It happened to one of my website members recently and he called to tell me what happened.
John was standing in a business and talking to someone when a drunk guy walked in and wanted to fight. The drunk was larger than John, and it was clear that he could do some damage.
Like most guys, John's first reaction was to think about fighting techniques. And as the drunk got more agitated, it seemed that violence was about to happen.
Suddenly, John remembered the recent Internal Fighting Arts podcast with my guest, Dan Djurdjevic. In the interview, Dan talked about "flipping the script," and how it got him out of some potentially violent encounters.
When you flip the script, you say something bizarre to the attacker to throw him off-script; to confuse him.
So just as it seemed that a punch was going to be thrown, John said to the drunk, "Did you see the game last night?"
The drunk looked confused. "What game?" he asked.
"My daughter's baseball game," John replied. "She made her very first out at second base."
The drunk guy didn't know what to do with that information.
"Oh, that's great," he said. "Congratulations."
With that, the encounter moved in an entirely new direction. The drunk guy calmed down. No violence happened. Nobody was hurt, nobody was arrested, nobody went to the hospital, lost his job or got sued.
Bruce Lee once said he practiced "the art of fighting without fighting." Flipping the script is one of the coolest self-defense tactics I've ever heard, and it is something you will want to remember. Imagine a thug's reaction if he wanted to fight and you said something like, "I love homemade pickles. My Aunt Jane used to make great pickles."
When I was growing up, I wasn't the toughest kid, but I beat up a lot of bullies because I was smarter than they were. As an adult, I have not been in a fight because I have been able to avoid them.
As adults, avoiding violence is the ultimate self-defense skill, and we do that when we use our brains, our awareness, and our ability to remain calm. John was able to do that by remembering a lesson he learned on my podcast, and I am very happy to have been a small part of this story.