Chicken, rice, coffee, and Grandmasters

Arnis Grandmasters
From left: GMs Jimmy Ibrahim, Martin Raganas, Jr., Francisco “Boy” Pajo, Henry Espera, Inocencio “Sioux” Glaraga, Roberto Labaniego, Vicente Sanchez

What do you get when you put Arnis Grandmasters together? Well…, a lot of Arnis talk, of course! (I’m corny!)

Anyway, that’s exactly what happened last Sunday, 25 August 2013. Grandmasters who held classes in Luneta were invited to a simple lunch get together.

With the help of some friends, our group’s Master, Cris Pasindo, organized the no-fuss event as a small token of appreciation of the efforts of older Grandmasters.

“They were among the ones who really worked hard for Arnis,” Master Cris said.

He couldn’t invite everyone, of course.  “When we receive more blessings we’ll have more of these,” Master Cris said. For this particular event, seven Grandmasters came and that’s more than good enough!

  1. Jimmy Ibrahim (Founder, Falcon Martial Arts)
  2. Martin Raganas, Jr. (A first generation student of the legendary Antonio Ilustrisimo)
  3. Francisco “Boy” Pajo — (Veteran Arnis tournament official)
  4. Henry Espera (Founder, Rapido Realismo Kali)
  5. Inocencio “Sioux” Glaraga (Founder, Kalaki Arkanis)
  6. Roberto “Bert” Labaniego (Founder, Top Labaniego Arnis Club)
  7. Vicente Sanchez (Founder, Kali Arnis International)

What did they do?

They enjoyed piping hot tamarind soup, ice-cold coke, Filipino-style chicken barbeque, and lots of rice. (The yellow thing on the rice is chicken oil. Not so healthy but oh so delicious!)

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They were given a simple gift of black shirts with the generic Philiipine flag and ARNIS logo, so that they can wear them in other events.  (See photos above and below.)

You know, this group of Grandmasters were really fun to be with. They had lots of animated conversations about their earlier days. Lots of laughter there.

Talk became a bit quieter when the topic became the current situation of Arnis in the Philippines. “Learn from the mistakes of your elders. Do not be distracted by too much politics,” they said.

What I liked best was when they discussed different techniques.

“Redonda is the backbone move of arnis”

“Whatever the style, strikes #1 and #5 are always the same.”

And then at coffee time,  they demonstrated some of their favorite moves.

Gm Labaniego showing some Lightning moves to Master Cris
Gm Labaniego showing some Lightning moves to Master Cris

At 3PM, some had to leave but some moved to a nearby McDonalds to have more coffee and conversation.

Beside Master Sioux: Sgt Tolentino Diaz and Guro Mon Mirano
Punong Guro Pajo, What are you saying that Master Cris finds so funny?
Punong Guro Pajo, what are you saying that Master Cris finds so funny?

Of course I had some photo ops. I had a few only because I was shy🙂

With Master Sioux, so far the most interesting arnis personality I've met. FMA's walking encyclopedia. Eccentric. Unique.
With Master Sioux, so far the most interesting arnis personality I’ve met. FMA’s walking encyclopedia. Eccentric. Unique.
With GMs Ibrahim and Esperas. It would have been a really good warriors' photo had there been no bottles of soy sauce and vinegar in the background, haha!
With GMs Ibrahim and Espera. It would have been a really good warriors’ photo had there been no bottles of soy sauce and vinegar in the background, haha!
with GM Sanchez and his beautiful ind us wife Cora (she has flawless skin, I tell you!) Standing behind us are   my always funny classmate Richard and his son Jude and of course master Sioux
with GM Sanchez and his beautiful wife Cora (she has flawless skin, I tell you!) Standing behind us: my always funny classmate Richard, his son Jude and of course, Master Sioux
with GM Labaniego who always had a ready warm smile and a low voice like a DJ's
with GM Labaniego who always had a ready warm smile, and has a low voice like a DJ’s

A good afternoon with good friends. The older Grandmasters should have more of these.

We’ll see. As the blessings come…

Pugay, Grandmasters. Thank you for all your hardwork for Arnis.

Thank you for taking time to read The Deadly Dance.

**************

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