was always full contact, we all wore Bogosuki (body armor) every class.
The class was exercises, kata, fighting techniques, korte training and
fighting every class. The Schilling center classes were taught
outside on the concrete patio most of the time. You would develop
blisters on your feet until you became conditioned. Classes would
be indoors on rainy days. Kise was right there doing each and
every thing the students did. Kise became my idol. I was
to copy his every mannerism and every way. People started calling
me "Little Kise", for when you saw him, you saw me.
Kise and I would go to each of
the different Karate Dojo's throughout the Island. He would
tell me to watch the instructors and their system, looking for weak
spots. Any of the senior ranking teachers, Hachi-Dan and above,
Kise would know on a personal basis, for they all knew of him and of
his ability in Karate. This type of thing went on the whole time
I was on Okinawa.
My reputation became
stronger and stronger. I became a constant winner for Sensei Kise;
a show piece, if you will. I was, and still am today, well remembered
and known in Okinawa.
In 1972 Kise and
I once again united. I found that Kise had indeed changed, from
being the hot head I knew while on Okinawa, to that of a businessman.
Kise's main line of thought was now the building of a large Association,
not that of building a reputation as a bad ass in Karate. He had
also put on weight. He would tell me that I was teaching too hard
and that it would lead to the loss of students. At this time I
was making my living off of Karate. I had a Dojo that was over
5,000 sq. foot (75' X 75'). I had over 300 students in the main
dojo that was located in Silver Spring, Maryland, and another 200-300
students at the other locations that I was teaching. Kise once
again impressed me with his great ability with the weapons. His
skill level is very high; he truly is a master. His thirst for
knowledge is relentless. I found that he was very selective as
to the information he would now give out to the students. I got
the feeling that he did not trust the Americans anymore, the way he
used to. I think he feels betrayed by us in that we all take the
knowledge from him and promise to bring him to the States, etc. but
never truly do so. The old "once burned, twice shy".
Once Kise and I broke apart as
teacher/student, I felt his Karate changed from being based on real,
to that of just money making. He also had two children going to
college, which he had to pay for. The only income was through
his Karate, so I think this was another reason for the change.
Kise and I parted because he wanted me to give out high ranks (3rd Dan
and up) without ever seeing what true level the person was and I had
to sign the certificate authorizing each rank, in his name. He
what difference is it to you, they cannot beat you, or me, just take
their money, it is good for the Association. He also wanted me
to send all of the money to Okinawa, not hold operation expenses or
ticket money for his next trip to the States.
No matter what Master Kise thinks
about me, he will forever remain my teacher and continue to have my
utmost respect. I may not agree with how or what he teaches, but
one does not forget real training. Kise holds a wealth of
knowledge, one only needs to tap into that wealth of knowledge.
I was told by Kise, back in 1961, that I would never be able to learn
100% of the system, for I was not Okinawan, however I could learn
up to 75% if I worked hard enough. I truly believe that Kise will
never again teach a non-Okinawan his vast amount of knowledge and skills
that he possesses.