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Bullies Come In All Shapes, Sizes and Nationalities

I’m cheesed off and have 3 stories to share!

Something happened yesterday to a defenseless guy in the village I moved from in Spain that has me spitting a bit of fire.  Friends back home are trying to sort out the best next steps to take but I am thousands of miles away and I don’t feel like waiting, so here we go!

Bullies are countless and populate the globe from corner to corner.   Personally, it’s not my style of parenting or management or how I engage in my personal relationships – or deal with the Airtel workers like so many ladies here!  My dad always said “you can catch more flies with honey than dog shit” so I’ve stuck to that.  But I do know that it is a way of life for many.  In fact, I have an ex who is a bully and it has been traumatic for my family at times dealing with him.  For some, maybe it is poor upbringing, unhappiness in one’s life, something in their DNA or a chemical imbalance.  Who knows!  But those men and women are not fun to be around at work or home or anywhere or else when they are in ‘bully’ mode.

Story #1: I recently saw a man on the street in Bangalore absolutely beating the daylight out of (I assume) his wife in plain sight and in front of dozens of people.  She stood there and absorbed blow after blow, while trying to protect herself as much as possible.  I was absolutely shocked that no one stepped in to end the violence.  I don’t want to go too deep into thinking about WHY and the cultural acceptance of this practice here.  What I will say is that in Spain and the U.S. people beat their wives indoors ‘behind closed doors’ because I can guarantee that it would be broken up in a heartbeat by bystanders otherwise.  Then that person would automatically be arrested and fined or sentenced for his crime.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not abdicating violence as a pastime or new hobby in the home but I’m still a bit in shock that I witnessed something so brutal in broad daylight with man after man passing by and doing nothing.  According to Shiva, women will also attack their husbands in certain classes of people here too in broad daylight.  And he confirmed that more than likely people would just stand by and watch as no one interferes with marital issues – even violence.

Story #2: On a softer bully note, I have a personal tale.  When we first moved into our new flat a short time back we were the first and only occupants in a building that had just finished being built.  In fact, the first six weeks we were alone here but no longer.  The neighbors on the ground floor have moved in (we each have the entire floor) and brought their dog along with them, a golden retriever.  Well, it’s not actually the family’s dog so much as the son’s dog who looks to be in his late 20s, a big guy and with a somewhat tough guy image.  Aside from him I’ve only met his sister who is very sweet.

Well, since our neighbours are Muslims they cannot have the dog inside their flat for religious reasons so the owner (the son) chains him up down in our common area at the entrance to our building and has obliged the security staff to look after him.  I’ve tried to speak to him once, the building owner has spoken to the family for hours explaining that they are breaking the community rules and must stop.  This has been going on for WEEKS now and I am soooo tried of it.  The son doesn’t appear to give a flying flip about what any of us say and is refusing to take their dog to their country house or give it away.

What annoys us is that we are woken up all the time by the dog, delivery guys refuse to pass by it … and trust me, when my daughter and I are in lazy mode the last thing we want to do is slip on shoes and go down and fetch our own biriyani or shawarmas!  On top of that I have friends who make me walk down to accompany them in and out of the building because they don’t like dogs.  Even worse than that is how we feel about the dog, chained up all day, lying next to his own pee and obviously starving for attention.  The other family members don’t spend time with him or play with him so he is alone.  In the scheme of life it’s not a huge deal but if this guy wasn’t a “tough guy” my guess is that the dog situation would have been handled already.

Story #3: I want to share something that inspired today’s post.  Back home yesterday in Sitges something occurred that honestly doesn’t surprise me but is thankfully being brought up through various channels.  There is a rough, low-brow guy from the UK living in the village who started up a tourist website many years ago that quickly became a big success.  When I was in between startups back then I actually worked for him and his partner for a couple of months promoting the business around town to keep me busy as I looked for a job.  When I stopped working for them – because he was terrible to work for and I simply didn’t want to do it anymore – he didn’t take it well.  It’s a small village and he went around town telling everyone I had taken money from them so they fired me.  But the funny thing is that most of those business owners he tried to convince I embezzled had known me for years, we had worked on charity events together and they weren’t fools.  They all told me the rumours he was spreading and that they knew it wasn’t true but to stay on his good side they didn’t elude differently to him.  I tried to laugh it off because he has a temper and I didn’t want to confront him – even though we had both signed a piece of paper that they insisted on drafting so that I couldn’t say anything negative about them, something along the lines of “we’ve decided to go our separate ways and we wish each other the best”.

Well, within a couple of weeks he did take it to the next level and proceeded to bully me and got physical twice.  He slammed a laptop lid down on my hands as hard as he could once at a restaurant while I was typing and then another time he roughly squeezed my arm and threatened me by whispering in my ear that he was going to hit me.  When I laughed at him and said “yeah, right… like you are going to hit me in front of all these people” he stood there, realised I was right I suppose and then grabbed his drink and threw it in my face and walked away.  Not a nice guy.

And my story is mild.  There have been dozens upon dozens upon dozens of incidents like mine.  The travel site they have is really well done so businesses want to collaborate with them for their traffic.  Period.  I’ve never heard one kind word spoken about him in six years.  Everyone makes fun of him and puts up with him because of the website traffic they want a piece of but… things might be changing.

There is a village drunk back home in Sitges who is affectionately called Trini and who is generally a harmless little guy who just wanders around, occasionally growling.  Even my daughter has been growled at a few times by Trini she just told me with a bit of reminiscent affection in her voice.  That is the general way everyone from the village is about him.  Well, yesterday he was attacked by this same low-class website guy who went after me a few years back, we’ll call him MR. F.  Normally Trini is quite mild but from what I’ve heard he was seen being quite antagonistic last night (something I was told by a friend who was sitting outside, nearby to where the incident took place).  None of my friends know exactly what verbal rhetoric Trini said to set off Mr. F but nothing can excuse the physical violence that happened next.  Here is what has been posted by a friend of mine:

“In the street in front of several terraces that night, the cruel and pathetic character related to the night photography of our people ….attacked Trini by a blow to the head, causing him a lot of pain resulting in a blackout.  Severe pain was caused by impact with the pavement.  When the ambulance arrived, they tried to assist with first aid and stop the bleeding on the side of his skull while local police tried to collect data on the facts, trying to locate the wrongdoer.  When they found him later, away from the victim, they continued an investigation of the events. This gentleman – even drunk – was not arrested tonight.”  Trini could have been killed.

Today Mr. F is just a pathetic bully, a man who physically assaults women and defenseless people like Trini, and who disrespect the peaceful life in Sitges.  Just like the man who was wailing on his wife on the streets of Bangalore.  What if next time they hit their victim a little harder?  How are the police in Sitges turning a blind eye to the most recent stunt of Mr. F?  Hopefully my friends and other concerned citizens will step in and be a voice for Trini and ensure that good wins out over evil this time.

As for my guy, Mr. Dog Owner…. Obviously I’m not comparing apples to apples against the other two bullies from my article but he’s definitely cheesed me off and I’m about to go take legal action because it’s insane that we are being bullied in our own home.  And after hearing all about Trini today I’m up for a bit of a fight for justice.  Just like my friends back home ….

XOXO Angela

© 2012 Angela Carson, Angela’s Adventures in Bangalore

I started Angela's Bangalore from my hotel room on the very first day I moved to India in 2011, while struck with jet lag! It was my very first blog, the country's very 1st luxury travel blog. Now I'm rocking YouTube as @ExpatAngela, hope you'll subscribe.

This article has 22 comments

  1. Animes

    Hey Angela~~
    Bullies are the douches who always get through in our society,where ever it might be…Just sad to hear about what happened to Trini may all the good people who should stand up to the moment and give justice to him . I will say a prayer for him too.
    Bullies just are soul-less bodies who just have a place in our world bcoz of all the good people who have let them stay like that bcoz noone ever tries to fight back…bcoz people never want to get into the front line in the fire-zone…Its just a matter of some people who have strong will power to get justice who will make it happen for the victims……I have contributed half of my life fighting for justice against educational rights and injustice in the govt. even tho i am just a kid…but always have been a rebel right from my high school days….
    And about the topic you said about the guy beating his wife in the public..well its a common sight in the indian suburbs roadside..everywhere here..I don’t know why they do it…But its really common..I know you are not used to this…and its really pathetic….Seriously its a very bad sight..But people who watch it are from those same circle and this is kinda their real tv-drama stuff….noone ever interferes bcoz here people are classified by Status of the society..and those people who fight on roads are always mostly slum dwellers…People passing by in cars just give a look and shake their head…saying ‘ahh these people never change”..sorry to say but
    I bet you will see a lot of this in future….:(
    And just Go and freaking untie that poor dog and give a call to the cops straight away….i know religious stuff but why keep a innocent dog in pain and harass your neighbors…i feel bad for ya all…these kinda people are silent bullies..Just get their ass smacked once they will know ya who they messing with hahaha 😀
    And this song is for you..http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wXiTjl8sXo
    My fav song when i need to kick some butt haha
    keep fighting keep rocking
    take care
    -xoxo Animes

    • angela_carson

      Thanks for the video pick-me-up, that was very sweet 🙂

      I am so surprised about the husband and wife beaters, truly. I’ve sat and really tried to think if I’ve ever once seen a man or woman hit their spouse in public and I just can’t recall a single memory before arriving here. I guess it makes sense though given that so many people live in large family homes. Maybe for them it’s better to beat the wife/husband out on the street instead of in front of family? Less embarrassing perhaps? Honestly I have no idea but just trying to put 2 and 2 together. XOXO

  2. PencilGirl

    Bullies are horrid, of course, but one of the unfortunate realities that I guess we’ve become desensitized to. It’s hard to be horrified when it’s so common, really. I guess our hides have just gotten thicker. :
    It’s sad what happened to Trini, and I do hope justice is served. As for the dog, I just feel sorry for it. It’s horrid to keep it tied up all the time. I don’t know if you’ll agree, but maybe it’s time to bully the bully. Some people just do not listen to reasonable and polite argument. If you want them to behave, you just have to get tough on them.
    Coming to the man beating up his wife, this is a problem much deeper than just simple bullying. It’s a mindset that is so common here that women are in some way inferior to men, and so we end up with such instances of abuse and violence. It’s just not perceived as wrong for a man to beat up his wife. Instead, it’s almost like he’s earned that right because he married her. I assume this is especially true amongst the poorer sections of society, maybe due to the lack of education and exposure. They wouldn’t try to hide it, and might even brag about it. In the more educated sections of society, I dare not assume that it never happens, but if it does I guess it happens behind closed doors.
    I have heard that this sort of mentality is a lot more common up north as compared to South India. I don’t know if this is really true, but I haven’t actually seen such instances of domestic violence anywhere in my family or friends. So I only have what I’ve heard to base my opinion on.

    • angela_carson

      Good morning, M 🙂 I like the bully the bully idea. I’m requesting the owner of my flat accompany me to speak to the family to try and end this dragged out affair. Generally I like writing about fluffier topics than this but it has raised a lot of interesting questions and points and I might go for a round 2 sometime. Shiva says that there are high instances of women beating the daylights out of their husbands in some areas/classes and that I find equally disturbing and odd…. xo

      • PencilGirl

        Again, it’s not something I’ve ever witnessed personally, so I can only assume that it is characteristic of a section of society where physical violence is simply not a frowned upon. Honestly though, I have never heard of women beating up men. I’ve heard of them screaming at their husbands, or maybe clawing at them once or twice in fury, but I cannot imagine an Indian man allowing his wife to get away with even that. And usually the man is physically stronger.. 😐

      • PencilGirl

        Oh! And a very good morning to you too! 🙂 🙂

  3. nithin

    Legal issues in India are a pain, they could drag on for weeks/months. I would ask someone to speak to them on my behalf to try and keep it out of court unless absolutely needed since you will have to live close to them.

  4. Rhonald Moses (@rhonaldmoses)

    Well, for a change, I use to be (during my school/college day) the bully of the bullies. In other words – Vigilante 🙂

    I dislike bullies bullying soft (or nice) people and hence I use to target bullies till they cry (very less violence involved – but more of musceling and mind games). However, I don’t give a damn when a bully getting bullied by another bully (food chain I guess).

    I believe bullying is something to do with not accepting oneself or not loving oneself. you start getting pleasure by doing opposite of what you want. But most of the childhood bullies change once they have families and start slogging for their lives (have met some of them during my recent reunion and was surprised).

    What you can do to that dog is; give an annonymous tip to the animal care. Even in India, you can give complaints for disturbances to the cops (though not sure about the results). Oh btw… if you did go to police station to complain, I do expect a very long blog 😀

    Also I think that guy (your next door bully) needs a hug from his mother 😀 that’s something he probably missed throughout his life and it’s showing up 🙂

    Anyhow, I enjoyed this post. Brought back some of my school/college memories 🙂

    Have wonderful weekend amigo.

    Adios 🙂

  5. Khurshid

    Hi Angela,
    As someone has mentioned wife beating in public often happens by the slum dwellers. Its a common site here. When we chance upon it, we just sigh, shake our heads and move on as getting involved will bring in more trouble for the poor women. Only if our woman stood up for themselves.
    I agree bullies have to be taught a lesson with their own medicine.
    I feel for the poor dog being tied up like this. There are organisations here who can help you with this problem. There is People for Animals(PFA); Compassion Unlimited Plus Action (CUPA); call them it might help.

    Good Luck,

    Have a wonderful day,

    Khurshid

    • angela_carson

      I agree with you in part about teaching a bully a lesson but it’s hard to find someone to do it. As a group I think it’s easier at times…. But great point. And thanks for CUPA suggestion 🙂 Have a wonderful day right back, ange

  6. Jeanne

    It’s cruelty to keep a dog tied up all the time. You can report this to CUPA and they will take him away. I had this done once at a building on Lavelle Road.

    • angela_carson

      Hi Jeanne, thanks for the advice. I take my cats to CUPA for all their vet needs and they are great. Always wanted to write an article about them and haven’t gotten around to it so maybe this is a good push 🙂 Cheers, angela

  7. Velmurugan Sengottaian

    Hi Angela,

    Most Bullies enjoy bullying others and the bullying habit increases if none confront the bully.
    I liked to bully my younger brother till some years back. 🙂

    About your neighbour parking his dog in your common area , only your owner can escalate the issue faster.
    Ask him to deal staright , either keep the dog in his home or vacate the home.
    The dog might already be targetting your cats for a snack. 😉

    Most of the middle and upper class indians never like to confront anyone in the street.
    So that could be the reason when nobody bothered to stop some bully who is beating his wife in the street.

    Regards,
    velu

  8. teena

    eeeeshh this brings back some not so wonderful memories of school/college days…u cud try talking to the tough guy’s sis and ask her do they really love their pet or is it just so that her bro can look cool in front of his friends…seriously ive seen people dump new puppies/kittens near the garbage coz they cannot simply be bothered…the least they could do was pass the word around if someone was looking out 4 a pet….

    • angela_carson

      I haven’t seen the puppy/kitty dump off yet, thank goodness. Sorry to hear about the school days bullies. I never experienced that thank goodness. –angela

  9. teena

    As for the wife beatin thing its pretty much ingrained in the psyche of the indian female that her husband should be her all and all, ofcourse with education and changing times it really doesnt hold through all the time but among the economically backward its a different story all together…

  10. San

    Your stories sound really horrendous. I’m an Indian and cheated to by a white girl, almost brazenly, but I never got physical, although in my view it tantamount to nothing less than mental torture.
    Re. story number two, I have a solution: just unleash the dog in the night. If owners ask if you know where it is, just put up a blank face.

    • AngelaCarson

      Hey Sanjay, I 100% agree with you about mental torture.  Words hurt so much more and the wounds often last much longer than a slap or a hit!  And as for the evil demon dog…I threatened to go to CUPA (an NGO) and report them for abuse and the parents actually thanked me and asked if I would do it so they would take the dog away for good.  I actually snapped photos but the next day I guess the son finally understood how serious it was and found a home for it (or let it loose and who knows what happened…but he’s gone and we are sooooo happy!).  Thanks for taking the time to comment –angela

      • San

        “Thanks for taking the time to comment” – Its a pleasure, but please don’t sound like those corporates, sounds cliched (and robotic)

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