Like 7-11

I’ve made some improvements in the security around the house since this incident. There were lots of good suggestions in the comments. I’ve implemented some and will do some more work later as funds are available. I can’t say exactly what would happen to someone who tried to take/molest one of my kids from the house, but nothing good I assure you.

One thing I didn’t make too big a deal out of though was the timing. I got home at 7:30pm. My wife and kids met me on the driveway and we all took the trash cans out together. But I normally do that by myself and at a later time; say somewhere between 10 and 11pm. The trash cans sit just to the right of my son’s bedroom window. So let’s think about that. It is entirely possible that at 10:30 I could have walked right into some perv watching my kids through the window.

When you go outside to take the trash out, do you expect to have to fight then and there for your life? If you read this blog, you probably spend a large portion of your time in condition yellow. You are alert for trouble and ready to escalate to higher levels of readiness if necessary. But if you walk out of your house not expecting trouble then how will you ramp up if there is some to be had? Your physical state of readiness is fixed at the time of the fight; whatever skills and gear you have on you is what you’re bringing to the fight. Take the trash out in flip-flops and not even a knife on you and you better hope your boxing skills are top-notch.

When I attended a Sayoc Tactical Group firearm course along with a big improvement in my shooting, I also had a big improvement in my mental preparedness. Most people are taught to escalate as required by the situation. But that can leave you behind the curve. If the bad guy is already in “fight” mode and you have to escalate your mental state up to that level then he will make the first move leaving you behind the reactionary gap (action beats reaction; if he gets the first move it is likely to be successful no matter how well-trained you are). If you are escalating then maybe you left the house without all of your tools. Normally life appears pretty safe, nothing much happens, so you don’t need your firearm this time, right? Just going around the corner to get milk, I don’t need my full kit.

To keep me on the right side of the reactionary gap, I de-escalate in most situations. Going from condition red, ready to fight even expecting to fight, down to condition yellow as the situation warrants. Every time I walk out the door I expect to have to fight for my life. I treat it like the high threat, unknown environment it could be.

If that guy had been there that night it would have gone very bad for him. I have pictured that dude being there time and again, every time I open the door I expect him to be there. Heaven help us both if he ever is.

“We’re sorta like 7-Eleven. We’re not always doing business, but we’re always open.” — Boondock Saints

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