Hard Pressed

We are on holiday at our little seaside retreat, and the schedule is simply so demanding — sleeping, loafing on the beach, swimming in Wellfleet’s cool and limpid kettle ponds and the backshore’s bracing surf, sampling the area’s toothsome viands, strolling through town, visiting with friends, brushing up my Iron Wire out on the deck, playing music, and reading — that it’s hard to find the time for serious bloggery. There will be rainy days ahead, though, I’m sure.

Meanwhile, some amusing fluff: the periodic table of the elements, in an easy-to-use video format.

Related content from Sphere


  1. Life is sometimes tough. By the way, though you may have mentioned it before, I shall ask anyway: what belt or dan are you in Kung Fu? What I really mean to ask is: If I came at you with a pointed stick or remark, would you be able to break my neck with the flick of a wrist?

    Posted August 20, 2008 at 7:47 am | Permalink
  2. Malcolm says

    Hi D.,

    Yes, I have a lot of responsibilities here, but I will try to bear up manfully.

    I started studying kung fu at the end of 1975. I stayed with my first sifu, Master William Chung, until the mid-80’s sometime — at the end of which I had a black belt in Lam Sai Wing Hung Gar. We had a “falling out”, though, sad to say; I was at loose ends for a while, teaching a bit, and then, in 1993, took up with my current sifu, Master Peter Berman, who teaches the Tang Fung branch of the same system. I pretty much started over from scratch with this new teacher, as the forms are all slightly different, and got a second black belt from him a few years back.

    I’ve written a few posts on the subject, and gathered them here.

    And no, in the pointed-stick scenario I certainly wouldn’t break your neck with a flick of the wrist. (An elbow or palm strike, perhaps.) A pointed remark would, I should hope, be more likely to evoke a flick of the wits than the wrist.

    Posted August 20, 2008 at 11:47 am | Permalink