Friday night, I went with some friends to see the latest Hunger Games film. I’m not really all that into that franchise, but I am into movies about bad-ass women who kick a lot of ass.
Speaking of bad-ass women who kick ass, I got into a street fight a couple of weeks ago. Okay, I’m totally over selling it. It was more of an attack that I defended myself against. But whatever, I got hit in the face by a stranger, and I didn’t cry. That’s bad ass.
It all started with a coupon to the Gap Outlet (like so many street fight do). Those bastards know I’ve never met an $8.97 t-shirt I can resist. As I walked over that day, I knew had no business going there since I am in need of nothing. Maybe I was looking for trouble.
I like shopping early in the morning, when a store first opens, so I can avoid crowds and lines (you know, other people). The door was locked when I got there so I stepped off to the right and continued to listen to music while I waited for the store to open. A woman approached the store from the left. As the only other person on the sidewalk that morning, I took note of her. Nothing stood out about her. She didn’t appear disheveled in any way. She was clean and reasonably put together. I noticed she was wearing flip flops, which I found odd because it was pretty cold that morning. But beyond that, looked like a normal lady to me.
She tried the door only to learn that it was locked. Without taking my earbuds out, I smiled and said, “Not yet.” She turned towards me and was saying something. I couldn’t hear her so I started to take my earbuds out. And as I was reaching up to take them out of my ears, I remember thinking, “She’s getting really close to me. She looks kind of mad…”
And quickly as those words crossed my mind, this woman raised her hand up and hit me in the face with her newspaper.
Yeah, I was pretty surprised, too. It took me a moment to figure out what the hell was going on. And in that moment, I could see her raise her hand to hit me again. Then I figured it out.
“So, this is happening,” I thought to myself.
Luckily, I grew up with a sister and we were well known as the “Bicker sisters,” and those petty little arguments sometimes turned violent. This wasn’t the first time I’d been hit in the face. So, it only took a moment for those old instincts to kick in. I caught her arm as she tried to hit me a second time, I grabbed her other arm and pushed her away from me. While pushing her, I heard myself say, “No. Don’t do that.” To my surprise, my voice was calm yet stern. It was the kind of tone you use when talking to a three-year-old caught writing on the wall in crayon.
I kind of thought that pushing her would be then end of it. But no. She came right back. She tried to hit me again with her right hand, which I caught again. I grabbed her other arm, again, and pushed her, again. This time I heard myself say, “Oh, you are a crazy person.” I pushed her again, and walked in the opposite direction. In an attempt to get away from her, I crossed the street and stood with a couple of people who were waiting for the Banana Republic (obviously a much classier crowd—now if only they’d start mailing me coupons).
“Do you know her?” asked the woman waiting out front of the store. I assured her that the people I know would never hit me in the face in public and then joked that maybe this was the universe’s way of telling me I don’t need anything from the Gap Outlet. (Please, like I’m going to let an attempted assault come between me and some shit I don’t need.)
All jokes aside, I think the universe actually may have been telling me something. Because once in the store, I got up to the register to buy something only to find that I had left my wallet at home. Well played, universe. No extraneous t-shirts were purchased that day.
So in closing, I would like to point out that while I may have been ambushed by a crazy person, I fought her off in a street fight (of sorts). Like a champ. AND I DIDN’T CRY.
Not to brag, but I’m kind of bad ass. If you want to start calling me Katniss Everdeen, I’m not going to stop you.