Two Parts Trouble / Double Down Tough

I wanna be tough …
That doesn’t mean I want to be a caveman, bulking with muscles and able to throw cars at people.
Well, maybe it does a little.
What I mean by tough is both mentally and physically. Another post I wrote pertained to the Killer Instinct and my lack of it. Through the past year I have found a little of it at times, but mostly when some idiot does something so obviously stupid I have no choice but to call them on it.
I was reminded about how little people know of me today when getting coffee with a co-worker. Somehow the direction of conversation got around to “speaking your mind” and the perception people in the office have of us. I have (somehow) gotten the reputation of someone that has little patience with things that are illogical (go figure) and someone who “speaks their mind”. I don’t look at myself that way. What I had to tell this person is how different I really am.
I think I fake it well. Those that know me closely (family, SOME friends) know me as a person that halve about this much self esteem and self confidence. I think one teammate actually saw that come out last week. As I said, I fake it pretty good. I talk a good game. But I am tough on the outside and a mushy mess on the inside. You’d figure after 50 years (almost) I would have gotten a handle on that eh?
While writing this, I think it’s not really a question of tough, because I think I am pretty tough when it comes to certain things. I do tend to be protective of those I care about. And I do have my standards and values and will staunchly and stubbornly defend them ( I consider myself a conservative democrat but I often get mistaken for a liberal because I believe hurricanes are caused by shifts in barometric pressure and not gay marriage). But now I think of the question “what is ‘tough'”?
We all have our thoughts on it I guess. Tough to me is not based on looks. I mean, Channing Tate has a great physique but not sure how tough he is. Tough to me is that grizzled old man who worked with his hands his whole like and never has made more than 30k in one but still managed to build a house, support it, and send his kids to college without taking one cent from the government. 
That is REAL toughness.

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