Ku is currently available through www.ShenKu.com
(don’t be afraid... scroll on down).
We've all played the Desert Island Game. You know;
the one where you try to pick the partner, food, DVD,
etc. that you'd choose for company when stranded (it speaks volumes
if you picked John Goodman for all three).
Art of Shen Ku
by 'Zeek', we have a contender for the title in the book category.
You can tell a lot about this book by the cover. The humor is
sophmoric, the artwork is that of a person whose primary activity
in highschool was astral projection, tenatively anchored by doodles.
Sword and sails, Chinese calligraphy of dubious provenance, bells
and belted planets all speak of the enthusiasm and romanticism
In other words, I LOVE THIS BOOK!!!
And then, I opened it... FLIP: Choosing the sex of my
baby in intimate (and I mean intimate detail). FLIP,
FLIP: Condensation techniques for collecting water in a survival
situation (workable and some new to me, despite considerable survival
training). FLIP: How to deal with bullies and bandits (action
plan, good advice, sound effects). Nutrition, sailing basics,
martial arts, dowsing, child control (complete with magic tricks
and emergency jokes). Clothing with secret pockets, sexual advice,
acupressure, CPR, palm tree climbing. And, omigosh... the totally
awesome Granny's Fist!
The book is packed with info, the density of which is
multiplied by combinatoric techniques, creatively indexed. It
will be quite a while before you can open the book without being
exposed to something new (FLIP: here's a method to keep doubled
thread from twisting when handsewing (!) - knot the ends separately).
Shen Ku is broadly divided into sections for the Traveller, the
Physician, the Sailor and the Martial Artist. We are accompanied
by a cast of Rogues and Heroes of varying ages, who illustrate
concepts and techniques through their various interactions.
While common sense wells from every page, what you find here
isn't necessarily the TRUTH writ large - you may or may not buy
into the Asian systems of diet which balance yin and yang foods
- but it's damn sure stimulating! You will find yourself
reexamining your diet; and, my friend, that is a good thing.
If you manage to find a correction or addition to what lies within,
just Post-ItT onto the page. It won't be long until you find that
several of the 'core books' of your onboard library have become
obsolete, leaving room for more swashbuckling bodice-rippers (O
Sabatini, thou Guilty Pleasure).
Zeek (it's a nom de plume, and I'm not going to 'out'
him) is one of us, according to eLegend; a sailor who cruised
the world in a home-built cutter. Behind all the fun lie years
of experience, no doubt won at the expense of many's the hard
Yet he's managed to keep that longing alive, alive-o, which once
pulled our eyes through institutional windows to span
the far horizon. That longing which made us draw endless
sails, swelled with wind, pregnant with adventure.
This book trembles in anticipation, as if one were looking down
the spout of a Djinn's enchanted lamp.
You'll find yourself looking up from its pages, disoriented by
return to the mundane world bound 'round our eyes, yearning for
lost Never-Neverland pounding in the veins. You'll feel the urge
to focus your Ki, to take up the Sword, to fling a tarp about
your shoulders and set sail upon seas strange and wonderful, clear-eyed
amidst the Danger and the Beauty. And really, what's stopping
us? Bring the kids! At the very least, buy this book!!
It's a start.