Living in the Pacific Northwest pretty much guarantees I own an umbrella. Many actually. Apparently, someone has discovered what my kids have always known...umbrellas can hurt people.
A martial arts academy in Vancouver is teaching a four-hour umbrella self-defence workshop. After spending your $45 it's claimed that "any woman or man will be able to confidently fend off any ruffian or knave who bothers them."
They claim an umbrella is handier than mace or a taser because you don't have to search through your purse to find it. Okay, this guy has obviously looked inside my purse. Small children and animals have been known to fall into my purse abyss never to be seen again.
I think it's obvious you could do damage to someone using either end of this one.
However, this is the type I usually carry and it certainly doesn't look very dangerous.
Now drink umbrellas really are dangerous! I've actually known quite a few people hurt by these. Whenever there is alcohol and pointy things there's bound to be injuries. If you've ever been somewhere with drink umbrellas (or worse those little swords!) you know there's a real possibility someone could lose an eye with these things.
I think a self-defence class is generally a good thing for everyone. Be prepared, like the Boy Scouts say. However, I think there's also a real danger if you're using an umbrella to fend off a mugging by some crack-head armed with a knife. Have you ever had to protect yourself using an unlikely weapon?
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