It’s amazing how everything can go from awesome to complete shit in no time flat.
I had a great weekend. Top notch. Definitely worth the price of admission. I came home from being away, all was quiet, and my presence was not requested, so I decided to go do something productive and hit the gym. I got finished with my workout, and I was on a high. A HIGH, I tell you. Endorphins are wonderful things.
As I was getting ready to leave, a small, pasty, bird chested kid came into the gym. He didn’t look much over 12, but I later came to find out he was a senior in high school and had just turned 17. I mentioned he was small and pasty, right? He came in, and the guy did everything WRONG. His form was terrible, and he was trying to lift WAY too much. I was watching this, and as much as I wanted to try to help him get it right, I couldn’t. I didn’t want to be the know it all asshole in the gym who had to get in everybody’s business. If somebody asks, I’ll tell them how *I do it, but I generally try to keep to myself.
I grabbed my keys and started to head for the door.
There’s a guy that I see in the gym from time to time. He’s big. Bigger than I am. He also looks like a douchebag. I don’t know how to quantify it, but I make it a point to avoid him. Anybody who sneers all the way through their workout is by default a suspect character.
Anyway, this guy starts picking on the small pasty kid. It started with a loud, “What the fuck do you think you’re doing?” He then questioned this kid’s manhood. Told him that there was no way he’d ever manage to snag a girlfriend, but that was OK, because he was likely to meet some nice guy he could hook up with anyway. And the kid, what did he say? Not a thing. He sat staring at the floor and wouldn’t make eye contact.
That’s the problem with being weak and small. Anybody bigger than you is intimidating. I can recall back in the day that I used to be that kid. I still want to take a baseball bat to the knees of the shithead I had to deal with, and that was almost 30 years ago. Mind you, I won’t, because that would be *WRONG.
Now having said that, I’ll say this. A BULLY IS LOWER THAN WHALE SHIT. I’ve got no use for them. I’m not sure what makes somebody decide that since they’re bigger and stronger than someone else, that they feel that abusing somebody smaller is a good thing.
I walked over and asked the guy, “Dude, what the fuck is your problem?”
Now, even before this, I suspected that the guy was an asshole, so the, “Mind your own fucking business,” didn’t really come as a surprise. It escalated from there.
Thankfully, there never was a threat of violence on either side, and it never came to blows. I’m not the most pleasant looking person, so I think that might have been a factor. I did find out, however, that the guy is a cop in the small town I live in. So it turns out, this particular bully carries a badge and picks on people weaker than him. I’m pretty sure that when I asked him if that’s what his idea of protecting and serving was that he *may have made some decisions about me in his mind. Any time now I am expecting some sort of hassle from the whole thing. Time will tell.
So the guy finally stormed off. Everybody in the gym finally stopped looking at the two of us and went back to what they were doing. I asked the kid if he needed any pointers, and he asked questions. I spent about 20 minutes with him talking about how to properly exercise so that he gets results, and how to work on his diet. I got the feeling that he was trying to strengthen up to deal with the idiots in his school. Whatever, anything to help. And, AND, more power to him.
So it got me thinking. This world is full of strong people and weak people. Some people have advantages other people don’t. Talent is talent. Do we have any responsibility for what we do with our strengths?
You’re goddamned right we do. I think that a man’s highest calling is that he use his strengths, whatever they may be, for the good of those who can’t.
If you’re big and strong, and you see somebody smaller and weaker who needs your help, you GIVE IT. Period. Plain and simple. You’re big and strong for a reason, and it’s not really for you.
Every bully out there probably can’t remember the names or faces of his or her (yes, her…) victims. I can guarantee that his or her victims still remember the bully’s name. Sobering thought.
As of this writing, I have no idea what the final outcome of this will be. I hope the small kid gets himself right and gets some respect. I hope that the bully cop has some sort of a “Come to Jesus” moment and changes his ways. And, AND I really hope I don’t end up with a squad car following me around wherever I go.
I’ll just end this with the following statement: A MAN does what’s right. A MAN doesn’t abuse those weaker than him. That includes his classmates. That includes his coworkers. That includes his wife and kids. A MAN uses his strengths, talents, and gifts to the benefit of those who lack what he has. Oh yeah, and a MAN does his best to NOT be a douchebag.