History of Tracy's Kenpo

Discussion in 'Tracy's Kenpo' started by John Bishop, Aug 28, 2008.

  1. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    I'll ask again: what's your axe to grind against the Tracys?
     
  2. Danjo

    Danjo Master Black Belt

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    Nothing against, or for, the Tracys per se. Just some of what they write. Especially when they bash on others needlessly.
     
  3. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    well you may not realize it, but at times the way you post here really looks like you have a vendetta. Whether you intend that or not, that is the impression that at least I get. I'd like to bring that to your attention. It's up to you to decide if you want to adjust your style. But at least I've pointed it out.

    I've stated it in various ways throughout this thread, and I'll say it once more: I don't believe Jim was deliberately bashing Mr. Parker in any way. In my opinion, having read almost the entire document (I do have a few pages to go yet) he was telling his story, and that included his observations of Mr. Parker as well. Given the full context of what he was writing, nothing he said about Mr. Parker was done in a disrespectful or accusatory or derogatory way. It is just the story as he remembers it.

    My instructor was a direct student of Jim Tracy, starting in about 1963 or so. He has told me that Jim actually idolized Mr. Parker, really thought the world of him.

    If you review his document, he never even mentions the Split that happened between them and Mr. Parker (unless he mentions it in the last few pages that I haven't read thru yet). He basically just says that they studied under Mr. Parker, then opened their own school, and studied with some kung fu unstructors, and started doing their own thing and running their business and opening their own schools. That's all he says about it. He doesn't talk about Mr. Parker's changes in the system, he doesn't cast judgement over that, he doesn't accuse Mr. Parker of watering down or destroying the system, he doesnt say anything about it at all. He just talks about what he and his brothers were doing at that time. This document is not about Mr. Parker. Mr. Parker is only in the document in his role as the Tracy's kenpo instructor. Nothing more is said about it. It really makes one wonder if the big nasty Split that everyone wants to argue about is a great big myth. My instructor has mentioned that it really was not as big and bad as most people like to believe, altho there were certainly some rough times between them. He even mentioned that Al and Ed had a cordial phone discussion just a couple weeks before Mr. Parker passed away.

    This document is not about the split, and it's not a "Tracys vs. Parker" story that he tells. He can't avoid talking a little bit about Mr. Parker because of course Mr. Parker was a part of their lives. But this is not a war document.

    If you can't see that, I don't know how to help you out. Agree to disagree if you like, but I think if you are finding things to argue about in this document, then you must be really looking hard for something to get upset about.
     
  4. HKphooey

    HKphooey Senior Master

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    I think more is being made of this article. Sounds like they all did something, they may not be proud of today, to get their schools off the ground.

    As with all the people we a place on a pedestal, we never want to see the dark side of things.

    Parker and Tracy have given a lot to karate. I'd rather concentrate on that.
     
  5. paulee

    paulee White Belt

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    It's kind of interesting, when Jim talks about the growth of Tracy's, and the resistance of other martial arts schools to them, it sounds eerily similar to what's happened in the club soccer world here in Dallas the past 5 years. A person with a vision enters the market, and winds up overtaking all their competitors who are still doing things under the old model.

    While the Tracy's were a major influence in the spread of and the teaching of the martial arts in America, whether or not the commercialization of the art was a positive thing is an open question.
     
  6. Twin Fist

    Twin Fist Grandmaster

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    FC is right about one thing, this essay, by JIM Tracy is nowhere near as critical of Ed Parker as anything Al Tracy writes. Read his stuff sometime and you will see LOTS of Parker bashing.
     
  7. paulee

    paulee White Belt

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    Al or Will? I've read what Will had to say about Tom Connor, Jim is much more even-handed in his portrayal.
     
  8. Danjo

    Danjo Master Black Belt

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    Well, he put that stuff in there and then posted it for all to read. It's still the English language and the stuff he says is pretty low. I'm sure that he could have painted Parker any way he wanted, but he had to talk about his "stealing" etc. He obviously knows what kind of impression that is going to give to those that read it. So I still think it's a cheap shot. Just because others have said worse things (Like his convicted felon brother Will), doesn't excuse this in my opinion. And even if it WAS Will that wrote the stuff on Al's site, Al is still the one that published it and gave it a home on the web.

    I think their story could have been told without all of that.
     
  9. DavidCC

    DavidCC Master of Arts

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    neither you nor Dan can be certain of his intention.

    the real meaning of any communication is it's effect on the listener (or reader). The intent of the author is irrelevant.
     
  10. Jim Hanna

    Jim Hanna Yellow Belt

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    Yep. There are multidimensional forms of communication that transmit information differently to a reader and are dependant upon that reader's background/experience/perspective. Allusion, metaphors, and meter are some examples.

    Anyone that uses allusion, for example, is "constantly risking absurdity" (yep, that is an allusion), when the reader only understands it in a one dimensional, logical, linear manner--sort of like testifying in court.
    When one insists on that type of a reading, there can be little or no argument.

    That's why people that write published articles/stories have the benefit of editors. They can clean up the parts that have too obscure of a meaning, etc.

    My take on the woman who was "7 pounds"overweight": Either Jim Tracy is a champion weight guesser, or she made a big deal about being "7 pounds overweight" and it stuck with him through the years, or there is an inside story that was not presented. An editor could certainly have helped him present that little story with alittle more background. Anyway, I read it and, without instantly thinking him to be absurd, decided that there is alittle more to the story than was presented.

    Jim
     
  11. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    Thanks Jim, this is exactly what I've been trying to say here.
     
  12. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    well, agree to disagree then, I don't have a problem with respectful disagreement.
     
  13. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    you are right, we don't know absolutely what he was thinking. I've never met him, and neither can I read his mind.

    well, yes and no. The effect on the listener/reader is an end result, but it may be a misunderstanding of what the author intended, and that is very relevant. That's how fights sometimes get started, that never should have.

    I think part of the problem is that the Parker kenpo world has become sort of highly sensitive to anything the Tracys might say, largely due to Will's writings. Keep in mind: this document is Jim, not Will, and Will's writing is actually pretty irrelevant to the discussion. Jim does not address any of the issues that Will addressed, that got the kenpo world so upset. But because they are both Tracys, I think there is a tendency to jump to a quick judgement and read insult in things in which it doesn't actually exist and was never intended.

    Jim's writing is a bit chaotic, and as Jim Hanna pointed out, a good editor could have cleaned that up a lot. Jim Tracy has been very open in his writing about the illnesses and difficulties, including mental illnesses, that he has suffered over the last number of years, and how it has affected him, including his ability to think straight. I give him a lot of credit for being so open about that. So I think that chaotic writing style needs to be kept in mind when reading this, and it ought to be recognized that perhaps not everything he says comes out the way he might have intended, and the true message he meant to deliver might get garbled. In reading Jim's work, I think you cannot take everything in a simplistic, one-dimensional and 100% literal way. Instead, you gotta be willing to look at the bigger story and recognize Jim's difficulty in writing, and realize the message behind the words may not be exactly what the words themselves say if you only read it on a simplistic level.

    Again, this document is about the Tracys, not Ed Parker. Ed Parker's role in this story is very minor, he is not the focus of debate. Rather, he is just one of many powerful influences in the Tracys lives.
     
  14. KenpoDave

    KenpoDave 2nd Black Belt

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    Hmm. I'd like to see it. Could you put up a link to something Al Tracy has written about Ed Parker?
     
  15. ackks10

    ackks10 Purple Belt

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    this document is about the Tracys, not Ed Parker. Ed Parker's role in this story is very minor, he is not the focus of debate. Rather, he is just one of many powerful influences in the Tracys lives.


    and that is what Master Al tracy said to me, along time ago..
     
  16. Danjo

    Danjo Master Black Belt

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    Well, it's about the Tracy's, that's true. But in the middle of the Tracy story, there's a cheap shot at Mr. Parker.

    And even if Al Tracy hasn't written anything negative about Mr. Parker, he's hosted Brother Will's Parker-bashing stories on his site for years, which is giving tacit approval to them.
     
  17. ackks10

    ackks10 Purple Belt

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    i know what you are talking about, and it's no big deal that there is no love loss between Tracy and myself, but i remember a story that Al Tracy was telling me about Mr Parker and it was not nice,but when you try to talk to him or Pat,it's like they don't care what you say (i know this for a fact it happen to me), but just wanted to add my 2 cents.:)
     
  18. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    only if you insist upon looking at it in a simplistic and unsophisticated way.

    He did for a while, but Will's writings have been gone from Al's website for years now. Give Al a call and straighten him out about it. Bitching about it here isn't going to change anything. If you object so strongly to it, go to the source and see if you can do something about it.

    Starting to sound like your personal vendetta is coming to the surface again. What's your personal interest in it?
     
  19. Danjo

    Danjo Master Black Belt

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    Seems like I started commenting on a published story, and you started in defending Jim Tracy like he was your dad. When someone puts a story out there for the public to read, commenting on it is fair game. It doesn't have to be "personal". And as to the "Vendetta" thing you keep mentioning, That would require them to have done something to me personally. They haven't. But are you going to tell me that you only comment on things that you have some personal stake in? Or are you free to make observations on things that are out there for public consumption?

    It looks like the only reason that Al took those stories off of his site, is because Will put up his own and published them there instead. But they were up for a long time. Either way, Al must have agreed with the content for them to stay up there on his webpage for so long.
     
  20. KenpoDave

    KenpoDave 2nd Black Belt

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    Actually, they were on the Tracy's site from 1997-1999, when Will was hosting the Tracy's site on his servers. Those articles have not been on the Tracy's site since Al Tracy began hosting it himself.
     

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