Sunday, December 26, 2010

Up in the Club

Unlike in the picture, clubs tend to be kinda dark spots. Because they also serve alcohol, the potential for bad stuff to go down is there, for sure.

Perhaps sick of hearing me harp about learning to kick in shoes or throw other techniques in "regular clothes," Sensei S told us to not even change into our gis for class a few weeks ago. He lined up some chairs from the hallway, turned off all but the disco ball/strobe light in the studio used during kickboxing class and had us sit down. "What would you do if you were here and someone made unwanted advances?" he asked. When trapped between the wall and the "offender" (which was Sensei S - and the only way "out" was through him), we all had different solutions for getting away safely - from using very dramatic physical force to the more subtle "Could you please remove your hand from my thigh?" non-confrontational approach. It was very enlightening and had us all talking about appropriate resistance for the rest of the evening.

What would YOU do to ward off unwanted advances in a dark bar or dance hall?


  1. At 53, this balding old guy would feel complemented.

  2. I'm with Rick ^_^ ....but hypothetically, I really don't know. Most self-defense is situation-based for me with no set idea other than to be safe and aware.

  3. UNWANTED advances, Rick & Shinzen. That might include a big dude named Bubba rubbing his had up your thigh (I'm just sayin'...)

    My club days are well behind me, but I was once a regular Thursday night visitor at Club Phoenix in Philly (in my 20s). I wasn't a karateka then, so the awareness thing was probably totally lost, but the nature of being in such a closed, dark, alcohol-soaked environment might make it tough to avoid trouble - in the form of that Bubba fella, for instance. Do I meet that creeping hand with an empi to the gut or just a "Keep your hands to yourself, please!" finger lock? Once I'm touched, it's on, but how ON I guess is the question...

  4. The situation will dictate whether it is the empi, fingerlock or walk away. My recommendation is to never go alone...ever. Guy/gal differences play a lot into it as well.

    It too has been awhile since I was out on the town and was fortunate to only have to defend myself once...thank goodness for 'Sanchin eyes'! I think the poor guy thought I was some type of psycho...I still chuckle when I think of it.

  5. The basic "girl code of the club" applies still - travel in 2s always, guard your drink, leave with the people you came with, etc. - but what to do when the fella you just danced with (or the guy sitting with you while your girlfriend is on the floor getting her dance on) mistakes your kindness/small talk for "she wants me bad but just doesn't know it yet!" and gets the wandering hand or starts to invade personal space? Should the level of the "I think not, bud!" correction match the level of the mis-deed or should squashing it flat (think killing a fly with a sledgehammer, and landing said dude on the floor on his booty, LOL) be the order of the day?

    I hear you, Shinzen - the situation will dictate a lot, but we female creatures are at a bit of a disadvantage, perhaps - wobbly shoes, clothing that may be a little smaller/tighter than normal and maybe even a little of that nurturing "don't want anyone to be upset" thing happening. I say warn once, flatten next - or make it clear that such "flattening" is a very real possibility - and deal with the fallout later. Like I said, once I'm touched, it's on. Keep your hands to yourself or take a chance of drawing back a nub...

  6. Been there, done that.

    'Best be there.' ;)

  7. I agree, Narda, but that doesn't help you much if you already are there...

  8. is a year and a half late too late to comment? hope not.

    being a guy i cant answer the question directly (when i was single, advances from women toward me - when they did occur - were seldom unwelcome).

    always go with your instincts, but i think a graduated escalation would probably be in order:
    -clear verbal command "hands off, etc".
    -2nd clear verbal command while gathering as much attention as possible "i said no! dont touch me!"
    -attempt to escape
    -if warranted, initiate violence

    these are all VERY general, of course, and subject to context, gut instinct, and setting. I should note that the 2nd verbal command is meant to make it clear to the drunk, but otherwise harmless, guy that you seriously arent interested. (no need to break the poor jerk's nose if you dont have to.)