The Karate Kid - learning to clean before he can fight

The Karate Kid - learning to clean before he can fight

The Karate Kid - learning to clean before he can fight

At Aurora ProClean, we are willing to take on plenty of major cleaning challenges, but rarely anything as tough as a bunch of karate blackbelts wanting to inflict serious harm on us.

That, of course, was the dire situation being faced in the film The Karate Kid by Daniel LaRusso. He managed to find himself in a fight over a girl called Ali with her ex Johnny Lawrence, a member of a local Cobra Kai martial arts club, whose karate skills are clearly too good for him.

Having clearly lost the fight, LaRusso is facing even more of a kicking as Lawrence vows "no mercy" - as he has been taught in his karate school - and things are looking dire until the local handyman, a short Japanese chap called Mr Miyagi, turns up and makes short work of Lawrence and his friends.

Seriously, this is nothing like how we work. We promise.

Mr Miyagi takes Daniel under his wing and seeks a peace offering with the Cobra Kai, which their teacher (Senei) John Kreese rejects. So instead, Mr Miyagi agrees to enter Daniel in a karate competition in which Lawrence will be competing, having first trained him up.

The trouble is, for the first week it seems nothing much like training. It looks more like cleaning, sanding and waxing and Daniel is ready to quit until Mr Miyagi shows him everything he has done in his hand movements is training him to use his arms in defensive moves.

Speaking for ourselves, we prefer to pay people in money rather than karate lessons, but it seems Daniel needed to learn to be a cleaner and use his hands skilfully and practically before he could deploy them in combat.

Of course, we all know what happens from there. Having accepted this is the way to do things, Daniel goes on to learn that martial arts is not just about training the body, but also the mind. This helps him in his relationship with Ali.

When it comes to the tournament itself, Daniel overcomes one of the Cobra Kai fighters injuring his leg in a move that gets him disqualified to limp out for the final against Lawrence. Defying doctors' orders, he delivers a flying kick that dethrones the champion.

It all makes for a great underdog story, a good vs evil battle, and because of this it may seem rather different from the apparently mundane business of getting premises cleaned at the end of a busy day.

Equally, however, when Daniel was doing all that menial work at Mr Miyagi's house, the same would have seemed the case.

So, no, we don't consider having a black belt on a CV to be an advantage when we recruit staff, as generally speaking cleaning up dirt and dust does not require fighting off wannabe ninjas.

Then again, The Karate Kid is a film with a fair bit of mess. All that bloodshed caused by various punches and nosebleeds - someone has to clean that up.

So, just as we revealed a few months ago when profiling Penry the janitor who becomes Hong Kong Phooey, perhaps Mr Miyagi was right; sometimes martial arts and cleaning really do go together after all.


Image courtesy of iStock/master1305 

Posted by Becky Cheall