The riot


When the boys are changing for their gym or swimming lesson, the changing rooms are a riot.

This is mainly because the boys are on their own, without supervision. It might have something to do with changing clothes and adrenaline before and after sport. I'm not sure. Maybe it's just the way that boys are.

I am a peaceful kind of guy and riots unsettle me. I try to keep away from them and neutral like Switzerland.

To say the truth, screaming, shouting and banging lockers are not my thing. But when you are changing for sports this cannot be avoided.
  I've noticed today that somebody's sport shoe landed quite painfully on my shin. I thought it was a mistake. When another shoe landed in the same shin I started to feel pain and I thought that somebody maybe not aiming well.

When yet another sport shoe landed on the same shin as mine i was very positive that it was not a mistake and somebody is actually aiming very well indeed. Unfortunately this is not a situation when you try to be invisible. This is a situation that needs to be dealt with.

As a Step 1 I looked up to see the source. What I saw was interesting. There was this Portuguese guy called Alfonso who was looking straight into my eyes, and approximately 15 Swiss boys watching Alfonso and me.

I decided to start martial art classes there and then, but I'm realistic enough to know that this decision was not going to help me right now and right here.

Alfonso was testing the waters to see what I was made of, and everybody was watching to see the result.

Oh boy.

I frantically searched my memory and my experiences of the past for some clue as to what to do.

I'm not much of a fighter and I only had three seconds to decide. Suddenly this bright memory of a brilliant piece of advice came to me. This was advice that my parents gave me when I was first starting secondary school. It was good advice, although I never used it in the past.

I came up to Alfonso and checked his height. I remember the rule which goes something like:

1 head taller than you -> Run
Smaller than you -> Sort them out there and then

Alfonso is about the same height as me. Maybe an inch taller, so it was a border case. Let's not forget I had about three seconds to do all the measurements. Including the decision at the end.

I had to do it.

I grabbed my rucksack by the straps and with all the strength I could summon in such a short notice I bashed Alfonso on his head. I made sure my sport shoes were positioned at the point of impact for greater effect.

I don't know what Alfonso expected, but it was not this.

He stumbled into the corner.

I observed that he is not very popular because everybody cheered me and some of the children started to throw their shoes at Alfonso, but my part was finished.

I quickly put on my last shoe and made an exit while I could call this a victory.

Yours sincerely,



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