Evildoer's Beware... in about 10-15 years.

           For the last year or so, I've run Superhero classes, but of course it's not just Superheroes that we train to become. No, more often than not we're training as Ninjas, or Super Spies, or Jedi Knights, or Shapeshifters, or Monster Hunters, or even the monsters themselves; whatever forms will allow us to penetrate deeper into that liminal state of reality that I've come to know as the Narthex. By Fall we'll have established two new tracks around which to reorganize and reinvent the curriculum, and I'm pretty excited to see where this new formulation of the experiment will take us.

           The bulk of my work week consists of a recreational fitness class that was designed to be both fun and empowering, a class that's currently offered eight or nine times per week to various groups of kids ranging from ages 3 to 15. I'll still be doing these sorts of classes next year under the title of "Superhero Missions," and with aggressive advertizing, and increased foot traffic, thanks to the upcoming Olympics, these will probably end up being scheduled even more often by next Fall. Lots of fun.

          However, in addition to these classes we'll be offering competitive, invite only, classes called "Superhero Elite," which will be longer and a bit more difficult, each class lasting at two hours. Students selected for this class will be given the option to train anywhere from 1 to 3 nights a week, for either $105, $155, or $180/month respectively. These classes will involve training that goes well beyond the the merely physical arts of conflict, as we'll be working to master rhetoric, law, science, and other related areas that might help any one of my students to one day become a potent asset to human dignity and freedom.

           To give you an idea of what we're doing right now, here's an outline of our last four classes before summer vacation (which I guess would more accurately be called our next four classes):

           This week we all had to pass the martial trials of the Shadow King, in a bunch of shadow plays around which we structure various free-formed choreographies of War. For instance, there's the Thermopylae (where the enemies are all right in front of you and you simply mow into them like Spartans), or the Dark Alley (where you have to fight enemies that come from in front of you and from behind you simultaneously), or the Storm Clouds (where you're attacked from on high), or the Ground Swell (where you're attacked from below), or the Bruce Lee (where you're surrounded on all sides but, for some reason, they only attack you one at a time), and finally there's the far less structured Free For All, which, of course, can be performed with as many opponents as one cares to imagine. All of these can also be modified by things like slow motion, or modeling your fighting style on the moves of some particular character, animal, or mythical creature. Also, if I have time, I'm going to cut some cardboard tubes into 7 inch segments and fill them up with mercury dimes and cotton (that small detail of design will come in handy much farther down the line), cover these in Velcro and put up a Velcro target for some child-safer knife throwing (because to call any simulation of knife throwing "child-safe" would be foolish, right?).

           Then, for next week's class, I'm going to buy a remote control car, make and join together the various segmented shells of a giant centipede, and run my new autopede all around the gym. We'll probably revisit the shadow play exercises described above, this time with foam weapons.

           Then in three weeks we'll spy train again with an even thicker gauntlet of laser trip wires, bells on strings, and various other booby traps, and maybe I'll finally break out that Captian America suit to make it all seem more patriotically pressing.

          I must guard myself against a psychic force that I call "the Unseere," that Zombie maker / childhood ender who blandly reorganizes sensible priorities and blinds the human heart to all art, passion and poetry. With my mind thus defended I might just continue to remember what it means to guard the Narthex, the last, and only, entrance, at least that I know of, into Super World. Wish me luck and Namaste.

 
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2 Responses
  1. So happy for you! I'm glad everything is working out so well for all of us. I just wish we could make things work out it the same place.

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