Know this: You will kick some ass and get some ass kicked, but this will hopefully avoid the full extent of your ass from being subjected to said kicking. There is no such thing as a clear winner, unless you're fighting your little brother or wrestling with a friend. But that isn't what we are talking about. Let us presume someone has insulted you or someone dear to you, and the only way left out is a tiff. It is critical that you realize this: You will get hit. You will get hurt. Chances are, though, that the adrenaline won't let you even feel it until afterwards. Your goal is to end the fight as quick as possible without looking like a sissy. The ole kick in the balls is out of the question, unless we're talking about a life and death situation.

Your Stance
You will want to have your weight evenly distributed between your left and right leg, with your passive side facing your opponent. If you are right handed, the left is the passive side. Your opponent will most likely do the same; if you see him leaning forward, you can take your chances and swipe kick the leg nearest you, throwing him to the ground. Stability is 90% of staying up.

A kick to the chest is sure to take nearly anyone down. But if you aren't fast, your opponent can grab your leg and pull it, throwing you to the ground. A kick to the shin is much easier, especially when your opponent has his eyes on your upper body. When he lowers himself after the shin kick, uppercut him.

Most basic rule of punches: keep your thumb outside your fist, lest you wish to break it. If you're hitting something hard, do a flat fist (fingers and back of hand at ninety degrees;) if your target is soft, angle your fingers at fourty-five degrees, striking with your knuckles. Always go for the money shot. Right in the face, preferrably on the nose. If you can get to the side of his face, a good strong hit has the power to dislodge his jaw or even break it. Always punch with your whole body - since your passive side is facing your opponent, by swinging around you can put an extra 1xx pounds into the hit.

Pressure points
With a bit of practice, you can end any fight in five seconds flat. There are tons of these, the most practical are between the jaw and ear, on either side of the neck, aside the shin... You can pick up a book on them or just poke yourself =) - They can save your ass if you're in any sort of lock and can liberate a hand.

We will assume that during the course of this, your opponent will try to distribute some bodily harm in return. It is amost useless to block kicks (unless you're a friggin' monster, and then why would you be reading this,) instead, try to move out of their way. If a straight-on punch is approaching you, use the outside of your arm to "smack" it out of your way, preferrably striking with the other one. Any sliding hit (coming from the side) should be blocked on the inside of your opponents arm with the downside of your hand.

ALWAYS try talking it out first, 'cause regardless of how good you are at this, you never know what might happen...

We almost have ourselves a little brawl going, don't we? =)

When I created my original writeup, I was describing a fight that would not lead to the death - merely the consummation of a heated argument; the kind of thing that gets stopped by both parties' friends before it gets too serious. Of course one should avoid fights when possible, I used to think otherwise until my jaw was broken with someone's first punch - but, we're young, we're men and in the quest for knowledge and nubile young women things tend to get out of hand, a good fight can be cathartic at times.