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Old March 25, 2010, 12:43 PM   #26
Ian0351
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Not going to bars because you don't want to be harassed by drunks is like not buying guns because you don't want to be harassed by your liberal neighbor; for it makes you look weak and does absolutely nothing about the behavior of the person in the wrong. While carrying into a bar is a certifiably bad idea (and illegal as hell pretty much everywhere) going into bars and enjoying the company/atmosphere is perfectly acceptable. Maybe you just have to beat up a guy or two before they'll leave you alone, just let him (attempt to) hit you first... then cross-body block him into next week... or a jukebox/pool table, those corners can leave nasty bruises.
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Old March 25, 2010, 01:03 PM   #27
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I drink. I enjoy it. But, I do not drink in bars often for the reasons outlined in this post. Want to go "out" for a drink? Go to Chili's or AppleBee's, or even your local pizzeria or Mexican restaurant. True "bars" are for the younger, less experienced crowd.

And anyway, in Arkansas (my home state) we must disarm to go to a bar. I don't like being disarmed.
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Old March 26, 2010, 03:59 AM   #28
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From my experience, those who hold themselves well and don't have a problem talking to strangers are the ones that get **** from drunks. I don't think you need to do anything to offend a drunk. I once had a drunk pull his gun on me for thinking I was watching him and his girl. I was trying to find MY girl...
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Old March 26, 2010, 07:36 AM   #29
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Well he's obviously doing something wrong, whether its with his perceived notion that he isn't acting aggressive, or in the belief that the bars aren't "rough." I just feel that saying "stay out of bars" avoids the problem rather than fixes it.
LOL, avoiding the problem is one manner to fix the problem, but yeah, there is something he isn't conveying. I have seen too many folks start fights with behavior that they claimed wasn't offensive or that they didn't do when they did. People simply don't end up in bar fights repetatively that aren't bouncers unless they are doing something to help promote the fights.
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Old March 26, 2010, 08:16 AM   #30
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I'm a pretty decent sized guy... about 6'4" and 220 pounds. I don't have a super body builder physic, but I am in pretty good shape these days. I have had the problem you're talking about occasionaly. I would imagine frequenting bars would magnify the problem. I honestly try to act as nice as I can, and most of my friends identify me as a giant teddy bear, so I know that I'm not giving off any signals. If anything I've been told I'm too nice. It's not just bars, sometimes car clubs that younger people frequent will have a few stuck in the crowd. There are other places that don't necessarily involve alcohol or cars, but this is just one example.

At any rate, I frequently get people that may emit some aggressive posturing toward me. They don't necessarily come right up and start swinging, but they ARE trying to solicite a response from me. My action then is to ignore them, and if that doesn't work walk away. I do NOT frequently get people that come out the gate ready to roll. I've had 1 instance in which someone had made up their mind that they were going to fight me no matter what. Every other time I succesfully ignored any aggresive behaviour, talked my way out of a situation if it escalates, or walked away to avoid confrontation.

Honestly, you ARE NOT doing everything you can to avoid this. You may not go out looking for a fight, but you're not backing down if one comes to you. It's a pride issue, and if you really want to avoid fights then you need to crush that demon. This issue is magnified many times by the fact that you carry. You're asking for trouble dude. If you can't walk away from a fight, you honestly shouldn't be carrying a firearm. Look into some verbal judo classes. It helps for you to de-escalate a situation by talking your way out of it, but still helps to save face. I use it on a professional level and it works well.
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Old March 26, 2010, 08:45 AM   #31
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I agree

BlackFeather is absolutely correct. The friendly, outgoing (not annoying), types tend to be the targets of angry drunks. Sloppy,annoying drunks are pretty much a target for anyone, luckily they are usually so sloppy that it doesn't take much to time them out. I tended bar in some pretty interesting places. The entertainment from the bartenders side is priceless.
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Old March 26, 2010, 09:24 AM   #32
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I'm 5'7" about 185 lbs. In my life I've had my share of big guys making life miserable for me. 15 years of Kenpo not only taught me how to defend myself, but also taught me that your best weapon is your brain. I've always tried to befriend the biggest monsters in a room. Shoot pool, throw the game, buy 'em a beer. You get to know those guys a bit and he will decimate a room for you.

Had a guy one time going on about getting out of the Marines and how ungrateful people were and how it just wasn't the same being out. I noticed the bulldog on his arm and figured it would have been a lot of trouble to go through to be a poser. I was watching the TV mounted in the corner over his head. He thought I was staring at him and looks at me and said "What the "F" are you staring at?" Then goes back to complaining. I got up to get another beer and walked over to him. He belly's up to me when he noticed I had my hand out. He said "What?" I said, "You know, you're right, not enough people thank you guys for what you did, and not enough thanked my Dad either. "The guys shakes my hand, buys me a beer, and I don't think I've ever bought a beer when he was in the room again.

Sometimes you can change a situation by being in control of yourself. Sometimes you can't and people are inconsolable, you just can't reach them, but they are the minority. Also, I find you can keep out of situations if you stay away from bars when it's late or near closing time.
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Old March 26, 2010, 09:57 AM   #33
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Beer joints in our area have just become bad news all around.
I pretty much stay out of them anymore. Not worth the hassle of having to fend off the morons that cant keep thier mouth shut or thier hands off my girl.
I have never been afraid of facing off with someone if need be. But the down side is you really never win.
Once you get a rep as a fighter, then there are challengers everywhere. For no reason other than they are some ****** off loser looking to take out thier frustrations on someone.
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Old March 26, 2010, 10:14 AM   #34
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To answer the question in a straight-forward way: you stay away from places that contain the type of people that would pick a fight. This is even more necessary if you carry concealed, since you may end up having to use your weapon when it could have been avoided by staying away in the first place.
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Old March 26, 2010, 10:30 AM   #35
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Two of my friends are huge, ugly men. You know the type, they look like the offspring of a Gorilla and a UPS truck. Both are very nice, friendly guys though. Both complain of being the target of drunken aggression frequently. In just about every case I am aware of, it is some little redneck with a short man complex full of liquid courage trying to prove that they are Billy Badass by starting a fight with the biggest guy in the bar.

One of these two that I am talking about, one punch KO'd a guy instigating a fight one night and got locked up for assault. Had to go to court with a bunch of us as witnesses that he was acting in self defense.

I'm not gonna say stay out of the bars because I don't like to give advice that I don't follow. You may want to find a different bar though.
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Old March 26, 2010, 11:06 AM   #36
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Am I the only person who has noticed that the OP's screen name, RamSlammer, doesn't exactly suggest that he's a citizen of the Peaceable Kingdom? This does incline me to think that some sort of attitude/body language thing is contributing to his problem...

I notice, too, that he hasn't been back since his initial post, but for what it's worth, I'd suggest a visit to No Nonsense Self-Defense, which has a great deal of good advice about how not to provoke people to attack you.
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Old March 26, 2010, 11:08 AM   #37
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I had to defend myself constantly when i was skinny in college and in the bars. Illinois State wasn't TOO bad, but Carbondale @ SIU was pretty rowdy. Nowhere NEAR as bad as my friends that were big though. Someone was ALWAYS trying to take a piece out of them. OP is right, it's a constant everywhere you go, people want to test the big guy. I don't think there's any way to avoid it.

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Old March 26, 2010, 11:18 AM   #38
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It's probably not any one thing. It's very likely how you carry yourself - not to say that there aren't dumb-a**** who like to start trouble and have something to prove 'cause they have a small one - brain, that is...

Like the other guy said - don't go to stupid places with stupid people and do stupid things. Bars don't seem to work for you. Stay out of them. Some might call it avoiding the problem, but how many of us would knowingly put a +P round in a revolver manufactured in 1910?

If you must go to bars, even "classy" bars - don't stare at people, talk loudly or be rude. Yes, I know you'd said you're a banker - so you're implying that you're a nice well mannered guy. Well, I'm an executive with papers and can a bad-a**, too. Alcohol "makes" people do things they would not normally do - That's why I don't drink anymore.


Quote:
RamSlammer
How to avoid being a "fight target"?
This bothers me. I'm a big guy, 6'3" 275 lbs, former college football player many moons ago. Problem is several times lately when I go to a bar there's some really big dude who wants to have a ******* contest. I give off no indications of wanting to brawl, but seem to be a target of guys with something to prove. Not rough bars either, but just the simple sports bar.

In fact, I'm a middle aged banker (46) who could care less, but somehow I seem to bring out the worst in some dudes who just want to get into it.

My buddy sums it up as "you just look like a bad dude and threaten the other bad dudes so much they have something to prove". Sorry, but I don't get that. Also, I carry regularly and have had occasion to pass my gun to either my wife or friend whenever a fight seems unavoidable. I thought this the best action but have wondered what would happen if some guy drew a knife or something.

Typically I just defend myself and whomever tires of trying to hit me without success. I had to really punch one guy last year, but generally just try to steer clear of hurting anyone just for being a drunk idiot.

Moreso than that, I would like opinions on how to (I guess) appear less threatening or avoid fighting which I have no desire for. I'm a conservatively dressed guy usually, short hair, no tat's, etc. Is it body language? Something I give off that is threatening, etc.??

Help . . .I don't get it and hate to be on guard just going to the corner bar to have a beer and pizza with my buds.
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Old March 26, 2010, 11:28 AM   #39
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I'd suggest a visit to No Nonsense Self-Defense, which has a great deal of good advice about how not to provoke people to attack you.
Marc MacYoung came immediately to my mind, too, when I read the OP. He points out communication is 85% non-verbal and only 15% verbal. Lots of thought-provoking stuff on that site, it's worth a visit.
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Old March 26, 2010, 11:37 AM   #40
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My experience with redneck bars, and it's considerable, is that few people are picked on because they somehow look weak. Nor are people picked on because they look strong. They're usually picked on because they are not liked, or have a mouth larger than their ability to back it up.

Fights usually happen for a reason. It doesn't have to be much of a reason, but there's pretty much always a reason, whether it's a disagreement over politics, a woman, the Green Bay Packers, or who paid for the last round.

But the most common reason I see for fights is that a person comes in who is not a regular, who is not one of the crowd, and he acts tough, talks tough, etc. Do this, and you will be challenged on a consistent basis.

If you are being challenged on a consistent basis, it's pretty much certain something about your behavior is causing it. Redneck bars do have a fair number of fights, and thinking they don't or shouldn't means you're in the wrong place, but darned few people go to a bar wanting to fight.

Sometimes, of course, you'll have to have a fight or three before you can really become one of the crowd. Not much wrong with this that I can see, as long as it is just a fistfight.
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Old March 26, 2010, 11:46 AM   #41
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Well, I am 1" shorter than the OP and 10lbs heavier. No, I don't get into many fights, and don't have people looking to kick my can. I try to be a decent person no matter where I am or who I am with and have found that my easy-going attitude has probably helped to avoid far more fights than I ever actually got into. To be quite frank about it, I really don't want to get into a fight period anymore, because there is usually some bozo, it happens, that thinks they have to shoot/stab you, if they lose. I have a duty to retreat from these types of people, for the betterment of myself and those I care about.

I would have to say, first, why carry when you state you have had to give up your firearm to another on a couple of occasions? Does this mean that, even though you aren't giving the signals openly, they are still being given in a lighter manner? I have to assume so, but that is my opinion.

Then, why not just take the higher ground if it looks as though it is going to come to fisticuffs and let the employees handle the situation? Again, I think others have pointed it out, but it looks as though pride is getting the better part of you.

Then, why if it has happened on an occasion, do you frequent the same bar and why would the same bad-A or his type want to deal with the guy that just whooped his friend last week or last night?

So, this is just one of the reasons I am not a fan of the bar scene as when I did go, I have ALWAYS seen at least one instance of inebriation causing one's IQ to drop to neanderthal levels for whatever reason and they want to fight the world or the biggest guy.

Now, as for my state, it is illegal to carry in an establishment whose primary purpose is selling spirits or alcohols, (bars), but you can carry in a restaurant that serves by the drink, because their primary means of business is food.
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Old March 26, 2010, 11:46 AM   #42
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Dont think I want to be part of a crowd that I would have to fight my way in.
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Old March 26, 2010, 12:02 PM   #43
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H.W. French gave the best advise I think. Nothing wrong with going out with friends. I would reconsider the CCW while at a bar of any kind though. If something does happen how is it going to look for you. Are there any laws about guns in bars? If not I would make real sure that I was not legally over the limit for CCW.
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Old March 26, 2010, 01:13 PM   #44
CRUE CAB
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No guns in bars in Florida. Actually nowhere where alcohol is served.
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Old March 26, 2010, 01:44 PM   #45
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Vanya,

Good post. No Nonsense Self Defense is a good resource.

Two books also spring to mind, for young men who are serious about staying out of trouble and knowing how to cope with trouble if it finds them anyway:

1) Meditations on Violence by Rory Miller

and

2) The Little Black Book of Violence: What Every Young Man Needs to Know, by Kris Wilder and Lawrence Kane.

Both books are written by martial arts guys with very solid backgrounds in the real world. Neither will appeal to wimps or posers.

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Old March 26, 2010, 04:04 PM   #46
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Actually nowhere where alcohol is served.
Not exactly. Florida prohibits carry in " . . . any portion of an establishment licensed to dispense alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises, which portion of the establishment is primarily devoted to such purpose . . . " (emphasis added). In other words, restaurants where alcohol is served, even if there is a bar attached, is not primarily devoted to dispensing alcoholic beverages, and is therefore not excluded from carry by licensed individuals.
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Old March 26, 2010, 04:44 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by Vanya
Am I the only person who has noticed that the OP's screen name, RamSlammer, doesn't exactly suggest that he's a citizen of the Peaceable Kingdom? This does incline me to think that some sort of attitude/body language thing is contributing to his problem...
He may enjoy hunting Rams...>.>

Thanks, Dropthehammer...

Personally, I would just ignore the drunks, let them talk, maybe order them a drink. I would be aware of their buddies or anyone that looks like they agree with the drunkard. Always be aware when going to the restroom, I always push the door with my left arm as I enter and keep my right arm up until I see who is inside. Leaving the gun in a secured box in your vehicle may be a good idea or at least unuseable by anyone but you or a friend. Unless they have a real reason to go after you, there shouldn't be a problem.
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Old March 26, 2010, 04:59 PM   #48
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RamSlam, like you, I am a big guy. I wear my hair in a perfect flattop. High & tight all the way. I look like a cop and have yet to lose my 'military bearing'. I no longer attract trouble as I used to. When someone gives me a problem I tend to smile a sly little smile and I never raise my voice. And, if the trouble keeps pushing, I tend to try to walk away. If that does not defuse the situation, then the ‘old, violent’ me comes out to play. Luckily, that has not happened in quite a while.

But, if you react to their pettiness, they own you. They own your attitude and they force you to react the way they want you to react. If you fall for their game, you are giving them power over you. Just relax and let the idiots prove they are true idiots! Believe me, if you do not feed their game, you will win and they will look foolish.
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Old March 26, 2010, 08:53 PM   #49
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Thanks to those that replied with good advice - much of it will be heeded.
-No carrying where there's alcohol around . . .check. Even though the places I was referring to are more restaurant than bar, I consider them a bar because they have one. I don;t visit often - primarily during football season to watch a game with friends.

-A little more humility perhaps. Guess a good reply to "Hey what are you looking at?" is probably not "Not much." Not that I ever said that, but sure was thinking it on occasion.

To clarify . . . bar hopping and fighting is not a frequent happening. I maybe go to a place where booze is served 5-6 times a year. There were 3 incidents. One was diffused by talking/leaving, the other I was attacked and just defended myself from a sloppy drunk who was mad his team lost. The third I had to hit back (once) before the guy's buddies pulled him away. (No TV style cage matches here.)

Also as an FYI to those who presume more than they should and jump to conclusions, RamSlammer refer to some folks who participate in (or used to in my case), IHMSA metallic silhouette shooting. The 200m target is a steel Ram silhouette which is typically shot with big bore revolvers to "slam them down" . . . hence: RamSlammer.
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Old March 26, 2010, 09:26 PM   #50
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I don't doubt what RamSlammer said in his OP. He strikes me as an intelligent guy although I don't know him. Part of the problem is that people are hypersensitive today and many insecure people expect to receive attacks or harassment from someone who is physically larger than themselves.

Some guys might be feeling insecure and feel that they need to confront RamSlammer to build themselves up and equalize the situation in their mind. They feel small so they need to act big when they are next to a physically larger man. I know all about it and I have learned to diffuse the situation by ignoring people who seem to lack self esteem.

I have noticed people responding to me that way because I carry myself with confidence but not in a thug way. I learned to walk that way as I was growing up. If I hadn't learned this, I probably wouldn't be here now because the real thugs would have worked me over on a regular basis.

Maybe RamSlammer is doing the same thing. Sometimes I notice people feeling uncomfortable with me because I am larger although I dress in sportcoats and slacks for my day job. To mitigate this situation, I make sure to stand well behind people at the 7-Eleven so they don't feel pressured or uncomfortable and I avoid making eye contact with people. I can remember a time when I would make eye contact with people and speak to them while passing on the sidewalk. At the risk of seeming unfriendly, I'm not inclined to make eye contact with people unless they look my way first.

I go out of my way not to walk past women in parking lots because I don't want them to get the idea that I'm tracking them. This might sound outrageous but it saves me a lot of grief. I once stopped to help a driver on the freeway when her car was on fire under the hood. I told her that it was not safe to stay in there with the carburetor on fire so I popped the hood and smothered the flames with my jacket. I offered the woman a ride to the nearest station and an offer to use my cell phone since she didn't have one. She was so afraid that she decided to stay in the car and only let the window down one inch. I called a road service for her and promptly returned to my car. I don't think I look scary at all but insecure people are conditioned to expect trouble.

As far as bars, I don't like them but if I do go, I will disarm to comply with the law. The beer tastes better at home anyway when I drink it in socks and pajamas with the remote in my hand.

I would suggest RamSlammer to try to frequent some upper class establishments where people don't feel like they have as much to prove because they have already accomlished something with their life. I can't afford to take on every ignoramus who tries to provoke me and I'm sure RS can't. If I did that, I would never have any peace.
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