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Old October 19, 2005, 01:56 PM   #1
Wynterbourne
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Training affecting your everyday life?

One of my supervisors, my wife, and myself had a long conversation over dinner a little over a week ago. During the course of our conversation my manager commented that I seemed a bit quirky. Not in a bad way, mind you, but that I didn't seem to do things the way that most people do.

After dinner I asked my wife, who'd apparently spoken with them about this in passing previously. She said that they'd noted that I don't walk down the stairs at work like the rest of the call center. When I go down the stairs, which are in an L-shape, I tend to turn so I can look down the stairs past the landing. When I go down past the landing, I tend to look on both the right and left hand side of the stairs, looking almost completely behind me.

Now, I'd never realized I was doing this. But, thinking back, I do realize I'm doing it. Further, I've realized the reason, I'm checking for potential issues or hazards around the stairs.

I was never taught to do that. I've never had an issue that involved a stairwell, other than my wife almost falling down a pair once. I wasn't even consciously aware that I was doing so.

So over the past week or so, my wife has started bringing to my attention some of the little 'quirks' that I've developed, when I'm doing them, and asking me why I'm doing them. Some of the things that I've been doing, well, I don't really know. Let me give a few examples of what has been brought to my attention.

1 - When I park my SUV, I tend to park so that the passenger side faces the door that I will be entering. When we go back to the SUV, I look at all four tires in passing. When asked why, the only thing that popped in my head was, "Checking to see if there's any damage to the tires."

2 - When I enter ANY vehical, the first thing I do before entering is look in the back. It doesn't matter if it's a car, truck, SUV, or van. It doesn't matter if it's 2 doors, 4 doors, or more. When asked why, the only thing that popped in my head was, "Checking to see if there's anyone in there."

3 - When we go to the movies, I HAVE to sit on the outside edge of the row. I'm not comfortable being pinned in. It doesn't matter which side of the row I'm on, as long as there is one direction that is open. When asked why, the only thing that I could respond with was, "So I can move in a hurry if I need to."

4 - When I go into any building, I tend to note the location of every fire alarm, fire door, fire suppression system, the alarm components, and security camera in the area. If it's a restaurant, I tend to note which tables around me are occupied at all times. When asked, all I could say was, "So I can get out of here if I need to."

5 - When getting dressed for work I have to put my knife in my left pocket, by itself, and it always goes with pivot point down. My badge for work always goes in the breast pocket of my shirt. My right pocket holds my cigarettes, less than $2.00 in quarters (never more), my keys, and my lighter. When asked why, my hand slid right on top of the pocket, and I was walking with almost no noise at all.

6 - When walking with my wife she almost always has to be on my left side. If she's on my right side, my right hand is almost always on her shoulder or back as we walk. When she asked, all I came up with was, "So I can get you out of the way if I have to."

There were others, a lot of them. But really, I only have one important question to ask.

Am I going nuts?

In all seriousness, am I starting to act somewhat paranoid? I don't mean to. I don't -feel- paranoid. I don't really consider myself a nut job. But, for a time (when working security in an area that I like to call 'Avenida de la Crack Ho') I was working hard to increase my awareness of my surroundings.

Have I gone too far? Has anyone else caught themself doing things like this?
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9mm. Because no matter how you try to rationalize it, .45 ACP is still for people trying to compensate for -something-.
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Old October 19, 2005, 02:49 PM   #2
Daniel964
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I wish I was half as organized and observant as you. No your not nuts. Your prepared. Do you CCW also?
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Old October 19, 2005, 03:10 PM   #3
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I do some of the same things as you. I have to sit on the outside of the asle(sp) on any form of transpertation (unless I'm driving) and in movie theaters. But that is part of the human's fight or flight system (some have it more than others, those that do are said to have panic disorder).

My knife is always clipped to the back of my front right pocket. To get to it if needed (and not just for defensive use).

I always swivel my head from the right, center, left when entering, or leaving a door.

Haven't used stairs in some time now.

I also check my car, outside and inside before getting to it and opening it. But that is something that my dad taught me to do as a child.

I tend to cross over to the far side of a corner so I can see around it before I have to go around it. But that is due to I've watched people hung the corners and come "kissing close" to the other person on the other side of the corner doing the same.

There are others. You seem to have a good boss/manager, he just called you quirky, mine thinks that I'm insane (j/k, he knows that I am ).

Wayne
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Old October 19, 2005, 03:18 PM   #4
rapier144
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Nuts

No im the same way its called being aware of your surroundings.How many people look but dont see what they are looking at. Ask someone you are with what color the car was that just passed you or how many people was in it and 1 out of 10 will be able to give a correct answer. its a good way to go through life.Being one step a head of danger helps when the sh-t hits the fan.Take any advantage you can get.
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Old October 19, 2005, 03:26 PM   #5
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I wouldn't worry. My Mom said I was always observant growing up and things haven't changed. In fact now that I live in the city I find myself more cautious and observant.

- When going into restaurants I identify the exits and like to sit facing the door.
- When walking down the street at night I evaluate everyone passing and check my rear every so often.
- When walking to the car I always look around the parking lot no matter what time of day.
-I use my periferal vision a lot to look around and see what people are doing around me.
-I check the tires of my car as well
-When walking with my girlfriend I keep her on my left and if she is on my right my hand is usually around her as well


Some people are more cautious than others. It's always better to be safe than sorry. If what your are doing stresses you out then I would get it evaluated. If it's become natural. Go with it.
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Old October 19, 2005, 03:34 PM   #6
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All that you do plus I tend to look at anything reflective for what's behind me,like windows,glass doors,and the little bubbles that cover the security cameras in our hospital's ceilings(great for seeing what's comming down the hall your entering). Stay alert,be safe.
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Old October 19, 2005, 03:40 PM   #7
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Nope, not paranoid. I do a lot of the things you do.
I constantly check what's happening around and behind me (yes, I look behind me as I walk). If you are human or moving and are within 20 yards of me, you are on the radar. Unless, as is every once in a while the case, I am so tired I can barely think.

Everything in my pockets is kept the same, and in spots where it won't jingle.

As I read your post, I realized that I too park with the passenger side to the entrance. I don't check the tires, but I do check the backseat and under the rig.

On the rare occasions that I go to theators/auditoriums, I usually sit where I can see best, but I have noticed I get annoyed when someone sits between me and the aisle.

No SO to position.

I need to work on noticing the exits, alarms, that sort of thing.
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Last edited by Twycross; October 20, 2005 at 09:33 PM.
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Old October 19, 2005, 04:30 PM   #8
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I guess I am not the only one that does these things then. My wife thinks I am looney, but I think it is just being prepared. Bad part is that I also bring other training home. For instance my wife hates it when she starts wrestling around, and I can grab one hand and roll her over on the floor. Having been trained to know if people are lying, I find that I use it on my kids. Some things are just hard to turn off.
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Old October 19, 2005, 04:46 PM   #9
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Hmmmmmmm

Um....Yea......Um......Bravo25.......no disrespect to you or your wife, but.......um....... I don't even know where to begin after that one.....
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Old October 19, 2005, 05:42 PM   #10
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Well then maybe you shouldn't. I didn't know that it was suggestive in anyway. Surely we aren't the only couple who wrestle around "outside" of the bedroom.
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Old October 19, 2005, 08:34 PM   #11
Bender711
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Hum............roll on floor.......just dont know what to say to that one.

But your not crazy........well not any crazier than me, then again thats not saying much but i do many of the same things, i always look for blind spots in security cameras, and try to keeps tabs on every body around me (which is hard considering how many people are at my school).
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Old October 19, 2005, 09:08 PM   #12
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Nah, your not crazy. I do almost all of those thing subconsciously. In restaurants I always like to sit where I can see the majority of the restaurant. I don't ccw but I like to know what's going on.
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Old October 19, 2005, 09:37 PM   #13
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Well, the general standard is whether or not the behavior is something you can forego voluntarily if you so decide.

If you CAN'T force yourself to walk down a stairwell normally, or if you CAN'T force yourself to get into a vehicle without checking the tires and looking in back then you are nuts.

On the other hand, if these are voluntary behaviors that you can forego if you wish then you're not nuts. BTW, SAYING you can forego them is not the same as actually being able to.

You are merely eccentric.
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Old October 19, 2005, 10:09 PM   #14
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A friend and I once caught ourselves contending for the chair backed up to the wall in a restaurant once.

If I sit down to eat in a restaurant I always try to get a seat where I can see the entrances and my car.

My wife moved the furniture one day and I could barely sleep for three nights. It occurred to me the bed was no longer facing the door. I'd never thought of it, but every house I've ever lived in the master bedroom faced out on the livingroom and my bed always faced the door. We had to move the furniture back around.

We moved into a new house last year and there are no windows in or near the door. It really bothered me the first time I had to open the door to a stranger. Apparently, I've always looked out the window before answering the door. I had to put in a peephole. My dad seemed to think I was paranoid. This is the guy who taught me to sit near a window in a restaurant where I could see my car.
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Old October 20, 2005, 03:22 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wynterbourne
5 - When getting dressed for work I have to put my knife in my left pocket, by itself, and it always goes with pivot point down. My badge for work always goes in the breast pocket of my shirt. My right pocket holds my cigarettes...

...

Am I going nuts?

In all seriousness, am I starting to act somewhat paranoid?

No, but inconsistent. Why would someone who obviously wants to be a survivor as much as you do smoke cigarettes?


For what it's worth, I do a lot of the things you mentioned (although I like to sit centered in a movie theater) and others you didn't mention (like locking my car doors as the first thing before I start the car or put on the seat belt).

Such habits take nearly no effort once they're established, and they could save your life, so why not?

-blackmind
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Old October 20, 2005, 06:44 PM   #16
Wynterbourne
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Quote:
Do you CCW also?
Not yet. I'm planning on it, and actually need to take care of it ASAP to fulfill another obligation. There's this pesky $1500.00 car repair that has to be taken care of first, though.

Friggin Ford Electrical System...
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"You can say ‘stop’ or ‘alto’ or use any other word you think will work, but I’ve found that a large bore muzzle pointed at someone’s head is pretty much the universal language." - Clint Smith

9mm. Because no matter how you try to rationalize it, .45 ACP is still for people trying to compensate for -something-.
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Old October 20, 2005, 06:48 PM   #17
Wynterbourne
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Why would someone who obviously wants to be a survivor as much as you do smoke cigarettes?
Because I'm an addict.

In all seriousness, I started smoking during a SEVERELY self-destructive, suicidal streak, when I was much younger. Over the past few years I've tried to quit a few times, but simply haven't been able to. Something about having a grandmother die of skin cancer, an aunt die of lung cancer, a sister who had a double mascectomy due to breast cancer, an aunt dying of cervical cancer, an uncle getting prostate cancer, a cousin getting cancer in his lip, and my mother developing emphysema, just makes me think that I really need to get off the stuff.

Just waiting for my insurance deductible to roll over at the beginning of the year, then it's off to the doctor for some Buproprion.
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They got mine once. Never again. Molon Labe!

"You can say ‘stop’ or ‘alto’ or use any other word you think will work, but I’ve found that a large bore muzzle pointed at someone’s head is pretty much the universal language." - Clint Smith

9mm. Because no matter how you try to rationalize it, .45 ACP is still for people trying to compensate for -something-.
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Old October 20, 2005, 06:48 PM   #18
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Anyone who reads a newspaper would never buy a Ford if he had a choice.

I can't think of another car maker that has more articles in the paper about recalls of 500,000 cars, etc., than Ford.


People say, "Buy American" blindly. I say, "I'll buy American when they stop making cheap s#!t and telling me that it competes with the foreign, superior products."

When I heard that the profit on an Explorer was like $13,000, I realized that Ford is more about ripping people off than about making something that will last.

Take a look at the Mustang, all those cheapass fake plastic "speed parts" like dummy wind scoops and stuff, and you'll understand the design philosophy of Ford is, "Make it LOOK like it's good -- it doesn't actually have to BE good." :barf:

I'll keep my Subaru.
There a reason they keep winning those Rally championships. Their designs and manufactures rule.


-blackmind
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Old October 20, 2005, 06:50 PM   #19
Wynterbourne
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If you CAN'T force yourself to walk down a stairwell normally, or if you CAN'T force yourself to get into a vehicle without checking the tires and looking in back then you are nuts.
Oh, I can force myself to do it. I even tried to do just that this week. It just felt really, well, the best way to describe it is 'Oogie'. It didn't feel comfortable bypassing those steps.

Maybe I can claim OCD and mooch some insurance benefits.

(Yes, that was a joke)
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They got mine once. Never again. Molon Labe!

"You can say ‘stop’ or ‘alto’ or use any other word you think will work, but I’ve found that a large bore muzzle pointed at someone’s head is pretty much the universal language." - Clint Smith

9mm. Because no matter how you try to rationalize it, .45 ACP is still for people trying to compensate for -something-.
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Old October 20, 2005, 06:52 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wynterbourne
just makes me think that I really need to get off the stuff.

Just waiting for my insurance deductible to roll over at the beginning of the year, then it's off to the doctor for some Buproprion.

My advice: don't use some pharmaceutical b.s. to try to quit.

Do it out of the fortitude of your soul and heart. You have the strength. You just have to find it and tap it.

Start by deciding NOT TO the next time you think of going to the store to actually deliberately pay money for cigarettes. It's hard to smoke something you haven't bought, right? And it takes a series of deliberate actions to actually buy them, right?

FIGHT for a couple of days -- stick a pen in your mouth and fume for a while when you get a craving. It will pass! And you'll be over the physical addiction and then can deal with letting go of the "habit."

I wish you success.

-blackmind
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Old October 20, 2005, 08:33 PM   #21
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Noticed that I have a hard time looking someone I'm talking to in the eye if they are someone I trust and am comfortable with... I'm generally looking over thier shoulder instead, watching thier back.

Lots of little trainned in oddities to suffer from.
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Old October 20, 2005, 08:45 PM   #22
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Nothing wrong with being alert. Paranoid....well...ummm....just ask yourself: would you rather be paraniod or dead?
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Old October 20, 2005, 08:46 PM   #23
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Some years ago, I picked up a contract with a company. My first day there, one of the guys offered to show me around. As we went down a long hallway, I noticed we were in step. When we came to the end of the hallway, we both took a little halfstep and scanned the opening and the room we were entering. I turned to him and asked, "Special Forces?" He replied, "Force Recon. And you?" I replied, "SAS." We got along fine.

I have many of the same habits described here. I'm not obsessive about them but they make me feel more comfortable. My wife and kids have the same awareness and that makes me feel more comfortable, too.

I once took a friend who always insisted on sitting with his back to a wall and facing the door to a little Greek restaurant I had found. It was basically a long room, with a door to the outside on each end. You couldn't sit without having one of the doors at your back. Neither one of us was ever able to eat there without the other along.

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Old October 20, 2005, 09:26 PM   #24
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Quote:
Oh, I can force myself to do it. I even tried to do just that this week. It just felt really, well, the best way to describe it is 'Oogie'. It didn't feel comfortable bypassing those steps.
It's a good sign that you have a choice, it's not such a good sign that it feels "oogie' to omit it. Strange or different would be one thing, unpleasant is another. It's a matter of degree, I guess. Anyone in your biological family have OCD or similar issues?
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Old October 20, 2005, 09:52 PM   #25
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When I walk to my car, I always have the keys out and the door key already selected -- held ready to put in the door.

I look around while I walk.

When I put groceries into the car, I look around before I begin and I glance around before grabbing the next sack, every single time. (I think once that saved me from a mugging or worse, late one night in an otherwise empty parking lot. Two fellows walked together out of the shadows, split up to go around the car one row away from me, then came toward my car walking about 20 feet apart from each other -- both tunnelled in on me from the look of things, but ignoring each other. I saw them coming, stood up and looked at them. They barely glanced at each other, and then both turned and walked away.)

In restaurants, I usually find myself in a corner, facing the door. I don't plan this, exactly -- it just happens. The only time I'm consciously aware of it is when going out to eat with range buddies, then I notice we're all jockeying for the "tactical seat." (Heh. Once in a Chinese restaurant, a group of us sat down at a small round table; the folks with their backs to the door simply glanced around and sat without making a fuss. But a few minutes later, the waitress found out we would be ordering family-style, and suggested we move to a larger table than our group really needed, so there would be room for the platters. Oddly enough, we all ended up on the "safe side" of the new table, fanned out in a C shape. )

When I leave the house, I pat my pockets to make sure everything is there that is supposed to be there.

Entering an apparently empty public restroom, I habitually glance for ankles under the stalls to see whether I'm really alone.

Of course, I could forego any of these little rituals. But why would I? As far as I can tell, they don't harm anything and they do make me at least a little safer. Why worry about it?

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