I was having a conversation with some co-workers today when the subject of fighting came up. It reminded me that I have been in exactly three fights in my life – none after the eighth grade. All three fights were brief and, as best I can recall, I walked away from all three without any major injuries. The three fights are not worth going into great detail but I will say this: I was provoked in all three.
Before I dispense my vast knowledge on how best to handle a fight, I want to make it clear to both of you, TheMonk and Swee’Pea, that I will not tolerate any bullying by either of you. If I ever hear that you actually started a fight, you will spend so much time in your room that they’ll erect a plaque in your honor. Am I understood? Good.
First, the best way to handle a fight is to actually avoid the fight. When being provoked into a fight, 99% of the time you can use wit and intellect to avoid a physical fight while still standing up to the antagonist. I have found that a quick, humorous insult directed at the loser in front of you will often confuse the imbecile enough to allow you time to keep on moving (after all, these bullies always seemed to be a few cans shy of a six pack). I would refer to this method as the “jab and run” way to avoid a fight.
Speaking of running, both of you have been blessed with a genetic pool that should make you as fast as lightning (It should be noted, that while I was a pretty decent sprinter and I won my share of races, your mother is the true athletic stud in this family. After all, she was a high school state champion in the Long Jump and the 300 meter hurdles.). Therefore, I want to say to you that there is no shame in running. In fact, I am very fond of the saying, “I’m a runner, not a fighter.” (What, you’re not familiar with that saying?) So, when the opportunity presents itself to get the hell outta Dodge, do it. Sure, people might start calling you Forrest Gump, but that won’t last past high school. I promise.
Having said this, there may come a time where you are cornered and have nowhere to run. Maybe you’re in a crowded room or maybe the smart-ass comments you made earlier have only pissed off your opponent even more (sorry about that). If this happens, I have one piece of advice to give you:
Fight like you’re a frickin’ lunatic.
The one thing I have noticed is that no one really knows how to handle “crazy” when it presents them in the face. And when I say crazy I mean you have to present an arm-flailing, loud-shrieking, crazy-eyed looking, tongue-wiggling, body-hopping, leg-kicking, ankle-biting, hair-pulling, crotch-grabbing, face-scratching, eye-gouging, mouth-drooling appearance. Trust me. That person will not want anything to do with you. Besides, there are no rules when it comes to protecting yourself. Fight dirty if that’s what it takes to get out of there. And, as a bonus, word will spread pretty quickly that no one should mess with that Crazy TheMonk or the Lunatic Bri.
So, that’s it. I guess I should mention that your first thing you should do about a bully is to tell an adult. But sometimes, you gotta defend yourself. Just remember, a lot of crazy will get you home in one piece.
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