The idea of a chimpanzee doing karate goes back a long ways.
It was in 1983 I was competing at a tournament in Wilkes Barre, Pa. There was a famous 1960s era Vic Moore there. He has a ferocious sparring style back in his day. He had a booth there and was promoting a Chimp for some movie roll. All day long people dropped by to meet Vic and the Chimp.
In those days, a karate tournament was more of an event for the public. The finals were at an evening show. My wife and I had been asked by Cindy Rothrock to give he a ride home (I was studying with Ernie then) as she was performing in the finals.
Vic Moore had a demo in the finals, He was showing the Chimp doing karate. It even had go go dancers in day glow outfits. But when the Chimp was to perform he would not do so. The long day had taken his concentration to perform and he would just stand there.
Such are the Chimps doing karate. They can learn it, but will they perform on demand?
Then there was a very different Cindy Rothrock memory from that day.
While we were driving her home, she was not happy with a remark some instructor had made to her. The remark was like “You were not at your best out there, you should have tried harder.”
She remarked, “How little they understand. Every time anyone competes, they are doing the best they can do. However, each day we are differen, some days more together, some days a little less. But every time one is doing one’s best.”
I have never forgotten that.