Wednesday, May 21, 2008

My Dream Interview: 'Judo' Gene LeBell

Pat Parker has landed the big one! Not Al Gore, Pope Benedict, Kim Jong-Il, or Elvis (who remains elusive, but still Gene LeBell with Tak Kubota accessible, I've heard), but the dangerous one, Mr. Gene LeBell, AKA 'Judo' Gene LeBell!

Pat casually asks some of the questions that a serious man would, such as LeBell's opinion of kids in MMA, about violence in our society, and his history in the martial arts (I'm telling you, the guy knows everything, and I'm sure he invented dirt, then threw it in his opponent's eyes!), doesn't ask about what we really want to know: boxers or briefs? Does Mr. LeBell actually put his Judogi pants on one leg at a time like the rest of us? How many puny humans does he break before getting seriously warmed up? Ah well, lost opportunities...

An excerpt:

Patrick Parker: You've had so much experience in judo, wrestling, boxing, and jujitsu. Which of these arts seems to you to be the best way to start young children (like ages 6-8)?
Gene LeBell: I would say tumbling, gymnastics. Then if they fall off their bike they have less of a chance of getting hurt because they know how to move through the air. Then Judo and grappling involve all the skills from tumbling. Everyone should have background in boxing, judo, and wrestling.
Patrick Parker: There's been some hoopla in the news and on the blogsites lately about getting young kids involved in serious MMA competitions - do you figure that is a good thing or a bad thing?
Gene LeBell: It is a good thing if they are having fun. Less injuries occur on the mat than on a skateboard in the middle of the street.

Want more of the interview of which I've long dreamt? Head over to the interview at Mokuren Dojo and read up! Congratulations Pat!

Photo credit: Gene LeBell

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