Do I really look like an easy target?!

Do I really look like an easy target?!

This is a discussion on Do I really look like an easy target?! within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; So I'm getting lunch yesterday at Subway by the highway overpass.. down the road from my work. I'm not carrying today, as I normally dont ...

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Thread: Do I really look like an easy target?!

  1. #1
    Member Array JasonJ's Avatar
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    Sep 2012

    Do I really look like an easy target?!

    So I'm getting lunch yesterday at Subway by the highway overpass.. down the road from my work. I'm not carrying today, as I normally dont at work, gun is locked in the trunk of the car.

    As I'm walking out of the Subway, I notice a sketchy guy in dark clothes approaching from the right.. keeping in mind I'm in a relatively dangerous township of one of the most dangerous cities in the country, and THE most dangerous in Michigan (Saginaw.)

    So I've got a sub in one hand, car keys in the other.. i dont make contact but know that I am aware of him.. guy approaches me and casually starts asking for change.. he sure as heck didnt look homeless and nearly everyone in this part of Saginaw is poor.. soo..

    What I didnt like is the ease and casualty with which is approached me.. and instantly stood WAAAY to close for comfort..

    I had two dimes in my pocket, said "i only carry plastic but here..." and got into my car and left right away.. he kept walking down past the restaurants ... not sure what he was up to, probably wanted booze money.

    My issue is that I don't want to appear like an easy target, I don't WANT to be approachable.. im 5'9, 215lbs.. got a nice full beard and am not a generally small man..I dont look friendly. But I aint super scary or huge either..

    Problem is even if I was carrying my firearm, he instantly came up so close to me it would have left almost no room to sweep my jacket, draw and defend. The proximities of things were such that there was really no alternate escape route.. couldnt pretend to go into another store, a different car.. etc..

    What is everyone's analyzation of this scenario? Should I have done something different? (besides making sure I was armed.. working on that.. need pocket pistol for 100% always armed). My SA was at maximum.. short of noticing him earlier and just staying inside the Subway with my sandwich.. but that also looks awkward to others around me.

  2. #2
    VIP Member Array BigJon10125's Avatar
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    Apr 2011
    It is a tough situation. It becomes that line of do I want to be a jerk IMO. Often times initiating the contact when they are at an appropriate distance can help. My wife says I always look mad, so that may help me, but in this case, I would suggest asking "Can I help you" when he gets to a proximity of any closer is too close. Might stop him and doesn't come off too crazy. If someone is coming towards me, and you can generally tell they mean to make contact, I will do this or a casual, "Yes?"
    DefConGun and Spade115 like this.

    "Better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than to open it and remove all doubt" ~ Mark Twain

  3. #3
    VIP Member Array xXxplosive's Avatar
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    May 2009
    As soon as he should have said.....Hey Buddy, can you spare some change ? Works everytime......they leave.
    Ya know you could have told him "Far Enough" in a stern voice.....but really, that's why you have a CCL.....don't you ?

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  5. #4
    Senior Member Array mulle46's Avatar
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    What made you think that the guy was sketchy? What do you consider too close for comfort? All told, I think you did fine, as there was no altercation, no threats, everyone went on their way, etc. But maybe you could have said something as he approached, rather than wait until he spoke. YMMV
    You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, "I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along." . . . You must do the thing you think you cannot do. Eleanor Roosevelt

  6. #5
    Member Array Biggie313's Avatar
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    May 2010
    Baltimore, MD
    Step back before he gets that close. Dont let sketchy people that close to you.

  7. #6
    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    Sep 2006
    Ky Backwoods
    Umm, 5'9", 215 lbs, full beard & don't look friendly? I don't know if you look like an easy target or not. But if YOU approach ME panhandling & get "WAYYY too close"'re gonna' see a muzzle & better pray you don't see a flash.

    I'm not gonna' be near as gracious as you were.
    There are only TWO kinds of people in this world; those who describe the world as filled with two kinds of people...and those who don't.

  8. #7
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    Array WHEC724's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JasonJ View Post
    Problem is even if I was carrying my firearm, he instantly came up so close to me it would have left almost no room to sweep my jacket, draw and defend... .
    Only my wife is allowed to get that close to me. Anybody else, and I'll create space - one way or the other.
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  9. #8
    VIP Member Array blitzburgh's Avatar
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    Did you look down while you dug for that change?

    An old method (probably still used though) is to ask somebody for a lighter, most people will look down at their pocket while digging for it and that's when they get snuffed and robbed. Not only is it a good way to blindside somebody with a haymaker, it also takes one hand/arm of the victim's out of the equation.
    "Rebellion against tyrants is obedience to God." - Benjamin Franklin
    "Experience: that most brutal of teachers. But you learn, my God do you learn." - C.S. Lewis

  10. #9
    Senior Member Array Inspector71's Avatar
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    "Paranoia strikes deep; into your life it will creep; starts when you're always afraid................." Buffalo Springfield
    If you can read this, thank a teacher. Because it's in English, thank a vet

  11. #10
    Member Array Sarge65's Avatar
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    Nov 2012
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost tracker View Post
    you're gonna' see a muzzle & better pray you don't see a flash.
    If I saw the flash, you missed.

  12. #11
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    Array Pistology's Avatar
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    South Coast LA Cty
    It's not what you asked. But it's something that struck me that while you may not generally be a soft target, you need to be more effective as a CCW. It sounds like you went to code orange but let the guy get too close anyway. IMHO, you need more training to respond to this scenario that you bring to the forum for our review. I mean, if there's about to be a grave threat, there are certain actions you have to take to improve your chances of getting your gun into the fight. A CCW doesn't improve your range of options in the initial encounter you describe unless you consider trading fire an improvement.

    Not so much in a lonely alley between the lunch counter and my car, for example, but, in general, and in a more likely close encounter like an intersection or other place where people traffic compresses or congregates, anytime a street stranger is too close for comfort, I want to walk away in a spiral arc. It looks like I just remembered or am trying to remember something. It is effective against someone who might consider me a soft target for my maintaining visual on the code orange threat and gives me some visual scope for possible accomplices / gang members without being embarrassingly crazy if they turn out to be my next job interviewer. But if some stranger "ambushes" me for the time or for spare change on the street, I seldom if ever give it and just say, "don't have it".

    By the force continuum, you avoid and evade before you counter. At least that's the way to plan and train and, if possible, act to give yourself the best advantage in a bad spot.
    EastCoastMojo likes this.
    Americans understood the right of self-preservation as permitting a citizen to repel force by force
    when the intervention of society... may be too late to prevent an injury.
    -Blackstone’s Commentaries 145–146, n. 42 (1803) in District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008)

  13. #12
    Member Array Miamieddie's Avatar
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    Oct 2012
    Its obvious you cant carry at your place of business thats why you keep it in your trunk. But your no longer at your work why leave it in your car ?? Are you an easy target ? ...... YES !!... Sorry.... Eddie
    BkCo1 likes this.

  14. #13
    AOK is offline
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    Do some research on South Narc or Craig Douglas. He refers to your situation as Managing Unknown Contacts or MUC. It involves proper verbiage, movement, cues to watch for and MUCH more. His approach is very easy to apply with practice.

    If the guy had bad intention he would have uses a rues to distract you (which he did). Bad guys wait for the right opportunity to pounce. The rues allows them to get close to you such as asking for spare change. Even if you did have your firearm on person, since he was able to get so close to you if started attacking you with a knife, how likely are you able to get your firearm out and into the fight if he is all over you plunging his knife into your abdomen?

    I'm not going to get into much but you should REALLY check his stuff out. He is actually coming to Michigan again September of 2013. You do need a solid verifiable training background in firearms to attend. If not there are other resources such as dvd's where you can learn this basic stuff. It's nowhere near as good as taking his class but it could give you a solid foundation to start from.
    aus71383 likes this.

  15. #14
    Member Array BaldSasq's Avatar
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    Aug 2009
    Stature doesn't really bother homeless types. I am 6'7" and weigh 300, and people I know joke with me and call me Stone Cold, or Brian Urlacher. I look like a pro football player, am bald, with a goatee, and facial scars. Homeless people ask me for stuff wherever I go, and I don't try to look approachable either. I've never had to draw, and hope I don't, but I think maybe you put too much into "looking like a victim" vs. "homeless will ask anyone". I doubt very much you come off as a victim, just rather you just came out of subway where you paid for something, and he likes the odds that you have "change", gave them a 10 for a 7 dollar sub and drink, bam, you got 3 bucks you might give him. If it's still something that bothers you, I suggest football pads with spikes on them, ala Mad Max bad guy look? :-)

  16. #15
    Senior Member Array mano3's Avatar
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    Jan 2012
    Wetumpka, AL
    Could have clocked him with the sub if things went south...

    On a serious note, you can carry your car keys like a knife and stick him in the eye if it went bad.
    US Air Force, 1986 - 2007

    "To disarm the people is the best and most effective way to enslave them..." George Mason

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