Illustration by Ryan Alexander-Tanner

I'VE NEVER been in a fight. I've wanted to fight, I've had people want to fight me—however, those two phenomena have never synced up, and THANK EVERY FORGOTTEN GOD FOR THAT. Fights only seem to happen for embarrassing reasons. Anger is rarely righteous; it seems like fisticuffs erupt over mishigas like perceived ownership of a sex partner, or because someone was louder and more obnoxious than you were hoping for, or for any number of dumb reasons.

Every time I've almost punched someone, I was SO GLAD I didn't. Not punching someone is the best! You get to go back to your house and watch Gilmore Girls and eat avant-garde ice cream and complain to your slam piece about a shared negative brunch experience. That's way better than clocking some knucklehead 'cause he cheesed you off on some "Macho Man Randy Savage if Macho Man Randy Savage Had Gone to High School in Tigard"-type shit.

Recently, though, I found my handsome self in a situation where an act of violence would have been righteous... I think... well, I'll explain AND THEN YOU TELL ME ON TWITTER OR WHEN YOU SEE ME ON THE STREETS OR PERHAPS EVEN A BOULEVARD.

Dear reader, I was at Trader Joe's, and I saw a Nazi. Now I don't mean I saw some dude on a tank storming from ethnic food section to ethnic food section, taking them over. (That ... that would have been glorious.)

What I saw with my two Jewish eyes, instead, was a man in his fifties, wearing a tank top, with a gigantic swastika tattoo on his shoulder. ON ACCOUNTA I was in Trader Joe's, I assumed this was a Buddhist swastika. (Listen, I'm one of those very chill Jews. I'll eat Indian food on Passover. My rabbi is a DVD copy of Blazing Saddles. I can accept a Buddhist swastika.) Further inspection revealed it was not a Buddhist swastika. A simple rhyme on how to remember which is which goes as follows: Swastika to the left? That's a Buddhist, save your breath. Swastika to the right? THAT'S A FUCKING NAZI. RUN. RUN AS FAST AS YOU CAN. NO, LEAVE THE ART. WE NEED TO GO RIGHT NOW. WHAT GOD WOULD ALLOW THIS? WHAT GOD? It's an old Jewish rhyme.

Anyway, this Kraut yutz and I traded frowning glances in the store. I decided to fuck with him by walking in front of him way too slow. He brushed past me to the parking lot and told me to watch where the fuck I was going—and it became evident... a fight could be had. I could bring to bear my Hebrew massiveness against this shithead anachronist and it'd feel so good and probably my father would be excited.

I didn't fight, though. Even if you're the most righteous idiot fighting in a Trader Joe's parking lot, you're still an idiot. I scoffed. I left. I ate my avant-garde ice cream at home, and it tasted just as good as if I'd fought over something stupid.