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Who would want to mess with Jersey Shore tough guy Ronnie Ortiz-Magro?Jersey Shore's 'The Situation' Hits The Radio
As a small kid growing up in the Bronx, a lot of people! "Everyone was always bigger than me, and being a lot smaller, I got picked on a lot by the guys in the grades above me," Ronnie, 26, tells In Touch. "My parents always taught me to walk away from a fight, but from a guy's point of view, how many times can you walk away? In other places you get respect, but in the Bronx, you have to earn it."
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For Ronnie, fighting back meant hitting the gym - hard. "I grew up watching guys like Arnold Schwarzenegger, The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin and knew I wasn't going to look like that sitting on the couch - I had to motivate and make it happen," says Ronnie. "It was because of the bullying - and I also started to get into girls, too!"
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As for accusations that he has taken steroids, Ronnie laughs, "People say I'm on steroids because they can't look like this eating fast food three days a week."
Ronnie also admits to In Touch that his experience makes him sensitive to charges that he has become a bully himself: "I get angry at that because every fight that I've been in on the show, I've been provoked or I'm defending myself. It's the Bronx instinct: If you feel threatened, you defend yourself." Despite this, he insists he's learned lessons from his boardwalk battles. "Watching the show, I get to look back on my mistakes and say, 'I'm not going to do that again,'" he says. "I grew up a lot during the Italy season. I stayed away from drama and just had a good time."