You can tell a lot about a man by how he reacts when you try to take his picture. Take UFC star Conor McGregor for example.
McGregor is a fine role model whose life is clearly headed in the right direction.
Well, unless you count that time last year when he allegedly attacked a bus carrying several UFC employees and injured at least two of them badly enough that they weren’t able to fight that weekend.
And that time last October when he took part in a full-blown riot in the octagon after losing to Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Oh, and there’s also Monday’s incident. That’s when a fan tried to take a picture of the UFC star as they were exiting a Miami hotel. McGregor slapped the phone out of the man’s hand, stomped on it several times, picked it up and walked away.
Three things here.
First, what is it with celebrities not wanting people to take their picture? It’s not like McGregor was in his home asleep and the man broke in to get a few quick selfies. A fan just wanted a picture out in public. Where’s the victim? It’s almost as if a lot of celebrities belong to a cult started by Sean Penn where the fundamental belief is that pictures from adoring fans will steal your soul.
Next, no one has ever tried to take a picture of me in public but I have been in my fair share of group photos. There’s a rule about group photos. The lady taking the picture never can take just one picture. Here’s how the process works.
First fifteen minutes: Lady tries to get everyone organized.
Next ten minutes: Lady tries to figure out how camera works while we kneel down. Side note: the temperature while this is taking place is alway somewhere between 90 and 115 degrees.
Next three minutes: Lady takes several pictures with several different phones. Her thumb is over the lens in every picture.
Next twelve minutes: Lady starts blaming the flash for something.
Next sixteen minutes: Fellow on second row passes out and is carried away by an ambulance. Everyone left behind envies him.
Final sixty minutes: Lady finally takes the picture she wants and everyone walks away, questioning the decisions in their life that led them to this point. Suddenly, the lady calls out, “Wait! Come back. Let’s take a silly picture now.”
I point all of that out simply to say that I understand the desire to throw someone’s phone down, stomp on it, grab it and walk away. But you have to control your urges.
That leads us to the final point. Let’s take a look at McGregor’s final few fights. In his last fight, McGregor was humiliated by Khabib Nurmagomedov. Before that, Floyd Mayweather beat him. He carried a two fight win streak into he Mayweather fight, beating Eddie Alvarez by TKO and winning a decision that could have gone either in his second fight against Nate Diaz. In his first fight against Nate Diaz, McGregor was beaten soundly. In his last five fights, the great Conor McGregor is 2 and 3, 3 and 3 if you want to count the fight he had with that guy’s phone on Monday. Either way, the slap, kick and body slam Conor McGregor gave to that phone were the most efficient martial arts moves he’s had in three years. That will definitely come into play when he is sentenced to two hours of community service and a $13 fine as opposed to the year in jail that you or I would have gotten had we acted on our urges during one of those group photos.
There is a lesson to be learned here.
The same characteristics that make you a reasonably good fighter aren’t always the same characteristics that make you a solid human being. To quote the great philosopher and chicken connoisseur Kenny Rogers, “You’ve got to know when to hold ’em, know when to fold ’em, know when to walk away, know when to run.”
Conor McGregor knows how to find a fight. Someone just needs to teach him how to walk away.