Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Bunny Ears and Time Off From Fencing..Not Work

Foil: The French grips held delicately with thumb and fore finger…..the other fingers just “aids” The light grip gives way to speed of attack and subtle beats and blade work using finesse  rather than strength.


I have heard this. I have read this. I have rarely seen this.  Many of the people in our club have a death grip on their weapon. Their nerves are coiled and their arms tense as iron. There is strong and wide flailing, followed by moving out of distance and then repeating the process. Even if I had the ability to fence this weapon well, I could not. I see no way for a delicate grip to match the strong armed panicky flails. You are forced to fence the same way.


I look at the slender blade of a foil and see that it was never intended for this type of action. Give me an epee blade. If you want to use force in that weapon, I can generally give as good as I get.


Henri's bunny ears are the only thing that made foil tolerable. Gosh..... it was awful.


Tonight is my wife's birthday, so no sabre for Jim. Our anniversary this month falls on epee night. I have already discussed this with Anne. As long as she gets a fancy dinner out some place, she does notcare what night it is on. The beauty of being married for twenty-six years.( I think it is might be 27. I need to look it up.)


I might run over to the club and borrow some sabre stuff. Matt and Jen are having a weekend workshop. If I don't have to work, I may go.
Good Friday means epee is canceled.
Unless I go to the workshop, I am closing my journal for the Easter holidays. I may not have a holiday, but I will take one from the journal. Sometimes it seems like work.


fencerkath said...

I can see the attraction of foil.  It took me a while to move on to epee, and I still fence foil.  (Sabre I can't imagine.)

I always use French grip.  When I tried an epee with pistol grip, I couldn't cope (it was the same with foil).  I like to feel comfortable with the grip of a sword in the same way as I feel comfortable with a good pen in my hand when I'm writing.  Yes, a fountain pen.  

I don't have the advantage of strength so I have to try other tactics.  (Usually they don't work, but I try them.)  In epee I have to deal with opponents who are physically stronger (as well as bigger, fitter and more experienced) almost all the time.  (This isn't because I'm small - I'm nearly 5 foot 9" - but the men who fence epee in the club are mostly taller and have a longer reach.)  I find foil is good practice at fencing tactically and thinking while fencing, even though the techniques and rules are different from epee.  Fencing against children, who often do unexpected things and have a small target area, can be useful - and sometimes the children like to fence an adult.  (But their panicky failing isn't strong, of course.)

Have a good holiday!  Enjoy the rest from the journal.  I'll look forward to reading more when you resume.

shazna02 said...

Yes, leave the dark and murky world of foil and come to the light of epee!  Go Epee!  I am sorry you had a not such a great fencing evening and that you won't be able to fence on Good Friday.   Congrats on your anniversary and have a good nite out!

Please don't leave fencing or blogging about it - us internet dependant types need you!