‘You’re a fat c**t and always will be’

Excuse my French. But these were the parting words of a bloke I had the misfortune of meeting a few years ago. I forget his name, so let’s just call him Slime Ball.

It’s an appropriate sobriquet. He had a pot of wet look gel on his head and had been doused in cheap aftershave the day I met him. As you’re about to hear, he was as slippery as an eel in olive oil. Still, weirdly, I have a lot to thank Slime Ball for. He gave me the best pep talk I’ve ever had.

“You’re a fat c**t and always will be”

First, he crashed his car into mine (which was stationary), apologised and admitted liability. Then he changed his mind and took me to court, claiming I was liable. He lied throughout the hearing. Slime Ball lost, because he isn’t very bright and a terrible liar. The evidence contradicted his story (he even got confused between his left and right).

Then, outside court, he declared I was a fat c**t and always will be. It wasn’t really the ‘fat c**t’ bit that pissed me off (I’m sure I’ve been called worse, and I was pretty porky at the time), but his assertion that I would always be so. As if, just as Slime Ball’s destiny seems to have been to grow up to become a lying little shit, mine was this.

Well, he was wrong. A week after the hearing I joined my local Crossfit gym. In the next year or so I lost a couple of stone. More importantly, I developed a love of exercise – particularly running stupidly long distances – that’s led me to set my sights on the Marathon des Sables in 2019.

I’m not saying this is all down to Slime Ball, but his words pop into my head from time to time when I’m running. And I smile. What makes me smile is that I’ve proven him wrong (at least on the fat bit; there’s bound to be some who still say I’m a c**t). Somehow I think Slime Ball will always be a slimeball.

Still, his words were some of the most motivating I’ve ever had.

Ever received abuse that’s spurred you to do something new or change your life? Ever been shouted at by a prick (they’re usually in a van – sorry, but they are) when you’re running? Let me know! Leave a comment!

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