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Lyle Zapato

Jiu-Jitsu Move #4

Lyle Zapato | 2007-10-09.2710 LMT | Defensive Techniques | Retro

LA GARROTTE Á LE JUPONAISE.

If a man be sitting in a chair, you can approach him on the right side or slightly behind, reach over with your left hand hooked under his chin, or seize his forelock, pull his head backward forcibly, and reach around his neck with your right hand and grasp his collar under his left ear (see ill.1). Now he is sure to put up his left, to get your right away from his throat. Catch it with your left, twisting it around to the left and backward (see ill. 2), and as you take your fall with B in the same direction, kick the falling chair away with your right foot.

No. 1--'Oh--'

No. 2--'This is so--'

No. 3--'Sudden!'

CHAIR ARREST

Here is another way to arrest a man sitting in a chair, without throwing him.

Chair Arrest.

From Jiu-jitsu: A Comprehensive and Copiously Illustrated Treatise (1904), p. 58-61, by Harry Hall Skinner.

Lyle Zapato

Mr. Beale And The Poulpe

Lyle Zapato | 2007-10-08.1355 LMT | Cephalopods | Defensive Techniques | Retro

Today is International Cephalopod Awareness Day. Which poses the question: Why should we be aware of cephalopods?

In years past, lack of awareness of our cephalopodan cohabitants has only led to misunderstandings, and often times violence. Take for instance this sad tale of an encounter gone horribly wrong between an Englishman and a Japanese octopus:

Mr. Beale and the Poulpe

[Octopuses'] remarkable spirit, as well as their strength, is evinced by an adventure which Mr. Beale, an Englishman, had with one of them among the rocks of the Bonin Islands, where he had gone ashore to seek for shells. As he was moving about, he was suddenly arrested by seeing at his feet a most extraordinary looking animal, crawling toward the surf, which it had only just left. It was creeping on its eight legs, which, from their soft and flexible nature, bent considerably under the weight of its body, so that it was lifted by the efforts of its tentacula only a small distance from the rocks. It appeared much alarmed at seeing him, and made every effort to escape. Mr. Beale endeavored to stop it by pressing on one of its legs with his foot; but, although he used considerable force for that purpose, its strength was so great that it several times liberated its member in spite of all the efforts he could employ on the wet and slippery rocks. He then laid hold on one of the tentacles with his hands and held it firmly, so that it appeared as if the limb would be torn asunder by the united efforts of himself and the creature. He then gave it a powerful jerk, wishing to disengage it from the rocks to which it clung so forcibly by its suckers. This effort it effectually resisted; but the moment after, the apparently enraged animal lifted its head with its large projecting eyes, and loosing its hold of the rocks, suddenly sprang upon Mr. Beale's arm, and clung to it by means of its suckers with great power, endeavoring to get its beak, which could now be seen between the roots of its arms, in a position to bite. A sensation of horror pervaded his whole frame, when he found that this hideous animal had fixed itself so firmly on his arm. Its cold, slimy grasp was extremely sickening; and he loudly called to the captain, who was at some distance, to come and release him from his disgusting assailant. The captain quickly came, and taking him down to the boat, during which time Mr. Beale was employed in keeping the beak of the octopus away from his hands, soon released him, by destroying his tormentor with the boat-knife, which he accomplished by cutting away portions at a time.

(From Illustrated Natural History of the Animal Kingdom (1859), p. 498, by Samuel Griswold Goodrich.)

Raising cephalopod awareness will help end the ignorant, speciesist attitude that lets Englishmen think it's proper to step on the arms of innocent octopuses. He deserved to be bitten and was just lucky that the octopus totally screwed up the kusa zuribiki move.

UPDATE: Also see Celebrate International Cephalopod Awareness Day at Cephalopodcast for more cephalopod-awareness-related links.

Lyle Zapato

Jiu-Jitsu Move #3

Lyle Zapato | 2007-10-08.1330 LMT | Defensive Techniques | Retro

KUSA ZURIBIKI, Shaking Hands Act.

Or as the Japanese name cannot be properly translated into an English equivalent, we might as well call it the "Glad hand."

No. 1--'So Glad  to See You.'

In order to secure a sudden advantage over an opponent, it is often best to resort to strategy and take your man wholly by surprise.

As a mode of attack, this act is one of the neatest, completest surprises known to the Gentle Art.

(1) A approaches B, holding out his right hand as if he were going to shake hands, grasps B's right hand as in ill. 1, and stepping back quickly, gives B's hand a violent pull, causing B to lose his balance and start forward, while A rushes back in the opposite direction, past B's right side, still holding B;s right hand, and stoops, grasping B's right ankle with the left hand, whirls B about and tips him over; or letting go with the right hand, sends him headlong with the left ankle, see ill. 2.

No. 2--'Must You Go So Soon?'

This is very simple and effective when you get it right.

From Jiu-jitsu: A Comprehensive and Copiously Illustrated Treatise (1904), p. 111-112, by Harry Hall Skinner.

Lyle Zapato

Jiu-Jitsu Move #2

Lyle Zapato | 2007-10-07.2340 LMT | Defensive Techniques | Retro

ARRESTING A POLICEMAN.

Some time it may become necessary to arrest a policeman; and in that event, all you have to do is to carry out the following instructions with celerity and precision.

A Weak Spot in 'Copper'

Get on his left side, a little at the rear, (1) with your right hand catch hold of the lower end of his club which hangs in his belt at the left side, and turn it outward to the left and upward, so that it will bear across his left arm just above the elbow; while you are doing this with the right hand, catch hold of his left wrist with your left hand, holding his arm back against his club, to keep it straight, and with your right hand push the top end or handle of the club against his left side, just above, and slightly in front of the pelvis bone on No. 11, ill. A., as per illustration. This hurts terribly in two places; the middle of his arm and at the end of the club in his flank. Be careful of the latter point. It is one of the knock-outs of JIU-JITSU and apt to cause collapse.

The writer asked permission to try this experiment, just for practice, on a New York policeman, and after grasping his left wrist and turning up the club in the above manner, as if it were one motion, the officer was asked what there was for him to do in a case like that. He replied, between gasps of pain, that there was nothing he could do without breaking his arm or killing himself.

From Jiu-jitsu: A Comprehensive and Copiously Illustrated Treatise (1904), p. 63-64, by Harry Hall Skinner.

Lyle Zapato

Jiu-Jitsu Move #1

Lyle Zapato | 2007-10-06.2900 LMT | Defensive Techniques | Retro

OYA UBI SHIME or Thumb Grip.

No. 4--Oh My!

Suppose you catch B's right thumb round the waist, just below the first joint, holding it tightly well down in the crotch between your right thumb and first finger, pull and press the ends of your fingers down into the base of his thumb at the back of the hand, he will probably drop to his knees, to save his thumb. See illustration.

Remember that in a rough-and-tumble fight or scuffle, when you can get one of these grips on your man, he is helpless. Always "look pleasant" and keep cool. This is often half the battle.

From Jiu-jitsu: A Comprehensive and Copiously Illustrated Treatise (1904), p. 13, by Harry Hall Skinner.

Lyle Zapato

A Lesson In Street Defense

Lyle Zapato | 2007-10-05.1613 LMT | Defensive Techniques | Retro

No. 1.—AN OPPONENT THREATENS TO START A FIGHT WITH ME

Read more...

Lyle Zapato

That's Redactulous!

Lyle Zapato | 2007-06-28.1356 LMT | General Paranoia

Besides their "Family Jewels", the CIA also recently released lots of other interesting documents, which can be searched through at their FOIA Electronic Reading Room. While some are questioning their heavy use of redaction, if you read the context of the redacted text carefully many secrets can be gleaned.

For instance, consider the document titled "Agency Hosts Movie Premiere and Sneak Preview". It recounts a screening at CIA Headquarters in Langley, VA of the made-for-cable movie "In the Company of Spies", which was filmed on location there. Although they obviously want to keep it on the hush-hush, the keen-eyed will notice that the document redactedly intimates at a highly classified CIA gift shop:

Scanned text

Redactions also hint at a secret CIA house band, whose name is only known to the upper echelon of the Intelligence community:

Scanned text

Given the fevered redacting at the end suggested by the crescendo of multiple, overlapping white boxes, one can only assume that George Tenet's drum solo must have really kicked [EXPLETIVE DELETED].

(Note that the line right before that contains a redaction joke by Tim Matheson. Perhaps the Publications Review Board redactor has a sense of humor.)

Lyle Zapato

Monorail Cat

Lyle Zapato | 2007-03-16.8970 LMT | Monorail Danger

First it was a monorail built exclusively for puppies, which the Monorailists hoped would lower people's natural resistance to monorails. At the time, I noted that the canonical psychotronic enamorment memeplex involves cute kittens and wondered why the monorailists would choose the non-standard cuteness vector of puppies.

Well, now the monorailists are closing the cuteness gap with their newest propaganda ploy. I introduce to you (assuming you haven't already seen it in the memeosphere):

MONORAIL CAT

As with the Toyger and Hitler cats, the Monorail Cat was bred by eugenicists to resemble something it is not. In this case, a monorail train.

Most likely building on the work of the controversial Munchkin cat breeders, the Monorailists have created a cat with only vestigial legs and a ventral groove that allows it to slide on its belly fur along smooth tracks. Soon they will have a whole army of Monorail Cats with which to slide across the railings and banisters in our communities, lulling naive people into acceptance of -- and, eventually, desire for -- monorailular movement.

I just hope breeding these cats for monorail-like traits hasn't resulted in them exhibiting the same propensity for spontaneous combustion as with real monorails.

More examples of Monorail Cat propaganda images are being spread via a cat fancier site called "I CAN HAS CHEEZBURGER?" (and possibly at monorailcat.com, which for now only says "Coming Soon!").

Lyle Zapato

Physiognomics As She Is Spoke

Lyle Zapato | 2006-09-25.7000 LMT | Miscellaneous | Retro
George Morland
Aquasorbitiveness large.
George Morland, a talented painter, who died as he had lived, a great drunkard.

The 1871 book A New Physiognomical Chart by Joseph Simms, M.D. presents an original physiognomic classification system based on over 100 faculties -- such as characterioscopicity, computationumericality, and physiœlpidicity -- discernable by a combination of body types and facial features.

Each faculty is given an entry that includes a descriptive physiognomic characteristic; a grading scale from 1 to 12; methods to increase or decrease ones grade, should one choose; and illustrations of individuals who exemplify the faculty, positively or negatively.

While some of the faculty names are still in usage (e.g. "ambitiousness" and "credulousness" -- which Simms conveniently considers a faculty worthy of promotion), most are all but lost to the Internet (The Phrontistery doesn't even have a list!)

So, for the sake of huntatative types who wish to expand their linguastiveness, find grist for their salitive mill, or are just trying to tell their temporinaturalitiveness from their temporimechanicality, here's a glossary of select physiognomic faculties (those with high degrees of both amicitiveness and ordinimentality, please feel free to add these words to Wiktionary to edify future generations of physiognomicists):

Read more...

Tha Stinkin' Pirate

Pirobots!

Tha Stinkin' Pirate | 2006-07-01.7030 LMT | Piratical Yarrings | Simulacra

Ferget tha scurvy, Depp'd Pirates o' tha Carrribbean ride, now ye can git yer own pirobotical shipmate...

(I pirated tha video off ah site I discover'd whilst searchin' tha eBay fer booty, but I've lost me map ta tha pirobotmonger's whereabouts. I'm plannin' ta replace me whole crew wit audioanimatrrronics, so if ye be knowin' tha site's bearins', I'd be much obliged.)