About the middle of sixth grade I realized that in those days, schoolyard fights were essentially a very rough sport, more like bullfighting than boxing -- i.e. the bull gets goaded into attacking and then beaten and humiliated. So I meekly endured teasing and having my nipples pinched (don't ask me why this guy was so fond of pinching male nipples, but he had a kind of route of a half dozen victims) for about a week while I planned, and then one day rode my bicycle into a crowd of him & friends, jumped off and threw it forward, thus tangling his legs.
While he was tangled, I grabbed his hair and pulled his face into several thoroughly inept punches that were nonetheless probably at least a bit painful, and before he was together enough to retaliate, the nice old lady who lived in the house, who was sitting out on her porch, came along and sternly ordered me to go away. I rode off, unretaliated against.
3. If you have no musical theatre interest, it's possible you've never heard "At the Ballet" from A Chorus Line. Go listen to it now, I'll wait, and you obviously have time if you read this blog. Now, what you're hearing there is a pretty good reflection of a very large number of kids' lives. If there's not much for you at home, sports programs, or some art activities like band or theatre or choir, can give you a full-on life, or so it feels at the time. Sadly, though … comes time for the big musical, the big game, the big concert … and all of a sudden, some kid who misses half of practices, dogs it on all the laps, never even showed up to help run the Thespian concession stand, has the big part or is starting in the position you wanted. And they might be pretty good but not nearly as good as you are.