I like to spar:
spar2 | spär | verb (spars, sparring, sparred) [no object]
• make the motions of boxing without landing heavy blows, as a form of training: one contestant broke his nose while sparring.
• engage in argument, typically of a kind that is prolonged or repeated but not violent: mother and daughter spar regularly over drink, drugs, and career.
• (of a gamecock) fight with the feet or spurs.
I believe I’ve sparred pretty much my whole life, remembering myself as the impish child, the one to provoke, stir the pot, defiant, contrary – training for adulthood, no doubt. And my only guess as to why I’m this way stems from a healthy curiosity regarding people; not just where they’ve been or what they do or like, but what they reveal when challenged. Show me the good stuff. And I like sparring; a little jab here, a little jab there. And my most favorite friends, writers, artists, professionals, comediennes, musicians and celebrities are those who also like to spar. I am, however, often viewed (and often incorrectly viewed) as passive aggressive, obnoxious and opinionated. I apologize to those I’ve offended, I’m working on the negative. But I have no intention of stepping out the ring—it’s too much fun. Carry on, my lovely sparring partners, my snappy sparring mentors; keep me sharp, keep me in the game.