Thanks for all the comments and feedback from everyone. I hope nobody gets the impression that I learned aikido in three weeks before I hurt my back. Actually I learned very little in the few lessons I took. It was just a blur of learning the etiquette, trying to learn to roll, watching the sensei do a move on someone several times, then being matched up with someone with my own experience to try to recreate the move. The instructor of the class does come by and give some pointers during each technique, but sometimes it was when I was being uke and sometimes when I was nage. All in all, I found it very hard to pick up with just my brief experience. I hope to take some more aikido when I get some health insurance and a less physical job.
Having said that, I'm guessing that someone besides myself would find some value in self study(reading, watching videos, aikido3d) to get a general understanding of the art. Especially for a beginner like myself. I have several books, videos, and even aikido3d, and as the books say I try to internalize the concepts of one point, the unbendable arm, and moving your body and arms as a single unit.
As to the fight, I didn't give much details but, my getting suckerpunched had to do with me thinking I could reason with this person. I stepped in between, as I saw he had tunnel vision for her and my mistake was I didn't stick my arms out, but I just had them palm out against my stomach, which he came up against. Way to close. Definite learning experience. Once the fight was on, I didn't do any aikido locks or throws. The third time I moved into him he threw a wild right, which when it hit my extended left arm and turned turned him completely sideways, putting him off balance with me in his space. If there was more room to that side I probably could have gotten a nice shiho-nage, or kote-gaeshi. Since my right hand was about a foot and a half from his left cheek I hit him about 6-10 times with my right in about a second or two and he staggered out the door, only to come back in about three minutes later and pick up a wooden baby chair and come after me.
Some other things I learned:
1.)Punching someone hurts,
2.)Even if you get several good punches at someone they may not go down.
3.) Just because they leave the fight doesn't mean it is over, they might come back.
4.) You reason with sane people, not crazy ones.
All in all, my experience just makes me want to learn more about aikido. I might need it