Thursday, September 3, 2009

A Glock 27 saved my stupid ass in 1996.

After posting my glocklove comment over at his site, Huey asked me about how I once used a firearm to save my life.

I don't think my lifesaving story is too terribly compelling. It's chock full of dumbassery on my part. But here it is, warts and all. Cue the italics.

I was working as a bartender in Columbia, SC and had just moved to a dilapidated old house about 2 blocks up Devine Street (the main drive) from the 5 Points "entertainment district".

On a whim one night, I decided to walk down to work to see what the hike would be like and maybe catch up with a couple of friends. I had intentions of walking to and from job as parking in 5 Points is terrible in general and an epic fail if you have to work there. I understand that this has not changed.

So...I didn't find any of my friends, and after a couple of beers I hoofed it back up the hill that led to my house. Not a bad hike at all.

Almost to my street and displaying a tragic utter disregard for situational awareness, I was caught unawares by a shady looking dude on a BMX bike as he pulled up next to me and asked me if I had change for a twenty.

By shady, I mean all of 5'2 and 125 pounds with crazy hair, a surplus woodland camo jacket 3 sizes too big (this is June in Columbia, SC approximately 112 degrees at 10:30PM) and, of course, sunglasses. At night.

His sudden appearance startled me so that instead of barking at him to stay back, I merely replied "Sorry dude, I've got no cash at all". The truth. And the standard response to the multitude of 5 Points panhandlers.

Here's where I made my 2nd (or 3rd, but there's so many) mistake: Instead of watching him take off in the other direction, I confidently crossed the intersection where he had stopped me and made my way up to the next street which was my own.

As I reached the next corner, I stopped and did (what I now know is) a "Crazy Ivan" to see if he was following me. He had made it about halfway to where I was, stopped his bike and was merely looking at me. Instead of telling him to move along, piss off or get lost (4th mistake) - I decided that I'd be better off confronting him closer to home (soooo young and dumb -at least the 5th mistake if you're counting).

I had my car keys in my pocket and my car was parked about 100 yards away on the right hand side of the street, facing away from me with the drivers side door closest to me. I knew that somewhat unsafely stowed under the drivers seat of my car was my loaded Glock 27.

Foolish young Brian takes a left and walks a bit faster (how many mistakes was that?) of the well lit main road and down the poorly lit side street, thinking about the motions that he will have to use to get the car door open. Hands on keys...fingers on car key...take the keys out and put them in the door, leave keys in door and reach for the pistol.

That is what I was thinking when I should have been chasing this guy off.

About halfway there I turn around over my right shoulder to see if he's still following me and WHACK, I'm on my hands and knees in the middle of the street. He's hit me with something, but I have a very large, very hard head and I am not unconscious, but dazed and bleeding profusely. So naturally I begin cussing him.

I cuss him as I get to my feet. I cuss him as I stagger towards my car. I cuss him as I scrape my key up and down the side of the door, trying to get the door unlocked.

He's riding around me in circles, looking around to see if anyone has heard me.

I get the door open (still cussing him) and fall on my knees to dig under the seat for my unsafely stored (in battery too - ugh -sorry SC law) Glock.

I found it and pointed it at him weak handed, but he saw the gun and was already hauling ass back up towards where he hit me (with a @#$% brick, we found out later).

I tried to get a bead on him with the intention of shooting him in the back as he rode away, but fortunately for him I couldn't get a good sight picture due in part to my double vision from the blunt force trauma to my skull.

Rule 4 saved that guys life that night.

That's it really. All of that probably took a minute and a half.

I stuck the Glock in my waistband and staggered up to the porch where I freaked out one of my roommates who was reading a book on the couch by sticking my bleeding head through the front door and asking for some help. She and my other roommates' boyfriend took me to the hospital where they stapled me up. No painkillers because I had those beers earlier. Ouch.

The police never caught the guy. We moved out of the house a couple of months later after getting robbed.

That was 13 years ago this summer. I was very, oh-so-very stupid and very lucky.

I'll never sell that Glock.

Added: I'd like to point out that I did not do even 1 thing correctly as these events transpired. If I had made even 1 better decision this would have never happened. I'll post a list later - I've been uncommonly prolific today.


  1. Great post! I'm looking forward to your analysis of events.

  2. Thanks for reading and commenting James. My analysis will hopefully be up by the weekend. I look forward to your comments!

  3. "I stopped and did (what I know know is) a 'Crazy Ivan'to see if he was following me"

    I lol'd hard. Cool story.

  4. But you did do two things correctly. You didn't shoot when you didn't have a good shot, and you didn't shoot him in the back which probably would have caused you a lot of grief.

  5. Robert - thanks for reading and commenting. I've got what passes for my analysis of these events posted. Let me know what you think.

  6. Should have aimed between the identical punks to get him...buuuut good thing you didn't. Thanks for the story. Glad that's "all" that happened.
    And, yes, keep the 40 for sure.