When I was in the 4th grade, a kid named Matt H. (Front row, 2nd from right, with the pink ears. That’s me next to him, in all white.) used to always pick on me, and I would always come home in tears. Finally, my mom had had enough. So she said, “Call him and challenge him to a fight tomorrow.” I was astounded. My mom has never been a violent person at all, but apparently she realized that every once in a while, a person’s gotta stand up for themselves (and she knew that I was going to be calling his bluff.) So I called Matt H. and the conversation went as follows:
- JGT: Hey Matt.
- Matt: Hey.
- JGT: Hey listen, I’m just calling to challenge you to a fight out by my swingset at 10 o’clock tomorrow morning.
- Matt: Um, hold on a second. Let me go ask my mom. (long pause) Hey, my mom says I can’t fight you tomorrow. But do you want to go to the movies tonight?
- JGT (Who was scared to death that he might accept the challenge): Yeah, sure!
And Matt H. and I have been friends ever since. So when I read about this mom in Dover who drove her daughter to the house of a girl who had been picking on her and told her to fight, I said, “Right on!” Yeah, the cops are pissed and the media won’t give you a fair shake, but every once in a while you gotta stand up to a bully, critics be damned. And, according to this story, the bully got her ass beat. Good on ya, I say. Maybe if the bully had invited her to the movies, none of this would have ever happened.