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Old 07-25-2017, 09:46 PM
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Default EDC Lesson

I stopped to gas up my car mid afternoon today when I saw a young guy walking across the lot watching me closely. No other cars or people were around (no station attendant in sight) and I kept an eye on his progress as he got closer. While I can't articulate it I believe he was sizing me up. I look like an easy mark, past 70 and handicapped. My 340PD was in my L/F pocket so I slid my hand on it trying to look casual. He gave me a wide berth but kept looking over his shoulder at me and checking to see if anyone else was watching us. Needing both hands to finish I shifted the gun under my shirt, appendix, with my back to him, and got back in the car. He was still looking at me as I drove away. Maybe I'm just a paranoid old retiree and nothing was going to go down, but I was really glad to be carrying. Lesson: If you can legally carry do so all the time, not selectively when you think you might need to.
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Old 07-25-2017, 09:59 PM
i1afli i1afli is offline
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You just never know.
Thanks for sharing.
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Old 07-25-2017, 11:43 PM
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Default Hand stays in pocket

Quote:
Originally Posted by Old cop View Post
I stopped to gas up my car mid afternoon today when I saw a young guy walking across the lot watching me closely. No other cars or people were around (no station attendant in sight) and I kept an eye on his progress as he got closer. While I can't articulate it I believe he was sizing me up. I look like an easy mark, past 70 and handicapped. My 340PD was in my L/F pocket so I slid my hand on it trying to look casual. He gave me a wide berth but kept looking over his shoulder at me and checking to see if anyone else was watching us. Needing both hands to finish I shifted the gun under my shirt, appendix, with my back to him, and got back in the car. He was still looking at me as I drove away. Maybe I'm just a paranoid old retiree and nothing was going to go down, but I was really glad to be carrying. Lesson - If you can legally carry do so all the time, not selectively when you think you might need to.
I've been fueling up and felt the same unease, hand in pocket...with off hand hung up the pump and replaced filler cap..discretely drew as I entered my vehicle, started the engine with left arm over the steering column..
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Old 07-25-2017, 11:45 PM
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Go with your gut feeling. If you thought he was sizing you up, He was very likely sizing you up.

Good advice. Carry everywhere every day.

Wing master
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Old 07-25-2017, 11:49 PM
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When I'm out and about I watch EVERYONE. I even turn around and look at them if I have to. If they don't like it, oh well.

Some youngsters see gray hair as a sign of weakness. BIG MISTAKE!

Can't say enough about situational awareness.
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Old 07-25-2017, 11:58 PM
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Situational awareness in action!

I can't help but wonder how many wouldn't have noticed a potential problem. We should all take a lesson from it.

Thankfully, your story had a good ending!
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Old 07-26-2017, 12:29 AM
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Many people have a touch of being "psychic" and pick up on another person's thoughts or intentions. Most ignore these internal signals and blow them off as paranoia, or whatever. Ofttimes, those who ignore these feelings wind up having trouble descend upon them.

A lot of LEOs DO pay attention when their senses flare up... they get a "hunch" that something is about to happen, or "feel" that something just isn't quite right in a situation. For some , it may be experience ("I've seen this before."), it may be good training, or it may be keen observation. Whatever the case may be, they are on alert and ready to act.

Have you ever just met someone and taken an instant dislike without even speaking to that person? Or see someone you've never seen before and want to have a beer with them? I would bet large money that most of us have. Same kind of radar.

What do you "pick up" from people when you're in a crowd? Do you sometimes get uncomfortable, maybe even agitated?

Pay attention to your senses and act upon them. It could be the difference in getting home happy and in one piece, or becoming a statistic.
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Old 07-26-2017, 12:38 AM
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Us old retired LEOs watch everyone! Yes, it is Situational Awareness, but I just like to watch people. One never knows what there is to see.....
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Old 07-26-2017, 12:47 AM
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Originally Posted by ExcitableBoy View Post
Many people have a touch of being "psychic" and pick up on another person's thoughts or intentions. Most ignore these internal signals and blow them off as paranoia, or whatever. Ofttimes, those who ignore these feelings wind up having trouble descend upon them.

A lot of LEOs DO pay attention when their senses flare up... they get a "hunch" that something is about to happen, or "feel" that something just isn't quite right in a situation. For some , it may be experience ("I've seen this before."), it may be good training, or it may be keen observation. Whatever the case may be, they are on alert and ready to act.

Have you ever just met someone and taken an instant dislike without even speaking to that person? Or see someone you've never seen before and want to have a beer with them? I would bet large money that most of us have. Same kind of radar.

What do you "pick up" from people when you're in a crowd? Do you sometimes get uncomfortable, maybe even agitated?

Pay attention to your senses and act upon them. It could be the difference in getting home happy and in one piece, or becoming a statistic.
There can be a fine line between "psychic" and "psychotic". If one thinks they can read minds, it is probably more a situation of the latter.
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Old 07-26-2017, 01:15 AM
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I often fuel up after shift, which is often on the later side of midnight. I carry appendix and have had situations of cars pulling into the empty lot after me and the circling around slowly. I just skip my thumb up to my belt loop to keep hand close and keep watch. I don't know if it's the "sizing up" of they just realize their target is paying attention and they won't catch you sleeping. Either way, keep the head on a swivel
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Old 07-26-2017, 01:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ExcitableBoy View Post

What do you "pick up" from people when you're in a crowd? Do you sometimes get uncomfortable, maybe even agitated?

Pay attention to your senses and act upon them. It could be the difference in getting home happy and in one piece, or becoming a statistic.
I'm often agitated in a crowd. Because I hate crowds and don't like being around a lot of people I don't know. But I don't think I'm psychic
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Old 07-26-2017, 07:30 AM
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Was your fly up?
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Old 07-26-2017, 07:58 AM
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Probably thinking "why is this old guy staring at me for"? EDC Lesson EDC Lesson

Sent from my XT1650 using Tapatalk

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Old 07-26-2017, 08:08 AM
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Just being aware and keeping an eye on folks can be a preventative. I had a similar feeling a couple years ago when filling up late at night and was alone at the station. Found out they had a robbery later that night. Was it the same guys in the same car? No idea. But being aware and not keeping it to yourself is a great preventative IMHO.
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Old 07-26-2017, 08:31 AM
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Old Cop:

I had a similar incident a few months ago while pumping gas, but my "ute" walked directly towards me with his hands in his front pants pocket. I moved my off-hand into my front pants pocket on my New York reload (Model 38-0), smiled at him, and said "why don't you just keep walking before someone has a bad day?" The look on his face was priceless as I imagine his surprise that at least this old dog still had a few teeth left in his mouth, and wasn't afraid of biting. Yeah, he put his head down, turned around and walked away to bother someone else.

I'm glad things worked out for you. Stay safe.

Regards,

Dave
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Old 07-26-2017, 08:47 AM
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Keep on being Paranoid--It could save your life
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Old 07-26-2017, 09:01 AM
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Better to be paranoid than compromised!

Way to watch, Old cop!
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Old 07-26-2017, 09:08 AM
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Your situational awareness was probably as important as your carry. There are so many people who are oblivious in public, that they might as well tattoo "Victim" on their forehead.
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Old 07-26-2017, 09:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old cop View Post
I stopped to gas up my car mid afternoon today when I saw a young guy walking across the lot watching me closely. No other cars or people were around (no station attendant in sight) and I kept an eye on his progress as he got closer. While I can't articulate it I believe he was sizing me up. I look like an easy mark, past 70 and handicapped. My 340PD was in my L/F pocket so I slid my hand on it trying to look casual. He gave me a wide berth but kept looking over his shoulder at me and checking to see if anyone else was watching us. Needing both hands to finish I shifted the gun under my shirt, appendix, with my back to him, and got back in the car. He was still looking at me as I drove away. Maybe I'm just a paranoid old retiree and nothing was going to go down, but I was really glad to be carrying. Lesson - If you can legally carry do so all the time, not selectively when you think you might need to.
Was it "coply intuition"?
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Old 07-26-2017, 09:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wingmaster View Post
Go with your gut feeling. If you thought he was sizing you up, He was very likely sizing you up.

Wing master
Yep; I'm betting he was sizing you up too.
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Old 07-26-2017, 09:51 AM
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You aren't paranoid. Humans are dangerous.
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Old 07-26-2017, 02:10 PM
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If you look like food, you may be eaten.

Double-O Dave handled that well.

I'm 74 now, really have to keep situational awareness constant.
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Old 07-26-2017, 02:47 PM
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One of my professors at John Jay (wish I could remember his name) described this type of situation. People who have (or have learned to develop) situational awareness notice small patterns in their environment, and then they anticipate potential future outcomes from those cues. It is not paranoia, even if the rustling grass is not a hungry lioness, the gazelle did well to move away.

On the street we occasionally busted storefront 'psycics' who preyed upon extraordinarily superstitious and ignorant clients (not that I am judging.) Many were just con artists and neer-do-wells, but those who stuck around year after year were mostly just entrepreneurial folks who understood their client's superstitions and had a better than average (which is to say phenomenal compared to thier clients) ability to read these little patterns and translate them into moron.

So if you are in a position of vulnerability, and you feel that tingle, you are psychic (at least in the Flatbush Ave sense), and even if its not a clear and present danger, you are not paranoid.
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Old 07-26-2017, 02:51 PM
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Well, while I'd rather not fire/light off a round near gasoline fumes, I rather doubt any miscreant would want to be threatening someone holding a gasoline pump nozzle, either.

Yes, if you're inattentive to what's going on around you, and look like it, it might appear to present an opportunity to someone looking for a victim.
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Old 07-26-2017, 03:54 PM
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They prey on the unwary.

Thanks for sharing that reminder that eternal vigilance is indeed the price of freedom...and safety.
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Old 07-26-2017, 04:17 PM
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Approaching someone holding gas pump is not very bright, I agree!


Quote:
So if you are in a position of vulnerability, and you feel that tingle, you are psychic (at least in the Flatbush Ave sense), and even if its not a clear and present danger, you are not paranoid.
That's the neighborhood I picked up my Spidey sense in, too. I enhanced it after Colonel Cooper taught us the color codes.
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Old 07-26-2017, 04:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muss Muggins View Post
Was your fly up?
That's funny, I don't care who you are ....!
My 'golden' rule.... Don't let a stranger within 'touching distance'....period!
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Old 07-26-2017, 05:33 PM
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Carry and shoot every day.........I see what I mean.
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old cop View Post
I look like an easy mark, past 70 and handicapped.
This thread made me think of an excellent phrase I once read here:

"A young guy may kick your ***, but an old guy will kill you".


CCW or not, your advantage was your excellent situational awareness and effective response. Congrats to you, sir.
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:07 PM
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Here in the sunshine state you can "flash," but even before you could, I would. A knowing look at the potential perp while scratching the side of my head with a Bull Dog .44 pretty much sets the stage for what's gonna' come next. Their choice.

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Old 07-26-2017, 06:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wingmaster View Post
Go with your gut feeling. If you thought he was sizing you up, He was very likely sizing you up.

Good advice. Carry everywhere every day.

Wing master
Learn to trust your gut.
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Old 07-26-2017, 08:32 PM
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Andy Grove, former CEO at Intel, wrote a book titled "Only The Paranoid Survive". I think he's onto something....nothing wrong with being a little paranoid.
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Old 07-26-2017, 09:06 PM
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One habit I've picked up over the years is to use any nearby glass or shiny surface as a mirror to watch my 6, and sometime my 5 and 7. You can keep an eye on your surroundings and decide on your next move without obviously turning and looking over your shoulder constantly.
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Old 07-27-2017, 07:24 AM
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I don't think that it is about paranoia at all. Our brains pick up messages and cues about our surroundings and set our nerve endings to tingling. So; at that point, you begin to pay conscious attention to your surroundings and the predator sees you paying attention. Then, when nothing happens (because you were aware and the predator decides to find an easier target) then the natural inclination is for you to just discard your awareness as paranoia since nothing "actually" happened.

The truth is that something DID happen - you were targeted, evaluated and eliminated as a victim. Trust your gut instinct.
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Old 07-27-2017, 08:24 AM
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Well done gas stations are a dangerous place. For car jackers and robberies
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Old 07-27-2017, 08:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fastbolt View Post
Well, while I'd rather not fire/light off a round near gasoline fumes, I rather doubt any miscreant would want to be threatening someone holding a gasoline pump nozzle, either.

Yes, if you're inattentive to what's going on around you, and look like it, it might appear to present an opportunity to someone looking for a victim.
Most people don't think of the gas pump as a weapon. It goes into the car and back into the pump. I'd be more likely to draw and shoot someone before spraying them with gasoline. Nice thought though. Simple and highly effective.
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Old 07-27-2017, 09:16 AM
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Situational awareness is the most important part of everyday carry, right after the "everyday" part. You did good!
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Old 07-27-2017, 09:36 AM
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I'm not so sure of my 'situational awareness' abilities at all times. When I got a lot of things on my mind sometimes I'm not aware of what I'm doing, let alone anyone else. When I was building houses I went to Ace Hardware to pickup several things then walked right past the cash registers out to my truck and got about half way back to the job before I realized I had not paid for anything. The Ace girls chuckled upon my return and said "We knew you'd be back".
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Old 07-27-2017, 10:00 AM
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Not sure how old you are ChattanoogaPhil but I walk into a different part of the house and forgot why I wanted to go there, and this happens all the time. As long as I maintain my LEO cops eyes (situtional awareness) I'll be happy.
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Old 07-27-2017, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by diegobxr View Post
This thread made me think of an excellent phrase I once read here:

"A young guy may kick your ***, but an old guy will kill you".


CCW or not, your advantage was your excellent situational awareness and effective response. Congrats to you, sir.
Been a long time since I went through academy training but even then we were not taught to fight "fair" but we were taught to fight to win.
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Old 07-27-2017, 12:17 PM
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A few thoughts...

1) Situational awareness is important and good habits can help improve your SA.

For example:

- I like to sit so I can see the door, or entrance in restaurants;
- I avoid middle lanes at stop lights and leave enough space in front of us so that I can drive us out of a situation by going left or right (a 5,000 pound pickup truck beats a 9 mm as a defensive or even offensive weapon pretty much every time at a stop light);
- I make eye contact with any shady looking people well before they are close enough to pose a threat; and
- I select my gas pumps for the field of view I'll have when fueling my vehicle. It usually is not the closest one to the stab and grab's entrance.

2) A practicing psychologist in one of my psychometric classes told me that the best diagnostic tool you have for an individual with a borderline personality disorder is the feeling in your gut you get after just a few minutes with them. I've found that carries over to many personality disorders. That tendency to disturb or irritate other people around them in a very short period of time is what makes it a disorder. If you encounter people that, follow that guy instinct, and remember them next time you see them.

3) Despite a back ground in counseling, psychology and criminology - or perhaps because of it, I'm a big believer in what folks sometimes call "instinct". I believe it's just a higher level of awareness, as some people pick up on non verbal communication far better than others. If you've got that skill set, by all means use it and pay attention to what it tells you.

4) Successful criminals tend to have well developed abilities to read people well. At a simple level, if you've observed someone sizing you up and you've established eye contact and thus communicated your awareness of them - more often than not, they will move on and find another target.

At a higher level, if you're not showing signs of fear or anxiety in a situation where your would be assailant expects to see it, they may not be able to determine exactly why you are not afraid or anxious, but they'll recognize that's the case. Unless they are psychotic, personality disordered, or under the influence of drugs, they'll usually honor the perceived threat and move on to an easier target rather than pushing a bad position and finding out why you are not afraid.
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Old 07-27-2017, 01:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Old cop View Post
Not sure how old you are ChattanoogaPhil but I walk into a different part of the house and forgot why I wanted to go there, and this happens all the time. As long as I maintain my LEO cops eyes (situtional awareness) I'll be happy.
About two years after we moved I was asleep in our bedroom. I woke up and the only explanation I can come up with is I forgot we moved because I got up walked out into the hallway and was like "Where in THEEEEE HELLLLLL am I?"

Only ever happened one time in my life, very disorientating.
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Old 07-27-2017, 03:11 PM
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That's listening to those fuzzy hairs that stand up every once in a while.
I do that too, and they haven't failed me yet. Were they right? I don't know, because I paid attention to them.
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Old 07-27-2017, 04:27 PM
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It's difficult to maintain situational awareness when I get out of the car and have to lean in to get my cane. That's when I'm most vunerable and I try to scan my environment, then listen to the inner voices that kept me alive during my 30 years on the street all other times. So far so good.
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Old 07-27-2017, 04:42 PM
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Old cop, those voices will probably never let you down. Your physical age may slow you down somewhat, but don't question those voices that you've spent your lifetime developing.
They can cover for slow muscle reactions.

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Old 07-27-2017, 04:47 PM
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Remember, just because you are paranoid doesn't mean they are NOT out to get you!
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Old 07-27-2017, 08:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Kanewpadle View Post
When I'm out and about I watch EVERYONE. I even turn around and look at them if I have to. If they don't like it, oh well.

Some youngsters see gray hair as a sign of weakness. BIG MISTAKE!

Can't say enough about situational awareness.
Young punks just don't get it. Old men only get old because they are tough. They know how to deal wit punks with a gun, knife, experienced hand to hand or even their cain.

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Old 07-27-2017, 09:00 PM
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Young punks just don't get it. Old men only get old because they are tough. They know how to deal wit punks with a gun, knife, experienced hand to hand or even their cain.
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Old 07-28-2017, 12:38 PM
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Been a long time since I went through academy training but even then we were not taught to fight "fair" but we were taught to fight to win.
As a Navy Corpsman serving with the Marines, I remember my gunny once telling me:

That dead man there fought his enemy fairly
That man lounging over there, he fought him as a soldier, and lives another day.

In Combat, and facing a bad guy IS combat, there is no such thing as a fair fight.
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Old 07-28-2017, 01:15 PM
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Growing up in bad areas I learned situational awareness at an early age and it served me well. Two words from the mouth of a low life and I can tell what i"m up against.

My problem is my wife won't make an effort to develop these skills and she has no interest in carrying. Over the years I have tried to get her to see what's going on around her but it just doesn't sink in.

One night I was gone and she came home late. She thought someone was following her so fortunately she didn't go straight home, instead she made a couple turns and lost him. When she got home and went to bed she locked the bedroom door. I told her that would stop an intruder for about two seconds. I have a 9mm in the night stand and a .380 in the hall closet both of which she won't let me train her on. I expect to be gone before her. Anyone have an idea how to get her with the program?
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