The is the foreword to the big hardback omnibus of the Immortal Iron Fist and I think it is possibly one of the greatest forewords ever written.
Kung Fu Is A Thing Of The Spirit: Why The Immortal Iron Fist Is The Greatest Story Ever Conceived And Told
There are many people in this world. Some of them are mailmen. Others are hairdressers. Even more still work at the post office. I myself am a master of the deadly fighting secrets.
You want to know my name? i could tell you my name. But then I would have to kill you, your whole family, everybody you've ever met, and everybody they have ever met to cover my trail. I am that deadly, and that hunted. You've heard of the six degrees of separation? Well i am the three degrees of totally killing you.
So instead allow me to tell you a little bit about me so you might better get to know me:
You would pass me on the street and think nothing of me, save that I am ruggedly handsome and clearly moneyed; visually I resemble nothing more than a well-to-do chap of classy breeding. Very classy breeding. But I am not a be-monocled fancy sort of lah-dee-dah how-do-you-do with a top hat and spats, but a real street-level workingman's manly man. Joe Lunchpail looks at me with awe and envy for my lunchpail is made of rubies and is filled with tastefully erotic photographs of my lady.
Now, the very most perceptive of you might intuit via your chi vessels and inner chakras that I am of noblesse oblige as our friends the Spanish would say. And that would intrigue you. Arouse you, even, if I was your type, and I probably am. Who am I, a total stranger walking past you on the streets of Chicago with a selection of magazine subscription cards in hand and ready for mailing, and why have I evoked such a strong feeling within you? Why are you compelled to kick me?
Because you, friend, have the kung fu spirit about you. And we know our own, oftentimes by scent. If you could bottle it, you could call it Hai Kung Fu (which is Japanese for 'Hello Kung Fu Master') but you cannot bottle it so don't even try. Why would you do that? It doesn't make sense and it is very stupid. Time wastingly stupid. Kung Fu masters don't waste time. They don't have time to waste.
If you are reading these words now then you are of the spirit. You have tried to kick me on the street, perhaps on your way to your own local mailbox to drop off some letters or pay some bills. And at the mailbox I have kicked back. We are brothers and sisters of the spirit of kung fu, of karate, of boxing, of whatever fighting style you find is the most awesomest. And kung fu is a thing of the spirit. All martial arts are things of the spirit. Even the spirit of kung fu is a thing of the spirit and I am a spiritual master. I mastered spirituality when I was twelve years old and made my lifes mission to keep it, and other deadly secrets like it, safe and secure inside and behind the clenched fist and brutal foot of my own savage nobility. It is not a burden to be this amazing, but rather, it is an honor. A spiritual honor.
Yes; kung fu is a thing of the spirit. And I was honored to accept the award for the Best Spirituality by the seventeen Shadow Shao-Lin Masters of Black Wuxia as a fifteen-year-old boy, not yet a man, but manly especially for a boy and proud. It was there my journey began. It was a journey that is 100% identical to your own.
You can stop reading this introduction now because it will be like reading a mirror and it will probably be a real "freak out".
I, like you, and like Daniel Rand, the hero of these pages, have discovered I was the scion of a kung-fu legacy; that my father was pushed off a mountain by his best friend; that is was a Himalayan mountain I happened to be on as a young boy of six, alongside my mother, in spite of any and all matters of logic or safety one might encounter when preparing a trek to and through the Himalayans; that mu mother, running from my dead dad's best friend, was totally eaten by wolves right in front of me, and that I then found a magical city ruled by arcane law and kung fu fighting tournaments and a woeful disregard as to the safety of its children.
You hear me? My dad is DEAD. My mom is DEAD. You best respect that. For then I punched a dragon in the face and I was a man. A man with numerous awards, a lot of money, the love and respect of a foxy boxing woman, and a golden sash. The world was my oyster, my fists were cocktail sauce, my feet just a splash of lemon. Served up over the bed of ice that was my life, I was the meal that walked like a man, kicked like a stallion, and loved like a Centaur.
These stories, friends, masters, and fellow philatelists, are our stories, you see? Our story. Singular. One story. It was Shakespeare who probably said that there's just one story and man was he right, I think.
Like you, I have fought these men and woman. I have broken their bones as they have broken mine. I have dwelled in forgotten science cities and discovered my name in books I did not write. and not the phonebook either, wisenheimer, I mean like real books, real old books, like you get on eBay. And I too have made wishes on my birthday. That most sacred and secret ritual, of blowing out a candle affixed to the top of a delicious celebratory pastry, and making your very dearest wish, was how I knew this book was created by men and women like us. Like me. That I was reading my own biography. That I had written my own biography, only it was not by me, or about me. My biography was about someone else.
The names in these pages, willfully obscured of course, betray not the identities of the heroic souls that actually lived these stories. The details are there, though, so that those of us in the know can totally have our minds "blown" by the inside jokes that make us all feel like real big shots. Our friends, foes, lovers, frenemies, Friendsters, Facebooks, and Baron Von Broheims present in these pages only serve to reinforce the realness that's about to be dropped on your ass.
This book is the real, raw deal. The stories it tells are the way we live and love our lives and lovers respectively. This is the way it really is when you are ranked on the list of the World's Most Deadliest Men. And if you're reading these words, then congratulations- - you made the list. You gambled a stamp and it really paid off. I look forward to murdering you soon.
See you at the post office!
Whereabouts and actual identity unknown.