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If You Don't Mug Yourself, Someone Else Will

To celebrate the last muggy day of yet another working week, here is a collection of stories about getting mugged from our friends in the UK.

To celebrate the last muggy day of yet another working week spent getting mugged off, here’s a collection of some of the most depressing mugging stories we’ve ever heard as told to us by our British friends from across the pond.

Illustrations by Sam Taylor. Follow him on Twitter @sptsam or visit his website at samtaylorillustrator.com.

THE BRAZILIAN REACH-AROUND

I was in Rio recently with a friend. One night, while we were having a post-dinner smoke on Copacabana Beach, a bunch of guys in drag came up to us and asked us for cigarettes. They were disheveled, reeked of booze, and their wigs looked like they hadn’t been brushed for weeks. They started insisting that we have sex with them, saying awful stuff like, “Put it in my culo, put it in my mouth, put it wherever you want, baby.”

I reacted how I imagine Hugh Grant would react if he were about to get raped: I started shaking and, in the most polite British accent I could conjure, replied, “I'm terribly sorry about this, but this is really not a good day for me.” It didn't work. Instead, they came closer and started touching us up, giving us what I now call the “Brazilian reach-around”: one hand desperately grabbing at our penises and the other searching each pocket to find and take our wallets.

When we finally managed to push them off, we scurried down the street, realizing our wallets were missing. We turned around, only to witness them pull out their penises and stand there flipping us the bird. They cackled at us for a while, then took off their heels and sprinted away with our wallets. We stood there in silence, trying to digest what had just happened. We spent the first part of the night waiting at the police station and the rest of it trying to get our families to wire us some cash.

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FOOTSTEPS IN THE SNOW

The third time I was mugged was probably the scariest. I was walking back to my girlfriend's house after she'd sent me out to buy dessert. The ground was covered in snow. I don't remember why exactly, but I'd stopped in the middle of the street to look at something on my phone. In retrospect, this was pretty ignorant and idiotic of me. A second after hearing steps in the snow behind me, a guy smoothly wandered past and snatched the phone right out of my hand. I stood there for a second, astonished at what had just happened, and I think I even tried to reason with the guy, saying something like, “Hey man, whatta ya doing? C'mon.”

He just laughed and carried on walking. Asshole. Suddenly, I felt a blunt, hard object hit the top of my head. I fell to the floor right away, soon realizing it was the robber's buddy who had hit me with a glass beer bottle. I don't know if you've ever been glassed before, but it really, really hurts. So there I was, on the floor, with my hand on my head and the guy's free hand clutching the collar of my jacket. “Now gimme all ya moneh,” he said, so I gave him the $40 I had. “Nah, gimme ya wallet, or I'm gonna hit ya again,” was his response. His breath stunk. I told him I didn't have a wallet, which was true. I don't know what the guy wanted me to do. He shrugged, let go of my jacket and walked off in the direction of his partner.

The cops told me they'd be able to track them down because they had found footsteps in the snow, but, unsurprisingly, nothing ever came of it. All three of my muggings happened on a Sunday evening, so I'm always extra careful whenever I'm out on a Sunday.

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GOLD TEETH


My buddy Rick was walking home one afternoon, when two guys suddenly jumped him from behind and tried to steal his iPod. They didn’t get to it, though, as my other friend fought them off. The entire time he was fighting them, his headphones were in. He was listening to “Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want.” He could only see the sky as they pulled him back, and he just remembers Morrissey's “Please, please, please...” ringing in his ears as he hit the ground. 

They ran off after a while, but not without splitting his lip down to his chin and knocking the bone and teeth out of the middle of his lower jaw. He also broke his foot while fighting them. After the attempted mugging, he went into the nearest curry house to get help, but they kicked him out because he was a mess and was scaring all the customers with his weird, slurry speech.

Just then, a friend who happened to be driving past picked him up and took him to hospital. The doctor gave him two options: either sew his lip back up on anesthetic, which might make for a wonky result, or without anesthetic, and it would be straight. Despite the fact it hurt like hell, he chose the latter. He now has gold teeth, is covered in tattoos and looks so badass that no one will have the balls to ever attempt anything like that again.

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THE YUCK-BAG METHOD


My friend Annika is one of the nicest people I’ve ever met, but also the messiest. We used to work together in a clothes store when we were 19, and she’d always fill the back room with various plastic, paper, and tote bags, overflowing with her random stuff—orange peels, wrinkled up receipts, loose change, tampons, and whatnot.

When closing the shop, there was always something she couldn’t find, usually her keys or credit card. If it wasn’t in her huge handbag, we had to start emptying the contents of the dozens of bags in the back room, placing the items in straight lines on the floor, until the missing object was finally identified.

Years later, she went traveling in South America. One night, as she was walking home with a friend from a party in a shady part of Buenos Aires, some thugs walked up to them and ordered them to hand over their handbags. They started with her friend’s purse, took her phone and wallet, then threw the bag back at her. Prying into Annika’s bag, however, was a whole other ordeal.

They desperately dug around in the mess for a good few minutes, making disgusted faces whenever they happened on a chewed-up piece of gum or a banana peel. They gave up and commanded her to locate her wallet. In a panic, she handed them her makeup bag. The guys were startled when they realized what she’d given them, but a group of people walked around the corner and the muggers decided to dart off. Who would've thought the best protection from getting mugged by some seriously scary men on a badly-lit street in a notoriously shady area would be as simple as a messy handbag?

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SHIT PHONE

I grew up in a rough neighborhood and used to pride myself on managing to talk, run or fight my way out of most situations. However, when I was 16 and on my way home from a party where I’d been clambering round people’s gardens, dry humping inanimate objects, and professing my undying love to people I had only just met (I had taken ecstasy for the first time), I found myself in a pickle. After boarding the train, I noticed a guy who looked like a steroid-pumped version of 50 Cent shouting down his mobile phone. It was really killing my vibe, so I skulked off to another carriage, where I plonked myself down and tried to snooze off the E.

About ten minutes into the journey, I opened my eyes to find my new friend towering over me, staring straight into my eyes, as if we were about to have that magical upside down kiss from the first Spiderman movie. He sat down next to me, asked me to roll him a cigarette and to “show him the time” (mugger language for “get your phone out”). I knew the only possessions I had on me were a half-empty bag of Golden Virginia and an old Nokia 3310, a phone so piss poor no one would've been able to fetch more than £5 for it on the black market, so I gladly obliged. I'd normally get defensive at this point, but the drugs had messed with all my natural reasoning.

Then, bizarrely, he asked me to speak to his girlfriend on his phone, while he "looked at my stuff." She sounded even more confused than me as to why we were talking. The train finally pulled into a station and I said goodbye to my new friend as he left my carriage. About 20 minutes later, I arrived at my station, only to find my shitty 3310 was missing. That phone had more use to him as a ballistic missile than it did as a piece of communication technology. However, by the time I got off the train, I had started to realize what had happened and crushingly realized that my perfect non-mugging record had come to an end.

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NAVAJO BIKERS

I had been borderline in love with a girl at school since she broke up with me in ninth grade after mandatory Combined Cader Force training. We'd gone out for about four days, which involved studiously not catching each other's eye or talking at all. She wisely called it a day while we were both wearing full camouflage and RAF berets in suburban South London drizzle.

After about three years of continued non-contact, I plucked up enough courage to ask her to sit in a Dulwich park with me one sunny day during break. I'd just spent the last four days painting a house, so I was flush with cash. I set off on the 185 with $300 in my pocket, my Discman, and a fervent hope that I might get to kiss her, or even put my hand on her hip/bum area.

She was actually there when I arrived and we found a semi-secluded grove, where we sat cross-legged opposite each other. I can't remember what we talked about, but it was probably awkward as fuck. Soon, a kid on a mountain bike went by, then went by again, and then went by again. Clearly impressed by my easy manner and new Discman, he decided to invite about eight of his friends along, who circled us on their bikes in a pastiche of a Native American intimidation routine, before dismounting.

At this point, three things became very clear: that sitting cross-legged not only makes you look like a child, but also makes it almost impossible to get up fast; that the seclusion of the grove was no longer in my favor and, finally, that there was no way I was going to get off with this girl today.

After one of the larger lads kindly warned me that, "If you look at my fucking face, I'll kick your pussyhole mouth off," I was meticulously stripped of my Discman, my decorating earnings, and two CDs, all the while not being able to look up for fear of my pussyhole mouth being kicked off. All I could see was the girl's face looking at me in a devastatingly sympathetic way. The last tiny bits of my self-esteem were napalmed into the dusty grass when they moved onto taking her phone, leaving me to to make a pretty Herculean attempt at begging for her SIM card (to no avail).

Eventually they left, shouting pussyhole all the way, just in case I forgot that I was, indeed, a massive pussy. I then walked the girl home. A wonderful day.

Illustrations by Sam Taylor. Follow him on Twitter @sptsam or visit his website at samtaylorillustrator.com.

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