Saturday, April 09, 2005

Things the Wife and I Have Fought About

The most interesting fight Virginia and I ever had was in Rome a couple years ago. We went down for a long weekend and were out sampling the Rome nightlife which for us basically means all the Irish pubs. We finished our night at the John Bull Pub, which is an English style pub near the Vittorio Emmanuel II monument in Palazzo Venezia. By that time, I’d managed to put away my share of pints (as well as a few other people’s shares) of Guinness and Allsop’s Cream Stout, so we decided to go back to the hotel and call it a night, me feeling very saucy from the stout.

We were laughing and joking as we start walking back towards the Coloseum to catch the metro. Now, let me set the scene for you – the road that goes around the Palazzo Venezia is very wide, enough for several cars. During the day, it’s very crowded with traffic and very dangerous. But late at night, with no cars, it’s wiiiiiiide open. So we’re walking across it holding hands and this idiot on a Vespa approaches the Palazzo. There were no other cars and no other pedestrians in the street. Yet, for some reason, this guy decides that instead of switching to one of the other 5 unoccupied lanes, I should get out of his way. He even goes so far as to drive straight at us and stop suddenly right in front of us, giving us a dirty look. I’m watching him the whole way thinking, “What’s this idiot doing? Is he trying to hit us?” As I’m watching this all unfold, I suddenly start feeling very snarky. So I’m looking at the guy as we keep walking and saying something like “Yeah that’s right dude, you’d better stop. You got all this room, you don’t need to raise up on me. Go ahead and drive around me”. He drives off still looking back at us with a dirty look, which really gets to me so I start jawing at him, throwing all kinds of tough guy clich├ęs at him like “Yeah, you feeling froggy? Go ahead and jump!” and “Got sumpin’ for me? C’mon back here with your faggy little motor scooter, tough guy!”.

It was admittedly not my finest moment.

So while this display of machismo was happening, Virginia is grabbing my arm, trying to get me to shut up because she’s scared of me getting in a fight in Rome in the middle of the night. She’s yelling at me to just keep walking but it was too late; the gauntlet had been thrown down and this aggression could not stand. As it turned out, the guy stopped, then when he saw I wasn’t backing down, yelled a few Italian obscenities at me and drove away. I was a bit relieved that I didn’t have to fight, as the stout had compromised my equilibrium a bit – little did I know that the real fight was about to come. By now, Virginia is extremely upset with me for the gross display of male bravado that she was forced to witness. She decides to subject me to the silent treatment that women are so adept at. I still had enough left over testosterone coursing through my veins that I was not going to stand for the silent treatment. So I start arguing, backing up my case with gems like “What did you expect me to do, back down to a guy on a Vespa?!”. Apparently I went too far and the tears made their inevitable appearance. By the time we got back to the hotel, she was still crying but I wasn’t backing down because I didn’t think I did anything wrong. The boiling point came when she decided to storm out of the room. Now, back in Caldogno, this would have been acceptable. But our hotel was near the train station, which is one of the more seedy areas of Rome, so I would not allow it. I stopped her from going out the door and said, “OK, this has gone far enough, there’s no way you’re going out in this area at this time of night by yourself. She got into bed, we went to sleep and in the morning, we apologized to each other for being stupid and made up over cannoli.

To this day, we still laugh about the incident. And no matter what, I still don’t think I was wrong. Just don’t tell that to Virginia…


Rik

12 comments:

eThib said...

So you passed up a scrap with an Italian biker to fight with a 4 foot tall Pinoy?

eThib said...

So you passed up a scrap with an Italian biker to fight with a 4 foot tall Pinoy?

DL said...

Yeah, you maybe right about standing up and showing off what a brave man you are. The biker could still be doing it as long as nobody would stand up to kick his butt for he is not the Lord of roads.

But... It could have been worse too. He could be badly beaten or you ended up in a hospital.

Avoiding fight is not cowardice. It's only saving yourself from possible bloody end.

Don't worry I wont tell Virginia! :)

kitty said...

Speaking as a woman, I think you were foolish to antagonize someone in a seedy part of town while you were drunk because you could have put your wife at risk, too. I have no problem with fights (most of the time), but you had your wife to consider, too. And being drunk was NOT the time to challenge someone.

But that's just me ;)

kitty said...

Now that I have sounded sufficiently like a scold, I decided I owe ya one. So, I linked you here: http://www.lifelikepundits.com/archives/000602.php

Gia said...

I'm telling!!

Americans in Europe, what Virginia and I have to deal with. LOL

All this bravado of they better stop or else... or else what, should call 112 now?

Suannie said...

I don't blame Virginia - it is nerve wracking to see your man involving in a senseless brawl. My partner Matt was bashed one week ago at a footy match he went to see with his brother, for no apparent reason, maybe it was just out of thrill. He spent the night in a hospital having to stitch a big split on his lips (ouch!). And this was all happening without my knowledge thinking he just stayed overnight at his brother's joint. Came home the next day, I was upset naturally, but would have been terrified had I witnessed it and probably needed some sedatives to calm my nerves too.

Dutched Pinay on Expatriation said...

Rik,

An American in the south of Europe where equal testosterones can fly is not a good combination for a brawl.

Rik said...

OK OK!!! Stop disparaging me, I'll admit I was wrong! You can all stop crucifying me now!

In fairness to me, this incident was totally out of character. Even when I drink, I'm always a happy drunk. And that old adage about being a lover, not a fighter, definitely applies to me. Just not in this one case...

Rik

Dutched Pinay on Expatriation said...

Haha, your post was actually a bit late for the Lent season (crucifixion)!

Mrs Frivolity said...

Men!

rotfl

Ed Abbey said...

Hey Rik, I would rather face the biggest, meanest looking Italian while stupified drunk anytime over facing the slightest bit of Filipina tampo! At least a fist fight, there is a definite beginning and end. With tampo, it sometimes takes me a minute to realize it for what it is and then you never know when the end has occurred.

Ask your brother if he has ever fought with a 4 foot wild tiger. Then he would have a good idea of what it is like to wrestle with a 4 foot Filipina in full blown tampo mode!