OK--What strange habits do you have to protect yourself?

I most often adjust the position of my folder for easy access when I leave the office at night. One step up in concern is I may transfer it to up my jacket sleeve. Third level up is I keep it in my hand as I head to the car. Fourth level up I have it open in a reverse grip with the blade hidden by my wrist.

Sometimes when I walk down a city street at night I carry a tightly rolled magazine in my right hand. It is totally legal and you can walk in front of the police department doing it, but it makes a large and heavy yawara stick.
In regards to the lights being the last thing. Not that it's a poor idea, but various lights will already be on. Brake lights, parking lights, reverse lights and so on. Sure, the headlights are the brightest, but if they're looking for lights, you already gave yourself away.

I always try to be aware of what is going on around me. I have to go to downtown Louisville to get my hair cut. The same guy has been cutting my hair for 25 years. He moved his shop downtown, so now, that's where I have to go. In Louisville we have an anti-gun mayor. The city parking garages have these little signs that say "NO CONCEALED WEAPONS". (This was Hizonner's idea.) I ignore these little signs. Two haircuts ago, three of the guys who wear "colors" spotted me from an huge, older car which was also in the lot. They got out. I guess I looked harmless enough. Just a middle aged man, limping across the deserted, indoor parking lot. (Bad back, makes me limp when it's acting up.) They got closer. When they entered my personal space, I stopped, turned and said, "Look guys, I'm going to hurt you REAL bad. If you ever believed anything in your lives, you'd better believe that". Startled, the obvious leader said, "Let's go guy's, I believe the old man". (I'm fifty. I guess that was "old" to them. Sometimes it feels old to me.) They went back to their junk car. I got on the elevator, went down to my floor, and reported them to "security". (If you can call them that!)
Anyway, I had my Seecamp in a back pocket holster, a Glock 27 in a belt holster, plus my new Microtech "UDT" in a belt sheath and a Dalton "Pocket Hawk" clipped and hidden under my belt.
I know that all the weapons might possibly sound a little "excessive", but we've had some murders in Louisville lately and I don't want to be killed because I couldn't get to a good pistol or fine knife.
That's just the way it is.

Mendacity is the
system we live in.

[This message has been edited by Will.223 (edited 03-01-2001).]
Well for starters I always had this habit of just sticking my thumbs inside my pants pockets, and just let my hands hang out. This makes it easy for my tip up knives like my spydies. I also don't like public restrooms either if I gotta go, I will leave the area, to a different place with just a single person restroom and lock the doors. I also get that feeling that I don't like a place or if trouble is brewing, I just make an excuse to leave, and do so in an orderly fassion, then get in and leave. Also walking around with that pure focused look, like you aren't looking at a person but through them is also a good thing.
None of the things you guys (ladies too?) seem to be that strange to me. It seems that we're more interested in avoiding a confrontation by staying aware of our surroundings.

Personally, I prefer not to use the urinal either; I get stage fright, even at work. And those stadium free-for all tub urinals...forget it.

I always scan the area before I get to my car and lock the door as I reach for the seatbelt. It makes the motion of pushing the button down look like I'm just getting ready to drive off. If I feel like someone is following me close to my home for awhile, I'll divert my course and drive around randomly. If they still follow me, I'll drive to a police station (while calling them on the cell phone). I haven't had to do that yet, but I'd prefer to know what I'm going to do in advance.

When walking on the street at night, I'll usually have my strong hand in a jacket pocket holding a knife (Starmate or equivalent) and the weak side holding a Surefire or Scorpion until I get the OC that I want. If it's a busy pedestrian street, I'll usually have the weak hand holding a red Photon to alert drivers making turns across crosswalks when I'm crossing the street (if necessary). I'd prefer not to be squashed by someone yapping go their cell phone instead of paying attention to the road.

If I could legally carry a gun and an ASP baton I would.

You're right to focus on the car. One's personal vehicle is usually the key to safety or danger. In the eighties I was stationed in El Salvador for two years. I knew an incredible number of people who were whacked in that country during that troubled time (it's not much better now). About 99 percent of them were killed entering or getting out of their cars, or while they were waiting for the light to change. One item I would add to your DCBL checklist, though: take a good look at the back seat before you enter your car. Someone could be lying there, waiting for you to get in.

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When entering my car and getting ready to leave anywhere, I do the following checklist, which I call the "DeCiBLe" checklist (DCBL) [/B]</font>

If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is not for you.
I dont got much to say, here but when I sense there might be trouble, I will keep my right hand on the opening of my pocket, where my friend mchenry williams, lives, and invite him to come out in the first sight of trouble, thanks......

I'll toss a couple of my "rules to live by" in the hat:

  • *Never get gas or use an ATM after dark
    *Never let the gas tank go below half way (I never NEED to get gas)

    *I carry $120 cash tucked away in my wallet (1 $50, 3 $20s and 1 $10), plus my regular walkin around cash, so I don't NEED to hit an ATM

    *Always carry at least one pistol and two knives (good luck Jim)
    *Don't go anyplace that has a sign up "No Guns Allowed"
    *When I go out to eat, never sit in the bar area
    *When going into a theater and there are two doors, go to the one less obvious. (Fewer people on that side)
    *Carry two sets of keys to the car (on two separate rings)
    *If your carrying a gun, carry a cell phone. If you have to use the gun, you want responding officers to know who the good guy is!
    *Never go anyplace with a gun that you wouldn't go without a gun
    *Look both ways when approaching intersections, even if you have the green light.
    *Don't be the first guy off the line when the light changes, but don't be the last across the intersection. This one saved by butt the other day (and has about five times in the past). A Suburban ran a red light the other day a full two seconds after the light changed. I saw it coming, the guy next to me didn't. I made a great witness instead of a great victim. Good thing was they both got a nice helicopter ride out of the deal.

I could go on and on, but you get the idea. Simple rules really. Keeps me out of trouble.


*Never go anyplace with a gun that you wouldn't go without a gun

From John's post above . . . now that makes a helluva' lotta' sense!

always carry at least my small Sebbie, sit where i can see whats going around me at restaurants. when i see potential trouble, i feel with my wrist whatever i got tucked in my waistband, if i sense enything more, take it from WB to pocket.
Some very good advice given here!

John Hollister and Will.223 I agree all the way. I carry (yes some of you probably already know, I´ve mentioned it before) my Spyderco Delica. Sometimes I also carry my ASP. I would carry a Glock 19 if I only could get one at a reasonable price. Where I live it´s very hard to get a license for a handgun, so.. the price at the free market is rather high.

I don´t think that I have any strange habits, except maybe that when I´m out on the town I never, ever sit with my back towards a dooropening (at lunch, dinner, the pub). I want to see the changes in my immediate environment. What kind of people are coming and going. Well it is even so that I try to sit with my back against a wall or a place where people can´t sneak up on me. That gives me the opportunity to track any differences in mood or behaviour that people show.

"One must exert oneself unceasingly and study very hard."
I don't THINK I'm that unusual, I carry and regularly train with quality defensive products, OC Sprays, pistols, knives,yawara sticks, etc. and I always make quite an effort to be aware of my surroundings, basically follow good common sense. The one perhaps odd habit I have is that I carry a Benchmade AFO auto knife about 97% of the time when working either Security or EMS, I do this for a theory I've developed regarding weapons retention. Similar to the reason alot of people use retention level 3 holsters. I regularly work around distraught, potentially violent persons who would gladly hurt me or themselves given half a chance. should things escalate to a level of physical violence or restraint, I do not want said persons to reach a simple opening knife and use it on me or themselves. So, I carry my AFO with the safety set at all times, very few people who are not "Knife Knuts" can open it immediately even in the calmest circumstances, so that gives me confidence that if someone does manage to get there hands on my knife I may have a few additional seconds to get it back without an open blade to deal with. I realize there are criminals and BG's that do know how to operate these things, but the ones I deal with on a regular basis tend to hold the belief that "Benchmade" is the smallest inmate on the cellblock that cleans up the workshop after there done making license plates for the day. While apprehending one particularly robust gentleman. the Officer I was working with had his AFCK popped out of his pocket and go skittering across the floor, coulda been alot uglier if the gentleman we were apprehending had gotten loose or obtained it.
You know, I think about all the things I do to make myself look like I'm not someone to be messed with. However, I've come to the conclusion it is the things that I don't do that protect me the most. Even though I weigh 280, and stand 5.9 (can we say round), I don't scare most people.

I don't drink. I've never been to a bar. I don't go to downtown (Dallas) for entertainment at night. I don't hang out with "lonely women and bad dudes". I don't do drugs or associate with shady people. And I don't go anywhere my instincts tell me not to (like malls).

Now this restroom thing makes sense. When I do use a public restroom, I always walk the length of the restroom to check it out. Anything suspicious, I walk out. I always use stalls instead of urinals and I keep my head UP while doing my business. There have been many times when I have passed up on a restroom. Never use a restroom in a deserted building. If someone can't hear a commotion in the building, they sure as hell can't hear you in the bathroom.

Even with living my life on the level, I, like most of you, have indeed encountered people who seem a little too interested in me. My response is 100% direct eye contact with strong body posture ready to act. If I'm walking away from them, I stop and directly face them. Almost always, they will look away. Even groups of gang bangers.
If they don't, I wiggle my right hand so that my thumb is noticibly tapping the top of my exposed Benchmade. They see enough to make them think.

Incidentally, if anybody has ever used a rest area in Louisianna, tell me if you did not feel like it was the most backasswards experience in your entire life.

Stay back! or I'll...OUCH...cut myself.