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Cheap Shots, Ambushes and Other Lessons
A Down and Dirty Book on Streetfighting

Marc "Animal" MacYoung

Before there was reality based self-defense, there was this book. The first book Marc MacYoung, fresh off the streets of Los Angeles, ever penned. Outrageous, raunchy, down and dirty, it is loaded with information about what it takes to survive long enough to get out of the street lifestyle. And it's information you won't get in a martial arts class.

Described by Iron Horse Magazine as "like pulling up a chair and a six pack with an old friend. A very twisted and dangerous old friend," this book pioneered the genre of ex-streetfighters explaining what it takes to survive.

This book was one of the first to introduce the concept that there is much more to surviving on the street than physical prowess or what fighting style someone knows. As Marc says about the writing: I wrote it for the scared 17 year-old kid I was. It contains all the stuff that I wished someone had told me ... including "It's okay kid, you can get through this."

Though his later books go into more detail on specific issues, this is a general how-to primer discussing such physical aspects as range, mobility, blocks, counters, punches, kicks and more; it also wanders into the realm of alpha vs. beta personalities, bullies, sucker punches, fights vs. combat, weapons, martial arts vs. streetfighting and much more. There also is a specific chapter "mostly for women" about dealing with the realities of violence.
Autographed by author

Warning: This book was one of the first written when MacYoung was "coming out of the street lifestyle ("the Life"); offensive language, and an obvious display of " street attitude" are present. This is the very attitude you will face out there. The book is not for all readers. But the concepts are important, despite language and presentation.

Cheap Shots, Ambushes and Other Lessons (Paladin Press) 1989, 247 pages, ISBN 0-87364-496-4

Softcover, Item# Bcheap
Book -- $23        Retail: $25

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Listen to a Internet Radio Interview with Marc MacYoung:
Kevin Keough of Warrior Traditions /Psych Journey interviewed Marc
Click here to play the Podcast

Comments about Cheap Shots include:

Hi Marc

I hope you're well. I just wanted to write you a quick note to say thanks for all the great advice you gave in 'Cheap Shots'. I first read the book when I was around 11 years old and still have my copy!
When I look back at I'm amazed at how much of a positive influence it was on my early life and how many of the books you recommended at the end I've since read. It certainly helped me get out of a number of scrapes unscathed, when others around me weren't quite so lucky. I also remain a big fan of the movie 'Road House'! lol
I remember taking the book around my grandparents and being really concerned they would notice some of the more colorful language!
All the advice on awareness and alpha/beta behavior really stuck in my mind and helped me out a lot growing up. I was learning Shotokan karate when I first came across your book and I remember thinking to myself 'there is so much more to learn than just kicking & punching!' How true is that!
So, thanks again. Great to see you are still in the industry. Kind regards

The book presents the author's attitude and practical knowledge of fighting and combat obtained from the streets. All his arguments are sound and clear. You will find the concepts and mostly not the specific martial art techniques. In my opinion the book is for all sorts of people, for housewives, for young men, and for martial arts experts too. The writing style is from the streets, making the book more colorful and interesting -- Slavisa Nesic

Let's face it, the chances of a martial artist being attacked in the dojo where he or she is warmed-up, wearing loose fitting clothing, and ready to go are about zero. Bad guys are bad because they cheat (among other things). All the martial arts training in the world is useless if you get taken down in an ambush before you have a chance to use it or even know that you might need to. Knowing where, how, and when an attacker might act is essential knowledge for survival. MacYoung's straightforward, witty style makes this an excellent read. -- Lawrence Kane, author of 'The Way of Kata' and 'Martial Arts Instruction'

I do not exaggerate when I tell you that reading Animal's book saved my life: using his awareness techniques, I was able to avoid a mugging in a rather seedy neighborhood of New York City. As a professional bouncer, it is my opinion that MacYoung covers the realities of fighting and violence like no other "martial artist" on this planet. This man has been there and done that! As I read this book, the truths of violence and fighting suddenly became very clear, due to MacYoung's no-nonsense, hilarious writing style. This is the book that started a whole new way of looking at the TRUTH of violence, self-defense, and fighting. I cannot recommend this book enough! -- Michael B. Bruneio

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