Tuesday, October 16, 2018

I'm Not a Pacifist...

I don't take a lot of shit.

I don't put up with a lot of nonsense.

I have no truck with fools.

I'm not a bystander by nature.

You all know that.

When you are hit in the face you see stars. Mostly nose hits do that. A solid jaw hit can actually drop you unconscious because of the nerve that runs along there. But nose hits, cheek bone hits, those can make you wish you were dropped they hurt so much. Eye sockets? Fragile things. Even if the orbital bone doesn't break the eye swells easily. Nature's way of protecting the eye from damage. Pretty genius really.

If you hit someone in the face your hand hurts. If you hit them hard enough your whole arm feels it. Your hand is solid. The bone you are hitting is solid. The impact stops the momentum so all of the energy has to go someplace.

That funny shot in a movie where someone who has clearly never hit anyone before shakes their hand out? That's real. It's a shock. You don't think you should hurt. You are the one hitting after all.

If you have never been hit at all, let alone in the face, the first time it happens is a shock.

If you are lucky and you get hit in the face, it is the only time you are ever hit in the face.

But if you have been hit in the face, or hit a few faces yourself, you know what it feels like and what to expect. So you are prepared when you might get into an altercation.

I think there are violent people in this world and nonviolent people.

I also think that violent people can learn to curb their violence and nonviolent people can be pushed to violence.

But there is a divide. Even people who have worked very hard at curbing their tendencies can feel it sometimes.

The itch in your hand that creeps along. That makes you feel your fist curling. Or maybe the itch is your subconscious trying to get you to uncurl your fist. I'm not sure.

Saturday before the game we were eating dinner, watching football, and wasting time at BWW. The table behind us had 4, (maybe 4, I didn't turn and look, not by choice, we'll get there) guys watching games. They had been drinking for awhile. Loud. Obnoxious. Told the waitress to smile. Which sets my jaw. Her facial expression is none of your goddamn business...

That was the first time Brent leaned over and put his hand on my knee.

See, Brent knows that if I lose my cool it's not good for anyone around. So he works as my Jiminy Cricket. And as everyone else's protector. Because first I'm going to say something, then I'm going to do something. Jiminy reminds me that's not the right thing to do.

They kept up the "banter" with other fans in the bar. And by banter I mean screaming at them about their team choice. Now, here is where I have to say, as much as I swear and as much as I don't give a fuck about good words and bad words I also don't like it when people swear loudly when kids are around. You don't know how those kids are being raised. You have no idea what their families are like. So watch your mouth. It's just common fucking decency...

Brent's hand on my knee again.

And then one of them started peppering in the gay slurs. The f word that I don't use. Ever. The one that I even have a hard time with hearing my gay friends use as they try to reclaim it. Because of assholes like this one, who use it as a slur. As a slam to insinuate that teams, coaches, players are somehow less than.

And now I'm not even supposed to turn around. Brent is holding eye contact with me, and his hand is firmly on my leg. Because I'm going to lose it. And if I turn around they are going to read it in my face and as soon as they say anything I will be off.

I am not a bystander by nature.


I'm there with Brent and with Christopher.

I was raised around assholes like the dude at the table behind me.

The type that get drunk and obnoxious and use the f word as a slur.

I know that the moment I unleash on them, they will want a fight and they won't be coming after me.

Because that wouldn't be the "manly" thing to do.

And as there are three of us at that table. And as there is one of us who can tell you what it feels like to punch and be punched and still come up for more and as I love the other two people and have no urge to drag them in to my fight even though they are pretty big guys and most likely could handle themselves, as I believe even nonviolent people can be pushed...but I don't want to push the nonviolent people in my life so...

I had to remain quiet.

And it still pisses me off.

It was the safest call to make.

On one hand it was the right call to make.

The unclenched fist hand.

If I had been there by myself I would have said something.

That's the other hand. The clenched one.

Which is slightly insane, I get that. There were 4 (?) of them and one of me.

But as Brent put it as we walked away they would have been shocked that the one they needed to worry about was the one they wouldn't have been worried about at all. Until they realized their mistake.

Because I have no quit when that is flipped.

And, as Brent also said, they wouldn't have understood what I was telling them when I explained why what they were doing was offensive and they needed to knock it off.

Their ignorance radiated off of them.

Just like my anger radiated off of me.

Brent is a good man for a fighter with no quit to be married to. When he sees the rise, he puts his hand on my knee and makes me consider the consequences.

I fucking hate considering the consequences.

When you hit someone your hand hurts.

When you don't your conscious does.

I'm not a pacifist by nature.

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