The letters of our thoughts are the ideas present in our mind before they come to realization . . . Thoughts that are, yet not felt . . . The words of the subconscious . . . of the soul . . .


Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Mike Pick of Pike's Peak and Other Stories

Note: I have since updated this post -see the end for changes.
On the Wednesday before Yom Kippur we went hiking in the foothills behind the Rabbi's house with one of the locals . . .
Click on the Link to Enjoy the Post . . .

Barbed wire from the turn of the previous century.

Cheyenne Mountain and Norad -from afar.

A normal sight for Colorado Springs

As well as working with the community at large, we made several trips to the college campus.

With the Rabbi and the chaplain

As to the name of this post . . .

Mike Pick as portrayed on Chinese Karate Federation web site

On Thursday, the day before Erev Yom Kippur we went to visit Mike Pick.
Mike lives in the mountains behind Pike's Peak (of which we will speak more of in a coming post).
Literally living off the beaten path -on a dirt road that branches off from the highway and twists into the woods- he made for a most
intriguing figure.

Short and stocky, he sported a full length beard, a woven kippah, and a black pipe clinched beneath his teeth.

"Sholom." He greeted us, in a clipped military voice. "Let me show you around."

In one room there was Mike's Kenpo dojo . . .
"I'll be giving a class here in about fifteen minutes, so we don't have too much time -so let me take you to my office."

The office, a small room overlooking the property and with a breathtaking view of the mountains and the setting sun, looked more like a munitions store then a standard office. The walls were lined with riffles and handguns, and the table had several dozen types of knives.

"You see this knife," Mike said, picking up a rather wicked blade in his burly hand. "I designed it for the Marine Corps after serving there myself in 'Nam. Standard Issue."
He paused for a moment then made a swift thrust with it in the air.
"Made strictly for killing people."

We understood.

"These riffles, on the other hand, are for Elk and deer. I know what they say about Kosher slaughter and all . . . But I can promise you that I kill them so quickly that they must be kosher."

Next was his forge.

Approaching the anvil, Mike withdrew several matches from his pocket and, striking them, lit his pipe. Smoke billowed out from the pipe clinched between his teeth.
A large hammer now in hand, he struck the anvil in front of him several times with a resounding ring.

"The blacksmith is the master of all trades -for only he makes his own tools. I make all of my tools myself."

Before we left, he gave us each a signed copy of his book of poetry - Childhood, Namhood, Manhood and gave us each a goodbye hug with his burly arms.

"I'll tell you something boys," he said as we turned to go. "I told the Rabbi, and I'll say it again. I promise I'll teach any of you Lubavitchers the two most important things a man should know: How to ride a horse and shoot a gun."

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Irina Tsukerman said...

You seem to meet the most amazing people... and I hope that hike was as fun as it looked on the pictures!!!

Mottel said...

There are some very interesting people out there . . .
And the hike? It was even better then it looked :-)

Yossi ! said...

so you've met mike pick and checked out pikes peak... nice brings back memories...had a bunch of pics on my blog from that time but they all went up in smoke with my zoto album...

Chag Someach

Mottel said...

I'm sure you had some great pics. They weren't backed up on CD or a hard drive?
A Gutt Moed.