Monday, August 04, 2014
Interview with Breakfall's Asbjorn Lund.
Me: I managed to get to chat with Asbjorn Lund from Breakfall and took the chance to have an interview with him.
AL: Hey… So, okay. I’m Asbjorn Lund, a navy vet, but I don’t have any official combat experience, y’know? And I’m with Sean, but you already know that. We’re both students at MIT. (He pauses and fingers his triskellion pendant.) Anyway, I was born in Denmark. I love Denmark, it has a lot going for it, but my home is here. My home is wherever Sean happens to be at the time actually. So… y’wanted to ask me some questions?
Me: Why did you pick Okinawa to go to to learn about the more ancient styles, was it the Sensei or the locale that was the deciding factor?
AL: I didn’t pick it. I was lucky enough to be stationed in Okinawa after a mission in Micronesia went to shit – but I’m not allowed to talk about that, sorry. Damn. So, anyway. We got pulled out. I’ve been keeping up on my empty-hand combat with other seamen because there’s only so much you can do onboard a ship and not go totally fucking nuts, y’know? Hand-to-hand came in very handy against the – well, you know. Can’t talk about that. But we got shunted out of the way to Okinawa, and I just about exploded with excitement. I’d missed Tiger something fierce, he was my teacher. My first teacher. Okinawa’s the birth of Japanese karate. Turns out, Chinese Buddhist monks brought kung fu to Okinawa and the Okinawans then used the arts to defend themselves against this Japanese family, who got exiled to the islands. The Japanese samurai were really brutal, but the Okinawans used whatever weapons were available, and some of them are really wicked. Sickles, fishing forks, all that. I was lucky to be accepted into a local family for instruction. They sort of adopted me, language barrier and all. When other guys had leave and went off base to fuck chicks, I was at the dojo, collecting bruises.
Me: Which Martial arts weapon is your favourite or do you prefer to fight without weapons?
AL: (Shrugs.) Anything can be a weapon, really. This coffee mug? Lethal, if you know what to do with it. A sharpened pencil can be a deadly weapon. It always cracks me up, how the TSA tries to ban certain objects, but women’s high heels will penetrate a temple no problem. I like punching things when I get pissed off, but Sean hates when I skin my knuckles and then he goes all mother-hen over me. That’s why I started working with the sai a lot. You have to modify the punch a bit, but you can cause tons of damage with a weapon like that. I’ve been doing all the katas with sai recently. It really forces me to focus on the essence of the biomechanics – oh, sorry. I could geek out about this all night long! Go on. Next question?
Me: Apart from Martial Arts (and Sean) what gets your passions going?
AL: Astrophysics, definitely! I’d love to be in the field, but it’s not practical. Sean and I have to think in terms of getting jobs in the same city, so I keep astro as a hobby, I keep up on the latest cosmological developments, but my career will be more micro than macro when it comes to the nature of matter. I’m going into metallurgy. And that’s interesting, too. Take Japanese swords, for instance. It’s fascinating, the quality of the steel they accomplished with such meager natural resources. If you compare that to early Viking steel and the trace isotopes, it seems that both cultures used meteorite iron for their steel on occasion… oh, sorry. I’m geeking out again. (He suppresses his sheepish smile and produces a feral grin instead.)
Me: Do you like animals and which would you prefer as a pet, cat or dog?
AL: Nah, animals are food. Most of them, anyway. I never got to have a pet. Mom’s allergic, and my nomadic lifestyle never allowed for such luxuries. But when we were doing some work near Indonesia, I got stuck in a mean tidal current and my air ran out and I thought I was totally fucked. And then this school of dolphins turned up! They explored me for a while, they’re pretty curious, and then they got curious about our boat, which was barely visible by then. This one dolphin rose right under me, so I grabbed its dorsal fin, and they took me almost all the way to my boat. So, yeah. I owe those guys my life. I’ll do what I can for them, and that includes not eating tuna. And I used to love tuna!
Me: How much influence did the DADT have on your Navy career and how much did that career help in coping with Sean's PTSD?
AL: That’s a tough question. I was sort of in the closet in the Navy anyway. I haven’t realized it at the time, but I was running away from my attraction to Tiger, who was like an older brother to me after my dad died. So I enlisted, mom freaked out, but enlisting meant I got to stay in the US near Tiger and Nell, and not be hauled back to Denmark. Regarding Sean, yeah, he displayed some classic symptoms of PTSD. It’s likely to rear its ugly head down the line, but he can handle it. We had some training on that sort of a thing. Knowing what to expect is really key to recovery. (He pauses, then gives a hard stare.) Not that I personally have PTSD, or anything. I’m perfectly fine. I’m not affected by stuff like that.
Me: How badly did Sean's attack and subsequent stalker problem affect you, especially as you were unable to be the bait instead of him?
AL: Well… I hate to think that it brought us closer, but it probably did. I thought I was done with all that drama after I got discharged. I never expected this sort of a thing to happen to anyone I knew in civilian life. It was like being taken right back into the middle of action, and there wasn’t a damn thing I could do. There was no command structure. Sean was taking risks – but we don’t have to talk about that. That’s all over now. There’s no way I could have been bait instead of him, ‘cause I’d have ripped the fucker’s balls off and shoved them up his nostrils, but then I’d be in jail and Sean would have gotten sore over that. I wanted to shadow Sean, though, have his back in case the police screwed up, y’know? And they put a fucking babysitter on me! I got totally thwarted. I thought I’d go ballistic. Sean did great, though. They wouldn’t have caught the perp if it weren’t for Sean. I’m so fucking proud of my man.
Me: Do you think you and Sean will ever get to the point where you will communicate better?
AL: (Hard stare.) I don’t know what you’re talking about. We do just fine.
Me: Do you think that Kate did justice to your story?
AL: (Embarrassed smile.) She should have kept the sex out of it. That’s nobody’s business but ours. But really, this story’s about Sean kicking butt. She should’ve focused on that, and she should’ve described all the Okinawan weapons in greater detail. It’s not like I didn’t teach her! But she’s a chick. Nell would’ve done the same, I’m afraid – and Nell can kick Kate’s ass any day, except Nell loves the book the way it is. I don’t understand women, I really don’t.
Me: One final question that is a little frivolous but people always seem to want to know - what is your favourite colour?
AL: Any shade of blue. Like the ocean. Plus Sean looks great in blue – it really sets off his hair.
Thank you Bjorn it was nice to meet you and I'm sure my readers will be delighted to read your story.
I hope you all enjoyed our chat, personally I think he is scrumptious and well worth chatting to. If you want to read more about Asbjorn and Sean just follow the links in my previous post.