Encounter with an oppressed minority

bucky

Pelican
It's after 10pm the other night and I realize we're out of milk, so I head out to the supermarket a few minutes walk from my condo. To get to it the shortest way, you have to go around the back of a shopping center and it's dark. I don't exactly live in the roughest part of town, so normally no biggie.

As I'm walking around back of the shopping center, I hear a guy yelling loudly into what I assume is his phone about someone named Mitchell and Mitchell's having f---ed him over. He's coming at an angle where I can't see him well, so based on his ghettoish intonation, I assume he's black. Shit, I think. Hopefully he'll just ignore me. Enraged black guys usually seem to do that if you ignore them.

He gets out to where I can see him and no, he's white. Bigger guy, kind of fat but in that stocky powerful way, like a lineman in American football, blond hair and beard, maybe 30 years old, wearing an ill-fitting jersey from the local NFL team. Walking right toward me, no phone, so now I assume he's talking into some kind of blue tooth head set.

I discreetly move over to the other side of the walkway. The guy continues to rant and I realize he's not talking to anyone. He's walking in the middle of the walkway, and a car comes around the corner, turning a bit abruptly to avoid him. He screams a string of vulgarities at it, then notices me.

"Hey, f--k you for having an OK life."

OK, so this is going to be an attempted confrontation on his part. As a younger man I might have been drawn into it, but I've got too much to lose now and plus, my kids need their milk.

"I do have a pretty OK life," I think to myself, not acknowledging him.

"F--k YOU, YOU BITCH ASS PUSSY" he screams. I pick up my pace a bit, since I'm pretty close to rounding the corner to the front of the supermarket where an assault is less likely to happen.

"F--K YOU, MITCHELL. WAIT, YOU'RE NOT MITCHELL YOU F---ING BITCH ASS PUSSY, YOU COULD PROBABLY KICK MY ASS..." he continues to rant and I smile to myself thinking that's actually kind of nice of him, I guess all the weight lifting is do is paying off (I'm ridiculously vain in all situations).

"IF YOU'RE GOING TO THAT LIQUOR STORE I'M GOING TO KICK YOUR BITCH PUSSY ASS." I realize he's drunk. I turn the corner and walk over to the supermarket.

"F--K YOU FOR HAVING A GOOD LIFE WHEN MY LIFE IS SO SAD" he yells as he goes the other way to the liquor store.

It was a strange encounter. His monologue, especially that last part about his life being sad, seemed awkward and rehearsed, as if he got drunk and went out planning to make that speech to someone, anyone. Doubtless his life is pretty sad.

I get my milk at the supermarket and start to walk home, turn the corner, and see that he's still out there hanging around in the middle of the walkway behind the supermarket. Great, I think, have to take the long way home because of this guy, so I do.

It was unpleasant overall, but I've thought a lot about him since that night, about what options he has as a mediocre, not particularly bright white guy with an alcoholism problem in current year America. I imagine he's the quintessential kind of guy who could have gotten a factory job and done all right for himself in the 1950s, met a decent woman, had a few kids, been basically happy. Don't get me wrong, I think there's still vastly more opportunity in the US than in most of the rest of the world, but as a society we still expect the unheard of standard of living that became considered normal for us after WW2 and lasted maybe until the late 1960s, where a mediocre white man could have his own house, car, wife and kids with just one blue collar job that didn't require much creativity or intelligence.

What would you tell a guy like this, assuming he's sober when you're talking and not ranting and acting like he might sucker punch you at any moment? I used to give advice freely as a younger man. I'd tell people to lift weights, to learn languages, go out and see the world, be financially responsible, stay away from alcohol and drugs, stop obsessing over sportsball, that sort of thing. No one listens, with the rare exception of the type of men who frequent RVF. Most guys of any race when you boil it down are just into frequenting prostitutes (I'm including porn and things like onlyfans as forms of prostitution) and drugs (including alcohol) and putting as little effort as possible into life.

It's very sad. Now that I've become a believer again through my Catholic wife, I'd add wanting to advise men like the guy behind the supermarket to make Jesus part of their lives, but I imagine that going over even worse than the advice about lifting weights, sobering up, and so on.

I'm interested in hearing your thoughts, fellow RVF members.
 

Thomas More

Hummingbird
You can't save people like this from themselves. Just make sure they don't catch you up in the disaster they've made of their lives. If you try to help them, you will learn this advice the hard way.

The same advice applies for alcoholics, bums who won't earn a living and follow a budget, and simps who choose bad women. Foolish and broken people can never be saved by other people. They can sometimes hit bottom and turn their lives around. However, you can never talk anybody into doing this. You can only let them fail, and maybe their eyes will be opened some day.
 

debeguiled

Peacock
Gold Member
You did the right thing. Ignore them unless they directly address you, and in that case look at them but don't say anything. He is trying to provoke a response he can use as an excuse to ratchet up the drama. You can shrug or raise an eyebrow, but if you don't say anything they will move on.

Lots of Covid related meltdowns happening right now. This thing is breaking people's spirits, even if they think it is something else.

Otherwise, you are giving a random encounter way too much thought and energy. The insane changes in society are making a lot of people lose their shit over nothing. Expect more of it and deflect and move on.
 

Deepdiver

Crow
Gold Member
According to the Great Reset Survival Guide by Mike Adams iirc things are going to get MUCH worse... This is the free PDF and MP3s downloads link ... You owe it to your wife and family as a modern Christian Warrior to be prepared to take care of them and not take foolish risks with your life since they depend upon you...


I gave up one of my junk emails in his email capture for the free PDF so you don't have to.
 

Lace em up

Woodpecker
You cant help people who are unwilling to help themselves. Sure handing a fiver or a bottle of water to panhandler helps them for the moment, but until they straighten themselves out, no amount of advice or assistance will help them long term.

Sounds like this guy could have just been plastered drunk and the worst thing going on in his life was the hangover he experienced the next day. Assuming he made it home safely.

You did the best thing.
 
What would you tell a guy like this, assuming he's sober when you're talking and not ranting and acting like he might sucker punch you at any moment?
I've learned the hard way that you can only help someone who wants to be helped.

If the guy was willing, I'd get him to lift weights and track his spending. The lifting will quickly teach him that he can get better at something in manageable increments. Once he starts making progress in the gym he'll clean up his eating habits without needing to be told to. And armed with new knowledge of his own abilities, along with the knowledge of where his money is going, he'll start making better financial choices. The good habits will snowball; I've watched it happen to myself and to others.

A lot of people's problems stem from not identifying what they can and can't control.
 

bucky

Pelican
According to the Great Reset Survival Guide by Mike Adams iirc things are going to get MUCH worse... This is the free PDF and MP3s downloads link ... You owe it to your wife and family as a modern Christian Warrior to be prepared to take care of them and not take foolish risks with your life since they depend upon you...


I gave up one of my junk emails in his email capture for the free PDF so you don't have to.
Thanks, I'll check that out. I don't know what's coming in the near future but it's still good to prepare as best you can.
 
You did the right thing. Ignore them unless they directly address you, and in that case look at them but don't say anything. He is trying to provoke a response he can use as an excuse to ratchet up the drama. You can shrug or raise an eyebrow, but if you don't say anything they will move on.

Lots of Covid related meltdowns happening right now. This thing is breaking people's spirits, even if they think it is something else.

Otherwise, you are giving a random encounter way too much thought and energy. The insane changes in society are making a lot of people lose their shit over nothing. Expect more of it and deflect and move on.
Great advice. I have pretty good street sense and a great ability to deal with people, it is just something I naturally have and then have spent years working to get better at and it is something I oddly enjoy.

I am giving advice based completely on the situation given, by yourself, dark outside, sort of cornered. The best thing is to keep moving and act like they don't exist. You are not going to solve any of their problems. Heck, to be honest, if you make this walk frequently I would advise you to wear noticeable headphones so everyone thinks you are tuned out to the world. But don't play any music on it at all, just wear them. It gives you a greater excuse to ignore people without the disadvantage of hearing your surroundings. You will hear everything but they don't have to know it.

But if you have no way to avoid the person and you must talk to them, the two most important things you can say is...

"Man, I understand" and agree and amplify with them. Make them believe you are on their side and feel what they feel.

"I hear you". I can't believe how many arguments headed straight to physical altercation I have helped to quell by simply saying "I hear you". People scream because they think they are not being heard, which is one step from physical altercation.

Also, I advise you to get you a small pepper spray dispenser you can fit on a key chain and keep it in your hand when you walk.
 
I advise you to get you a small pepper spray dispenser you can fit on a key chain and keep it in your hand when you walk.
Great advice here - also get the ones labeled for dogs if you can like ones for runners -just my opinion it might help your case if you ever have to use it, it implies you weren't carrying it because you expect confrontations with humans.
Keep in mind it is already illegal in many blue cities.
Man, I understand" and agree and amplify with them.
When i was younger and unemployed an aggressive panhandler came up to me, I told him I was unemployed and he completely changed demeanor and wished me good luck.
 

bucky

Pelican
You can't save people like this from themselves. Just make sure they don't catch you up in the disaster they've made of their lives. If you try to help them, you will learn this advice the hard way.

The same advice applies for alcoholics, bums who won't earn a living and follow a budget, and simps who choose bad women. Foolish and broken people can never be saved by other people. They can sometimes hit bottom and turn their lives around. However, you can never talk anybody into doing this. You can only let them fail, and maybe their eyes will be opened some day.
This is exactly how I feel, especially based on my experience trying to give out what seems to me like pretty simple advice when I was younger. I realize now that almost no one wants advice unless they specifically ask you for it, and that very few people caught in depressing lives like the guy I ran into that night really want to put in the hard work necessary to improve their situation.

That said, I wonder about it from a Christian perspective sometimes. Based on my last reading of the NT, it seems like Christ might not approve of writing them off as hopeless and not bothering to do anything for them which, again, is definitely my first instinct and much more comfortable. Also, almost certainly safer as you noted when you talked about learning the hard way.
 
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debeguiled

Peacock
Gold Member
This is exactly how I feel, especially based on my experience trying to give out what seems to me like pretty simple advice when I was younger. I realize now that almost no one wants advice unless they specifically ask you for it, and that very few people caught in depressing lives like the guy I ran into that night really want to put in the hard work necessary to improve their situation.

That said, I wonder about it from a Christian perspective sometimes. Based on my last reading of the NT, it seems like Christ might not approve of writing them off as hopeless and not bothering to do anything for them which, again, is definitely my first instinct and much more comfortable. Also, almost certainly safer as you noted when you talked about learning the hard way.

You can't assume that a drunken ramble represents what the dude believes in the light of day. He could just be having a moment, and one that he won't even remember.

It is commendable that you are thinking of your Christian responsibility in a situation like this. You could try praying in the moment and ask God what he wants you to do. This course of action is easy to forget.

Or you could say something like, "Do you know Jesus?" Yes, it is kind of a cliche, but it will act either as a sedative or a repellent, and give you an idea what to do.

BTW, deciding to do nothing is not the same thing as writing someone off as hopeless. It could merely be Prudence, exerting her measured influence.
 
I happened across an interesting fellow last night. Clearly on drugs. We had a short "conversation." He was genuinely friendly, but made absolutely no sense as he was completely tweaked on meth and lamented to me that he's sorry he can't articulate himself due to the drugs. He clearly needed help and someone "normal" to converse with for a bit. I noticed he wasn't wearing shoes and his feet were cut up so I offered him a pair of shoes and socks (I keep extra pairs in my trunk.) He was giddy with joy and kept smelling the clean socks. I had to remind him to put the shoes on multiple times. Once he did, he giddily skipped off into the night rambling about birds on busses. Hopefully he cleans up as that life isn't meant for him.
 

Tom Slick

Robin
Since you didn't feel safe talking to him, pray to Jesus and Mary every day for a week to help him. You gotta trust your instincts, but a person like that is probably looking for a little human contact, a short convo, a God Bless You.
 
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