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Susan Perry


"I just wanted to flee, my solution of choice to brewing trouble. I was beginning to doubt myself, and looked for the door, when I remembered something I had learned in Aikido class the evening before: there is no real power behind a feigned attack. .. I looked at the dean again and considered the drama he was bringing, and I noticed the cowering student in her chair. It did seem frivolous and empty. Would he really punch, slap, or otherwise hit me? Attacks take energy to produce; they don’t just happen. He had enough energy to stand up and pound his fists and yell, and yet it would have to escalate quite a bit more if he were to cross the room to do me physical harm … I didn’t think so. The whole thing suddenly seemed ridiculous and absurd. It was so clearly a fake-out that I couldn’t suppress a smile. So what was I afraid of?"

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