Revenge is a dish best served cold, so they say.
It’s a phrase quite often used in popular culture and another phrase reiterated in The Godfather.
I’d heard it when I was younger, but If I’m honest, I was never sure exactly what it meant?
But now looking back, I seem to have learned that lesson from life experience.
I guess it depends that each case is different and it depends on the particular circumstances at the time.
Take for example, you’re standing in a bar and some stranger accidentally bumps into you and knocks your beer to the floor.
What would you do?
A – Tell the guy in no uncertain terms that he “better” by you another one?
B – Judge the guys reaction and decide if it was deliberate or not, then go to A
C – Apologise?
D – Do Nothing?
Response A is over-aggressive in my opinion, you “better” is only going to illicit a response of “I better do what?” and escalate the sitation. It’s a beer, what the point in getting upset about it and reacting too quickly
Response B would be my first choice, the guy should at least apologise and make the offer to pay for your drink, but if he doesn’t, that says more about him. He clearly doesn’t see you as a threat or just incapable of basic manners.
But because they are incapable doesn’t mean that you should react aggressively. Start a bar-fight with a stranger over a beer .. have you lost all sense of perspective? .. or are you completely insane?
Response C isn’t that strange, you’d be amazed the amount of people who say sorry when they weren’t at fault, it seems to be a built in response in the human condition of civilised peoples, particularly in the UK.
Response D – Do nothing? You can’t do nothing. You have to at least say something “You’ve spilled my drink mate” gives the guy the opportunity to make amends, whereas calling the guy a “Dickhead” is only going to incite the situation unnecessarily.
Bottom-line is, it’s all about perspective. Is a bottle of beer worth fighting about?
Is it worth taking revenge? Waiting on the guy outside?
No .. it isn’t, let me stop you right there .. that’s a childish response .. you need to grow up and stop thinking like that.
But someone ruining your life … cheating on you .. stealing significant funds from you .. taking advantage of you even legally .. now that is a different story.
The full point of revenge being a dish best served cold is that it has to be done after the fact and in a cold calculated manner to inflict as much damage as possible.
But there are a couple of flavours …
Do you want them to know it was you .. or not?
Obviously if they know it was you, you might have the pleasure of them knowing that it was you. But it then gives them the opportunity to tell th authorities or take some sort of action against you and there may be legal, civil or physical repercussions and this could become a tit-for-tat situation and escalate beyond your control.
Personally I don’t see the point in that, particularly when the revenge you have taken could end you in prison.
For me, the most important thing is not just to avoid detection, but also avoid suspicion. Therefore there has to be a significant time period between their action and your revenge or it follows that one is a consequence of the other, you will be the obvious suspect and you will end up in the clink.
Yes you will end up in the clink. You might plan your revenge thoroughly, but chances are you will make some sort of mistake and leave some sort of trace, particuarly in todays world with CCTV all over the place and your own mobile phone and internet service provider giving the game away.
So keep it cold, fly low, let time pass pass and plan it thoroughly.
Most importantly you need to have complete seperation between the actions taken and any opportunity to trace it back to you.
That means that you tell no-one, not even your partner or closest friends, leave no-one with the opportunity to inform the authorities or use it against you.
When the time comes, make your revenge all encompassing and leave them with no means to determine that it was you.
You don’t need to see their faces, not directly, you know that it has had its effect.
Do not revisit the scene of the crime. At least not immediately.
You will have won, know it enjoy it.
But will you really have won?
Sometimes taking revenge just isn’t enough.