It took all of ten seconds, and although they didn't actually get anything, thanks to my supa slick fighting skills, I did end up with a black eye, and a pretty swollen face. This lead to three days off from work to think about my current state of affairs...dangerous territory. I skimmed the highlights of pretty much all of Elizabeth Kubler Ross'
stages of dealing with disaster. Of course anger was a big one, and then on to sorrow, more anger, then dread. My friends were great and called me all the time, but I was pretty much alone in my apartment for three or four days before I ventured out into public with my big new face. It was at some point during those few days that I had an epiphany: I had gotten beaten up, I had a pretty lame black eye, and my face hurt constantly. But that was it. It could have been way worse. I could have gotten a broken nose, or worse broken teeth, I could have been stabbed, or shot, or even killed. And I don't mean that as a simple occurence, I had the actual realization that I could have ceased to exist after that night. It freaked me out.
I love my brain, though, because over the course of those few days my shame turned to fear, which turned to anger which turned to entitlement, then pride.
I haven't been physically threatened like that since I was in the Navy, and even then it was usually some weak townie in a bar fight. You see, I did have a terrible night that night, and a few bad days since, but I got through that. I know now that if pressed I will react and hit a bitch! I know what I will do, and that I can handle myself. So yea, the aforementioned realizations were terrifying, but they have laid way for this excellent confidence. I'm not saying I would ever want this to happen again, but since it has, I am taking the best parts of it, and I'll leave the rest. I now wear my shiner like a badge, and although most people don't want to fuck with me anyway, you should see how fast guys at the gym, or ladies in the Duane Reade get the fuck outta the way when I stare at them with my zombie eye! I'm not using this to bully others though, I just appreciate the reaction. The best reactions though comes from the hustlers, and the low-lifes that try to hassle you for a dollar or a cigarette, or even more. It's like word spread from that night, because whenever I'm on my way home now, and they try to stop me, they see it in my face, or more accurately in my eye, that I'll rumble if an asshole wants to come at me, and they'd b dealing with a Super-Hero style ass whoopin' and they don't want any of this, so they just shut-up and walk away.
So yea maybe it took a few pretty rough moments, and some dark days, but I'm better now then I was before. So for those assholes who roughed me up, I'm still mad, but a little grateful, because they changed my attitudes, and made me way more self-aware, which is a good thing. I'm not about to become a vigilante, but I'd consider it...