Posted by: Norm | October 12, 2013

Getting Away With It

I remember once saying something to Johnny Hubbard and he smacked me in the face.  We tussled for all of 20 seconds before a teacher broke up the fight.

I guess I carried that with me for a long time.  It certainly came to mind from time to time when I was wont to make a smart-ass remark to someone.  It also came to mind when I told my boys not to fight someone who was enraged.  You most likely won’t win if you have to fight someone who has good reason to be mad and good reason to take it out on you.  I once saw a little guy, but more importantly a jealous husband, deck a big fella at a Little League baseball game over touching his wife.

One night, perhaps a decade or so ago, after the Chiefs had soundly beaten the Raiders, I went to the Kansas City blog  and watched the fans go toe to toe with Raider fans.  Since I had never been on such a chat before, I was AMAZED at the way people were talking to one another.  It was war in the trenches.  No logic, few facts, but plenty of character assassination.   Someone said something I thought I had a smart-ass response for and it took me a minute or so to work up the courage to type it in.  Then I did and actually held my heart in my throat waiting for someone to lambast me, diminish me and put me in my place.  There were a few yucks.  But mainly I got away with it.

That’s the worst thing that can happen to a person in such a situation.  I got away with it!!  No consequences; no being held up to any sort of standard at all.  I learned the first terrible lesson of the chatroom, the blog or a personal response to articles and news.  There are little  (99.99% of the time) or no consequences to being and showing yourself to be an ass.

Therein lies the reason why millions of people, daily, talk trash to one another.

In my opinion, the internet has done more to dismantle a genteel society than any other social event in the history of the world.

If Cain killed Abel because Abel worshiped  God better than he . . .

If Grog  killed Mord for spilling Grog’s yak milk . . .

If a Pope sent more troops to Jerusalem because the Muslims defiled the Holy City . . .

If the Master of the Orphanage rapped Oliver across the knuckles for asking for more gruel . . .

If Billy the Kid shot a man dead because the man called him a liar and horse-thief . . .

There were immediate consequences.

Today the Bullies show up in chat-rooms and say what they like and there are no consequences.

You can’t take it seriously.

You can’t take it personal.


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