Fight or Flight

Tipping Point by Garry and Roy Robson begins as a story of a boy in trouble. Harry didn’t like to see his friend Epimou bullied. Epimou couldn’t defend himself so Harry waded in to discourage Gary Milton from further bullying. Using the fire extinguisher may have been a bit much. That was the Headmaster’s opinion when he expelled Harry.

When Harry returned home, mom was not happy. It was probably better that Harry went to a pub for awhile. Harry was sixteen. In some countries, he may just have been an expelled student in trouble, but in London, he was a man needing a job. And he got one. His father put him on a strike-breaking crew that would get rid of trash and refuse from posh areas of London. A general strike had been called by the responsible union workers but the rich wanted their streets clean. And they would pay for it. This was bound to lead to fighting. And Harry didn’t have his fire extinguisher.

After a life of fighting at school and fighting on the job with dad added to a few drinking sessions with dad and dad’s friends, Harry began to see a pattern emerging. He looked to the example of his dad who had been fighting all his life in periods of employment that frequently required the injudicious use of violence. What kind of future could Harry see for himself?

Just before being expelled from school the headmaster gave Harry a bit of advice. Perhaps Harry was suited for military life. Harry would at least consider it.

For those ignorant of a certain class of London life (me), this was a fascinating read. In this selection, there were links to follow up books by this author. One of these will be my next read. This style of writing is new to me and I find it interesting.

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