The World Series: Baseball and Winning in America

“Jack McKeon inspired the Marlins to play like kids.” Mike Bernadino, Sun-Sentinel

“From Chumps to Champions... as improbable as it still seems, the Little Team That Could believed in itself and mowed down...opponents ... to get to the playoffs , somehow kept going...and with one-third the payroll topped the mighty New York Yankees on their home turf.” Sarah Talalay, Sun-Sentinel

“Marlins made South Florida care again about the was the re-discovered passion when my daughter’s kindergarten teacher was illustrating the concept of verbs by asking: what does Josh Beckett do to a baseball?”

Dave Hyde, Sun-Sentinel

“We don’t give up. You know, we play all 27 outs hard, and we don’t give up any at-bat, any out.” Ivan Rodriguez, Marlins catcher

“I wanted these guys to have fun, but the only way to really have fun, and relax and do your thing, is to win, and that’s my motto: winning is fun and fun is winning.”

Jack McKeon, Marlins manager

“We always believe in ourselves. The Yankees are a great team, but we played better.” Ivan Rodriguez, Marlins Catcher

“They built an ego-free team from the ground up, with a lineup built around multiple solid hitters instead of one or two big-ticket superstars.”

Phil Rogers, Chicago Tribune

“When you are that young, you don’t know what fear is. This kid doesn’t think of anything negative.” (referring to Marlins Pitcher Josh Beckett)

Joe Torre, Yankee manager

Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria stayed on in Yankee Stadium on Saturday night after his team won the Series and everyone else had left so that he could run the bases himself. As a kid growing up in the New York City area he had attended baseball games many times in this stadium.

Marlins Coach Jack McKeon’s advice to his team was to tell them to go out, play ball and just enjoy the game. McKeon, at age 72, has surpassed Casey Stengel as the oldest manager to win a World Series.

Every great work, every big accomplishment, has been brought into manifestation through holding to the vision, and often just before the big achievement, comes apparent failure and discouragement.”

Florence Scovel Shinn

A Message from Sensei Kendra Smith

As many of you know, I took stripes from a few students last month. I would like to explain why I did this, in order to prevent any misunderstandings in the future. As I have moved through the ranks under Sensei Mason's supervision, I have learned that persistent self-discipline, hard work and a willing attitude earn stripes and belts, and that behavior contrary to these principles may result in loss of stripes. Losing a stripe is not intended to be a punishment, but rather a reminder that only good behavior will be tolerated. All Instructors and Staff may take a stripe while only Instructors can award one or return one.

In my experience, a classroom with more than one disruptive student only needs to see one student’s stripe being lost in order for the entire class to return to a state of order. When classes are larger, it can be more difficult for one Sensei to see every student all the time. This is a reason why it is common that if more than one student is involved in misbehavior, the Sensei will take the stripe from the student they see having the greatest part in the commotion. This immediately causes the remaining students to better their behavior. However, in the rare case that students are involved in a dangerous activity, stripes will be lost from each student involved, regardless of their part in the activity. Even if a student was only a bystander, they may lose a stripe if they failed to report the situation to the Sensei.

I am very fond of every student that comes through the classroom door, and I am disappointed when the students think otherwise. I strive to be fair to each and every student, and though I am very strict and expect a high level of awareness and respect in my classes, I would never intentionally hurt a student, emotionally or physically. Taking a stripe is not intended to hurt a student, but to remind them that I did not appreciate whatever they did that led to them losing the stripe. The disappointment they feel should be focused toward bettering their performance in the future so the stripe can be earned again from any Instructor, following an excellent class.

I encourage parents to come to me with an open mind if they have questions about their child’s lost stripe, but I do not make a habit of giving the stripe back on the same day that it is taken, nor do I give any indication of exactly when the child will earn the stripe back. I do make a particular effort to let the student and parents know exactly what behavior I have isolated as unacceptable, so that the student knows exactly what they need to work on. As is the same in the workplace and life in general, unacceptable behavior is not rewarded. Removing a piece of red tape from a belt, while symbolic of the student being set back a step, allows instructors to discipline without anger and is less severe than many punishments used in our society.

Dojo Artwork

David Wheatley, a local artist who hails originally from Canada, has created a unique piece of artwork for the karate school. Some of David’s other work may also be seen at the Chocolate Moose Music Café in Davie; and he can be reached at his website where an extensive portfolio of his work is displayed including murals, paintings, mythic representations, and more. Sensei Mason particularly likes this design because the symbol of the dragon has long been associated with the martial arts. The MuDoKai logo, at the center of the design, was created by Mr. Mason and drawn by former student Geri Larson.

The Logo

The four points of the white star represent Fire, Water, Earth and Wind which are the principles that define all strategy. The sun signifies the Center of the Martial Artist from which all movement is initiated. The outer circle and the black background represent the Void, all that is beyond the knowable. The dove signifies Peace, originating at the Center, extending its wingtips to the very edge of the Void.