by | Apr 6, 2018 | CNF, Issue Two

The knee is an evolutionary masterpiece that permits near flawless ambulation, the seemingly simple, yet preposterously complex act of kneeling. Without knees, we would never have been able to crouch in stillness behind flowering bushes, hide from predators who could out run, swim, and climb us. We would not have survived long enough for Sartre or Sushi, Pho or Ferlengetti, the Coliseum or even Kentucky Fried Chicken. But we are so dependent upon the knee that defects disrupt the whole endeavor. So vulnerable, that whole martial arts are designed to attack and twist joints, specifically the knee, rendering the recipient of a hold powerless. In jujitsu, a knee bar ends a confrontation in crippling fashion, if an attacker twists their hold beyond maximum extension or flexion.   Fire a bullet into the knee, kneecapping as it is known, and you send a chilling message. At best, the victim limps and suffers the rest of their life. If too much damage is done from the toxic, deforming metal of a bullet, part or all of the leg surrounding the knee might need to be amputated, or the victim might bleed-out and die. To understand the knee, you must understand biomechanics, physiology, biology, biochemistry, anthropology, orthopedics, rheumatology, medical technology, occupational therapy, physical therapy—even psychology, gender—the list could go on.

And while part of me wants to digest it all, I really just want to be able to walk a bit less stiffly than your average horror movie zombie.

Read more CNF | Issue Two

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