Sometimes I like to head over to the /CCW thread on Reddit and read the different posts. Today, I came across a post that stood out, because we’ve talked about drinking and carrying a few times on Concealed Nation. While this situation is different, the author learned quite a few things from this one night out. I’ll let him explain:
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[Source] I’ll preface this with a little background. I and the three friends I was out with are in our early/mid 20’s and college educated. I’m the only one in the group that carries (that I know of).
So this past weekend I got a text from one of my friends saying I should come out to the bars her and her friend in a city that rhymes with Smishwaukee. No thought needed on that one, sure! I ended up inviting one of my friends along. That made a group of 4 of us… two males and two females. But back to the story…
We were bar hopping in downtown Smishwuakee. My friends (we’ll call them Lloyd Christmas, Caroline (an ex D-1 athlete), and Jennifer (a pretty built softball player)) and I had all had a few drinks. Because we went out drinking I wasn’t carrying. Usually I carry a Shield .40 but one of my rules is to not carry when having more than 2 drinks in the night. Near the end-ish of the night, just before midnight, we began to walk to a new bar. During the walk we past a couple that were arguing. The man; black, about 5’5″, 175 lbs, and wearing baggy clothes was holding onto the woman’s arm trying to stop her walking away. She was saying “let me go, let me go” or something like that. I wasn’t paying too much attention to them as we were in the middle of a crowded street.
This is where things took a turn for the worse. We were about 3 steps past them when my friend Lloyd in all of his infinite wisdom decide to yell “LET GO OF ME… LET GO OF ME… SPOUSAL ABUSE!” in a mocking way but still pretty loudly. Caroline and I look at each other.
Another two steps later I hear some shuffling behind me as this guy comes running past me, proceeds to jump and punch Lloyd in the back of the head. As soon as I see this my adrenaline button gets pushed and I go from pretty buzzed to full concentration mode. At this point the guy had landed from is jump a few feet in front of Lloyd (who had no idea what happened) and I’m between Lloyd and the dude who had just attacked him… and I’m not there by choice.
Now this dudes sights are set on me. I’m not small by any means… 6’3″, 275 lbs, and pretty athletic. The guy starts to get up in my face screaming “I’ll take on anyone” repeatedly. I’m totally defensive in both my composure and stance… one foot behind the other to expose less of my body, hands out of my pockets, trying to appear larger(er), and saying “come on man, we don’t want to fight”. Attacking dude keeps trying to get to my side, while still yelling at everyone, while I continually block him from Lloyd, Caroline, and Jennifer while saying “I don’t want to fight you” over and over. Eventually this guys girlfriend that he was just fighting with comes over and starts to pull him away. Finally the engagement was over and we continue on our way.
But here’s the kicker. All of this took maybe 15-30 seconds. AND there were two police officers standing maybe ten to 15 yards away form the altercation who failed to notice that anything had happened. They did absolutely nothing.
My friend Lloyd had no idea how dangerous the situation he created was. I had no idea if this guy had a knife or gun and I didn’t want to find out.
I learned a few things from this incident that I think a lot of people don’t necessity realize…
-Pick who comes out with you very carefully, especially when drinking.
-Things happen very very quickly. The whole incident took less than 30 seconds. This guy was within arms reach of me before any of us had a full grasp on the situation. Had he had a knife or gun this situation would have turned out very very differently.
-I got tunnel vision… hardcore tunnel vision. All I noticed was the attacker. I had no idea if he had friends of his own coming around my blindside.
-The situation was EXTREMELY dynamic. It skipped the avoidance step and when straight into damage control. No situation is ever static and you won’t be encountering a stationary target. The best thing you can do is to practice situational awareness and realize that you may very well have to utilize techniques other than going to guns. I wasn’t armed and I wouldn’t have drawn if I was (as it was 1v1 and I had a size advantage).
-Use whatever means you have to de-escalate a situation before fighting. Whether that means apologizing for something that wasn’t your fault, using a size advantage, or something else. My group walked away without furthering the incident because I went into defensive mode rather than offensive mode… keep your emotions in check.
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Notice what I highlighted in BOLD above? This is an important step to any successful night. For example, I have a few friends that I can think of off the top of my head that are prone to causing problems anytime they go out and have a few. Is that something I want to be a part of? Absolutely not.
The author did the right thing and successfully de-escalated the situation. Who knows what could have happened if he hadn’t been there to step in.
What do you take away from this scenario?