My family moved around a lot when I was a kid so I was often forced into making friends quickly. I became a bit of a target when I moved to New Mexico. Being a brash, pale Australian kid stands out in that environment. Soon enough, some tough kids started picking on me after school. The bullying was relentless and I didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t fight and even if I could, I was outnumbered. Snitching meant I’d get hurt even more. One afternoon 3 of them cornered me as I was walking home. After some jostling, they punched me in the stomach and a switch flipped inside me. I lost my mind and started screaming at them. Like, full-on-what-the-fuck-are-you-looking-at meth-junkie crazy. Even in my blood-rage, I knew I couldn't fight so I ripped my shirt off, threw it on the ground and ran in a tight circles while screaming as loudly as I could in the Aussiest accent I could muster.
I'LL FUCKEN EAT YOUR FUCKEN FACE, YOU FUCKEN PACK OF GALAHS! FAIR DINKUM!!
I threw a couple of bins vaguely in their direction and started snarling and growling at the one closest to me. "YOU'RE FIRST, YOU FUCKEN TWAT!" I screamed and they looked at each other and ran off. I stood there shaking, possibly from adrenaline but most likely because it was November in New Mexico and I was half naked. That was the day I learned that you don't have to throw a punch to win a fight. You just have to look like, if given the chance, you'll eat an ear or nose if it pops into your field of vision.