The Kali Master and the Ditch Digger: A Parable
Two men were walking down the street. They just so happened to be going into the same direction
and wound up side by side. To break the awkwardness, one asked the other, “So that’s a fancy uniform you got there. What do you do, karate or something like that?”
“Oh, no,” the other replied. “I’m Supreme Grandmaster Datu Smith. I am the world’s greatest combat expert, and study the world’s greatest style, Kili-Kili Kali.”
“You got a lotta patches there.”
“Yes, I do. I worked hard to earn them all, but the one I’m most proud of is the Kili-Kili- Kali International Ass. badge.” Supreme Grandmaster Datu Smith then did a flourish with the two rattan sticks he was carrying.
“So you fight with them sticks?”
“Yes. And the single stick, knife, chain, nunchaku, staff, spear, sword, machete, and 23 other weapons. Would you like to learn Kili-Kili Kali?”
“Well, I’d like to, but things are kinda tight right now. I’m a ditch digger and I don’t make much.”
“But what would you do if you were attacked?”
“I’d just whack ’em with this here shovel. I been a ditch digger for years, and I used a shovel on the farm long before that. I’m pretty handy with a shovel.”
“You’d be lucky to last 10 seconds. You have no technique. On the other hand, I could teach you 17 different defenses with a stick, and that’s just on angle number 1!” Supreme Grandmaster Datu Smith briefly demonstrated an x block, a wing block, a gunting, a block and hit, a pass and hit, and a few more moves.
“Wow, them sticks look like blades in a blender. I dunno know, though. My dad was in the Korean War, and he took out a guy with one of those little shovels.”
They were so engaged in their conversation that both men were surprised by the wild eyed man at the street corner. He was high on something. His matted hair and glassy red eyes created the impression of a rabid animal.
“I’ve got it.” Supreme Grandmaster Datu Smith clenched both sticks and began to move in close –after all, he was a master of close range combat. He stepped and then seemed to freeze for a moment. “Should I merge, or meet? Maybe an X block follwed by an… no, wait, how about an abaniko to the hand, followed by a…”
As he was debating his next move, the psycho lunged forward and stabbed him.
The ditch digger brought the shovel resting on his shoulder right down on the psycho. The flat of the blade struck the deranged man on the skull, and clanged like a bell. It was a strike powered by both hands, calloused by long years of hard work. He had launched the strike without even thinking, and struck the mad man with the knife a second time as he fell.
The ditch digger waited for the ambulance to come for the two men. The martial arts expert was losing a lot of blood, but the knife had missed his heart.
As Supreme Grandmaster Datu Smith was wheeled on the gurney into a waiting ambulance, he weakly whispered to the ditch digger, “Don’t thank me, I was just doing what any other Supreme Grandmaster Datu of Kili-Kili Kali would have done.” He then gripped the ditch digger’s hand briefly and let go as the ambulance doors were shut.
The ambulance raced off with lights flashing and sirens wailing. The ditch digger looked down at his hand. Resting in his palm was a blood stained business card for Supreme Grandmaster Datu Smith and Kili-Kili Kali.