Good talk on blocks

Sensei Canna offers insight into the real world of self defense!

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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:20 pm

The Walmart incident

We read in the news that generally, Walmart is not generally a safe place to park and shop, with some real characters who frequent the place, especially at night in the sprawling parking lot...


It was a balmy Sunday morning several years ago, and Little Darling had been saving her dollars and cents for a GameBoy. I am a man of the pinball generation, and I have little appreciation of video games.

I see the results they build in skilled hand eye coordination among the younger laproscopic surgeons, compared to the surgeons of my own age strata, but still, I resisted buying her the toy. When she proudly announced she had the funds herself, I relented.

Better to teach her the benefits of thrift than the tyranny of a father my wife told me. So, before church, we took off for Wal-Mart. She had her little purse of greenbacks and I had a 1911 under my sportscoat.

Inside the mega-store, she waited patiently as an employee summoned a manager and the manager found the keys to the locked case of video toys. No, we could not take it to the front to check out, so the milk my wife wanted would have to wait.

I glanced impatiently at my watch. Little Darling stepped proudly up to the counter and counted out her money. After taxes, she was eighty-seven cents short, and tears welled up in her eyes. I fished the change out of my pants pocket.

Time was short as we made our way to the front of the store. I cringed as I approached the greeter at the door with a bag in my hand. Thankfully, the elderly lady ignored me and we exited the first door into the foyer.

I became vaguely aware of two scruffy young men behind us as I stopped to look for traffic in preparation of entering the parking lot. They stayed behind us, rather than coming alongside.

I handed Little Darling her bag and took her hand as we began to negotiate the maze of parked automobiles. I glanced back and saw that the two young men had spread apart, one on either side of us and to the rear.

That is when I felt it. They had matched my stride and were circling me. Like an antelope, I knew I was being stalked by jackals, only I did not know why. Time was accelerating at head pounding speed, and Little Darling, blissfully unaware, was along for the ride.

I saw our vehicle and began to approach it, but I wanted to be certain. I walked past, and cut between two unoccupied SUVs, grabbing a shopping cart to block the path from my front.

The man on my right turned towards me and cursed as he saw his path was blocked by the cart jammed between the two vehicles sideways. I spun and drew my pistol from it's holster, keeping it at low ready, facing off the other young man who was quickly approaching me from behind.

My thumb had already snicked off the safety and Little Darling, confused, peered from behind me.

It seemed an eternity looking into the menacing, sneering face of the hoodlum who had began his approach from my rear. He sized up the man with the gun, a little girl behind him. I heard nothing to my rear.

Not a word was spoken. Then "God d-amned mother f-ucker......." he snarled as he sauntered away.

I said nothing. I couldn't. I turned to the rear, shoving Little Darling to the side. Nobody was there. I pivoted back around, my gun still at low ready. Nobody. I waited between the SUVs. Within seconds, a mother with her child in tow strolled past.

I took my daughter's sack, as well as her her little hand, and used my remote to unlock my Jeep's doors two vehicles away. I held my pistol in my right hand, concealed underneath my jacket and left arm as we made our way to the vehicle.

I made Little Darling enter the driver's side and told her to crawl over. As she scurried past the console, I followed and locked the doors behind us. It was clear behind us as I started the engine.

Then a green Cadillac paused behind us. I was trapped. The blue haired lady waited a moment in her Caddy, and then pulled forward. I took the opportunity and quickly backed out. I drove to an area of the parking lot that was empty for at least 75 feet all around us. I left the motor running.

I opened my cell phone and struggled to call the police. My fingers were still suffering from the loss of fine motor skills. When the cruiser arrived, I kept my hands visible and waited for the officer to ask me to exit my vehicle.

The officer asked for my identification, and I presented my driver's license and my carry permit. At his request, I shut off my engine and got out of the Jeep. My knees were weak.

I shuddered as I told the officer my story. I did not know why I was being herded and stalked, but I explained that I knew what was happening and felt it deep in my bones. I had been prey. I told him I had drawn my weapon. He asked if I was still armed, and I said yes. "Good," he replied.

God I love Louisiana sometimes. He never asked to see my gun. He made out a report, which I gladly gave to prevent accusations of "a man with a gun" in the Wal-Mart parking lot. With a smile he told me I was free to go.

Through church and over the next few days I was perplexed. Why would a man of my stature, a fit six foot one, be chosen as prey by two criminals? I could not understand it.

Those kind of things happened to the elderly, women, the weak. They did not happen to big guys with crew cuts and broken noses. Hell, most of the time, all it took was a cold professional stare to change the direction of young men.


Was my world changing? Was I getting older? Did it show? Or were the cretins becoming bolder? I was dumbfounded. I did not know why I was singled out as prey, and it bothered me. I began to grow apprehensive.

I could not change it unless I knew why, and I was still going into the worst of neighborhoods to provide nursing service. Were these thugs targeting me specifically? Did they know me? Had I unwittingly crossed into some unknown gangland pissing grounds? God damn it, did they want my child?

I doubled my awareness, and I slept lightly for two nights. Then, on Wednesday, as I was changing the dressing on Miss Eleanor's abdominal surgical wound, Judge Judy was blaring on the television. Two idiots were arguing over a GameBoy as though it was a bag of diamonds.


It was then that everything became clear to me. The two thugs could not steal a GameBoy from the locked case inside the Wal-Mart. I remembered them being present looking at CDs while Little Darling and I waited on the manager to open the locked display case.

They had waited for a customer to purchase the object of their lust, and then followed the customer out of the store to score. My little girl's life and my own life had been threatened for a damned toy.

The idiots had not planned on risking their own life, however. The jackals had unwittingly encircled a lion.

That was the last time I drew my weapon in fear of my life. I still feel that my life and my little girl's life was at risk. While they may not have willingly killed for a toy, these criminals had no compunctions about starting a fight and possibly pushing a child into traffic to get a damned electronic toy.

My world had not changed, but the world around me had. I relaxed a bit, and I released the knots in my stomach. I knew my selection as a victim had been the result of a specific action, not because of a perceived weakness.

Still, it was a lesson reaffirmed. We never know when or why an attack might commence. We do not know what lengths others might take to obtain that which they deem valuable. It is impossible to predict any and all contingencies.

Because of the differences between people, and the dangers that result from those differences, we can only be prepared to protect ourselves and our children, at any time, by any means necessary.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:28 pm

Interesting subway ride
TSDguy »

I was waiting for the subway at rush hour, and I heard a guy yelling not far from me. He wasn't making much sense, but he was clearly very pissed. I got away from the subway tracks, braced myself for a possible shove on to the tracks, made sure I wasn't going to be on the same subway car as him when the train came, and went about my business.

After all, people getting pissed and yelling is an everyday occurrence in Boston, especially when as many people are out as at rush hour. This is my standard routine. Don't get thrown onto the tracks and don't get on the train with a psycho.


Train comes, and I get on. Apparently pissed off guy had been running around, because he gets on the opposite end of my train. Dammit, but whatever. A T worker timidly confronts him from the platform about his screaming right as the doors close and the train takes off.

The guy is ~ 6 foot, 200lbs, shaved head and goatee dressed in sweats and carrying a backpack. He is talking VERY loudly, sort of to everyone in the train, swearing profusely, still not making much sense. He's going on about how his mother is a ##### whore, how are of us are cowards and only pick on the defenseless, and he was 'defenseFUL'.

Something about his mother paying to have him locked away twice. I assume at this point he'd either been sent to prison or an insane asylum by his mother. Whatever, he's scaring the sh-it out of everyone on my train. DEAD silent, no one moves an INCH. And what is in this guys bag.

He's getting more and more agitated, screaming on and on about the defenseless/defenseful thing, slamming his hands into the subway door occasionally.

He's really pissed at this point and tells us he's going to kill us all at Copley, he'll be waiting for us (?), but he's definitely going to kill everyone. A while back I started to suspect he was going to pull a gun and start hosing us all down, and now I'm really, really worried.

Most of the people on my train and old women and children. I'm way too far away from him to be thinking first strike, and all I'm worried about is a gun coming out. As sad as it sounds, I wasn't that worried about a knife coming because I knew there was nothing I could do. The women in in between him and I would die, I wouldn't be able to move. I was ready to duck under the dead bodies of old women and the seats if the gun came out. :?

The train is under the ocean towards E. Boston, which is a fairly long stretch with no stops, and we're not moving fast at all. So I'm just stuck there waiting to either die or something to go down. I thought about having someone push the button to call the train operator, but just had to hope someone had discreetly done it. I thought movement of any kind would make this worse.

Next stop finally rolls around and the police are waiting for him. (This was an interesting show down as well, the guy that escorted him off the train was standing almost nose to nose with the crazy guy and was a decent amount smaller than him.

I was very impressed by the authoritarian attitude of the cop, but I wondered if he actually could back it up if crazy guy suddenly pulled a weapon.) The cop got him to come willingly by telling him "we're just going to another car", which I'm sure was not a subway car but a police car.

My subway car comes to life, EVERYONE is best friends now, talking about how they're glad he's gone, how they were scared, yada yada yada.

Thoughts:

I was stuck. There was no way out, and no way to attack the guy either in melee or ranged.

Everyone in the car (60 people?) was frozen deer in the headlights. Was there a better option? Maybe not? There could have been someone near him with a concealed weapon, I don't know.

TSDguy
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:30 pm

A tough one. Reminds me of two movies: The incident [1967] where two punks terrorize a subway car full of frozen people in New York, and the other "The laughing policeman' where a nut gets on buses with a machine gun and kills everybody. People frozen in fear.

You move, others won't help you, people will die, you will get blamed for moving, doing or saying anything. They'll say you started it.

A no win situation unless many of you take action at the same time.

Would someone with a gun in the pocket take first action?

And what if he did?

You did best....wait and see...and hide or use bodies as a shield if you must attack to save your life.

You step 'bravely forward' you will die in many ways you haven't thought of.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:33 pm

Some people really have no choice but to take the ‘T and see’ _

Scum is ubiquitous, police presence is scant, and punks are arrogantly aware they ‘own’ the rails.

You are a sardine packed in other sardines when the sharks come on board to feed.

Choices are: You stay a packed sardine hoping you won’t be singled out_ or you wiggle out of the pack.

Once you wiggle, what happens next if you don’t die or get crippled will be your fault especially if others die.

They’ll say “if only that fool would have stayed put”

_ Difficult to stay put at times as you want to pull your Glock or sharp blade and ‘gut’ the predator spilling blood all over the car, right?

Now think of what will happen next.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:35 pm

TSDguy »

f.Channell wrote:
Best thing is to stay off the loser cruiser and burn some gas.


I understand the sentiment, but driving is more dangerous than riding the subway. With driving, it's 'how many?' and 'how bad?' not 'will you?' be in an accident.

It's a rare thing that someone pulls a gun on the subway. And me being more aggressive about getting off that particular train would have gone a long way.

I could have shoved my way out when I first noticed him on my car. I wouldn't have been popular, but I would have been out of the situation.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:37 pm

I agree, especially driving the rush hours to Boston and back everyday.

Lousy drivers, cell phone 'drivers'_ texting addicts...coffee and doughnuts drivers_ pigs at the wheel unable to turn their heads and check traffic_ you name it.

Pick up trucks bullying you around, road rage punks etc.

TSD you did right. Stay aware and the hell with the others.

Use them as shields because they will do it to you. :(

Scream 'my bag_ my bag' as you barrel through the crowd to get the hell out.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:40 pm

The Taking Of Pelham One Two Three”


On a quiet mid-day in New York, along the Lexington Avenue subway line, the train designated "Pelham One Two Three" -- so named for its station-of-origin and time of departure -- makes its way down the East Side of Manhattan.

One by one, three men board the train and at 28th Street a fourth man approaches the motorman (James Broderick) and points a pistol at him, ordering him to unlock the door to his cab and admit the man waiting there; meanwhile, another man points a gun at the conductor and threatens to kill him unless he holds the doors open and then closes them when the man talking to the motorman is aboard.


Once on board, "Mr. Blue" (Robert Shaw) and "Mr. Green" (Martin Balsam) halt the train between stations, while "Mr. Brown" (Earl Hindeman) and "Mr. Gray" (Hector Elizondo) seal off the lead car.

With Mr. Green at the controls, the front car is separated and isolated in the tunnel with 17 passengers aboard, and then Mr. Blue presents their demands over the radio -- one million dollars in cash, within one hour, or they will start shooting one passenger each minute.


On the other end, Transit Police Lieutenant Zachary Garber (Walter Matthau) must overcome his initial disbelief to deal with this threat, amid the confusion of a subway system that's chaotic even when it's running normally.

With the mayor reluctantly aboard to pay the ransom, Garber must keep the hijackers from carrying out their threat while the money is transported, and keep the hotheads around him and on the police force under control -- and figure out how they intend to get away with a million dollars from inside a subway tunnel with police on all sides.


The action is fast and furious but never confusing, with director Joseph Sargent, photographer Owen Roizman, and editors Gerald Greenberg and Robert Q. Lovett all combining to create a closely interwoven, briskly-paced account of split-second interlocked and overlapping action, which locks together like the dialogue in a Howard Hawks movie and is every bit as intense and engrossing, leavened by carefully placed, totally naturalistic moments of gallows humor.


A must for subway riders.

The incident, in particular, puts you in touch with the 'inner self' something not very comfortable.

It is a movie that will leave every subway rider shaken.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:46 pm

f.Channell »

Best New York subway madness movie of all time 1979's the Warriors.

It was banned in Mass. but my high school buddy had an early cable thing of some sort. Good stuff.

Driving in the city can be fun. But not in anything worth over $1,000.
Drive a Corolla rice rocket like me and enjoy. :lol:
But if I was driving nice rides like Van, I'd have both eyes open.

I haven't been on the "T" in 10 years. That was quite a story in itself.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:48 pm

Yeah, Fred, that was some movie. No?

Right you are about not driving in town unless you have an urban combat vehicle.

I leave my BMW in the garage and take out my VW-GTI for in town trips. A quick pocket rocket that runs circles around street pigs.

It is rare that I get on the T …though I have done that for fun as talked about a while back.

TSD describes a harrowing event as that nutcase very possibly had a gun in the bag, was demented, and had commanded people not to move.

If you did move and the nut opened fire on the passengers _ how would you feel assuming you survived?

Besides, you would be blamed by just about anybody for the carnage, and most likely sued.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:53 pm

NY/NY

There is never a most dangerous. However I will say it can be unpleasant late at night riding any line through the low income sections of the city. Not because of a lack of people, the problem is the type of people on the trains at that time in those areas.

A lot of drug addicts, homeless, mentality challenged, gang members, trouble makers.

Another time is when school lets out in the afternoon through the evening. All those wild ass kids can be a pain. Fighting on the train, smoking weed, blasting music, flipping, doing all kinds of crazy ****.

Then you bump into one and you get into a big ass argument. One station that comes to mind is East 125th Street on the 4/5/6 line. Place is out of control around that time.

I guess a few lines that fit this description for unsafe are the 2, 4, 5, and 6 through the Bronx and Harlem.

I'm a lot more anxious being in Brooklyn late at night on the train than the Bronx.

This is from my own personal experience. Some of the stations in Brooklyn can be really shady and desolate.

The scariest experience for me was when I visited a friend in East New York late at night. I think I had to take the 3 train. Let's just say I've driven pretty much every time I've visited after that.

I haven't had any bad experiences on the 4 or 6. The actually tend to be pretty filled up, even later on into the night. At least on the weekends.

I see the East Bronx as more desolate than the W Bronx which is closer to Manhattan and has more crowded areas like the Concourse.

To me, areas like Hunts point, Longwood and stations like Elder and Morrison in Sound view are in a no-man's land, and scarier than areas to the west, though I know those areas can be just as bad.



NY...arm pit of humanity :lol:
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Fri Jan 10, 2020 12:04 am

f.Channell »

Here we have a real case of fighting back with a handgun while outnumbered by punks. Found innocent in criminal case, lost $50 million (80's money) in civil case. So if anyone chooses to chop up their would be assassin, don't get caught.

http://eightiesclub.tripod.com/id311.htm

Huge news back in the day.

F.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Fri Jan 10, 2020 12:08 am

I agree. Bernie Goetz was a can short of a six pack for sure.

Put himself right in the shark’s jaws. NY was and still is the armpits of the world when it comes to the right to defend yourself. Corrupted lawyers and prosecutors looking to make a name for themselves at the expense of hapless citizens.

But then the idiots like Goetz make their jobs easy.

Talk about tactical idiocy. As we see constantly this seems to be a 'martial malady'

No common sense whatsoever, especially when real weapons are about to appear.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Fri Jan 10, 2020 12:10 am

TSD_ just wondering. From your vantage point and distance from the perp, did you cross glances with some people you might have perceived capable to take action, if need be, as a group rushing that guy?

There is much which could be conveyed by the eyes and subtle gestures enlisting support and triggering an attack in unison.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Fri Jan 10, 2020 12:11 am

TSDguy »

No definitely not, and I was definitely looking. Just middle aged women staring in to space, an infant... It might very well have been a slaughter if he even only took out a heavy flashlight.

There was that guy wearing the hat who was commented too, closer to the crazy guy, but I never got a good look at him. The memory is fading a bit, but I seem to recall him being young and extremely short.
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Re: Good talk on blocks

Postby Van Canna » Fri Jan 10, 2020 12:15 am

Well, it then looks like you exhausted all possibilities and did the right thing in not doing anything at all that might have antagonized/triggered an excuse for the schizophrenic to go ‘postal’ _ if he was so predisposed.

You had no way of knowing what was boiling under his skin, just a look might have nudged him over the threshold.

In such cases, the worst part is the self doubts after the fact _ that someone may have about what he should, could, must have done, especially if a trained martial artist and or even the carrier of a concealed firearm.

Sound tactics is what saves the day, not impulsive idiocy, like not being 'punked out' BS...

To keep in mind is that the first responsibility is to the defenseless group of people in the subway car, not a place to pull some hero BS that could well affect the lives, death_ paralysis, of a great number of them.

In such cases, discretion is the better part of valor, something that goes to ‘tactical thinking’_

Had you triggered a carnage, you would never live it down; it would haunt you for the rest of your life, possibly from a wheel chair, and from a hole in the wall as your house, since you lost all you ever had, including your job, after the law suits started coming in.

There is a time to take action and a time to ‘go grey’ _

Well done.
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