Are you eye balling me?
Many concealed carry holders will never use their weapon for personal defense, or even draw the gun in a live situation.
But what they will experience, almost everyday of their lives is the uncomfortable situation of somebody "eye balling you."
Remember "eye balling" is a very minor form of human aggression.
If you melt when this happens then how will you handle somebody who is in your face, or shooting at you?
It is amazing how many things can happen to you when you are being eye balled that will happen to you during a gun fight.
Increased hart rate, face becoming flush, fight or flight (aka, stare back or look away). And many other factors.
Remember that attacker's often interview their victims to make sure they will be a victim.
So you want to get this one right and send the right message.
For me (off duty) the situations usually looks like this:
I run into the gas station to pick up a cup of coffee and while I am waiting in line, I notice that somebody in another line is eye balling me from halfway across the room. In the past I would look away and then think. OK. Here I am in line just wanting to buy this cup of coffee.
I don't want to play tough guy or anything, but at the same time, I don't want this guy thinking I'm a wimp and that I will not defend myself.
But to avoid a confrontation I would not look at him.
But deep down this bothered me, because I knew I was sending him the wrong signal, I was no longer able to observe his actions and I resented the fact that I had to do it to avoid a fight.
I felt like I was putting myself at the bottom of the pecking order to avoid a fight.
Over time I realized that it is a pecking order and I wanted to be "the head pecker." :image035:
Over time I came up with a simple but extremely practical and tactical solution that I use almost everyday.
Simply put I decided that if anybody wanted my attention they got it.
But I realized that I didn't have to play the tough guy role to do it.
If I felt like somebody was eye balling me, I would make eye contact back at them and smile.
My basic idea was to play the nice buy, but always win the eye contact game and make them look away first.
If they were in a car, or a long ways off, I would wave or nod.
If they were in a line next to me I would start talking to them about something, like, "How is your day." Or whatever.
This way I communicated to them that:
I noticed you.
You don't scare me.
I'm a nice guy not looking for a fight.
Instead of looking at them through corner of my eye, I could look right at them and determine whether I thought they were a threat and even see if they were packing. Even if they were jerks, I had them instantly playing defense and having to react to me and not the other way around.
What I learned was that you talk to a lot of people when you do this and that 99 percent are not looking to start something.
Most of them most likely thought you were eye balling them first (since we are always scanning for threats you most likely were).
They are usually relieved to find out that you are a nice guy.
I know this isn't high speed shooting techniques, but you can get tons of practice using this in real life and it helped me out a lot.
This is the first advice I give new Police Officers on how to deal with suspects.
If you do this already then great. If not give it a try.
Get ready to talk to a lot of people, and practice your smile.
Remember the trick is to talk to them long enough to win the eye game.
If you are not already doing this and try it, then let me know how it turned out.
Any thoughts or suggestions gents?
P.S. I would say I was sorry for the long post, but really I'm not. :hand10:
Good post. I do this often, but not always. Depends on how I feeling at the time. Your post reminds me that being proactive is more successful than being reactive. Thanks.
I have always done this from a young age, not because of the threat, but because I am a friendly guy and a flirt and this worked to talk to women.:image035:
Good worthwhile post and a topic that we have not discussed too much on Defensive carry.
A great thread for your third forum post.
Works for me.
Welcome to the forum...
Politely look 'em in the eye...
Great advice...it works!
Stay armed...stay safe!
Eye-balling? Don't bother me one bit. Look all you want to, but please don't touch.
Good post, I do much of the same thing though I've never really thought about it. If they are nearby I might start a conversation, if noisy or farther away a slight smile and head nod will do it. I haven't had that many staring experiences, but after initiating conversations, I've suspected that some of them weren't actually staring at me. They were in deep thought, or just in "another world" while standing in line, but no doubt, it looked like they were staring at me.
Speaking of faces, we've been out in public and later my wife might say something to me like, "I saw you walking to the car and you were pretty mad-looking, what happened?" I'm usually surprised at this and answer her truthfully, "I wasn't angry at anything at all, I was just walking".
I guess it's whatever "game face" you have on at the time. Keep in mind that some stares you get may not actually be intimidating stares. Regardless though, +++1 for anyone that notices their surroundings and know how to handle it. :hand10:
I just give them the Crazy Eyes... :Eyecrazy:
I think the "eyeballing" thing depends on where you live. In the south, it's common for people who make eye contact to grin or exchange pleasantries. Up north, strangers avoid eye contact, and generally will look the other way if it happens. It really is a cultural thing.
Being from the country we always smile and wave at complete strangers as they drive or walk by. When I walk through a downtown area like Dallas or Houston people avoid eye contact like the plague. I really hate going to the big city.
When you get that guy that is maybe across the street and keeps his eyes on you all the time, and if you give him the eye back he might do the head nod or the hands flip out and might say "watchu lookin at?". It's more frequent when he has piercings and a tattoo.
How does one respond to this?
Cross over to where he is and ask him where is a good place to eat? (Frequently I am looking for good local places to eat)
What do we do when someone is in line at some store and is just looking at us for no particular reason? We can't assume that everyone who looks at us is being aggressive, can we, or should we? Haven't we all seen people who look like someone we know and we say to our wives, hey, see that guy over there in the red baseball cap, doesn't that look like Jim?
And she says yeah sorta and meanwhile the guy is getting ready to possibly draw on us because we looked at him?
This is the kind of stuff that gangbangers do, when someone looks at them they kill them. I thought it was just them that did this stuff.
When we go into a place we are just looking around, not one of us stares at the floor the whole time we are in a supermarket or restaurant or store, do we? So every look is a challenge?
For those who do look at us in a challenging way, isn't it up to us to just ignore them and if they take it up a notch, then we can always do that too? But I disagree that most folks who look at us are sizing us up as a potential victim.
There's a fine line between cautious skepticism and paranoia.
I was essentially saying that for every time a savage looks at us with malicious intent, there are probably seventy five times a guy or woman is looking at us because it is better than staring at the floor or walls.
But there is always that ten percent, as our Parris Island DIs told us :)
I never knew exactly how right the DIs were, either, til I got much older, and now I think it might be up to 20 percent
When people eye-ball me I make it a point to lock eye's and let them know I see them and aknowledge their presence. If my perception is the guy is a punk, drunk, junkie, whatever...no smiles, no turn away, just stare for 3 or 4 seconds and move on with my day keeping an peripheal on them...
Never act like Prey!