On my way out to my car into the H-E-B parking lot, I saw a nefarious figure leaning on a car in the parking lot. He was smoking a cigarette and just watching me. I had seen him earlier with a couple of dudes inside. They all seemed pretty at home at the South Congress H-E-B. I think S. Austinites know what I’m talking about. I tensed up when I saw him looking at me. I immediately thought, “when this mother fucker makes a move I’m clocking him, no questions asked. I’ll sacrifice a few cans of chili for a right hook.” I made that commitment to myself. Luckily, he did nothing. He continued to enjoy his cigarette while I walked quickly toward the safety of “El Guerito”.
In the car, I thought about what would have really happened if he tried to mug me. I mean, could I really just fuck someone up? Wouldn’t I just curl into a ball, hand the man my wallet and gently shit myself while I cried? I assured myself that I would have gone to town on this scrub.
I haven’t been in an actual fight since I was 11. In that altercation, some kid decided I didn’t “deserve” the touchdown I just made in our 6th grade game of touch football. He decided to push me. I agreed to make this a full contact contest and stomped the little shit out. I got in loads of trouble and even left school for like two months. It was awful. I went to court for breaking the kid’s arm, y’all… Anyway, long story short, I was pretty much sworn off fighting from then on. I channeled all the rage into other passions–music, artful swearing and attempts at knitting.
Actually, before I was 11, I was on the receiving-end of co-curricular face-punching.
For a pussy like me, getting punched in the face is an alarming feeling. You’re confused as to how you got to this point. The last few minutes just flash before your eyes. You wonder how you could have avoided this all together. Should I have not called his dead mom out on her deadness? Who really knows?
I learned from a young age that getting punched in the face was not what I wanted to do with my life. I quickly checked “Boxing” off my list of possible Latino-centric professional pursuits along with painting houses, roofing, gay stripping, lowrider driving and famed taqueria critic.
Nowadays, I pretty much rely on my size to keep from getting into serious confrontations. I feel like I can intimidate most people at hardcore (hXc) shows just by turning around, giving them the “LOOK” and mercifully, saving them the ordeal of being pummeled by me. At least that’s how it works in my head. As you all might know by now, I’m fucking crazy, so that’s probably not how it works.
I just have no real desire to ever get physically aggressive. I don’t want to get physical. This is very unlike the killer attitude it takes to participate in millions of Americans’ new favorite sport MMA. Even though I hate getting punched in the face, I love watching men and women wreck on each others’ faces for my simple amusement. There’s nothing more exhilarating than watching a fight IRL or on TV.
I guess it’s just observing people at their extremes. It’s interesting to watch people at their most vulnerable or most powerful. There is no in-between.
There are victims and there are victors. There is no gray-area in fighting. There are clear simple lines that separate one person from another, and that’s why it’s so simple for people to take that alternative. It’s so easy for people to choose that option because by the end of it you’ll know who is truly “best“.
But, hey, what do I know? The last kid I beat up was 11.
* “stealed on” -Beat someone up and mess their face up.