As hard as it is to believe for anyone that knows me, I have never actually been in a fist fight in my life. Many, many, many, many times, I really should have had the stuffing knocked out of me, but by some grace of God – I have eluded the fisticuffs (although there have been a few scuffles). I never got to throw even one punch in any of them, but that’s not really the point I guess. Not even when I went up to that girl in The Dark Horse Tavern and told her that her face looked like diarrhea because I thought I was helping her out, not even a slap. Of course, I was drunk and slurring my speech when that happened, but she got my meaning and just as an FYI: if someone is trying to help you, I think you should at least hear them out!
In Elementary School, I used to incite the girls that I liked so that they’d chase me around and then beat me up when they caught me. I was young and had crushes and besides, I actually liked it when they beat me up. My first love was Elizabeth Taylor (when I saw her in Cleopatra at the age of five, I knew one day she’d be mine), but my next love was a girl in second grade named Jennifer who could run faster than any of the other girls (and most of the boys) in our class. When she eventually caught up to me, and she always did, she would take hold of my hand or my ankle and swing me around so fast like a carnival ride…Granted, she would eventually let me go and I’d usually go flying face-first into a chain link fence or a brick wall, but she did hold my hand for those few brief moments…
I have three older brothers and one younger sister, so there were always fights in our house growing up. Usually, the fights were between my brothers Angelo and Anthony, but my sister was always the wild card. She was the one who would say “You know, Mommy says you can never hit a girl, right” and I would tell her that of course I knew that and before I could even ask why she was asking me that, she would haul off and punch me in the face. Literally, closed fist punch me in the face. Of course, I was stunned and disoriented and then she would run to my mother saying I was after her which would have my mother screaming at me to leave her alone. That bitch was crazy back then and to this day I still refuse to sit next to her at family dinners in case she has a flashback or something. I mean, this is also the girl who took a razor and gouged the hair and at least ten layers of the skin off of my right ankle while screaming “Wanna shave your legs too” and then ran off while I lie there bleeding. It has been over twenty years since that happened and the hair still doesn’t grow over that scar.
As a point of reference, I don’t count the time that I got jumped by those three guys on Wellwood Avenue trying to get my wallet, as a fight. My wallet was in the chest pocket of my poncho (no jokes, a lot of people wore ponchos) and the zipper, of course, got stuck on the material of the poncho as I tried to give it over to them. I’ve never been a hero or what you’d call brave – I think the technical term is actually that I’m a Pussy. When I didn’t hand my wallet over, they knocked me to the ground and just kept kicking me in the head, face, and chest figuring any smart person would give them the wallet and let them be off. That whole time, I was trying to get the zipper unjammed and give them the wallet, but I couldn’t get it loose. Finally, I just said “Take the fucking Poncho and the wallet already” and tried to take the poncho off. I don’t know if you have ever tried to remove a poncho over your head while three people are steadily kicking you in that same head at full speed, but it ain’t easy – so it just added to the confusion.
As this was happening, there was a lady who was about sixty years old sitting on her porch swing at the house we were in front of watching the commotion and saying (not even screaming, but just saying at regular voice) “You boys better move that away from here before I call the cops” to which I gingerly replied back at her (trying to poke my head through the barrage of kicking feet wailing at my noggin so she could hear me clearly) “HEY LADY, WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU WAITING FOR? – THEY’RE BEATING THE SHIT OUT OF ME – CALL THE FUCKING COPS ALREADY!!!”
Long story short, I couldn’t get the zipper undone and then a cop car drove by (she never did call, the cop was patrolling the area and randomly passed by) and they ran off. As I tried to get myself up off the ground, she just kept saying that she didn’t want trouble in front of her house. If that cop wasn’t there and I had my bearings, I most certainly would have went all Jackie Chan on her ass, but I was a little bit shaken up and, truth be told, she probably could have taken me in a fight too.
At the police station, I didn’t want to get my mother nervous (it was the middle of the night and she had cancer and was undergoing chemotherapy) so I called my friend Elaina’s house to ask her to come and pick me up. That was a mistake. Apparently, that Yenta had hung up the phone, told her mother, then called my mother and then between the two of them, called everyone they knew and more than twenty people showed up at the police station. It probably wouldn’t have been bad if my mother and Elaina’s mother hadn’t started a vigil in the waiting room like Kris, Bosley, and Julie did when Kelly was in surgery after being shot in the head on the last episode of Season Five of Charlie’s Angels.
As I walked into the waiting room and saw all of them there and heard my the aforementioned Yenta‘s wailing and crying, I remember thinking “Oh my God, this is humiliating, what could possibly be more embarrassing than this?” I found out the next morning, when I woke up to my mother hysterical crying on the phone with someone – “They beat the shit out of my baby, my baby boy” (as if she were talking about an infant.) I went to the kitchen and let her mutter on with her call thinking it was her friend Bonnie and as she hung up, I tried to tell her that I was alright and not seriously hurt and asked her to calm down. I asked her to hand me the phone so I could call in sick to work to which she replied “Who do you think I was just on the phone with? That was your boss, Joyce, I called in sick for you. She is so upset” I literally had the shit kicked out of me again right there. Needless to say, I was ragged on quite a bit at work over the next few months for being 20 years old and having my mother calling in sick for me while crying hysterically to my boss…
So I don’t necessarily consider any of the above an actual fist fight (they were more like drive-by shootings) and as a side-note, I do have really nice hands. I think that one day I could possibly be a professional glove model or ring model, so I would hate to scar them up with bruising and teeth marks from a fight…so it’s really not practical for me. Don’t worry though, because I will update this entry if, by chance, I ever do get into a fist fight where I actually get to throw a punch – not just receive them.