My first police chief taught me that as long as no one was throwing punches, sometimes it was good just to let people “blow off some steam.” Back then new officers were taught the art of mediation. The choice to arrest, or not to arrest, was left to the officer’s on scene discretion.
Those boisterous people would often vent a bit and then regain control. More than once I was able to calm an irate individual by not reacting the way they thought I would. Many blowhards were ready to fight, but when I did not offer physical combat they took the cue and changed their tune. Some even apologized to me for losing their cool.
The article also deals with other stuff but we will leave out. The important part from a civilian self-defense point of view is that one of the best things we can do to go home and sleep in our own bed the same night is to keep cool and not feed the Ego.
In case you haven’t read it before, Ego is defined by that little asshole we all have inside and that gets us in trouble. Ego gets in the way when we should be de-escalating and its powers increase 10 fold by every BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) fraction we have in our system. We we happen to face an angry individual who is not an immediate danger, our best course of action may be not to feed the fuel that rocks his own Ego troll. That means to remain and show that you are calm, maybe even show some degree of remorse for any mistake you made (even if one is not necessary or warranted but make sure you sound contrite enough. Fake it till you make it) and even concede that to invest $20 on beers for the imbecile yelling at you is a much saner investment than six figures to a defense attorney.
This is not a 100% solution as nothing ever is, but you would be amazed how effective it can be as opposed as going head to head in an insult/yelling war. Words do not hurt. but stabs, bullet holes, fists to the anatomy, stomps, hits with a bat, etc all that stuff hurts or can kill you.