In my youth, I was trained in the martial arts. Through karate, my tiny doughy body was transformed into an engine of angsty destruction, and my ADD riddled mind was honed into a harmonious aura of calm and understanding (that was riddled with ADD). Or at least it would have been, had I gone to a real karate instructor. Sadly, I went to what’s known as a “Mcdojo”, or more accurately known as “a studio run by a fucking white guy”. So while all my friends were dodging ninja stars, doing bicycle kicks and beating the shit out of Ralph Machio, I was learning how to punch and block. A lot. In various orders and patterns. For 5 goddamn years.
At the time, I thought I was a living weapon; in retrospect, I could have gotten my ass kicked by a dead cat. In fact, there’s only one scenario in which my training would have been even remotely useful:
Bully #1: Alright, today’s the day we attack that kid.
Bully #2: Awesome. I can’t wait to punch the crap out of that kids face.
Bully #1: I know! There’s only one problem- I am horrifically ill. A combination of asthma and muscular dystrophy has ravaged my young body. If this boy resists our attacks with so much as a single well choreographed punch, I would shatter me.
Bully #2: That is horrific timing, because I just came down with polio. I can’t manage anything but the slowest of movements.
Bully #1: Luckily, I don’t expect this guy to fight back at all. Not even a little. And even if he does, I’ve convinced four other bullies to help us.
Other Bullies: Hey.
Bully #2: That is awesome! And they’re all strong, right?
Bully #1: Not really. Three of them have fetal alcohol syndrome; it’s as if their bodies were comprised of pipe cleaners and Elmers glue. The fourth is okay, but he has a crippling phobia of people who go “Yaaa” when they punch. And two of them have OCD, so they insist me mount our attack in a single file fashion, only assaulting him one at a time. They were very insistent on that.
Bully #2: That sound pretty horrible, but I’m nonetheless optimistic! What’s our strategy?
Bully #1: first, we attack from the front, then stop within arm’s length, and take the proper amount of time to get our fists ready to punch him. If he survives that, then you approach him from the left and grab him by the wrists.
Bully #2: but what if he’s able to turn left? And then break my hold with some sort of mystical spinning of the arm?
Bully #1: Impossible! No man can turn left and escape the grabbing of the wrist! It’s been proven by science! And even if he does, he’ll never expect me to attack from his right!
Bully #2: (Gasps) My god, you’re like a tiny Napoleon wrapped in a Digimon t-shirt!
Bully #1: And even if he does manage to foresee my attack and discover my secret weak spot-
Bully #2: -You mean your entire torso?
Bully #1: -Yes, my weak, gnarled torso- then I’ve brought this to shield myself with: a sheet of balsa wood!
Bully #2: Brilliant! Let us begin our attack! (Begins walking) But what if he has learned some sort of martial art that allows him to punch through your balsa wood?
Bully #1: then god help us all.
Other Bullies: why are we doing this again?
Bully #1: I’m not sure. I think it’s that stupid “Gi” he always wears. I fucking hate that thing.