Without Writing

The art of writing without writing… about fighting.

Tag Archives: sid sofos

The Without Writing Biggest Disservice to Martial Arts Award, 2011

A belated happy new year, one and all. 2011 was an interesting year in combat. Many great fights were fought, many interesting techniques were demonstrated in front of millions, and many interesting news stories discussed the implications of crime, violence and self defence.

But who pooped in the proverbial pudding, last year? Of all the party guests, which one was the most objectionable?

Ladies and germs, I provide you with: The Without Writing “Biggest Disservice to Martial Arts Award”, 2011. Read more of this post

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Steven Seagal… The Man Who Should Fail

This man’s face is too small and vicious for his head

Steven Seagal is one of the great martial arts success stories of the past few decades. Here is a man who studied an- at the time- obscure martial art, became a high-ranking instructor in that art, moved to Hollywood, was discovered, became a star and has since made close to forty movies. He is the star of his own reality TV show, has released two albums of his own music, and is a prominent religious, political and animal rights activist.

Oh wait. I forgot to mention: He’s a fantasist, a bully and a terrible, terrible martial artist. He’s a man who should have failed in life, if anyone should. He simply does not deserve the fame, fortune and public platform that he currently has. He should fail. If there were any justice in the world… he would.

Now, what I just said is in fact self-evident (anyone who has seen Seagal perform… or in fact speak should realise the truth of this) but in the climate in which we find ourselves, where  the prevailing “wisdom” is that Seagal is a “martial arts master” and spiritual guru, my claim qualifies as an extraordinary claim. And as such, it requires very detailed evidence to support it. Well, never let it be said that I do not shoulder my responsibilities: Read more of this post

The Case of Harry Cook, and Abuses by Authority Figures

There have been many scandals associated with martial arts teachers in the past. Most have simply been exposés of teachers’ lack of credentials, but in the odd case there have been more serious issues unearthed. Such is the case with one Mr Henry Wilson “Harry” Cook,  who was for the majority of his lifetime one of the most prominent and most feted Karate teachers in the UK.

Harry Cook: Self confessed paedophile and rapist. Who’d have thought?

Harry Cook has, over the past six months, been remanded in a prison in Durham, and has- bit by bit- admitted committing 14 counts of sexual assault- primarily against minors- over a twenty year period. He has, as of 31 October, been charged with 29 counts in addition to these, including charges such as sexual assault and taking and possessing indecent images and videos of children. In other words, he is a self-confessed paedophile and rapist of children. Read more of this post

Skillfulness and Unskillfulness

Buddhism has long been associated with the Chinese martial arts. There is an old legend (often wheeled out erroneously as a fact) that some of the first organised forms of Chinese martial arts were born when a buddhist bodhisattva (a person who has totally dedicated themselves towards seeking enlightenment and liberation) from India came to China and taught the monks of a temple called Shao Lin (Mountain-forest) the rudiments of buddhist breathing meditation.

This prototype “Chi Gung” or “Energy work” became the basis of the increasingly demanding physical workouts for the monks, which (so the legend says) evolved into martial forms of Shaolin Gung Fu, which then evolved into various southern and northern styles of Gung Fu, and were re-worked and exported to other nations such as Indonesia, the Phillipines and Japan. Read more of this post

The Power and the Story and the Lack of Recognition of Steve Morris

It’s about time I dedicated a whole post to Steve Morris. Not because I’m one of his fanboys, (of which there are few enough, despite his obvious ability and outgoing personality) but because the case of Mr Morris illustrates several points about the martial arts as a whole, and yes, even some points about human nature as a whole.

Some background: Mr Morris is the quintessential martial artist. By all accounts he has studied more martial arts than most people have ever heard of, in places most martial artists have never visited. (Despite the art they’re studying having originated there.) Read more of this post

Sofos News Update Alert Update!!!!11

An update on our favourite fraudster’s media exposure: The recent article by one Tom Foot that was discovered in the Camden New Journal has also appeared in the Islington Tribune (presumably a sister paper of some sort), and a similar though slightly less fawning piece has appeared on the Barnet Today website, under the byline of one Daniel O’Brien. 

This latter article at least demotes Sofos from “Kung Fu Master” to “Kung Fu Teacher”, and likewise downgrades him from having “Taught Lennox Lewis and Steven Seagal” to having “Trained with” those two… but it’s still a pack of Sofos’ own lies, parroted back relatively uncritically by a journalist who simply can’t be bothered to fact-check his stories. Read more of this post

Sofos strikes back… against illness

Sidney’s in the press again. I wondered why he had been so quiet for so long. Apparently it was an enforced absence. 

According to this “human interest” article published in a local London newspaper this very month,  Mr Sofos recently had life-saving surgery to correct a heart problem. Some of the article consists of Sid thanking his cardiologist for saving the aforementioned life of Sid. (all credit for spotting this fantastic literary farce goes to one Mr Peter, who kindly commented on the original Sofos article on this blog) Read more of this post

How To Spot a Fraud

While discussing my blog post on Sid Sofos (and people like him) with some friends, the following question came up: Is there a hard and fast way of spotting those in the field of martial arts who wish to pull the wool over your eyes by giving you ineffective techniques, and taking your money in the process?

It’s true that Sofos is a painfully obvious example of a completely fake, totally meritless excuse for a martial arts instructor. But people still seem to have been taken in by him, especially those without previous martial arts experience. So how can prospective martial artists possibly protect themselves from frauds who are more convincing than Sofos? And let’s face it, any fraud will be more convincing than Sofos. Read more of this post

The Power of Sid Sofos

Sidney Sofocleus: This is a name that strikes fear into the hearts of the bravest fighters.

Fear of catching whatever gibbering mental and/or physical illness warped this initially (presumably) human man into a grotesque parody of life and reason, that is!

Mr Sofocleus calls himself “Sid Sofos”. This is inoffensive enough. He calls himself  “Grand Master”. This is ludicrous. He calls himself “Sijo”, which is a Chinese term meaning “founder of a style”. This is flatly false, as Sofocleus has no style. Read more of this post