How I lost 25 bucks or... Dim Mak, the HOJO, and Master Chuck

How I lost 25 bucks or... Dim Mak, the HOJO, and Master Chuck

A Story by The Last Ronin

Adventures in the ancient art of the "death touch"


The ad leapt off the page at me, below the words was a picture of a vaguely asian looking fellow in a "ninja" hood and mask.  Below him in small print were the words
"Conference fee 25 dollars.  Cash only please"

Sounded reasonable enough.  What could go wrong?

Believe me... plenty could,  and even more did.

I arrived at the Hojo conference room (and TV lounge and Bar, as it turned out) about 8:45 the following saturday, my 25 dollars in hand. There was a line waiting to get in. 

"Maybe there really is something to all this," I thought.

I looked at the crowd and noticed something strange.  Almost without exception the crowd was composed soley of 11-14 year old, out of shape, boys.  And
almost all of them were wearing t-shirts that had some form of hollywood martial arts related hooey printed on them.  I didn't see anyone in a teenage mutant ninja turtle shirt, thank God (cause I'd of kicked his *** right there) but just about everything else was represented.

The morbidly obese preteen in front of me turned around and peered at me through his coke bottle glasses.

"You here to see Master Chuck?" He bubbled, clearly excited.

Master Chuck? What in the hell is going on here?  For the first time in what would be many times that night, I found myself wondering what in the sam hell i was doing in the HoJo, surrounded by a room full of kids bound for fat camp or a coronary next summer, about to pay 25 bucks to be taught the "death touch" by some guy named "Master" Chuck.

I glanced at the kid's morbidly undersized t-shirt, struggling valiantly to contain his monsterous belly, and breasts i might add.  It was black (a thinning color, as my tired mind reminded me, with a twinge of humor) and printed on the front of it, in pseudo-japanese stick letters were the words "Real American Ninja".  A shruiken (or throwing star for the uninitiated) with lines to indicate it was spinning, sat below the words.

An image that was both horiffic and terribly funny arose in my mind.  I was in some backalley in new york, lost without a hope, when two roughniks show up
and draw switchblades.  They demand my wallet.  I fumble around in terror.

"Please don't hurt me!" I scream.

All of the sudden, the alley fills with smoke and when it clears, the real american ninja, all 300 pounds of him, is standing there.  He fights the muggers off, jiggling all the while, and afterwards we go to McDonalds for a quadruple 1/2 pounder with cheese and milkshakes.

"Thanks American Ninja!  You're the greatest!"

"Master Chuck is the MAN!" The american ninja babbles on, "I went to two of his conferences last year. Hes the ****!"

The american ninja, puts his hand over his mouth as his eyes get wide.  He blushes as he looks around, as if fearing his mother might have heard.  Not very ninjalike.  But what do I know?

Around 855, the double doors to the conference room open and we are ushered into a small, dimly lit, conference room, handing our money to a pimply teen boy in a cheap ghi (karate suit) with the words "Master Chuck's DOJO!" emblazened over one breast.  A small, dimly lit stage is at the front, and fake japanese-looking scrolls with gobbildy-gook adorn the walls, held in place, i noted sourly with scotch tape.

I sat down on one hard metal chair and waited.  About 915, apparently dimmak masters aren't big into promptness, a diminuitive girl came out on to the stage and cried out

"Ladies and gentlemen... Grandmaster Chuck!"

In walked the fattest, greasiest, most foul looking human being to ever grace a HoJo conference room.  Master Chuck weighed at least 900 pounds... none of it muscle.  He wore horn-rimmed glasses and was almost bald.  What hair he did have, he wore in a comb over.  He looked vaguely like Chris Farley in his "Matt Foley" guise, only older.,fatter and greasier... and balder.

He sauntered over to the podium.  His belly hung out above his black belt (which i noted, to my horror, were really 3 black belts tied together, and even that was getting tight).  He bellowed into the mic

"Ladies and gentlemen!  Thank you for coming.  Tonite i will be teaching you all the deadly art of DimmAK!  The Death Touch!"

I heard a gasp from my right, i turned and saw, to my dissappointment, the real american ninja, sitting there with his jaw ajar.  A feverish glow lit his eyes and I had the horrible thought that we were about to be asked to drink "special Kool-aid" so that we could join dimmak masters of old. 
I shuddered.

Apparently,american ninja caught the movement out of the corner of his eye. He
turned to me.

"!  I'm gonna master the deadly art of the death touch so I can kill billy evanson!"

I looked saddly at the american ninja.  Judging by the jelly stains on the front of
his shirt, he hadn't been able master the deadly art of the fruit pie. I didn't see him posing much of a threat. I turned back towards the sweating atrocity on the stage.

Apparently in my conversation with the american ninja, i had missed something.  And whatever it was had pissed Master Chuck off something fierce. He was flailing around the stage, hollering and panting, stopping to catch his breath and starting over again.  It took me about 3 minutes to realize he was telling a story.

"So.....I grabbed him like THIS", He made groping motions at the air, the crowd gasped, "then I gave him onea THESE" he rammed his knee up, lost his balance and almost fell over. The crowd was mesmerized.

"What a bunch of horse ****,"I thought to myself, "I wasted 25 bucks on THIS?"

Only apparently it wasn't just to myself.  The room had fallen silent and all eyes were on me.  Master Chuck leered at me evilly.

"YOU!" He screamed.  "You doubt the deadly art of dimmak!????"

I looked to the american ninja.  He mouthed NO!!! and then put his head down
in fear.

I had had enough.  It was one thing for these freaks to live in their little fanasty world, play karate-man on their x-boxes, and stuff fruit pies down their gullets.  It was another for this 50 year old to exploit that. 

PLUS he had my 25 bucks!

"As a matter of fact, greasy, I DO!" I shouted, i heard the american ninja groan in horror,"And I'll tell you something else.  I've studied various martial arts for years, and in all that time, i've never seen a more sorry excuse for a "master" than you.  A 2 year old retarded orangatang with epilepsy and one eye could kick your ***!!"

Man, i was on a roll.  I was about to conclude with a real zinger when he raised his hands and hollered

"STOP!  You come up here right now.  I'll make a believer of you yet""

The crowd was speechless.  All around the room mouths were hanging open.  Eyes darted back and forth between me and master chuck, as if these eating machines were watching a game of tennis."

"You're on, B*****d ****!" I screamed cheerily, adrenalin and rage obliterating my senses. I chuckled at my little joke.

The master grinned evilly.

As I squared off with him, i was almost knocked over by the odor wafting off of him.  He smelled like a mixture of Wild Turkey, sweat, rancid mayonaise, and old spice. Not quite the death touch, I thought, but its damn close.

He raised his hands in front of him, boxer style, then opened his fists and held his hands out to his sides.

"Go ahead, smart guy" he mocked, "Hit me"

Martial artists train for years for one street encounter.  They go through all the moves, and when it comes down to it, they don't think, their bodies just react.  Or so they say.  I can attest to that.  Looking back on that day, I've asked myself why i didn't use some variant of the Sword and Hammer, or Broken Twigs, or the Alternating Maces, or something that would have messed him up.  I'd studied them all (those in particular were Kenpo moves).  Hell I should have gone old school on him and opened up some Ninjutsu.  But I just reacted,
and I ***** slapped him.

For those of you unfamiliar with the ***** slap, it goes kinda like this.  The slapper (that would be me) brings my slapping hand across my body so its over near the opposite shoulder.  Then, I propel my hand by turning my whole body, back towards the way my hand came from.  The back of my slapping hand raps the cheek of the slappee (that would be Master Chuck).  And thats exactly how it happened.

His horn-rims fell to the floor, his jaw dropped open and his eyes got wide.  A little cry of terror rose from the back of the room.  The american ninja.
Master Chuck stood there for a minute, awestruck.  Then he began to cry.  He crumpled to the stage in a little ball, crying.

"Why'd you have to go and do that?" He blubbered.

I turned to the crowd, triumphant.  I was about to tell them to go home and get lives when I realized most of them were crying too.  One of Master Chuck's students stood by the door, tears rolling down his face. The front of his ghi was stained dark.  He'd wet himself.

All of the sudden I felt very very low.  Here i was, an interloper, and i'd ruined their fantasy.  I'd beaten up an old fat man and had taken away probably the only thing most of the kids in the room had to live for.  I looked around the room of weeping freaks, some of whom had wet themselves, and others who soon would, and suddenly remembered.  I had been a freak too.  I would have killed for a place like this when i was their age.  I turned towards the bawling Master Chuck, who was only providing these kids with a dream, even if it was a sham, and knelt down.

"I'm sorry, man,"I began, tears welling in my own eyes,"I, I, I, IIIIIIIIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!"

Pain exploded in my brain.
"Oh ****! Dim MAK!" were my first thoughts.
Then I realized where the source of my pain was located.
That fat b*****d had punched me in the balls.

I rolled over onto my back in pain.  The kids from his Dojo (or maybe it was another HoJo, for all I know) carried me through a triumphant crowd. 

"CHUCK CHUCK CHUCK!" They screamed, then "DIM MAK DIM MAK DIM MAK!!!!"

Had they not seen?  Were they actually convinced that he had used an ancient death touch on me?  Or was the secret of Dim mak to pretend to cry until you saw an opening to punch your opponent in the testicles?

I was pondering this through the pain when the kids threw me into a dumpster.

To this day, i'm not sure.  So, don't tell anyone I told you, but i'm going with this.  If there is a secret death touch, Master Chuck doesn't know it, or, if he does, he's not telling you for 25 bucks.  But even if there isn't, a well timed suckerpunch to

the groin can be just as effective.

© 2012 The Last Ronin

Author's Note

The Last Ronin
This is a repost. I lost the first one when the site dumped all our writing.

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Added on August 17, 2012
Last Updated on August 17, 2012
Tags: Master Chuck, karate, humor


The Last Ronin
The Last Ronin

Not to far out in the sticks, but deep in an everpresent gloominess, GA

The Last Ronin has been writing short fiction off and on, mostly off, for the last decade. He grew up all over the united states first as a military brat, then as a military officer himself. He ha.. more..

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