Monthly Archives: February 2017

Pickpocketing.

Even in a low crime city there’s always petty crimes. Petty crimes like pick pocketing, purse/chain snatching, etc. The only thing that remains the same, is the fact that taking preventive measures to keep ourselves safe from these crimes, is our responsibility.

This article actually popped up in my head after thinking about a usb drive I lost a few years ago, due to my carelessness, it was the first and last time I have ever lost anything in my pocket. The usb had all my favorite songs, my pictures and videos of seminars I had done, some miscellaneous funny pics and over 1gb worth flight simulator X add-ons. There was nothing too important like passwords or login information to any sites. Adding insult to injury, I didn’t back up any data on it before I lost it. Had to replace all of it from memory. I did recover just about all of it within a few weeks. But losing that usb was quite a wake up call for me to be more careful of what I carry out and what I don’t.

I took that usb out because I was going to transfer some pics of my security training and seminar from the kind people at Reliance. Unfortunately that didn’t happen. Now why did I mention that? Well, it’s because, sometimes, we are in a situation where we need to take something out of the secure place it’s in and bring it in the outside world. Not everything is in our control, but what’s in our control is making sure we reduce the chances of losing it or it being stolen, if/when we do take something important out.

Below I’ve written some simple things you can do to make sure the contents of your pockets aren’t stolen or lost. Principles remain the same due to the fact that the things have to be taken out of your pockets for you to lose them. This article is more geared towards safety from pick-pocketing and just making sure you don’t lose something that’s in your pocket. Purse/chain snatching, etc. requires a similar, yet a little more pro-active approach. Many of the principles do still apply.

So, to begin;

  1. Even though I mentioned a point about this above, I’ll still include it; Never take anything with you, that you don’t wanna lose, if you can help it.
  2. Never carry small things without its original casing or any other thing that you can put it in (carry bag, plastic pouch or a wallet); Small things are hard to keep track of and can be lost easily, bigger things are easier to keep an eye on.
  3. Never keep it in a shallow pocket, it can easily fall out or be taken out, without you noticing.
  4. Keep it in a pocket that’s tight enough that the contents can’t be removed without you feeling the hand in your pocket or fall without you feeling it fall out.
  5. Keep checking the contents in your pocket every 5 minutes or so (this can vary depending on many factors like where you are, will you be sitting, standing, running, how long, whether it’s a crowded place or not, etc.), even if it’s just feeling it out from the outside.
  6. Avoid removing anything from your pockets in public, especially crowded places, if you need something, try and remove it before hand and make sure nothing else falls out with it.
  7. Which brings me to the next point of never crowding and filling your pockets to the brim. Easiest way to lose something or it being pick-pocketed.
  8. In places where these things happen a lot, I.e. train stations, public parks, etc. Be cautious of people’s hands. Keep an eye on people’s hands and the direction they’re walking in. People who have nothing to do with you, will often avoid colliding with you, but those who want something in your pockets, will not avoid that collision, as that‘s their window of opportunity.
  9. Avoid keeping anything in the back pocket, it’s the one place you can’t always keep track of; I.e. your six.
  10. Be careful of the diversions, sudden collisions, feeling something on your back, someone pushing you, etc. etc. They might be a diversion to distract you while the other guy takes the contents out of your pocket and runs/walks the other way without you seeing and knowing it happened.
  11. Try having an inner pocket for the most important things. If you don’t have one, stitch it in. Add a pocket to your jeans or t-shirt on the inside and keep the important things in that.
  12. Of course, the most cliched point will be added by me like a broken record, I.e. be environmentally aware. Keep a look out for any odd behaviors (example mentioned above in no.8).

Well, that’s it. These are some of the things you need to pay attention to, so that you can make sure you don’t lose something that may very well affect your life, career, identity, sentiments, emotions, etc. Yes, it can be stressful for many.

Note- Now I know it might seem silly and downright stupid, but this post is kind of dedicated to my lost Toshiba USB drive. I miss you 😦

Finally, Thanks for reading! Like, share, if you found it useful!

 

Edit – I wanna add one thing related to Point no. 5. When I wrote keep checking your pocket every five minutes, it’s not some kind of a rule, or any specific number. It was meant to state that checking your pockets at fairly regular intervals, depending on where you are, can at least make you aware of anything that has fallen out or stolen. This is especially applicable if you’ve just felt a hand brush against your legs or hips or waist. It also can be applicable if you’ve just sat down and your pockets are at an odd angle (in this case, avoid putting anything in that pocket).

It doesn’t have to be a full on check, just a simple nonchalant pat once in a while is more than enough.

Alright, that’s it.

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Training for actuality of violence

When most people, especially instructors are asked whether they train realistically, their answer is usually ‘yes’. But when you see them do their “realistic stuff”, it seems pretty far and out of touch from reality. It seems that their concept of reality is different from the actuality of it.

 

Recently, I asked an individual a simple question, “How, would you say, a real violence training should look?” The individual replied in a very cliched way and went on about how the opponent should come at you aggressively, yelling and stuff, etc. I asked him in return, “Would you see it coming?” He didn’t have a proper answer, but yet tried to say something and ended up saying just “Yes”.

 

Now, here’s the first problem of things with this. Most tend to see these things from a purely physical perspective. Not many seem to focus on the pre-violence situation. No verbal cues, no tonal changes, no physiological changes, no physical positioning, no symptoms of ASR, etc. etc. In fact, most don’t even acknowledge it even exists. Which kinda poses a problem when we are “training for violence”, doesn’t it? I mean if you don’t train to see it coming, what are you preparing for? To get out barely alive and half dead?

 

So, realistic training? What does that entail? Well, if you ask me, the drills should focus more on the pre-violence cues than anything really, physical aspect of it should not be choreographed, no matter how “aggressive” the other guy is, (let’s be honest here, he‘s really not truly angry or aggressive in most cases). Superficial aggression is utterly useless, you don‘t have to kill them, but all of the pseudo aggressive and “hard” movements are nothing but taps in actuality, are you really gonna learn how it feels to get hit by being tapped on your chest? No, you are not.

 

Let’s take a situation here, if I am in a big fancy Martial Arts studio, and I’ve been told to rush and charge this guy in order to demonstrate “the harsh reality of violence”, and I charge at him, but the guy knows I‘m coming, ‘cause, you know, He Told Me To! He‘s READY for his “moves”, there is no sudden jolt to his nervous system, no emotional stress, no adrenaline dump, and I didn’t try to get a rise out of him by calling his mom an individual who asks money for pleasure, not to mention, I‘m not gonna actually make contact here, it‘s gonna be an acting show, a choreography with taps that look “hard”.

 

So my questions are, “Is that really reality?” and “Are we really showing the actuality of it or are we just showing what we think and we want people to think is reality?” I mean in an actual assault or an attack, very rarely people do see it coming, and even when they do, they’re still overwhelmed by the sheer aggression, it’s sudden, our hands are shaking, our legs feel weak, our stomachs are churning and we’re basically too busy crying and asking ourselves questions like, “What the hell is happening?” and “Why the fuck is this happening to me?”

 

I’m pretty sure, that most who just train for their kind of “reality”, where the guy they know is coming, charging at them without any purpose, without thinking about any of the events leading up to the escalation of the situation and violence, that kind of individual will not only, not see the threat coming, but they will crumble under pressure due to the aggressive nature of the actuality and suddenness of violence, as they won‘t see it coming like they did in their fancy studio. Not to mention, fail miserably to deescalate the violence in the first place due to lack of verbal skills necessary to not provoke the guy even further by challenging or insulting him.

 

So, my opinion here is that, the best training is something that encompasses every subject related to violence, which includes not only physical, but verbal, psychological, emotional, biological, societal, moral, consequential, tactical and a very important aspect; Legal.

 

As far as the physical training goes, scenario training is great, but without purpose, it loses it’s purpose, which is to mold your brain to handle and resolve or combat threats if/when you come across them by utilizing our brain’s neuroplasticity. Blindly creating aggressive scenarios without any situational context and escalation, is just inviting more trouble and is not training for the actual thing, it’s just training for more senseless violence. So please, Train street smarts and common sense, rather than senseless violence.

 

Finally, my question to you, the reader; What are you gonna train for? ‘The reality of violence?’ or ‘The actuality of it?’.

 

Well, that’s it. Thank you for reading.