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Saving a Starfish

posted Apr 24, 2015, 7:07 AM by robb buckland

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Saving a Starfish

I was doing a weighted walk on the beach this morning. 
No one on this island community wakes up at 5:30 am, apparently.

I was standing in the surf with All Time Lows' new CD, Future Hearts on the I pod.
Sweat dripped off me in the sunlight while a cool breeze tried to console my hot skin.

I looked to where the waves break on the resort beach and saw a beautiful starfish.
It had washed to shore and was beginning to dry in the sun.

How cool would it be on a coffee table !! 
Much to my surprise when I picked it up it was still alive,
 It had just become trapped in the waves and washed ashore.
I could let it dry out in the sun. A couple days and boy,
 would it look cool on that coffee table.

 I threw it back out onto the reef.

It's hard to believe its been nearly 5 years since my many surgeries for diverticulitis.
Following each surgery I suffered from memory loss from the pain medicine.
During this time I needed training partners that would talk me through
 each drill, kata, mitt sequence ect. Like the starfish I had washed ashore helpless.
We all at different times in all our lives face adversity.
A stronger opponent, the death of a parent, the 'tragic breakup',
the loss of a job or a large sum of money.

You can choose to see the curse or the gift.
 And this one choice will determine if your life
 is a success story or one big soap opera.

 -Jon Gordon-

Have you ever faced negative people before?
Wait — who am I kidding? Of course you have! I know I have.
Unless you live in a cocoon, all of us have encountered one negative person in our life.
Negative people are everywhere, in our workplace, in social circles, or our family.
The challenge with dealing with negative people is that they tend to be draining.
 No matter what you say, they always have a negative opinion to offer..
 When they have a problem, they prefer to complain, rather than work out a solution.

 He dropped out of grade school and was home schooled.
He ran a country store, went broke.
 It took 19 years to pay off all his bills, but he did pay them off.

 He had a law firm, but his partner ran off and left him with debts.
 He was married, but his marriage flopped.
 His wife came down with mental illness and paranoia.
 He had a son who was physically weak and died at a young age.

 He ran for political office four times,
 twice for the house and twice for the senate,and lost all four times.
Ultimately, he held office but was despised by half the country.

Satirists and newsmen derided him on an almost daily basis.
Most audiences felt his speeches were hum-drum.
 His classic speech was met with indifference.

Who was he? Abraham Lincoln.

Whether your the 'starfish or the beach walker your day will come
 if you DON'T QUIT !!!

Pleasure and Pain

posted Jan 2, 2015, 5:44 PM by robb buckland

Part II

Once upon a midnight dreary, 
while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore—
    While I nodded, nearly napping,
 suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
“’Tis some visitor,” I muttered,
 “tapping at my chamber door—
            Only this and nothing more.

The Raven
-Edgar Allen Poe-

Since my experiment regarding the validity of the 'tap tap' use of Kyusho in self defense
was 'so rudely interrupted'  by the holidays, this segment has been delayed...

What we do know about the use of this style of defense is that it's effectiveness
is minimized, if not eliminated by body conditioning (iron shirt ect.)
If we throw  a conditioned mind into the mix, it's unlikely it's of any use at all.

When combined with Uechi Ryu as a foundation (delivery system); as demonstrated
 by Jim Maloney, Art Rabesa, Ed Hulse, Van Canna  and others 'in the know',
Kyusho acts like a kind of  'GPS'  for the Lamborgini of infighting styles.

My friend Denise is a blogger 'of the heart', she would say,

In life we either make good or bad choices.

 The bad ones bring pleasure for a little while but the pain always follows.

 The good choices may cause pain but our heart tells us it's right.
  Our way is not always the best way but,
 doing something right when no one is watching
Is a signature of our personal truth, our essence.

 The resulting 'feel good, feeling' empowers us for the next 'fight'. 

I find it somewhat empowering to believe that I have a functional 'GPS'
onboard when it's 'go time' but there is no substitute for 
old fashioned training and conditioning.

The Good Touch

posted Dec 18, 2014, 3:04 PM by robb buckland

In martial arts life and love we are all susceptible to the fantasy of 'the good touch'.

The old Kung Fu master touched his assailant, with no apparent effect. 
 Days later, the assailant died a sudden and mysterious death. 
 He was a victim of the legendary dim mak, the touch of death.


The Cantonese term 'dim mak' does not translate to 'death touch'.
A more accurate translation would be 'press artery'

There are pressure points on the body that when manipulated 
 cause immediate excruciating pain;
 also vital areas that require a small amount of force to inflict great damage.
As martial artists we are trained to protect these areas.

When it gets Intimate

Understanding the manipulation of these meridians allows for heightened awareness and
 states of arousal during intimacy actually creating a hungering for them.
This understanding leads to new sensations and/or states of arousal,
where we can achieve even more pleasure.

The Intimate Fighting Range

Though some pressure points happen to be located along arteries.
This does not make 'Dim Mak' synonymous with pressure point striking or grappling.
The 'Bubishi'  is the how and the where...

But is the practice of the how and the where a stand alone fighting STYLE ?

I think not .....
As a companion art I believe in the validity of Kyushu.
It's study is like a dictionary of striking points and methodologies.
As a stand alone defense system it's dangerous to believe in it's stand alone efficacy .

Martial Arts , Life and Love are all founded in part in Fantasy & Myths.
One such myth is that Kyushu alone will save you against a 'motivated assailant'.

Knowing how to hit,
 (boxing & kicking matrix, small circle ju-jitsu);
the development of interactive skills ie:
 movement vs firepower,controlling distance, 
set point control and aggressive defense,
ring generalship and controlling the pocket are hallmark attributes
 we train these attributes on a daily basis so as not to be vulnerable.

The Walk of Shame

posted Dec 11, 2014, 7:41 AM by robb buckland

In music they call it a 'one hit wonder'.
Like Soft Cells'  Tainted Love.

Buster Douglas is a great example in the 'fight game'.

A 42/1 underdog handed Tyson his first professional defeat in 1990.
Leon Spinks defeat of Mohammad Ali in 1978
Spinks career record 26 wins 17 losses making the Ali victory
a kinda one hit wonder....

As far as life and love goes, we all know our share of 'walking travesties'.
We see them out at the local pub or hear their whispered stories
on the mat at the gym or by the water cooler, their lives a succession of 
'Walks of shame'.

As always in my musings I avoid the obvious, I leave it to you the reader to imply it.

One of my early karate teachers discouraged me from going to tournaments.
He told me that the rules were designed to eliminate the strengths 
of our style...specifically 'the grab'.

Joe Lewis encouraged what he called 'limitation sparring'.
A drill where you would eliminate one or more of your 'Aces'.
The idea was to enhance tactical efficacy in the event of injury or 'bad rules'.

Arthur Rabesa has such drills both on you tube, and his website.

I took 'the walk of shame' from many early tournaments.

I believed 'the master'....

I left those tournaments feeling weak and used after successive defeats.
I lost so many times my friend Tom didn't wanna go any more haha !

Roosevelt said,
It's far better to dare mighty things, 
To win glorious triumphs,
even though checkered by failure.....

Something had to change.
Joe lewis had always told me that he didn't have much respect for fighters
that were under 200 pounds. I was only 170 !!
A slow middleweight .... but I'd be a fast heavyweight.

After a tournament in my hometown of Pittsfield , MA
a referee came to me and said your gonna have to really hit your opponent
if you want to get the win. They are watching they're guys NOT YOU.

Lesson Learned !

With the help of a friend Dave Sinopoli (weight training advice)
 and boxing coach Dickie Eklund (footwork).

 I Lifted & 'Danced' (footwork drills), my way to 208 pounds
 Now I could hit like a heavyweight move like a lightweight !

Let me be strong enough to know when I am weak,
and brave enough to face myself when I am afraid,
Let me be proud and unbending in honest defeat,
 and humble and gentle in victory.

-Robb Buckland-


posted Dec 8, 2014, 1:22 PM by robb buckland

The truth comes out a little at a time 

And it spreads just like a fire 

Slips off of your tongue like turpentine 


 You better be careful what you do 
I wouldn't wanna be in your shoes 
If they ever found you out 

 It never really added up any way 

You said you went out to a bar 
And walked some lady to her car 
But your face has more to tell 
Cuz my cousin saw you on the street 
With a red head named Bernice 

Turns out you don't lie too well 
Here's a bombshell just for you 
Turns out I've been lying too 

Yeah I'm a white liar 

 -Miranda Lambert-
'White Liar'

  In December of 2013 I decided for the convenience of remote deposit
 and other features to open a bank account with a national bank.
 I had a 'parting of ways' with Bank of America, 
 that left me with Wells Fargo .
 My first visit to the bank was an interesting experience.
I was greeted and treated like royalty.
My teller was a young Russian girl,
when I asked her how to access the 'upgraded features'
I was told I was 'establishing a relationship' with the bank,
and those fantastic features that had attracted me to them
 would be available to me after a year .
It's been a year !!!
And it's Facebook official !!

  Denise Lora Webster Davis says.....
Lies why start when the truth always comes to surface and the one and only to start being honest with is yourself stop blaming everyone else for the mistakes you made for it's those choices your made that has got you where you are today so open up your heart and let the truth in for it will not only set you free but everyone around you and you will start to see a new meaning on your life and those you care about stop living in the past and start a new beginning for you have this one life and why not open up and let the love and honesty inside.

I feel compelled to come clean with you my trusted readers.
The whole time I was 'establishing a relationship' with Wells Fargo
I was actually 'maintaining a relationship' on the side with Kennebunk Savings.

Honestly I don't feel I was being dishonest or 'cheating'.

After all a man has to

Mr Right or Just Mr Right now ?

posted Dec 5, 2014, 4:56 PM by robb buckland

So often in life we settle for what we can get rather than what we really want.

I'm at work, just after Black Friday...........
 not the best time of year to be in the Timeshare sales industry.
 Definitely the worst time for marketing for this industry.
It's said to be a success in sales all you have to do is talk to a lot of people,
what is potentially exciting about that is there are lots of people.
Now don't get me wrong,
 I understand that for every sale you miss because of your enthusiasm,
 you miss a hundred more from lacking enthusiasm. 

It's hard to be enthusiastic about a 40 something woman
 with disheveled hair and an English accent (unless she's in your bed, lol),
But, when it's your only customer for the day ....on a SATURDAY !!
Lawd help us !!!

I'm questioning the viability of this job.
There is no passion to be found in playing small,
just settling for a life that's less than the one you are capable of living.
Regret has a way of staring you in the face ......

I think the greater danger is in not aiming too high.
In life like in golf why settle for a bogey when you can shoot for an eagle.
Two words that nevered settled well with me are maturity and content.
I think they 'spell' decay ......

Obviously stymied by my 'right now' choice of employment ........
I've turned too the lovely and talented aspiring blogger Holly Arland
 for her take on this topic based on her experience.

Saddling up, settling down, or just settling?

Mr. Right, Mr. Wrong, or Mr. Right now?

Why does this cowgirl read the body language of a 1200 lb majestic creature,
 but sees the body language of a man as a foreign ?

 Is the man as confused by the signals that emanate from him  ?

 Is it the distance he sets, the moral he lacks,
 or the sexy scent he puts off that confuses me?

Horses lack the capability of being deceitful for personal gain
 but have a sense of survival most humans thirst for !

 People seem to lack the moralistic capability of honesty and loyalty. 
So how is a high - minded woman like  myself supposed to identify
 Mr. Right, Mr. Wrong, Mr. Right Now
My, Mr. after 9 years  going to leave you alone in a world.....
A world which was created for two…. by two ?

What qualities prevail over the others? 
How do I rope a cowboy who will, compliment and balance me?

 What scale do I use? 

Am I searching for what's nonexistent or undeserved by yours truly? 
What is the definition of settling? 
Do I settle for the first thing that trots this way,
 like a horse with no gait? 
It's an ugly, uncomfortable ride . 

  Can I break a man like a wild horse and eventually call him my cowboy?
 What's the difference between settling for less 
and compromising oneself?

 Forget settling down I am saddling up….
 Where are my boots??

My BFFL Gabby says....

Whether it be with work or romance, 
everybody expects there to always be a right answer or "Mr. Right".

 When you take a look back and try to explain how you got where you 
are there is no straight and narrow road.

 Life is full of mistakes and experiences and its not those situations that can answer your questions but how you reacted and your attitude.

 People like to blame Mr. Wrong on the man himself,
 but obviously what he does works for him and what he is trying to accomplish.

 Mr. Right Now is a forced action.

 They are the person that is placed in front of you 
when you are looking for something specific.
 The funny thing about life is
 that the best things happen when they are least expected.

 Stop looking!!!

 Mr. Right and Mr. Right Now is a figurative concept imagined by people who feel that there questions always have to have an answer.

 Focus on yourself and things you love; your job, riding horses, martial arts, golf ...

Build yourself up and not what you are looking for, but what you need will just appear.
 Don't spend your life wondering or worrying spend your life living.

 When you are ready life will know.
Posted by at 8:21 AM 

A Matter of Inspiration..a letter to a friend

posted Nov 30, 2014, 5:49 PM by robb buckland

A flower that continues to bloom in the face of adversity is the most beautiful of all.
Adversity, pain & heartbreak are all seeds for the improvement of ourselves,
 or those we mentor.

I remember as a 13 year old boy meeting you for the first time.
You were a pretty intimidating guy, the kinda guy I wanted to become 
after being repeatedly bullied on the school bus.

Children must be taught how to think not what to think....you did that.
The mind of a child is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled.

You were not so much a teacher to me but an awakener.
We live our lives between the act of awakening and the act of surrender.
Each morning we awaken to the light, an invitation to a new day in the world of time.
Each night we surrender to the darkness to play in the world of dreams,
 where time is no more.

Often the profound effect we have on others goes unnoticed by us.

As parents we want to be heros to our children.
As warriors we want to leave the mark of our will, our signature,
on the hearts and minds of our students, and all who's lives we touch.

You have done that in me Thank You, It is an honor to call you a mentor and a friend.

The Pantless Hermaphrodite

posted Nov 22, 2014, 11:37 AM by robb buckland

Winnie the Pooh was banned from a Polish playground for being an

 'inappropriate hermaphrodite'

Winnie the Pooh has been banned from a Polish playground
 because of his “dubious sexuality” and “inappropriate” dress.

This says something about us as a global community.
Humankind has an innate ability to find something wrong with everything.

My friend John Hall and I have always been of  the belief that wearing no pants
 symbolizes a day off, Doesn't Pooh deserve a day off too ?

He's a mythical character made up by an old man, I imagine that must be pretty tiring.
Perhaps the 'old man' is suffering from Alzheimer's and forgot to draw the pants.
Winnie the Pooh is also 'dumb as a box of rocks' maybe he forgot to put his pants on.
I'm a big proponent of 'no pants' if it was socially acceptable I'd sure do it.

Wouldn't you ?

He eats alot of honey, maybe his pants are being washed from frequent spilling.
Maybe, he likes to feel the air on his 'Winnie'.........
or he 'poohs' alot and requires quick access.

Whatever the truth is I think the 'bear should be bear'.....just sayin.

They say life is so much sweeter
Through the telephoto lens of fame
Whether you're late for church or you're stuck in jail
Hey, word's gonna get around
Everybody dies famous in a small town

-Miranda Lambert-

It's said that when someone shares their favorite songs with you,

 embrace them, because they’re giving you a small glimpse into their soul.

I try to do this in my stories each time.
Why do we close our eyes when we pray, cry, kiss or dream?
 Because the most beautiful things in life are not seen but felt by the heart

The safety of being a 'big fish' in a small pond, is like living on an island.
No one will ever discover your pretense if you don't cross 'the bridge',
 never venturing from the 'safety net'  of a small town.

Pooh is safe in the 'Hundred acre wood' without his pants, 
without the judgment of the global community, with his honey.

Life is easy for him as long as he doesn't cross 'the bridge.'
He'll never develop courage, because he won't have to challenge adversity.

Every adversity, every failure,
 every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit.
-Napoleon Hill-

Rotting on the Vine

posted Nov 7, 2014, 4:29 AM by robb buckland

Time you enjoy wasting, is not time wasted.
Iv'e been through 2 legal pads of notes trying to make this damn thing perfect.

At least I'm laughing at myself and my 'OCD shotgun' approach to this. 
I feel like a day spent without laughing would really be a wasted one.
At least I'm doing that !!!

Trying to live with a sense of urgency often makes things seem overwhelming.
Sometimes it's better when things aren't perfect.
At least that way you know 'it's' real.
Creativity, is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art, is knowing which ones to keep.

I'm working on a DVD project with one of my mentors, Art Rabesa.
We are highlighting Arts' encyclopedic knowledge of Power In-Fighting and training methodologies with an R.M.A. twist ......FEARS style !!!

Excellence is attainable, but perfection ?
In our profession, precision and perfection are not dispensable luxuries,
 they're necessary attributes.

I was doing my weighted walk through the cemetery today.
Leaves were blowing everywhere, Summer's death has completely given way
 to the decay of Fall: now too soon replaced by Winters frosty grip.

It reminded me of how we all hope for breakthrough rebirth moments.
My training went through a renaissance after experiencing the power of Art Rabesa.

Art said something interesting during a recent phone conversation.
He said, "I don't need to hurt anyone for them to learn this 'stuff'. "

O.K. but I sure remember pain......
I think we gain wisdom from mentors and pain and Art Rabesa provides both.
I'm sure thankful for it too because the experience changed 'my martial art' forever.

In Martial Arts, Fitness, Life and Love were are searching for
someone or something whose 'demons' will play well with ours. 

Arts' 'demons' play well with mine

Living like a Runaway

posted Nov 5, 2014, 10:16 AM by robb buckland


Life is short, break the rules (they were made to be broken)
Forgive quickly, kiss slowly, love truly, laugh uncontrollably
and never regret anything that makes you smile.

The clouds are lined with silver and the glass is half full.
(although the answer won't be found at the bottom)
Don't sweat the small stuff,
You are who your meant to be.
Dance as if no one's watching.
Love as if it's all you know.
Dream as if you'll live forever,
Live as if you'll die today.

When I was younger I lived like a runaway.
To be a seeker you have to doubt all truths,
observation and experience will teach you what you need to know.

In the end it's imagination, not knowledge that marks intelligence.
I think the saying goes, 'Without strong roots the mightiest tree cannot stand.'
Experiencing different places, cultures and opportunities has always been paramount 
to my 'taking root'. Funny how people try to get you to focus on what 'they' want.

The discovery of 'the agenda' is the hardest thing to accept when you discover it.
Key West, South Beach, Williamsburg, Cape Cod, New Orleans...on and on,
 Been there done that ! It's not the place, It's the people that make the difference.

There are people we don't want to lose
but can't hold onto.

There are places we don't want to be 
but are meant to experience.

There are things we don't want to happen 
but can't control.

It's your job to climb the mountain and see above the clouds for yourself.
Rather than to believe the 'congregations' interpretation of the view.
We need to be able to state our personal truth without having to prove or 'shout' it.
Our greatest short coming is that we have learned to mask certain feelings,
or portray feelings that weren't even ours.

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