So this week has been fairly unproductive as I’ve been struck down with a heavy dose of man flu. It was in my head, throat and chest. It’s still in my chest to be fair. It’s affected my work, training and teaching. Yesterday (Saturday) was the first day that my throat wasn’t sore to be fair. Any way it was an early start heading down to Darlington to Pro Defence krav maga to see the guys down there. I did my instructors course with Lee from PDKM and we normally grade together so wanted to get down and do a bit of training with him before our grading next week.
we set off at 6.30am down to Darlington, met the guys and did a little training before my chest gave up. I then did purely technique work with Lee while Brendan did a few hard rounds of sparring. After that it was back up the road and in the house for about 6pm, good day. From there it was some dinner then chill for the night with a film and a beer.
After dinner it was time to take the dog out before putting on the film, it was around 9.30 ish but as I stay in a 2nd floor flat its out for a walk we go. The street lights just happen to be out around where I live for some reason and it was actually quite dark. Any way off I went for a wander with the pup. Just down the street towards the shops I heard a bit of commotion, nothing major just voices getting closer, as I looked up I saw a guy and 2 girls with bags of bottles chinking cutting through the car park from the shop. No big deal, I crossed the road to avoid them and continue with my walk. Just then I noticed out the corner of my eye another body appear, I have to admit that my dog (Kiera) clocked him first. I was aware that he said something but it didn’t really register that he was talking to me as why would he be?? As I walked on a bit Kiera clearly wasn’t happy and as I turned to look the guy came walking towards me saying ‘whit’ ‘whit’ I found this a bit strange as I hadn’t said anything to him. Maybe he was talking to Kiera as she was growling at him by now.
So here in lies the dilemma and it all went through my head in a flash. He was about 2 meters away from me, roughly my height, clearly intoxicated, had a full bag containing bottles in each hand and was walking towards me in an aggressive manner. He was with another 3 people all carrying bottles with them. I was on my own and had Kiera with me. Now Kiera is a 10 month old 4 ½ stone Akita with a breed specific history of hunting bears, fighting and guarding which to be fair made the whole situation even more baffling. This guy was either really pished or didn’t really give a shit. So my options were as follows; walk away, talk to the guy (already knew that wasn’t an option to be fair) stand my ground or attack. Due to the fact that I had the dog and she was getting stressed meant it wasn’t easy to get away. Im sure he was passed the stage of talking too as his whole attitude was aggressive so I picked the attack option, right down to how and where I was going to hit him. At this point he was still saying ‘Whit’ now this is his way of initiating an argument or a reaction from me to justify how he would react next i.e. by lashing out. So I didn’t say a word and positioned myself ready to throw my attack, I wasn’t going to wait for him to attack first. There was a small wall about a foot high between us so it was either going to be a kick to the groin or a strike to the face. Before I got the chance Kiera jumped and started barking to which the guy stopped with a fairly scared look on his face and turned and walked away mumbling something to his friends. The strange thing was although I was ready and had chosen to fight I didn’t have the adrenaline release or response I expected to, it was strange. I felt very calm.
From there I just carried on with my walk. On reflection I had very conflicting thoughts. On the one hand it is always best to walk away if you can and avoid a conflict. You can be the best self defence expert around but shit can still happen and there is always a chance of something going wrong. On the other hand my ego I guess was saying you should have smashed his f*^king neddy wee face through the pavement, how dare he even attempt to have a go at me for no reason. On the other hand I had my pup with me and In no way wanted to put her in any danger by her getting off the lead, getting attacked or her doing the attacking and getting into bother for it. She is a gentle and well natured dog but I have no doubt at all in my mind that she would do her best to protect me. I then started to get angry, almost to the point of walking back that way after them. Why had he done this, was it the booze, is that an excuse? Is he just an angry wee arsehole that goes looking for fights? To him I was just a guy out walking his dog minding my own business. What if I was someone who didn’t know how to defend myself out walking a more timid dog? Would it have ended up with me being seriously assaulted or worse? I then started to think that if I had hit the guy then maybe that would make him think twice about behaving this way in the future. As the saying goes Hindsight is a wonderful thing and it’s pointless dwelling on what would or could have happened.
I will say this though, awareness of your environment is so important, maybe I shouldn’t have went out into the dark street, maybe I should have went a different route. On the other hand why should people be scared to walk their own street or be out at night? Is it just the norm these days to expect the threat of violence and intimidation? What is it that is wrong with people that they feel they need to use aggression and violence towards innocent people as an outlet? I am sick of hearing about people being assaulted or hospitalised or worse by some scumbag with a personality problem who can’t handle their drink. If this is you then sort it out as you might just end up on the wrong side of someone.
If you have had any similar situations happen to you we would love to hear your story. leave us a comment below.