I don’t – off-hand – recall any reference to this aspect of Shelly’s youth.
Is the first reference to it, or am i forgetting something?
Yes, when she and Owen were discussing his new girlfriend. He was the smaller kid she protected; he referred to her as the bully who was his friend. I’ll try to find the links …
Thank you; I was looking in the wrong place.
Look for the arc with the “that’s for flinching” comment, IIRC.
Perhaps Shelly is attracted to our officer friend because he reminds her of Owen (and/or that little boy)?
Owen was that little boy
Been there — done that. Got the scar(s).
They fade, but not much.
I’m more impressed that he survived to tell the tale.
BTW, has anyone mentioned this fellow’s name, or is he still ‘Officer Tight Buns’?
I do believe someone mentioned it was Justin
Shelly mentioned that his name was Justin in this strip:
Fatuncle I read about Shelly and Owen just yesterday going through the archives. 🙂
Would you happen to know just which dates? Save me some digging?
Heh. I wonder if real-life bullies ever turn out to be decent people when they get older…
Being the constantly bullied nerd back in my school days, I’ve always just entertained the fantasy that any person so cruel and weak of character as a school bully would grow up either in jail, on the street, or wasting away in a job worse than mine. :-p
Good question… I’ve no interest in trying to dig any of mine up, though. Too many places lived, not enough info.
Have entertained the same fantasy. It would be interesting to see the results of a statistically-significant study… not that any such would be possible. Still, I’d enjoy visiting a few choice individuals if I found out they had gone up the river for life…
I too have no desire to dig either, and it annoys me that when the alumni committees for every high school reunion node contact my parents, they freely give away my information without asking me first.
And they wonder why I need the 1000-mile buffer…this is also why I will not join facebook.
Agreed. Yes Google is just as creepy, but at least they have the good sense to try to be somewhat subtle about it. Unlike Facebook’s “Haha! Got you!” attitude.
From what I’ve heard there is a disproportionate percentage of bullies that end up in prison. I don’t know how reliable that is though, given the utter flakiness of most social science that makes it through the media filters.
Although I hardly keep in touch with anyone from my hometown since I graduated high school almost 20 years ago, a couple of them went to the same college as I did… for a few semesters. Then they and others, who tried other colleges for the same amount of time, moved back to our small Kansan farming hometown because they couldn’t handle being out of their element. So they’re back there now, trying to re-live their glory days through their kids.
“Heh. I wonder if real-life bullies ever turn out to be decent people when they get older…”
I bullied a boy in my class mercilessly for the four years I was at that school. 3rd/4th grade to 7th. I think about him a lot. I never pushed him around physically, but I teased him cruelly. Nearly all of the kids in the class did.
In reality, I was only one notch above him in the class’s social pecking order. It was bully or be bullied, and I also got bullied and teased a LOT. The 5 years at that school were my own psychological hell.
It’s easy to look back and see why I did it, even though the motives were all subconscious at the time. For defense, to prove I was ‘cool’, and as an outlet for the ruthless teasing I was enduring. Abuse begets abuse.
That poor boy and I should have been friends. Or at least not enemies. Twenty years have passed and I still wonder about him, probably on a monthly basis. I’ve tried to look him up on social sites to see if he has any online presence, so I can apologize to him and say the same things I just wrote here. I haven’t been able to find him. I wish I could, and say I’m sorry.
Not all bullies end up in jail or become derelicts… I honestly regret what I did to that boy, just because the same things were done to me. Bullies really can grow, change, and truly feel pain for all the pain they wrought. 🙂
of .. course .. i .. could be completely full of shit and maybe should . just .. stfu and let the damn thing play out like a good reader. *crawls away*
…And I’m supposed to care about the whinings of a self-professed bully why?
Because people change, and realise the error of their ways, and Shelly wouldn’t be phrasing that way if she hadn’t, and stories of self-discovery can be interesting?
Or maybe because she’s not whining?
I guess she stopped whining and started winning
Because not caring about the feelings of others is the biggest part of being a bully to begin with.
…Because character development is kind of the basis of any good story?
Alright, then, riddle me this.
Would you guys be so quick to defend her if she wasn’t attractive?
Ever notice how the biggest bullies tend to be the most attractive people?
Not really. In my experience the worst ones were the average ones. Looks are so important in school that the pretty ones didn’t need to be bullies. They just got what they wanted by default and the not-so-pretty ones just stayed out of everyone’s way and hoped for the best.
It was the ones who were good-looking enough to convince themselves that they had an chance that were the worst. They’d keep on trying to make it on looks even after it was clear to all concerned that they were outclassed. Then they’d fail and come looking for someone to take it out on.
Lucky you. Wasn’t that case in my school. The best-looking ones didn’t need to ‘take it out’ on anyone for relief, they just did it out of pleasure. And then got away with it because of their looks.
I’m not really defending Shelly (so let’s begin). Just noticing that you clearly hate bullies to the point where you’d insult the storyline by dismissing any plot centered around the topic as irrelevant.
I’m not attracted to Shelly, being a girl and all, but if a total uggo character were making the same confessions/revelations, it would simply be good character development. Because she started one way. And now she’s learned and lived, and is another way. And we watched her make that change. The fact that she’s pretty doesn’t have much to do with my admiration of the way Pablo has shaped her character.
Ah . School daze .
Feels weird thinking of you as a female
Also, here: You’ve always been the bully that’s been my best friend.
I really love the way Mr . Taylor’s style has evolved over time .
Hopefully Justin will be the one to keep Shelly grounded and centered, because Monica cannot always be there.
Yes. The network of mutual support is growing, extending beyond the core group.
My Older sis, (who I sometimes refer to a Army/Firefighter Sister on other forums) she wasn’t a bully, but she relished putting bullies on the floor. That was due to our upbringing, Ma and Pop taught us right and wrong, stand up for the little guy, and never start a fight, but finish any fight you find yourself in. Ma made sure my sisters could actually fight, and not any of that eye-scratching, slapping, sissy stuff. A couple of her cousins were in the Golden Gloves program, and showed her how to throw, land, and follow up punches. She passed that on to my sisters. Comanche Girl + Boxing Skillz = Mayor of Fist City.
When did girls fighting become something to brag about? Just look up girl fight in YouTube to get an eyeful. It used to be women were the peacemakers, keeping things in check down through the ages. Who know how much violence has been averted due to a kind and soothing word or action from a woman at the right time. Now it seems women want to join in the fray and brag about it to boot. In short, become men. Not all women, of course, but it seems to be a modern trend, rather than an exception.
If the woman is about to be beaten and no soothing words from her lips can stop that beating from coming, I think having that woman prepared to kick said attacker up and down the street and pound the living shit out of them is a good thing.
After 7 MONTHS of my soothing words and quiet, calm logic in the face of his jealousy and narcissism, my ex raised his fist to hit me one morning. You can know sure as shit that I was glad I knew how to defend myself even if it managed not to devolve to blows. I dumped him that day.
A friend told the story about his grandfather, a river pilot, and his grandmother, a nice Southern lady, about half his size.
Granddad was prone to take a few drinks after he came back from a run all the way down to the Gulf, and prone to be a bit belligerent when he had a drink or two in him.
So he came home the first time, a tad the worse for wear.
She mentioned it.
He raised a fist.
She stood there, looking him straight in the eye, and said “Go ahead.”
“…and then never sleep again as long as you live.”
Willie Nelson told the story of the time he came home drunk and was perhaps a touch too mouthy to one of his wives.
He went into the the bedroom and passed out on top of the bedspread.
She got a big needle, a spool of carpet thread, a bucket of ice water, and a broomstick….
True. My husband has taught me Wing Chun for quite some time. We’ve slacked off a bit (2 children under kindergarten age!) but it’s comforting to know if an aggressor goes for me/mine even after Wordsmithing fails, that I know an effective defense…and that’s only if fleeing’s not an option. I don’t want to hurt anyone, but I know how to cause pain enough to incapacitate. (Like Brandi, I also shoo bugs out. I can’t even remember when I last skooshed one.)
If anything, knowing offensive/defensive moves makes me even less willing to hurt someone.
Punk rock chicks who can kick ass r0xx0rs my b0xx0rs…that is why I am married to one…
Remember, the discussion in this strip is bullying. I’m talking about women who go out looking for a fight, or resort to fighting at the drop of a word. That’s what bullies do. This goes for violent sports and the military as well. Women clamoring to get into combat roles.
The soothing words to which I was referring was more along the line of women soothing male rage at someone else. Keeping him from doing something rash to some one (not her) in the heat of anger. Who knows, they may have even stopped wars in ancient times. A gentle word or caress at the right time. I’d venture to guess many kept their heads (literaliy) because of a woman’s intervention. These days it seems more likely she would egg him on instead.
Self defense is another issue entirely.
Because we tried that for close to 200,000 years. I’d say that it had accomplished everything it was going to. The insistence that women be ‘celestial beings’ and ‘above it all’ is pretty ineffectual in reality and is probably a large part of what earned us a reputation for being useless in stressful situations.
SoWhyMe: What you’re saying sounds verrry close to the kinds of rigid gender role fantasies that have kept women oppressed (aka “the peaceful ones” — because they weren’t allowed to do anything else!) for centuries. Women are not “natural” peace-keepers and they are not supposed to be soothers of male rage. I can see what you mean, and I’m sure that situations like you have described have happened and continue to happen — I just would like for you to realize that some of the things you’re saying are pretty over-generalized (“women used to be peacekeepers,” etc) and, whether you realize it or not, are destructive to women. Also, women who enjoy combat are NOT “trying to be men.” They are trying to be women who are capable of fighting.
Awww. That last panel is so sweet.
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