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I was maybe twelve years old, and I was sitting in the dining room at school with my lunch.
One of the older lads came and sat at my table with his friends. They were a little lively… nudging, messing about, laughing, poking fun at things.
Suddenly this lad fixes me with firm eye contact, picks up his glass of water and empties it on my only-just-started lunch.
Naturally I pick up my ruined plate and take it to one of the supervisors, reporting what has happened, and she fast-tracks me through the queue to pick up another lunch, also indicating to a colleague to deal with the miscreant.
Fast forward a week or so, and I’m in the toilets minding my own business when in walks the same posse.
Uh oh again!
“There’s that little git that got you in trouble”, says one of the friends.
“Oh yeah. YOU… you’re that little git that go me in trouble”, says the lad squaring up to me.
I don’t know where it came from, but it was probably pretty authentic:
“I didn’t really need you to get in trouble, I just wanted another lunch.”
At this he got angry and flushed my head… no, he didn’t… genuinely he said:
“Oh. Okay. Fair enough.” and they left me alone.
In fact, we were on nodding and “alright?” terms after that.
That was pretty much my entire experience of bullies at school. Seems I was better at being assertive when I was twelve than I was for the next thirty years or so!
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