Many people that have met me in person or have been reading my thoughts over the years have heard me refer to “fast roping off the space shuttle whacking tangos with (insert silly item marketed to the masses)”. Most readers agree that the reason they educate themselves here on MCS, attend classes, and carry tools is to increase their survival. Isn’t that what it is about? Being the gray man?
Going all the way back to the first days of MCS and the CAT (Counter Attack Theory), look for what promotes survival in nature. The first thing animals count on to survive is blending in, whether it be by using their natural camouflage or moving with a pack so as to not stick out. Here are some the most common things that people do that draw attention to themselves-
Wearing clothes that stand out in the environment.
Having self-defense tools like guns and knives exposed.
Carrying purpose driven self-defense tools that do not have an obvious legitimate purpose.
When an animal’s camouflage or use of the pack fails him the next survival measure is movement. Either to outrun their attacker to get to a position of physical safety (a physical location the attacker cannot access). To the animal this is going up a tree or into a small hole that the pursuer could not fit. For us, this may be a secured room or vehicle. The second option is back into the environment of the pack where the attacker has to give his back to the pack that now know his intent. This is a huge stumbling point for humans because they are ego-invested. In training we see over and over again that people ignore opportunities to get away. Your mindset should be to fight to get away, not fighting to win. Unless you are duty bound such as law enforcement or military, define for yourself what “winning” means.
If blending in and movement fails, you are left with only one option, and that is to fight. It will not be a pretty fight. You have been backed into a corner, your blood pressure is up, and you are experiencing vasoconstriction causing your blood to pool into your core leaving your fingertips numb. You will need open hand skills to fend off your attacker in order to gain time and distance. This is where animals use their claws. Sometimes it is enough to make the predator think twice, sometimes not. You have no idea what position you will be forced into and have to fight from. In your training, do you consider every conceivable possible position and fight from them or are you taking the easy way out? Every time you are attacked it will not be with you standing upright with weapons exposed. Can you access your weapons? Do you have open hand skills to fall back on? In the middle of the fight, at contact distance, do you think you will default to trying to draw your own counter weapon when your attacker is attacking you with a knife or trying to deploy a gun? Do you have the skills to suppress or redirect the attack allowing you to access your weapons? Lots to ponder.
Final thoughts, the key to survival is to first attempt to blend in no matter what, then if you are identified as a target to avoid the attack using movement, and if all else fails you need to be prepared to fight using a well rounded skill set based on fundamental principles, not those that fixate on tools first.