Once I was in The Midland, my local bar in Manchester, when a drugged up type came up and started to be a pain in the nether-regions. I fobbed him off and he eventually went away.
Then two very well dressed men walked in. The druggy approached them and was given short shrift. He didn’t like that so he grabbed a very heavy ceramic ashtray and threw it at the head of one of the men. This man produced a very large knife and threatened the druggy. There was a fight and somehow the druggy got the knife, stabbed the man and ran away.
I had just done a first aid course so I was mentally primed to respond – once the aggressor had fled – and so I shouted to the barman to get me the first aid kit. They didn’t have one. I managed to get some clean bar towels. I was applying pressure to the wound when two nurses from the local hospital came up and asked if I needed help. I handed it over to them.
There were always bar fights but this was the most serious. The druggy was sent to prison for attempted murder.
That’s when I decided to emigrate. And I went to live in a mediterranean country where you could go out for a drink and not see a fight. I’ve seen altercations where I live now but it’s usually just words and posturing. Where I come from, if a fight kicks off, someone leaves in an ambulance. If they’re lucky.
Most people don’t react to sudden drama. It’s called the ‘deviation to the norm’. It’s natural. You need to be primed to act and that takes training or maturity.
And it is the second of those that makes you decide to get away from the violent culture and go and find something better instead.