Enemies Both Public & Private.
Preface: This story is 100% true. Some details have been left out not to protect the innocent but because it’s none of your damn business.
I have recently had the displeasure of coming into contact with a person who pretty much represents all of the things wrong with males in their mid-20’s today. A lack of willingness to grow up. A sense of entitlement. The inability to accept facts. A self-destructive streak that extends to those around him. Bipolar symptoms and a complete lack of interest in having those symptoms addressed. A willingness to hurt others if it suits his needs, including animals. Absolutely no qualms about lying to anyone and everyone for the simple means to not have to deal with a situation. Borderline sexual predator tendencies. Obsessive compulsive tendencies. A past that features extensive abuse of several kinds and more interest in repeating those abuses instead of using those memories as a means of learning from them. A belief that suicide is option A or B in most multiple choice dilemmas in his life. And more!
I have spent the majority of my adult life safeguarding myself against people of this sort. God knows I have my own problems. In the past year though, my desire for security and comfort has been replaced again by the need to explore. To lose the safety net. As a result, I now have this new person in my life that I never asked for and I spent an amazing amount of time trying to help this person with their issues even though every fiber of my existence screamed at me to let the fucker go down in flames.
I spent hours helping to talk this person “off the ledge” as they say. It’s what we as good human beings are supposed to do, even… ESPECIALLY if it makes our lives more complicated and difficult as a result.
I can’t go into specifics but I will say that my decision to selflessly help someone who for all practical purposes is my enemy WAS A BAD CHOICE.
Some people don’t deserve too many chances. Plus, I had the unique and stomach turning experience of listening to the police arrive to help this fellow, the subsequent discussion that followed, and then the ride in the police car where two cops said things that pretty much ruined all of my faith in the system. All because this fellow forgot I was on his cell phone. In his pocket I listened to the whole shebang and I realized that despite the fact that this person is a threat to himself and everyone around him, the system would much rather wait for him to so something very extreme and final than deal with him at this stage.
I listened to a male policeman flat out tell this guy in the car that when he gets the chance he should find me and kick my ass because I was instrumental in helping his ex-girlfriend get out from under his oppressive boot. A cop tells a mentally unstable person in their captivity to come after me violently! While I listened on the phone! Then he suggests that the guy find one of her friends and fuck her as a means of getting back! Then the female cop tells him that from her cursory glance at his ex-girlfriend she realized she was a whore and not worth his tears and effort. This is the police saying this! The police that the guy’s ex-girlfriend called to keep him from doing something horrible to himself.
Now there is the possibility that they were baiting him. Trying to get him to admit to an impulse or something. Regardless, you DO NOT put those kinds of thoughts into the head of an unstable person who has already done considerable emotional and physical damage to a situation.
Then again, he can come at me all he wants. He’s got me by five inches but I’ve got him by 20 pounds of functional muscle and experience handling assholes like him.*
So, here I am. 35 years old. 10+ years of marriage. A 4-year old daughter. 16 years with the same woman. 8 years as a self-employed fellow. On the verge of heading West to achieve a dream. Pretty much on autopilot in life. No real drama. No real enemies other than a few faceless, harmless internet trolls. I’ve done a decent job of making myself into something from somewhat meager beginnings.
Why would I involve myself in a situation like this?
Because it’s worth it.
Because I could. Because I didn’t see anyone else stepping to the plate. Because the things I found so vital and important just aren’t so much anymore. Some people. Some responsibilities. Some forms of entertainment. Some material things. Some friends from my past. A lot of the things I surrounded myself to distract myself and entertain me just aren’t cutting it anymore and instead of burying myself in work as I did in the past, I feel the need to go at things head on. Even if it baffles those around me. Life’s too short.
We spend so much time avoiding confrontation and conflict because it’s civilized but the honest truth is that some people simply don’t deserve the courtesy. They need to be told in no uncertain terms that they are simply above fair treatment.
Enemies are everywhere. Because someone shares your biological composition doesn’t give them freedom to take advantage of you. To look down their nose at you. To cut you off in traffic. To bump into you and not apologize. To exacerbate their own life so much that it spills onto yours.
Enemies are good. They keep us alive. Animosity fuels that inner fire that needs to be lit in order to balance out everything else. It’s good to hate a little. To want to intercede. To be able to call someone on their bullshit.
I’m reaching a point where I’m probably a little too high strung. A little too willing to be difficult. Impatient. Wary. Skeptical of most. Willing to cut ties with anyone.
But I have to be honest. I don’t miss the comfort. I only wish I felt this way sooner, because I have a laundry list of people who I want to treat a whole fuckload differently than I did in the past. People whose feelings I didn’t want to hurt and people who didn’t deserve the amount of slack I gave them. People who are probably treating someone else the same way simply because no one called them on it.
Fuck them and if you’re like them, fuck you.
- Nick Nunziata is a surprisingly caring person despite his growing desire to pound anyone who irritates him with a +4 Enchanted Hammer.
*That was not hollow macho internet posturing.