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The Punch-in-the-Face List

I maintain a "punch-in-the-face list", which is a violent name very much at odds with my upbringing as a Friend. Perhaps "maintain" is not quite the right word, as that implies that I keep an actual physical list collated somewhere, and updated regularly, and that I would genuinely follow through if given the opportunity.

The list is actually mostly notional, as while I may consign people and organizations to its membership, I rarely bother to track who or what is on it. If I've a grudge, I'll know whether they're on the list whether I write it down or not. If I haven't formed a grudge, then obviously it wasn't bad enough to merit permanent membership.

I've also never actually instigated a physical fight, aside from the occasional scuffle with my sister before adolescence hit her (when it had hit me but not her, she'd antagonize me and then get upset that I was "threatening her"; in actuality, I was doing everything I could to hold my temper and warn her that if she kept it up, I would snap and she was likely to get hurt; she didn't appreciate that very much; after it hit her, she came to realize the temper we'd both got and stopped it), and the one time that this creep on the schoolbus was illicitly moving between seats and sat down on the seat that my sister and I shared, whereupon I shoved him on the floor and he punched me. (He's one of the former schoolmates who I won't even contemplate adding on Facebook. I think I have him blocked already.)

If given the opportunity, would I punch someone on this list in the face? I like to think that I would not. My temper likes to think that I would. However, if someone's earned membership on this list, I would only regret the violation of my principles and any consequences that befell me -- not any harm I caused to their person. Does this make me a bad person? Entirely possibly.

Crossposted. comment count unavailable comments.
Gone away, gone ahead,
Echoes roll unanswered.
Empty, open, dusty, dead.
Why have all the Weyrfolk fled?

Where have dragons gone together
Leaving weyrs to wind and weather,
Setting herdbeasts free of tether;
Gone, our safeguards, gone, but whither?

Have they flown to some new weyr
Where cruel Threads some others fear?
Are they worlds away from here?
Why, oh why the empty weyr?

-- "The Question Song", Anne McCaffrey
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