 pints of Snake Bite and Black. I vomited, passed out, can’t remember how i got to my chalet or the two hour couch ride home the day after. 5 years late i would drink two bottles of Jamaican white rum. That happened on a Friday night, i had to have the Monday and Tuesday off work. Know your limits.
6, I used to ride mounting bike trials, and downhill on an old beat up bike. One day going down a hill way to fast the rear derailer went into the back wheel and locked it up, the back end slid out to my left hit a big lump of dirt and the bike kicked my off an dover the handle bars, i flow in the air for what felt like 30 seconds and landed on the back on my right shoulder, and nice smudge of dirt showed me where exactly, i tumbled down the hill ahead of my bike, when i came to a stop i looked up and about 4 inches from my head was the bike, the crank set looking straight at me. I rolled over and sat up, i hadn’t even realised that my right arm was sitting across my stomach, i tried to get up but all i did was push myself to the right with my left arm, i felt my right shoulder and felt the big lump that was my collar bone which looked like this –> /\ yep, it had snapped in two. I didn’t brake the skin thought so no blood. My mate Lee was laughing so had he no only didn’t know i had broken my collar bone but also didn’t hear me ask if any of the people standing around watching had a camera and had maybe caught the whole thing so i could watch it. I picked up Lee’s bike as it was lighter then mine and carried it to the top, Lee carried mine. I had it fixed on the NHS, a steel plate, which i then had removed 18 months later ’cause it was giving my problems.
7, I love Wolves and Crows. I’ve always wolves, for as long as i can remember. But Crows, that started one Halloween night. A bunch of us, maybe a dozen or so thought we’d go walking in the cemetery at mid-night, me and Lee were up front the others were composed of boy and girls, we were around 18-19 i guess, anyway, i heard a Crow caw in some trees to my right, and as my and Lee had know each other for years we had an unspoken language, i got his attention, and cocked my head towards the trees, he looked up to them, smiled and nodded. Maybe he too heard the Crows caw’s or maybe he liked the idea of leading our friends into the dark trees. As we started towards them everyone behind us moved in closer and started to hold onto our, mine and Lee’s, jackets, afraid i guess, after about 1 minute the Crows took flight, there much have been hundreds of them and they all came straight at us, jumping free of the trees and descending towards us and flighting over our heads cawing loudly. And as everyone run screaming back to the road me and Lee were in fits of laughter, that kind of laugh where you can’t catch your breath. It was as if the Crows knew what we wanted and listened. Since then, i’ve loved Crows.