Saturday, June 25, 2005

A Tribute to Sifu

It can be safely said that there are four people that mean the most to me and that I owe the most to. The first two would of course be my parents and the third would naturally be my dear. Last but not least of course would be my sifu, Dr Song.

Funny how I've done tributes to the previous three but completely neglected to do so for a man that has done so much for me in so little time.

I'm aware that there are quite a number of people who don't see Dr Song in the same light as I do. To those said people, I implore you, please be silent unless you have anything nice to say.Thank you.

Anyhow....about dear sifu:

Little did I know that when I went to sign up for the CMA club in IMU that my life would be so affected. I went in wanting to pick up some Wing Chun in order to learn some self defence using my hands. After all, many many years of TKD still left me relatively knowledgeless about how to punch or block using my arms. Surprisingly, it was at that time the CMA club said they were starting a Tai Chi class and it would be taught by a Dr Timothy Song.

I remember my first impression of him was of a lecturer that enjoyed eating as much as he enjoyed joking with those students which he knew. I also remember the time when Geak Poh invited him to come up front to do a demo, to which he declined vigorously. Unfortunately for him, and fortunately for me (and SC who was there at that time), they all managed to persuade him to do a demo.

It was then I saw a side of Tai Chi which I had not thought existed. I saw him perform a routine that was both grace and power personified. It was soft and smooth as how Tai Chi should be, but it was also vigorous and explosive like a whip ready to strike. I didn't know what it was during then, but now I know it was part of the Chen style Tai Chi.

It also managed to effectively kill off whatever desire I had to learn Wing Chun (for the time being, if you ask Dr Tim).

Wanting to know more, I went up to him (together with the ever adorable SC, who was later to be possibly my closest training partner) after the demo and asked THE question.

"Can Tai Chi be used to fight?"

Ten minutes and two aching backs later, I was convinced.

When Tuesday came, I was the first to be at class.

And that started a two year journey of transformation for me.....

....to be continued.

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