Wednesday, November 07, 2007

The World's Worst Mugger

Okay, here is the mugger story that you asked for in the comments.

I think I met up with the World's Worst Mugger a few nights ago. I don't know where muggers go to learn their profession, but this guy must've cut class at mugger school the day they taught how to pick your targets wisely. I hesitate to bring this up, because I'm not one of those people who brag about being a badass (I am way more lover than fighter). But I'm posting it because:

  1. Some blogger wrote something idiotic about muggings recently that pissed me off. It basicly said "I live in the suburbs and I've never been mugged before, and if you have you were probably not paying attention that's why it happened to you". I won't link to it because I don't want to give her site hits;

  2. The people I've told this story to think it's funny; and

  3. it happened in my driveway, and involved a crackhead.


  1. If you ask me what the right thing to do when confronted with a mugger, I would tell you 99 out of 100 times that you should just give them your money because no amount of money is worth risking your life for (especially what little cash you're likely to be carrying around in your wallet.
  2. Despite what I'm about to say in this story, I don't want people thinking I live in a bad neighborhood (especially when I try to sell my house for WAY more than I bought it).
  3. I'm not the type of person who gets into street fights (anymore). Aside from the junkie I kicked in Amsterdam in 2002 (which doesn't count) I haven't been in a street fight since the infamous Jack in the Box drive-through"incident" in 2000 and I don't plan on being in any if it's avoidable. I already have two facial scars and I'm not looking to add any new ones. I'm sure that some chicks did guys with facial scars, but most probably don't so:

I'd rather look like this guy

Than this guy

At any rate, I hesitate to tell this story because the last thing I want is to be in a bar and have someone who read this post think "he doesn't look that tough" and try to punch me in the face. Because then I'll end up with a black eye or someone will end up with my beer bottle smashed across their face (yeah I fight dirty, get over it).


The other day I was helping a friend look at some condos that were in the vicinity of the Ninja Fortress. My friend said "I don't know about this area. A friend of mine was mugged, like, six times in a year here". Because I am an idiot, I mentioned that I'd never run into trouble in that area (knock wood)--the worst thing you could do is tempt the fates. As if by clockwork, a few days laterI ran into either the worst mugger, or most agressive panhandler in the history of the universe.

A DC blogger posted recently about the different kinds of homeless people in DC. Well, I ran into this guy from that website:

The Scary Swindler
Sketchy parts of the city E.G. Questionable sections of U Street at 2am in the morning. [ed. note, the Fortess is near U Street]
This category typically consists of petty thieves and muggers (sometimes high).
When he asks for money you automatically know that means hand over your wallet.
If you aren’t certain whether or not handing over your wallet is a suggestion or a command, his crazy eyes and the broken liquor bottle he is waving at you should make it clear.

Having grown up in NYC, I am familiar with this guy. Apparently some genius somewhere told them that if you say "give me $10" instead of "give me your wallet" that they can claim they are panhandling if the police happen to stumble upon the mugging while they are on their way to the Dunkin Doughnuts. Of course, if you give them $10, they will take your wallet too. It's just a test to see how you will react. Will you run? Yell for help? Fight? or give up your wallet? Or maybe you should just hide somewhere?

Back to the story: I had just come back from a no-gi grappling class. In case you're wondering what that is, it's jiu jitsu that you do without a uniform, in order to simulate what would happen in the real world (like fighting while leaving a bar, or in the parking lot of a Jack in the Box).

I didn't bother to bring a change of clothes, so I was still wearing my rashguard and fight shorts, which have a pocket in the front to keep your mouthpiece in. I even had my cup on. (this is relevant to the story)

Now, if you read my blog you probably figured out that, mentally, I'm not all there. But even if you're a crackhead with no laptop, you can probably figure that out when it's cold outside and I'm walking around in flip-flops and shorts in an alley at 11 pm. So I parked my car behind the fortress and made my through the shared alleyway that leads to the street. (at the end of the alley, a few doors down from the fortress is a boarded up building...and, no, I don't live in the ghetto).

I spotted a tall skinny guy at the front of my alley way. He wasn't walking by, he was just standing there.

Give me ten dollars!
I looked him up and down. He was about 6'2" tall and skinny. He was wearing a denim jacket and was now IN the alleyway, not just in front of it. He was doing some weird shaky thing, which made me positive that he was on something. I didn't think he was armed because I figured if he had something on him, he would have taken it out and threatened me with it by now (I don't know why I thought that but I did).

Now, I don't know if it's because I'm very territorial when it comes to my driveway, or maybe it's because I don't like it when people who are taller than me* try to physically intimidate me...or maybe it was because I was wearing a cup and just spent two hours practicing how to choke people. But for some reason, I wasn't having it. Any of it.

Now because he's a crackhead, he was kinda skinny, so even though he was taller he was probably only 40 lbs heavier than me. And since he was skinny, he had a long neck, and one of my best grappling techniques is do the math.

I'm not saying that because I'm bragging. If I was bragging on my blog to impress chicks, I would make up lies about how rich I am or how long my dong is, but unless there are women who have a Hannibal Lecter fetish, I don't think anyone is impressed by you telling them how good you are at choking people.

Maybe we can go out to a movie sometime...and dinner. PFtthfhhffhththhthththththththt.

But I AM good at choking people. Once upon a time I studied Judo from this guy and although I'm out of practice, I know about twenty different ways to choke someone. *** And this guy has a long neck so that's almost an engraved invitation. Jus' sayin'

Although I'm not short, tall people bug me. I don't lose my temper easily, but one of the things that makes me lose my temper (besides people who kick puppies and eat babies) is when someone taller than me tries to physically intimidate me.

Yeah, you, motherfcuker! I'm talking to you, I said give me ten dollars!
For some reason, if I had to describe my emotions right then, it wasn't fear, but rage. If we were boxing for the welterweight championship title, I would be in trouble because he's probably got a 12" reach advantage when it comes to punching, (and also because I'm a sh1tty boxer), but we're not in a boxing ring. We're in an 8' wide alley, I'm wearing a cup, and I can tell from the way he's standing that he doesn't know how to grapple.**

I said matter of factly "It's in my wallet...why don't you try and take it?"

Then I reached into the front pocket, took out my mouthpiece and put it in my mouth. (Going to the orthodontist once is bad enough, so if I had a mouthguard on me, I was going to avoid a repeat visit if possible).

When I took out the mouthguard, the look on his face changed instantly. It was as if I had pulled out a knife instead of vulcanized rubber safety equipement. He had that "oh sh1t!" look. As I took a couple of steps towards him and raised my fists, he put his arms up with his palms facing outward walked backward and said

Crackhead: "hey, hey, it's not like that...I was just tryin' to get somethin' to eat.

HIN: Oh really??? Well why didn't you say so?...Get the fcuk outta my driveway!!!

As he walked away I wondered if he would call it quits for the night or take his chances mugging someone else. After the Catholic guilt started kicking in, I reached into my pocket, ran up to him and gave him some money.

HA! Psyche!

If you believed that last sentence, then you must have me confused with some other blogger. There's no way I would lend a crackhead $10. If he's had to resort to mugging to make ends meet, then the odds of him being able to pay me back aren't good. Besides, I'd rather spend it on beer for me, than have him spend it on crack. It's the principle of the thing.

What actually happened is that when he turned to walk away I thought about grabbing him from behind and choking him out with a rear-naked choke, then leaving him there. I wish I could say that what kept me from doing it was that I'm a nice person, but actually, it was that i was 20 feet from the ninja fortress and i figured that if I did it, they would probably find me. Although I don't live next to a Dunkin' Doughnuts, I don't think the cops would have trouble solving the crime.

Now, looking back at what happened, it was a dumb thing to do.

In case you hadn't noticed, I'm kind of a wiseass, and you can't grow up in Brooklyn being a wiseass without having had a few street fights. But I really hate to fight. To me, fighting is like taking home an ugly chick from a bar at closing and making sexy time. It seems like a good idea at the time, but it's something you will regret later. And in the end, fighting is always brutal and terrifying, even if you win--like playing strip poker with Rosie O'Donnell. *shudder*

At the time I wasn't thinking about him having a knife or a gun. (which is stupid on my part) At the time, I was so pissed off that all I could think was "Crackhead, I'm gonna fcuk your sh1t up!"
I guess in the end it was okay. Nobody go hurt, nobody got robbed, and I did refrain from doing something really stupid (even if it wasn't for the right reasons). Plus...I got a blog story out of it. Anybody else have a funny fight story?

*Now, I'm 5.8" tall and according to some (probably inacurate) statistics I am slightly below average height, which is 5'9", if we are to believe the government. The same government who said that Iraq had WMDs and that Hillary Clinton doesn't have a penis. So, pitting my credibility against the government, we'll just say that this is my blog and I'm not short, and that's that.

**if he knew what he was doing, he would stand with one leg forward. Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart (in an alley) makes it really easy for me to shoot for a double-leg takedown, and there's no room to sprawl in an alley to avoid it, so he was going down. Plus he was wearing a jacket, which gives me an advantage (it's easier to control someone by grabbing their sleeves and lapels than it is if they are in a t-shirt).

***if you don't believe me, here they are :1. one handed choke, 2. two handed choke, 3. head and arm choke, 4. guillotine choke, 5. anaconda choke, 6. rear naked choke (RNC) with figure four grip, 7. RNC with cable grip, 8. RNC with half nelson grip, 9.crucifix choke, 10. triangle choke, 11. viking choke, 12. cross choke, 13. reverse cross choke, 14. gogo plata, 15. north-south choke, 16.-20 are "gi chokes" that I don't know the names for.


The Speaker of the House said...

This is great. Just great. I'm in awe...

See how you feel about this...

I'm new to the blogging thing, but the style is similar to yours and I'm trying to get linked up to other DIYers with a sense of humor. Enjoy.

Anonymous said...

Why do you think girls don't find tough guys sexy? Willa Ford dated Chuck Liddell.

Anonymous said...

Moral: Always carry a mouthpiece.

Great story.

Anonymous said...

Glad that ur okay. What exactly happened at Jack in the Box? Is that a follow up story?

Anonymous said...

first.. facial scars are sexy..

second..lots of hot chix date oh i dunno jenna jameson...

third... you DONT want to look like Randy "the Natural" Couture??? you are crazy..

fourth.. a guy tried that rear naked thing with me once...its fun... you just have to relax..


HomeImprovementNinja said...

The Speaker of the House: Thanks, I'll check it out.

UFC Fan Grrrl: Is that how she got on the Ultimate Fighter show?

You can call me, 'Sir': thanks.

Anonymous: I don't think it's a follow up story. It's a long story but it involves a fight in St Louis.

1. Awwww, thanks :)

2. Jenna J is hawt. I'll give you that one.

3. Mad props for knowing who that's a picture of. Who knew chicks like you like ultimate fighting?

4. I think we're talking about something different. Just a hunch.

Anonymous said...

Ok your post was really long! All I saw was "mugging", and the tag Columbia Heights at the bottom. Email me! I'm interested in knowing more about this.

Lil Kate said...

Well, I'm glad that you thought it over and decided to share. I know *I* was entertained.

Anonymous said...

never underestimate "chicks like me"

Anonymous said...

First, I agree--not many things hotter than a facial scar. Second, You think Jenna J is hot? lately? She has totally ruined herself. Last, glad you are ok even if that was kind of an ill-advised way to handle the situation.

Muskego Jeff said...

Um, thanks for posting the link to your cup. Really, I have only myself to blame, as I knew what I was in for.
You should of given the crackhead a warning punch in the ear. A little somethin-somethin to remember you by.

Anonymous said...

I too disagree on the Jenna J thing -- she's pretty much turned herself into a coat hanger.

I'm glad you weren't hurt. It sounds frightening on a couple levels: what could have happened to you and what your reaction could have been. I kept picturing John Goodman screaming at a bunch of nihilists "what's mine is mine!" as I was reading this. The mouthguard is a good bit -- I wonder if my retainer would be a suitable substitute to ward off muggers?

Anonymous said...

Amazing what getting pissed off leads you to do... Last time I told some guys I didn't have any cash (I did -- automatic reaction) it ended up with a philips screwdriver in the arm (mine) and a tetanus injection (also mine). So on the scale of things I lost but hey, I give to charity when asked nicely so to hell with three people who ask at knife-point!

Useful point about the cup and mouthpiece however... Though my mother always told me the most useful way to scare off a potential attacker/rapist was to vomit all over them. Pity I'm not bulemic.

HomeImprovementNinja said...

startingtoday: okay, I didn't want to split in two and get called a tease. I'll prepare a Cliffs Notes version.

Lil Kate: awww, thanks.

suicide_blond: Good point.

lemmonex: JJ is not hot LATELY. But she just needs to eat again and she'll be fine. I'll send her links to your food blog. And thanks for the scar comment ;)

Muskego Jeff: Yeah, I thought about it. But it ended without a fight, and if I punched him, he might punch me back. I figured I would quit while I'm ahead.

Michelle: Don't hate on JJ! She's going through some food and bad plastic surgery "issues" but she'll be back.

intellileg: Ouch! Hope your okay.

Anonymous said...

Now THAT is quite a crazy story, I must say. Glad everything worked out okay. :)

Anonymous said...

Glad you did not have to choke a motherf*cker out!