Theory of

Taunts, Insults or Attacks

Codewords Inside Aggressive "Tricks"

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The Way Out





Patient refers to it as stargate-seven-four

An Instigator.2






—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—The opposite.

—Forget that!

—I'll live. Spare me!




Infantile Narcissism — Perhaps your libido can get attached to someone who's violent or who hates you. What do you want to get attached to?





[narcissism & posing] - These people are expressing themselves through self-centered wantonness - It starts out with little kids in preschool - By the time they're adults, they're so facile, they don't know what they're doing - They're so facile that it's meaningless.

The Age of Significance, ages 20-23




Exactly what someone said [or did]
... usually not very original.

The thoughts of a "bad child"
... to free your mind again.




"Man, I will fuck you up!" [Trying to ignite a barroom brawl – It all began at stargate32]

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Relax! ... Guatemala! ... Relax! ... God makes everything beautiful.

["I'm going to make movies."] "It's not going to happen."

—I'll live. Spare me!

—It's out of The Arabian Nights.

"It's not good – Broken already – First thing in the morning."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Another level.

"Not the longest ride of the day."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Another world.

"That's not Mexican!"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Another miracle.

"Not your day."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Another triumph.

"I'm doing illegal activities."

—I'll live. Spare me!

—Another dimension.

"Please! I'm not with you."

—I'll live. Spare me!

—Anybody who's good at anything.

"This Week's Websites: * CLICK HERE The mother of all aneurysm causing websites. I've yet to figure out what the hell this site's about. It goes beyond definition. A discombobulated mess or word diarrhea pounding your brain cells until you give up on life itself. Random images, colors and links lead you through a gauntlet of madness. Pages extend for miles with nonsense and endless tables. The Horror ... The Horror ..." [Link from Links That Stink – The Greatest Waste Of Bandwidth On The Web]

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Weak and mixed up.

"Promise me you'll scan the medallion at the end of your shift!"

—The opposite.

—You can't be wise and in love at the same time!

"Well, you better get practicing then."

—The opposite.

—If you want a robot to read this to you, push a button ... It says, "Smell my armpit, cutie pie!" ... I'm struggling to be user interactive.

"Well, I hope you don't start this job and then say, 'Fuck that!'" [At a job interview]

—I'll live. Spare me!

—That's all they do, those people, is use other people, one way or another ... There's a lot of competition for jobs like that.

[Outrageous flirting, pushing all your buttons, remaining clearly unobtainable]

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—What is the most wonderful thing on earth? Nothing. Because nothing can have everything ... What is the most powerful thing on earth? Water. Because water can fill anything ... It takes a long time to figure people out, because no one's the same.

"She's not my favorite."

—I'll live. Spare me!

Afraid of the dark ... It pays to be ignorant ... Just like me.

[A homeless man peeing on you in a city bus]

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—There's a lot going on right now – Need a little break! ... Would you like me to look away? ... Life has to hurt you before it blesses you ... Touchdown Jesus!

«Get verbally defensive easily – How to be bigger person»

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—People are afraid to be empty ... Let the chips fall where they may.

[The Sufi character Nasrudin pouring yogurt into a lake: "What are you doing?" "I'm trying to turn the whole lake into yogurt."] "That's not gonna work!"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Yeah, but what if it does?

«Acting too defensive in conversations»

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Try to keep your mind quiet and realize other people don't; their minds are filled with fireworks ... See Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (1927), directed by F.W. Murnau.

"He said I not pretty; I stupid." [Three-year-old girl telling her mother about a little boy in preschool - They can't stick up for themselves, so we must - It's like giving gold to god - You just can't regret anything you do for that girl - You never feel cheated - She is so worth whatever you do! - You slowly become an expert - Don't fuss with it!]

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Oh, my goodness gracious me! ... Someone mean ... They all are ... It's really scary! ... If a boy sees a shooting star over a girl, what can a boy do? ... (Kiss the girl!) ... Let's do it again! ... If a boy sees a shooting star over a girl, what can a boy do? ... It's really worth seeing! ... (She can ask the boy to kiss her!)

"You're not pretty; you're stupid!" [Three-year-old boy to little girl in preschool]

—Forget that!

—If a boy sees a shooting star over a girl, what can a boy do? ... It's really worth seeing.

"You're crying because you're not pretty?" [From a three-year-old girl's older brother]

—Forget that!

—There's no future in that.

"Screw you!"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Right back at you!

"Hey, screw you, buddy."

—Forget that!

—All the home stuff.

"Fuck you!"

—The opposite.

—Keep it in the family.


—Forget that!

—Kiss my ass tomorrow!

"FUCK YOU!" [To the TV]

—Not much. ROAD KILL!


"What's the latest news in town?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—It's just as well.

["We got listed in The Rough Guide to the Internet!"] "What does that mean?"

—The opposite.

—That's one for the books!

"Well, what does that do for you?" [Getting a listing in 'The Web's Best Sites' section of]

—The opposite.

—It's a good investment.

"It does matter."

—I'll live. Spare me!

—Let's buy it, then!

"This is old news."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Well, I'm not so sure.

"That's not what we're looking for."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—The more you have, the more it grows, the more it costs.

"It does nothing for me."

—I'll live. Spare me!

—It may be old age.

"WHAT the fuck. ... WHAT the fuck."

—The opposite.

—The plant may be dead, but so's the fungus.

"We not the same?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Those things can happen, you know? ... I'm not so wrong ... Just try to listen to yourself when you do things ... If you live, that's the test.

"What are we not doing that we should be doing?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

You're a hit! ... You've got to take time off ... That's good to do ... It's not good to do things forever.

"Fuck you white boy."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—On the job.

"You're not a cool guy."

—I'll live. Spare me!

Tough customer! – I've got five dollars – That's really something.

"It'll cost you fifty cents."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—They don't last that long anyway, so you might as well do the cheap ones.

"Ghirardelli, not the long way."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—I know, but I still want to.

"That's not true."

—Forget that!

—Don't believe anything until you see it.

["I'm going to Moscone." "Which one?" "Moscone West." "Much better!"] "Oh, that's not good?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—That's where you meet everyone.

"You're not going to turn right here?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—On the contrary, I am.

"Your uselessness is epic. (–Kate Hudson, Fool's Gold)

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Whatever happened to Roger Rabbit?

"Did you work Sunday? Was it busy?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—What a worker!

"Whoopee, go fuck yourself!"

—The opposite.

—You have to have that killer instinct.


—The opposite.

—You're not just saying that?

"You're not my girlfriend."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Maybe it's the animals who eat all the apples.

"Not probably – He actually does."

—I'll live. Spare me!

—Well, that's different.

"I'm the wrong guy to fuck with."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Don't do anything.

"What does that mean?"

—Forget that!

—Stop worrying – Life is not a test.

"Is that a put-down?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—It's like a charm.

["Don't you grow more fond of this city every day?" (San Francisco, on a beautiful sunny afternoon)] "I can't tell if that's sarcastic."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—It's not for you – I've got something better for you.

"I thought you were being sarcastic."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—We'll make it.

"That would not be good."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—It's really wild.

"All right! Don't be a stranger."

—The opposite.

—You look like Earthquake McGoon!

"Not too bad, was it? Better than a prostitute."

—I'll live. Spare me!

—They're just looking for warmth.

"Then does that mean it's free?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Let's not overdo it.

«De-escalating an angry person»

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

How do you protect your inner child? (1.) It is on the inside; (2.) It is on the inside and well-protected; (3.) Don't try to be good; (4.) Try to be efficient; (5.) Acting good is not protecting a child ... If someone's angry, or having a tantrum, say on the inside, —I hope you die, you gutter rat.

"Fuck you!" [Someone having a Friday night tantrum]

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—No one should Fuck you! you, really ... Too old for that ... Watch out for Spain and France and Italy ... You just have to be careful ... Fifty dollars an hour ... You win this round, this life ... It's hard for everyone ... [They say they can't help it if they have a volatile nature - They're really trying to be better than they are, that's the sad thing - What they say is, Mick Jagger saw Tina Turner once, and started copying her - He's childish, he's a baby, so he has a baby's way of solving things, which is to throw a shit fit - "Do you know anything about hysterical conversions?" - (Talk to him as an equal, not a simpering little fool) - "When I'm in pain, I'm expressing myself." ... I feel a song coming on ... "Please release me, let me go! Please release me, I'm a schmoe" ... It's shocking coming from me]

«How to handle a verbally abusive husband»

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—It's hard to understand at first; there's lots of little rules ... You must write these things down, and then you have a clear conscience ... But what's going to happen to you in the future? ... Even a little education is fantastic.

«When a friend verbally attacks you when you are down»

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

Very little ... Minor ... You can't ask for too much more ... Just like home! ... You should get together and write these things down, because everybody must go through these things ... I'm sure some people will be able to understand it ... You know what? – They're shameless ... I'll take my chances ... And a mother's kisses ... That's where they get the pain in, too.

"Thirdly, why don't you check out an inscrutable site that will make your brain melt. It's ... uh ... advice on how to deal with people, from a cabbie in, I think, San Francisco. I can only imagine what actually riding with him is like. (Probably not very interesting.)" [Link from Sticherblog]

—I'll live. Spare me!

—What did Reagan say? Trust but verify.

"You may wish to begin here, which illustrates as much of his philosophy as I can understand, interspersed with some poignant details about his life."

—The opposite.

—It's the first time I ever had the nerve to try it.

"It makes me feel something ... some odd specie of sadness."

—The opposite.

—That's not a bad thing to do.

"At some point in school I decided it was cool to be witty and off-the-cuff and zing anyone with the slightest hint of malice toward me. I'm not talking about verbal self-defense or anything that confuses people. I'm talking about turn-beet-red, in-your-face, no-holds-barred caustic snubs that stun people into oft self-conscious silence. I inherited it from my grandmother, who could turn a stranger to tears with an off-the-cuff phrase and later plead ignorance, saying she was just making small talk. It became an art, for its own sake, to come up with rapid fire shut downs for anyone, anywhere. I'm in my mid 20's and nothing and no one can touch me. Who needs an arsenal when you're impregnable?" [Excerpt from Everyone's a Critic -- and then you DIE]

—The opposite.

—Ooo! A bone in the nose! You've got the tribal talk down really good. I know you're just joking, but what if you weren't? Superego people, zombies, nuts, are trained dogs. All they are living for is doing what their parents told them to do. Before they say hello, they've got to not say twenty things. They don't understand what a fed mind is capable of. They have no idea of feeding minds, the idea of feeding a mind so it can do something interesting.

"I know you're fiercely independent."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Everyone helps everyone.

"Don't screw up!" [Heckler from the audience, before you've even begun]

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Turn of the screw ... it happens ... and then it doesn't happen. [See also stargate56, betrayals]


—I'll live. Spare me!

—He has a very strong undercurrent.

"Not working today?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Isn't it rough?

"You're not doing anything?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—I'm not very articulate – It's not my first language.

"Have you ever considered streamlining the site?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—That's a whole art, huh?

"It was me, Richard! It was me! I scraped it off the bottom of my foot."

—I'll live. Spare me!

—Sometimes you just have to do things.

"This page has the most aggravating, senseless layout I've ever come across. Add in the needlessly arcane terminology, the lack of titles or descriptive paragraphs, and you've got a page that amounts to little more than a confusing assemblage of random words. I salute your determination that you managed to glean as much as you did from it." [Message at bad_craziness]

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Suitable for embedding in a pillow.

"Still at this goddamn page, trying to make sense of it. Are the comebacks randomly generated? Fully half of them don't even seem to address the conversational topic at all. I don't deny their effectiveness in a put-down situation -- but only because, in using them, the stream of nonsensical gibberish coming out of your mouth will make your opponent question your sanity and fear for his or her safety." [Message at bad_craziness]

—Forget that!

—Who cares? I don't. I don't believe in any of that.

"We haven't visited in a while."

—Forget that!

—It's your fault!

"Please don't despise me."

—The opposite.

—You don't want anyone to like you better – That's the secret.

"I'm so proud of myself."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—One thing leads to another.

"Something to be proud of."

—The opposite.

—What are you, a phony?

"Does that make you proud?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—You realize how lucky you are.

"I know I'm being neurotic."

—I'll live. Spare me!

—Do something nice for yourself and you'll feel better.

"You're neurotic."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—A little different than that.

"I'm not perfect – I'm human."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—You're just smart because you can talk about it.

"I'm glad you're not upset."

—The opposite.

—As if you don't have enough troubles.

"That really hurts my feelings."

—The opposite.

—Half of it dropped in the toilet.

"Your business is not so good, huh?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—A lot of what you think is bad, is not bad.

"How much do you owe him?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—What's great about that is no one can steal it.

"I owe you ten bucks, man!"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Take as long as you want.

"Now if Mary danced for me, I'd increase the tips."

—I'll live. Spare me!

—Wear bells or something!

"Was that an insult?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—You just wouldn't believe it.

"What do you mean, 'Something smells?'"

—Forget that!

—Something nice must have happened.

"Was that a sarcastic remark?"

—The opposite.

—Start to believe it!

"Does that mean you're going to send us hate E-mail when we get home?"

—I'll live. Spare me!

—One cruel thing or another.

"Don't be a stranger!"

—I'll live. Spare me!

—Who's stopping you?

"Well, why don't you give me a call after the first of the year?"

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—I'm terribly disappointed in your patient relations.

"You have to promise to get in touch with me within two weeks."

—The opposite.

—You can call me anytime you want.


—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—It's not like that.

"Fuck emotional intelligence."

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—I'm but a mere pawn.

["See you tomorrow!"] "Not if I see you first!" [They'll disappear or make a getaway]

—Not much. ROAD KILL!

—Did you say something?
























The Turtle's Shell

Children are left to their own devices when learning how to defend themselves verbally, so when two kids I know issued the following exchange over Christmas vacation, their words soon escalated into a fight. "You remind me of Forrest Gump," the ten-year-old informed his older brother, who responded, "I hate your guts!"

It's a fast exchange, and an expert in verbal self-defense would have responded almost mechanically in the following way:

"You remind me of Forrest Gump."

—It's chilling.
—I've arrived.

"I hate your guts."


What if these two "attacks" aren't attacks at all — just some sort of "truth?" Well, the responses are also some sort of truth which accurately reflect the level of animosity originally delivered. They are poetic responses — powerful, yet open to interpretation. Ambivalent responses can quickly defuse an attack, transforming hostility into humor or mystification. If the origin of the attack is "innocent," so's the defense. If the intent of the attack is "devious," so's the defense. If the agent of the attack is "influential," so's the defense. Just like Forrest Gump.

Adults are in a worse predicament than children. For one thing, most adults think they have already mastered verbal self-defense, so they imagine serious study of this discipline embodies "slinging shit" or "taking shit." Nothing could be farther from the truth. Second, their "emotions" lead them to believe the attacker is important. So they feel angry at that person, or afraid of that person, or hurt by that person rather than reveling in the rhythm, pleasure, and joy of their own lives. Third, their childhood misunderstandings of verbal violence have become crystallized in their psyche, heaped upon by repeated attacks, and quite forgotten. Again, their misunderstandings have been crystallized and forgotten.

Once, when I told a particularly tense businesswoman I could teach her an interesting way to defend herself from mean people, she said, "Oh, no one ever attacks me."


—SOMETHING smells.

Verbal self-defense has an astonishing dynamic and is rooted most firmly in understanding what's going on. For example, if you remember people carry with them something like an inner atmosphere, which is really their character, you can understand how they might respond if you say, "—SOMETHING smells."

If that woman was telling the truth when she said, "No one ever attacks me," when you say, "—SOMETHING smells," she'll continue with something like, "Everything's coming up roses!" or "What's cooking?" evincing beautiful smells she's experienced in life.

However, if she was lying, her poisonous inner atmosphere will lead her to say something like, "What do you mean, 'Something smells?' Was that an insult?" to which you might respond with one or more of the following:

(—Not much. ROAD KILL!)
—The opposite.
—Something nice.
—You just wouldn't believe it.

The point here is that everyone covers themselves with defensive armor which they regard as smooth and "with it," like a turtle's shell. But where are faith, hope, charity and love for anything at all? These are attributes of heaven, buried deep within meat and electricity alongside ungainly veins throbbing with life.

We are quick as turtles, strong as turtles, strange as turtles, and even when very old, beautiful creatures. When you remove the shell, you have to act fast. Ever add basil and sage to turtle soup?







As follows

CODE WORDS: abusive, acting, activities, after, aneurysm, arcane, assemblage, [audience], [brawl], [buttons], causing, cells, cents, cheapskate, considered, danced, de-escalating, despise, discombobulated, does, endless, extend, fantastic, feelings, fiercely, [flirting], fuck, gauntlet, gibberish, glean, [heckler], illegal, illustrates, increase, inscrutable, insult, it'll, jackass, miles, neurotic, news, not, owe, [peeing], poignant, pounding, practicing, promise, proud, put-down, randomly, sadness, sarcastic, scraped, screw, small talk, smells, stranger, streamlining, Sunday, [tantrum], trash talk, [unobtainable], uselessness, verbally, visited, WTF


"Sculptor's studio"

—I'll live. Spare me!