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Human Tetherball

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Human Tetherball last won the day on June 13

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About Human Tetherball

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  1. Flaws of Goat Format. What would you change about it?

    I think Graceful is stronger than Pot. Pot's an auto +1, but Graceful lets you see one more option, and gives you a chance to set up another option immediately or later (BLS, Premature/Call/FLIPs for Night Assailant) via its discard. As happy as I am to see Pot, like you said, Graceful helps you dig for answers. If I'm winning, I don't need Pot, if I'm losing, I'd rather see Graceful. In MtG if I was a blue player, multiple Graceful activations would be pretty great (Ponder and Preordain got banned pretty quick, effects closer to Graceful in literal execution were great). The right cards are more important than any immediate +1, +2 off a single card (multiple activations); the option-diminishing aspect of Duo is what makes it so cruel. A random -1, -2 off a single card is horrible.
  2. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    This is good advice. I bought a pistol a few weeks back and made two 'range' trips before taking my CCDW exam last weekend. I bought a bunch of cheap ass steel-cased Tula ammo for the very reason you mention. It's dirty but the Shield doesn't care. I've shot guns off and on my whole life, but that's no substitute for knowing your specific weapon, not even the platform, but the weapon. It doesn't matter how many other Shields I've shot, I have to know mine. I've gotten over choking up on the trigger so the plastic trigger safety hinge no longer throws off my first shot. I don't commit most of the common shooter errors [milking, limp-wristing, etc.] so that's speeding things up a bit. My grip and stance (Weaver) are pretty well rehearsed. I won't say I'm familiar with the firearm until I've put about 500 rounds through it, and I've put about 200 through. Can field strip it, clean it, lubricate it, and reassemble it with no problems. I'm making progress, and I think it'll work for me in a defensive situation right now. No manual safety and the slide doesn't like to close without chambering a round so those two factors are things I don't have to fool with, carrying condition 0. My friends are shooters and own land so setting up a shooting day on a random weekend has been easy so far. They've been really helpful and it's not like it's hard to ask a Kentuckian to go shoot, lol. Back to your very good point: I'll continue practicing because I simply enjoy shooting so there's no lack of motivation there. After I get through my 500, at least two trips a month. No sense in going through this trouble if I'm going to let my skill atrophy. Need to find a local indoor range and gun club so I can keep this up through winter. I'm also infodumping as I'm going so forgive the redundancy, I figure you know all that stuff but everyone doesn't. As for where I'm at in the process: passed exam Saturday 9th with flying colors (not that it's hard) and am waiting for all the paperwork BS to get done, which should take no more than two weeks. The instructor didn't send our stuff in until Friday. I signed up for digital application so I wouldn't have to wait "up to 60 days" for the paper ones to get processed. Calling state police tomorrow to make sure our test results are in the system, and if so, going to the county Sheriff's office to get all that going. In the meantime I've been dry-firing the shit out of it so I don't lose my ability to pull the trigger without moving the frame. It's striker-fired so dry-firing doesn't hurt it; wouldn't be doing it with a CZ-75. Hornady Critical Defense hollowpoints were recommended by my instructor. JHP is good for not overpenetrating, but this specific round is able to pierce heavy clothing before expanding thanks to the polymer filler in the nose's hollow. So I'm going with that as a defense load. They're relatively expensive, so I'm gonna practice with 25 of them and keep the other 25 for carry until I can buy more. With shitty CCI Brass and Tula loads it still gets 1" groups at 7 yards, so I'm confident in its accuracy and ease of getting on target. It's a natural pointer, fits the hand like a glove. Had to lube the shit out of the slide though so it didn't take Herculean strength to rack or takedown. As for disabling, yeah, you have to aim for center mass, as people will only go down with a direct hit to the central nervous system or direct hit to major organ. Mechanism of death from gunshot wounds more often than not is from blood loss, and it takes longer than you would like for someone to bleed out. Hopefully a hit elsewhere will convince someone you aren't worth the trouble anymore. Aim to kill. Shoot to stop. The area I'm most green in is drawing from a holster. I'm used to just pulling a firearm out from its case and going to town. I've decided I want to go with appendix carry, but I haven't picked a particular model yet. Once I do, I'll be practicing that intensely (it's good that this vital skill can be learned at home with your shades drawn). Whatever I pick will protect the trigger, and I'm thinking of using rubber trigger guards as well, but I don't know how counterproductive that is to condition 0 carry. Anything is better than a negligent discharge, but... Also ruled out shoulder holsters, ankle holsters, [these two suuuuck] and IWB holsters that sit on your ass [these are fine but I imagine uncomfortable]. Appendix lets me sit comfortably and also draw from my front.
  3. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    Greeting people is always a good idea IMO, it gives you a lot of useful information. As for slowing down to engage shady people beyond that, naw, you need that distance the time you don't spend there gives you. No one is trying to make friends downtown at 12AM. Ignoring them initially just slows down the rate at which you acquire information. The immediate aftermath paranoia has given way. Now, with my situational awareness, improved knowledge of de-escalation and escape techniques, and additional training in the lawful carry of a firearm for the defense of self or others in imminent threat of serious harm, I feel well prepared to deal with the problem before me while I work on solving other problems relevant to that one. I don't live an 'unfortunate life', people in Guatemala live an unfortunate life. I'm American poor, which just means that much of my existence is incomprehensible to people who are of a higher socioeconomic class than that and always have been. I face generally more problems, which are also more severe than and are different from the problems they do. I had a fucked up past which has given me psychic injury, but again trailer trash child abuse fucked up, not victim of war fucked up, and I am now receiving adequate care in at least that dimension. Medicaid does a lot of things right. I'm still LOLing at posters saying shit like "why not move to a wealthier state or country?"; cost of living is very relevant. Might as well let me eat cake too. After all, Americans are merely temporarily embarrassed millionaires, to paraphrase Steinbeck.
  4. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    Atypical depression caused by a fucked up life, that is now effectively treated by neurotransmitter substitutes, is totally why I don't deserve my second amendment rights. Bad things happened to you because you were too weak to stop them and it hurt you, but fuck you for claiming the bare minimum means of power to defend oneself. Fuck you stigmatizing mental illness. I'm not violent and I don't live in another dimension so what the fuck is it to you if I don't make enough dopamine or norephinephrine on my own? I'm not schizophrenic, I don't suffer psychosis. Unlike the general population I actually KNOW what's going on in my head because I take care of my mental health. When I speak of the dangers of 'mentally ill' people it's those who are violent, delusional, and untreated. Left untreated, I'm constantly sad and anxious, and that's about it. My life sucks without help but I'm no danger to myself or others. Otherwise I'd be deemed incompetent by the state and would not have passed my NICS background check. Qualified for my CCDW, btw. Missed no shots at 7 yards. 100% range accuracy translates to 50% combat accuracy, says veteran police officer of 31 years who taught the course. My other classmates were two middle aged white women (one with an EPO on a violent ex) and a middle aged black woman. Considering moving because I'm poor not retarded; that however is a process that also takes resources. Men don't have reason to fear sexual assault? @Jazz You're flat wrong. (but statistics and rape culture!) yes, those magic words will prevent all rape I might risk. I've been assaulted so I'm biased, just not randomly on the street by a stranger, so yeah it's probably unlikely for that to be a consequence of an altercation I would have in this circumstance. Yes, the first event is the one that matters and yes I came to the same conclusion regarding threat level. I already park as close as possible and move as fast as possible--a block away at most. I also called the police as soon as I got home. That is not the extent to all of what I should do. Someone, somewhere will have to work this job even if I leave, so pretend, if you will, that I personally do not exist but that this situation does as a constant. Some arguments may make more sense if the context is more important than the individual. Here's a weird thing to me: the odds of being assaulted go down or up based on location; but they never equal zero, so no one is justified in owning a personal defense weapon? It's always middle class and upper middle class people who have never been in real danger who think no one should have guns. No bad things ever happen once you do the white flight thing and make it to the 'burbs. As for Sam Harris comment, if the wrong person says the right thing, fuck it totally right? Sorry I didn't link to someone on your reading list. @mmf I post weird shit because I'm weird and my life is weird; approaching normalcy is the goal, however, whatever that means--I assume it means lower overall existential risk. @Sophocles Yeah, I'm just trying to give myself a fighting chance in case I can't get away. Going from 100% chance of dying to 99% chance of dying is still worth effort. @Malcolm I'm also no longer considering carrying an arsenal on me. The pistol I purchased will do just fine. Everything else is either overdoing it or underdoing it. I've been doing some more self-defense training but of course the emphasis is distraction and escape. I'm not trying to be Bruce Lee. Also working on making money so all my problems go away. Just paid off the debt I incurred off car repairs. Now I can focus more on my medical bills and credit card debt. If I was doing "privileged comment" BINGO I might have it by now. We've reached the point ITT where I'm not seeking advice but giving it.
  5. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    Had another close call/encounter today. Not as close as last time by a good margin though. Me and my co-worker loitered, I suppose a few minutes too long, in the safer closer parking lot. The one I was using and no longer use was still within a block; this one is too, it is one corner shorter, well-lit, long line of sight. Gave us a false sense of security. I had my driver's side window down to let the cigarette smell out, and left the lot, no problem. Before we turned the corner. "Hey! Hey ese!" [he was not Hispanic]. Whip my head to the side and this weird looking motherfucker is in the middle of the lot we just left. My co-worker says "don't look at him, don't look at him", so I face forward. We get a green light only to hit a red one around the corner. "Hey ese!" I shit you not this motherfucker decided to follow us. He seemed far enough to where I figured we'd make it once it went green. Based on how fast he was moving, it seemed like we had plenty of time. "Go go go!" says my co-worker. I look out my window again and this dude is booking it and has gotten a hell of a lot closer. Less than a hundred feet away, probably close to sixty or so (I suck at this but he would have been at my window soon). I looked around the intersection for like a second and gunned it through the red light. Thankfully there was no incoming traffic and the next two were green; at 1230 or so your odds regarding traffic are pretty good. She's scared of course. She knew my story, and I carried my bat of course, but she hadn't had a close call herself yet where she felt fear. Just a random hobo stole her vaporizer while she was on a break outside, hit it, and gave it back without missing his stride. That was the weirdest prior thing she'd dealt with. My anxiety level has kind of plateaued so I'm not all that shaken up about it. We passed 6 LMPD officers on the corner of 4th and Muhammad before we left work for the parking lot; it's Friday night on 4th Street Live! of course the cops are out in force. Contributed to our false sense of security. None of them said anything about my bat, and less than a block away some scraggly motherfucker decides he's gonna try to get intimate through my car window. I don't think he had particularly violent intentions, I think he was just an extremely poorly socialized beggar. I think Summer brings out the crazies more than any other season so far. I've worked there since December. A security guard I shoot the shit with told me in July that an abrupt change in how Social Security worked led to about a hundred or so people becoming homeless at once, and the city of Louisville had no forewarning about this. There's a park where a lot of them huddle down, he says, a mile or so west. I don't remember the name, starts with an H. Supposed to be a playground, but, mired in human shit and heroin addicts for now. A lot of them were probably mentally ill to begin with, and without state support what else would happen to them? Lesson [re]learned: don't loiter in a parking lot at night, no matter how safe you think you are. I usually practiced this principle but slacked this time. Dude probably saw us long before we got in my car for that reason. She called her mom while I was driving--her mom agreed to split the cost of a pistol with her, and she's interested in getting a CCDW too, so that's good. She's disabled, has back problems, has no chance in a fight, and is a young mother. I picked up my pistol earlier yesterday and got a business card from the CCDW instructor who owned the gun store. Just spent an hour field stripping and reassembling it and I can do it without the manual now. Striker fired pistols are kind of all the same. Everything's a Glock. Three weeks or so is how long I have to practice, think I'll do okay. Going down to Bardstown to shoot cans with my buddy later today. He's got some land with a lot of natural backstops. Threw 150 rounds of 9mm on the credit card, that should give me a decent feel for it. Found a good deal online for bulk ordering that cuts the $/rd in half, probably gonna do that too. Link to SOSS Smith and Wesson Flash sale: S&W M&P Shield in 9mm no Manual Safety for $298 [with a native capacity of 8+1 it's legal even in communist states] Remington bulk ammo, 500 rds of 9mm for ~$100. SOSS in general has the best deals online. My LGS was selling a Shield for $349. FURTHER EDIT: Magazine springs were a bitch to break in but the Shield shoots like a dream. Easy to control, accurate enough and consistent groups, will probably need to adjust the sights a little but was definitely able to get minute-of-badguy. The CCDW test should be a joke. The only thing I don't like about it is one small issue with the hinged trigger but that will go away with practice anyway. Also practiced some useful self-defense techniques which do not involve firearms with my karate buddy; I will describe them below. Technique #1: The most important one: change the attacker's focus. Give them something to think about that isn't you. Throw shit at them (people naturally try to catch it or halt), if engaged in combat even a light shin kick is enough to distract. Throw your hand in their face (doesn't have to be a punch). Poke them in the stomach. Whatever you can do to make them think of something that isn't you. If they're thinking of the gut that just got poked, or hand suddenly in their face, they aren't thinking about you. Only an experienced fighter can ignore distraction. Most people are not that. You can usually get an opening to flee, which you should do if possible. If not, take advantage of their vulnerability. Pepper spray is an extremely effective example--hard to think about you when their eyes are burning. Technique #2: breaking a grab. Using your feet and body weight you can escape nearly any grab. Step backwards if your arms are grabbed and rotate those arms in a wide circle. Your foe will be off balance because you shifted your weight by stepping backwards, and the circular motions take advantage of the limitations of human arms in general--they will have to let go. If grabbed from behind (arm wrench, to give an example), move hard and fast in the direction they're pulling you. Go with it, your weight will throw them off balance and you can pivot to escape. Everything is circles. Randomness in your arm movements can help break a stubborn grab. Technique #3: A charging enemy attempting a tackle, if it cannot be evaded or interrupted with a distraction, can be punished by driving your knuckles into the soft tissue above the collar bone: use their neck to help you aim. The force you resist with, and the force of their movement combine in a small area to cause a great deal of pain that can help break their focus. DONT'S: you're trying to survive, not win a fight: don't tense up [it will not make you faster even if you think it will], don't try to box, don't treat it like a sparring match. The costs of a missed punch can include a broken arm. Stay as loose as possible. That same arm, if loose instead, can be used to deflect an attack to create an opening or escape route. Circles. If they have a knife, these principles will still work, just try to think of one of their arms being longer than the other. You just need to escape. Don't panic. If they are holding it blade down, edge out, clasped in fist, they know what they are doing and should be eliminated at range if possible in any way. A person holding a knife palm up, tip forward, doesn't know what they are doing and your odds are a little better--still a serious threat, but they can lose control of their weapon more easily. Another tip: stare potential threats in the eyes; turning away indicates weakness. It's fine to keep your head on a swivel--you should be aware of your surroundings--but keep staring at their eyes. It indicates that you are confident you can fuck them up and vultures looking for weak prey might have second thoughts. One of the skills cops learn is to make prolonged uncomfortable eye contact.
  6. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    I've taken two self defense courses in college and read a lot on the topic because of my fucked up life. I've more than likely committed tons of plagiarism by cryptamnesia or otherwise in these posts. Sam Harris has a good sum up article and I'm pretty sure some of my wording uses his because I recently read it to see if I did anything wrong, as I have been obsessively reading up on the subject in general. Regardless of how incredulous you are at what I'm saying, and its your life, you should be skeptical, you should read up on it. EDIT: I've also done a LOT of de-escalation and some running my ass off, to refer to non-OP experiences OP has. Just some random examples: Had to talk a farmer down from shooting my cousin's dog a second time gun in hand, etc., when I was 13 [she was fine, the bullet passed right through the meat of her leg; to be fair in retrospect he had chickens to mind and Girl was a black lab without a leash and on his property] out in Caddo, OK. Prevented fights at parties by getting in front of a belligerent while apologizing profusely for anything and everything [many times in Berea], gotten outwardly crazy people to calm down and leave houses [Bardstown], stores [Louisville]. Been hit and not thrown back, talked it down (some people actually get embarrassed if you don't retaliate and just act like a rational adult) [abusive ex, random school bullies earlier]. Stopped stepdad from beating mom [several times] and vice versa (wasn't always successful but nobody's dead so good enough). My brother's done a lot of that kind of stuff and I've watched him in action, he's better than me (I learned a lot from him). He caught a punch to the face one time at a party around a bunch of drunken idiots (young ass men with alpha complex bullshit) and still managed to keep his head straight enough to talk down what was about to be an all-out brawl. We left quickly after. [ex]friend of a friend's house in Cleveland. In some situations you just get the fuck out of someone's way or perceived way and let them go be crazy/an asshole in some other direction. I haven't seen all the shit he's dealt with. Got out of a shady ass meth trailer outside Gatlinburg, TN after we gave a ride home to a drunk lady who crashed her car into a tree down a hill--her friends and family were not happy to see her and they followed us in their car for awhile, probably thought we would call the cops, but he lost them in the mountain roads--they probably just gave up and went back to looking for her car before the cops could get to it. Was with my buddy Will out in Samuels Loop [16, 17?] when we had to lose an aggro driver who got really pissed off because our dumbass teen selves cut him off on 245; he tried to run us off the road. Had to talk a guy down from stabbing me by asking why he wanted to stab me repeatedly while backing away for about 4 or 5 minutes until he decided he didn't have much of a reason to (he really didn't it was fucking random and he was batshit crazy, one of those edgy teens that could be a school shooter, but really, could've been a school shooter; at some dumbass high school party). I've pussied out of tons of fights too. Also won a few by unexpectedly fighting back (by won I mean I was able to get away without getting my ass beat because I threw a lucky punch or elbow). I got bullied a lot as a kid, been around a lot of scary people my whole life. I guess I'm proud of going out of my way to not hurt people or be hurt? I dunno. But I'm here in one piece. Running and talking. In terms of deterrence a lot of the rednecks in high school stopped bullying me when my brother pulled one aside and played up how crazy I was and therefore dangerous (the word stab was used)--they already thought I was weird so in confirming their biases they decided I wasn't worth it. To be fair I was mentally ill and fucking weird in high school so... back to the baseball bat thing, I just don't want to be an attractive target. Hornets have yellow and black stripes to let you know it has a stinger well before it stings, so it often doesn't have to. I'm candid about all these things because I know other fucked up people badly need other fucked up people to relate to and feel validated about being fucked up. But yeah, feeling secure? I don't know what that's like. I do know that the older I get the more real mortality gets, and the idea of dying over stupid shit more outrageous. That's why I've worked so hard to get away from all the really crazy influences in my life and now just deal with regular crazy. I'm white trash that escaped the drug world, escaped crazy shit,worked hard so I could get a scholarship,got educated, still working hard. Shit's always a struggle. Getting stalked and nearly assaulted/mugged/whatever, it made me think of the people I can't afford to not go home to. How truly alone you are in a dangerous situation. I haven't had something to fight for in a long time, this year , and some of last, is the first in a long time where I actually give a shit (I shouldn't say that because many necessary things required effort but doing necessary things for me primarily/not out of pain fear is fairly new due to an external locus of control problem). There are a lot of mixed feelings and experiences in play here across several age and place cross-sections of my life. Things are way better now that we've finally gotten the neurotransmitter thing mostly nailed down and most of my demons killed, so yeah, I want to live. I actually crave life. I didn't use to. I don't know if any of this is of any value, but it's here. As for "you've made it this far without getting seriously injured/killed, why freak out now that the overall risk is lower?", there's this thing called survivorship bias. There are only so many times you can convince a knife-wielding schizophrenic on methamphetamine that there are in fact no demons in you or your stepmom's heads (though to be fair he wasn't like that all the time and was usually pretty chill) [also learned a lot from my stepmom].
  7. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    If you read what I said above you would not come to conclusion that escalating a situation to lethal force is a thing I advocate. I'm 28, started shooting when I was ten. Not saying you have lack of experience with firearms. I was saying you lacked experience with living in fucked up places dealing with fucked up people, fearing for your life, for about 22 of those years. Domestic violence, drug dealing, break-ins, actual fights in our driveway, my sister running a methhead out of our trailer with a knife, to give you an example. That was my life. Mental health issues made me graduate a year later than I wanted, but my timing for withdrawal was great because my stepmom was about to go to jail and I could take care if the house. Most of my immediate family: repeat offender felons. "Just move out of there" is classism. You think if I had the scratch to pay deposits on everything and travel for job interviews I'd still be here? "But you spent 300 on a gun". Yeah, well my appendix exploded in April and my car broke down in May so I'm in debt up to my eyeballs because my insurance wouldn't cover my CT scan. Louisville is the economic center of KY. I'm working on my shit, its just hard to get ahead when you're behind. I just don't get why your response to a person who is clearly scared shitless and doing the things that make sense to them no matter how irrational they are is to be a dick. Everything I said above says that violence is a last resort option. I am worried because 10 or 20 ft. Is not a wide margin for error and should that error have been made I probably would have gotten fucked up. Show some fucking compassion. You're flaunting your socioeconomic status, is what I'm saying, and that's fucked up.
  8. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    Your bitchy smug comments coming from a place of total lack of experience are helpful, constructive, and add to the conversation. You're flaunting ignorance and a bad attitude. Take pride in that if you must.
  9. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    @rei this Guelph, Ontario?
  10. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    Louisville, KY. I work in this area. The past two years have seen an increase in homicides and shootings.
  11. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    You work downtown at night in a city with a steadily increasing homicide rate and run into trouble and see how you start changing your priorities and behavior, just saying. I think a lightweight bludgeon, pepper spray, and single-stack 9mm are conservative, practical choices in the meantime while I wait to get transferred to a less crazy location. And yeah, mall ninjas are what they are because they fetishize weapons that are impractical and 'exotic' and don't bother to become proficient with them.
  12. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    Same. But I don't think that these people tend to give a lot of dialogue options based on what I experienced. Technically, I have no fucking idea what they were after/what their goal was beyond interacting with me in a way I don't want with a high likelihood of force/easily interpreted menace. If they said "I got a gun, gimme your wallet", they could have the wallet. But if they never state a demand, if they just go on the offense, their unclear motives are worst-case in your risk assessment. I would shoot someone to avoid being hurt by them, and hopefully they would stop and go away and not die or suffer permanent injury. I think the number of lumps I should be expected to take should be zero. I'm still going to open carry the bat as deterrence to reduce the chance of that being a call I have to make.
  13. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    I've settled on a S&W M&P Shield in 9mm and it should arrive at my LGS tomorrow. It has a stellar reputation and is a favorite carry gun for many; if I don't like it trading it or selling it will be no problem [next option would be a Springfield XDS in 9mm]. In the meantime I have taken to walking to/from work with an aluminum baseball bat while wearing a leather jacket. I got away the last time and I intend to the next; if I can't, I won't be left without an option. Gonna put in some range time this weekend to break it in [hopefully with my grandfather] and if I get good groups to start with, I'll go ahead and start the CCDW licensing process. You only have to put 11/20 rounds on target at 7 meters to qualify, which sounds easy enough. The interesting thing about a CCDW is that it allows you to also carry tons of other things that you're not supposed to even open carry normally - brass knuckles, shuriken, nightsticks, it's pretty funny really. A mall ninja's dream.
  14. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    Oh yeah, and if you're already in a fucked up situation, if anyone is trying to kidnap you or move your person to another location, they are definitely trying to kill you and you should attack as hard and fast as you can. Be vicious. Get away the first chance you can. Do. Not. Get. In. Their. Car. 6/7 people survive being shot with a handgun. You can't be more afraid of maybe dying than definitely dying in probably a really horrible way. In the event that any of this type of stuff happens, especially if you shoot someone, you must call the police ASAP. I called the cops as soon as I got home, because you have to wonder: who else were they trying to fuck with that night? If you shoot someone and run it's really really bad for your inevitable court case. If you have an airtight self-defense situation the police won't always press charges.
  15. Almost got jumped; buying a gun.

    Situational awareness and instinct were my weapons this time. I wouldn't have done much different because drawing a firearm is a commitment to a life-or-death action. It would mean standing my ground and killing someone. I was (barely) able to get away without a direct confrontation. I was lucky. There were several points in this incident in which I could have been engaged in a direct confrontation: -If their pace was faster, or were running at me rather than stalking. She could've run up on me if she wanted to, and dude probably could've too if he wasn't going the long way on purpose. -If I was attacked as I passed them initially; I would run to get clear distance, and continue running until I determined that a fight was necessary, if it were necessary. She was just slow enough for me to be able to get into my car and lock my doors. By the time I had my keys in the ignition and seatbelt on, she was very close to my rear driver side door. I looked carefully because I didn't want to hit her if I could avoid it. One of the things that crossed my mind was being in a disadvantageous position while entering my vehicle or shortly after (or shortly before), and that is when I would've used a gun. The point right when you are damned sure you are in harm's way and have to use it. More below relevant to subject and other posters. (I don't mean to condescend if you already know all this). Weapons are tools of absolute last resort, when all other options are exhausted or impossible. I don't want blood on my hands, even if they're trying to harm me, it's a tough thing to live with, and there are many many potential legal consequences including a manslaughter conviction, civil suits etc. But as they say, "it's better to be judged by twelve than carried by six". You are as much of a human being as your attacker is and you have the right to live more than they have the right to try to ruin your shit. Like, if you end up in one of those stupid "honorable fights" that sometimes come up between men while hammered over some idiotic conflict--a gun is not appropriate. You're not going to get killed, you're just consenting to potentially get your ass kicked. If you know you aren't in danger of serious injury or death, do not use your weapon. If you have no intention of engaging and some asshole just wants to kick your ass, fuck that, you have a right to use your weapon after you've declined violence and expressed a verbal warning not to attack. Don't just go popping off on someone over something that can solved through de-escalation. De-escalation, like situational awareness, is a tool you can always use without negative consequences to prevent violence or harm to your person and you should learn how to do things like that in case it is possible to resolve a conflict non-violently. It is much better to look like a pussy than to be a murderer. One of those things is temporary, and can be forgotten. If you can placate an aggressor in any way that will not result in harm to your person, do it. If someone wants your wallet, it's not your wallet anymore, it's potentially your life--let them have the fucking wallet. Learn how to talk people down from states of high agitation, anger, potential intoxication, and social pressure to fight. Situational awareness is simple once you know it but easy to fuck up without practice. You need to pay attention to specific things in your environment and in other people in order to act in the smartest way possible to save your life. If you sense you are in danger, do you know where all the belligerents and potential belligerents are? Do you know where you're going to run, and if you can even outrun them? Did you anticipate being in danger in this environment beforehand so you could read the behavior of the people in it? Do you know where you are, and what the potential battle space is? Chokepoints? Blind corners? Doors? Windows? Driving conditions (if outside)? Who is doing what and how they're doing it is a critical set of questions that demand answers before acting. You can hone situational awareness as a skill. You can practice it and should. It will help you do the right thing when the butterflies creep into your stomach. It is the most important skill. It tells you which situations can be avoided or de-escalated, and which ones can't. So, what I would do differently if I had a gun was feel more in control of my situation should things escalate such that I avoid escalation even further. A minor change in variables and I could have been dead. It's a wake-up call that my ability to fight is deficient, but my situational awareness is not. I may have been able to sprint to my car instead, knowing that if it provokes a chase you have confirmation that you must act if you can't get away, and that you have a course of action that will protect you. If they didn't pursue in response to the sprint, congrats, you're alive and they are too. That's ideal. That's how you win the game under most circumstances. If you're in real danger, you win the game by killing (assume you will kill when you fire, they may just be injured, but know you are using a killing tool). It's not a game, but it's a useful metaphor. I should also note that at the second your enemy begins to flee, every trigger pull is murder. You just have to end the conflict with you alive. If they are deterred by your action you have succeeded and no longer need to continue firing, so don't. Your real win condition is making your attacker stop and leave you alone, you getting away is the only thing that absolutely has to happen. I cannot say with absolute certainty that my stalkers intended to kill me. If you get away like I did you never can. I'm sure I was going to be assaulted and robbed. You cannot ever truly know this but you have to assume that someone who is willing to violate you is also willing to kill you. They didn't point a weapon at me or otherwise threaten me and express a demand "give me your money" "give me your car". That didn't happen, otherwise I'd be down a wallet.