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GLOCK 19 (courtesy The Truth About Guns)

in kitchen drawers, in barns, in out and pump houses, behind bedroom doors, under beds, in open gun racks, while tagging along with adult hunters, while becoming a junior hunter, on rifle teams, on skeet and trap fields, with muzzleloaders, in the military ’69-’72, and all the rest of my adult life. I have NEVER seen a gun act of it’s own volition. It takes a human. However, an evil human can and will turn everything from his fist and boots, to a club, to a rock, to overwhelming numbers, to a car, and eventually a weapon . . .

The criminals will outweigh you, outnumber you, have the will to do harm or death, and have no regard for their victims. The single most effective item a family can have against that malign element is to be armed, and in practice. I have never had to draw a gun, but several times potentially criminal situations were avoided by the fact that the aggressors sensed that something wasn’t right about what I call ‘the prey aura’.

In other words, I didn’t act like or look like, or otherwise have ‘victim’ in my body language. As having been a victim of violent crime, [the hardware store would not allow employees to be armed], I knew — they knew — and everyone walked away. FWIW.

– TTAG reader JM

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  1. Yep. Situational awareness. I don’t THINK I’m paronoid but I’m always scanning the landscape for trouble. I’ve only been doing the gun thing for 3 years now ( I’m over 60 ). I used to rely on being very large and intimidating for many years. The lessons I learned made me up to speed now that I’m old and
    slower. And your advice is worth a LOT…there’s a lot of evil in this world.

    • No more paranoid than a good driver would have in good driver awareness. If your not constantly scanning in front, in back, side to side, in your blind spot and beyond the next intersection while keeping the appropriate distance between you and the vehicle ahead; your being an in-attentive driver that can get you and/or someone else killed.

      Just as when your out of your car and going about the rest of your day and having good situational awareness.

      • Of course,some dip will invariably cut you off because screw you for wanting to maintain a safe distance in conditions other than ideal,for driving.

        It’s really fun when you start to slide because some jackhole in the middle of an Alaskan winter,wanted to get in front of you and didn’t even bother to use their turn signal,so you start putting on the brakes just a little…and you can feel the rear end kick out a little. I let the driver ahead of me know that they were #1 and blinked my highbeams at them.

  2. I agree 100% on the last paragraph in particular. When I’m walking down the street and some one from the opposite direction is approaching, if they look the slightest like they could be a threat. I “tighten up” so to speak, I walk a little faster and put sort of a frown of my face, like I’m pissed off about something.
    A criminal looking for somebody to rob would much rather pick on somebody that shows a “meek” appearance, or a person that looks like they would much rather “Give in” rather to fight.
    Of course you can’t rely on that, so it is best to be prepared for the unexpected.

  3. Firearms are much like fire extinguishers. It’s better to have one, and not need it than to need one, and not have it.

  4. Was in Atlanta some years ago. Took a shortcut to the hotel. It’s one that’s commonly used, but this time I found myself all alone, save for two young men who stepped out ahead of me and came my way. turned Started to turn around, saw two more had followed me down the alley.

    I unzipped my jacket and reached inside. Never pulled anything, never brandished anything. The saw me do this, and all four just stepped back as I walked by. No, I have no “proof” that I was about to be a victim, but my gut told me so, and I have no doubt that my “he’s not the one to jump” attitude kept me from being attacked.

    • Good response.
      When things get dicey, the best you can do is show them you won’t be a victim if they choose to do something stupid. Even armed criminals would rather not have to go to the hospital for their bullet wounds (that’s where most that get away end up, right before the police slap the handcuffs on)

  5. Whoa whoa whoa! What’s with that OWB holster in OC!? Don’t you know the ONLY way to carry is concealed? And concealed means CONCEALED! Librul heathen!

  6. I too have been around guns all my life. I had my Bearcat on my hip on the ranch from the time I was 13. Had occasion to point them at assailants twice too, and both times they decided to go elsewhere, posthaste. The first was reported, and the police wanted to arrest ME for being a victim! I talked them out of that by asking just what they thought they could say to a jury that could twist it into my fault, and they thought better of it.
    The next time I had the sense to just walk away and not call in the official thugs. Fool me twice, shame on me….

  7. I am 5’7″, 190 odd pounds of hippy looking old white guy. And curiously enough people don’t f**k with me. I worked apartment maintenance on the south side of Atlanta for years, was THE token minority in every situation, and again no one f**ked with me. Is it attitude? Is it happy chance? I don’t know and I don’t care. I just know I am aware of my surroundings at all times, I observe every one around me at all times, and I radiate my willingness to “cut heads” when sh*t looks to be going sideways. I don’t run from trouble, don’t run to trouble.

    And yes. I been around weapons and the martial arts all my life.

  8. …something wasn’t right about what I call ‘the prey aura’.

    That “prey aura” thing is right on the money. I don’t know how to describe it, but I learned to spot it as a kid growing up in NYC. To date I haven’t found any trouble, even when it went out looking near me. I do sense a strong “prey aura” around the rank and file MDA trolls that I’ve seen; again, I can’t say why I discern that.

  9. As a woman I was taught to walk with my head up, shoulders back and to look everyone in the eye. My husband has furthered my education showing me how to look in stores windows to see who is behind me and to look for escape routes when entering stores and restaurants. Currently working on my C C W and yes, I have also been around weapons all my life. Grew up in California but raised by a Missorian. I do believe attitude helps to not be a victim and to always be prepared!

  10. Great post. Confusing photo, though. Either he has the rig weak side backwards for cross draw or wears his watch strong side. Either is a bit odd.

    • I switch arms with watch a good bit, depending on what work I have been doing. Using tools with a lot of vibration, chainsaw, hammer drill etc tends to make one or the other wrist swell a bit, so I switch the watch to the opposite side for a while.

      I’m still hung up on the glock like substance on that holster! 😉

  11. There have been a few times in my life when I have had to subtly let someone know that they didn’t want to mess with me. It worked every time. In 59 years I have never been robbed or assaulted.

    Sometimes it was just a glance in their direction with a facial expression that said, “I know you are there, and I’m not afraid of you.” Once I just put my hand on my clip-on pocket knife, and the guy following me just wasn’t following anymore.

    Sometimes if a guy looks a little ‘hinky’, I will just give him a friendly “Hello” as I get close to him. You can actually see their expression change! Bad guys who are looking for an easy target don’t expect you to be friendly to them, I guess.

    As RF said, it is all about Situational Awareness, and knowing what to do when the situation doesn’t look quite right.

    • Yep. The casual greeting tends to disconcert them every time. It is so outside their standard frame of reference in many cases they just don’t know how to process it, especially when they are concentrating on their bad intentions.

  12. I learned to not look like a victim in high school. 5′ 10″ and barely over a buck soaking wet, I was a prime bullying target. But every time a bigger kid would get in my face to pick on me and/or try to get me to fight him, I just balled up my fists and stared them in the eye with a p*ssed off look on my face. They’d throw pulled punches at me, shove me, slap me, but I’d just use that to make myself look even more p*ssed off. Every single time, they were the ones to walk away, usually mumbling some variation of “that’s what I thought” to themselves. I never shoved them back or took a swing at them, just stood my ground and stared them down. And looked really, really p*ssed.

  13. Juarez, before the cartels cut loose, 3 of us were walking to a convenience store from the plant, and an old cabo with a couple friends locked and eyeballed us as we neared the store, I smiled, flicked my wrist, dropped the switch blade into my hand, and began cleaning my fingernails as we walked and did a 180 left and right look and back to the cabo. My friend, a former Marine MP, saw and immeadiately did the same, the old cabo immeadiately lost interest and looked the other way, we went out the back when we left but the old boy and his uh buddies werent there anymore!

    Wonder why LOL!

    We always carried multiple knives when in Mexico, cheap to buy, easy to hide, easy to dispose of!


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