It would be some time before I would run into Ric again. An unlikely spot, no less. As I was following around a simple vandalism case a few weeks later, I found him at a local thug's house, sitting on the porch next to Red, drinking a beer. The stories had still percolated down in the hood about Ric and they got back to me from time to time. By now, he had grown an action figure reputation.
After I was done questioning Red on a dead end call which ended up on Nowhere Lane as many vandalisms do, Ric got up and told Red he was leaving. Ric walked me to my police car. The conversation was small talk and mostly him jesting the PoPo lady.
I really don't know what I was thinking when I told him to teach me how to fight. He laughed and said I would not be able to make it and I was a girl, end of story-no way. This time in my life I had been separated from my husband. The papers were about to make it official and I had free time on days off when my daughter was at her father's house.
The street's were getting worse, and everyone wanted to fight the police. I was strong. Not to put down law enforcement custody and control training, but it is lame at best. We tried street fighting once and the administration was worried we would have a bunch of broken up cops they would have to pay to repair. I rather liked it better than the usual custody and control classes where the boys were whining not to hurt their knees, shoulders, or collar bones. They were a bunch of pussies when it came to that crap. None of them wanted to pair up with a girl either. Really pissed me off.
So here I was hearing the same song and dance from a street punk. Instantly gets my blood boiling. I'm not the toughest girl on the block, but I'm no pussy.
Throwing his words back at him that he didn't know what I was capable of, he smirked. I challenged him. I told him I would pay for lessons.
He pulled up his shirt and swaggered toward me like a gangster punk and told me, I couldn't handle his 6-pack. Then he flexed his left arm and said I wouldn't be able to take the first punch. He popped his neck and turned around and waved me off, lastly saying it was easy to disarm a Casper Police Officer and no challenge. I could tell he grew up in the hood somewhere else because no one from my town acted like that when they were white, nor did they have more street charm than 50 Cent, minus the bullet holes.
Well, now if a punch lands right on anyone it's going to leave a mark. And I surely wasn't going to sit there as a sitting duck while someone punched me. I think he thought I was a Shirley Temple. I told him he was scared and didn't want his reputation ruined by having a girl beat him up. Big words. Hot air. That was me. I had seen what he had done.
He turned around and pointed at me. Three minutes. If I could last three minutes without tapping out, getting something broken, or dying, he would teach me.What was I thinking? Fargo Jump Street 21? (Although that moving hadn't been made yet) Oh, yeah. I took that challenge. Game on. We agreed if I could last, $300 for 3 months. Cheap. Half down. Half when it was over. I felt like I was negotiating contraband. We scheduled the beat down.