Private Investigations and Personal Security/Trophy attacks


Dear Mark,

The most common form of physical confrontation I have seen, hence the one that worries me the most, is where you are singled out by the trophy fighter - the wannabe badass - who will engage you under some pretext - something you said/didn't say or did/didn't do and then seek a confrontation from which he will attack you.  I think you describe it as the 'tantrum' attack on your website and is a trap - an 'escalating' interview style.  I would try to look scared of him if it meant he left me alone.  But sometimes you may not at first realise that he is aggressive, which is how you end up getting into the 'chat' with him to begin with.    

I don't know if you've seen the film Dazed and Confused but there is a scene in the film which portrays this scenario really well:

Bully: 'hey what did you just say - something about us toking reefer'

Victim: 'it was just an observation, er, i was just saying.....'

Bully: WELL WHO THE HELL ARE YOU MAN, ISSAC NEWTON?' etc, etc.  I've just realised that is quite funny when scripted out - the bully uses agression and 'humour' while mounting his attack - making it doubly hard for you to know what to do.

Provided you are unfortunate to have arrived at this point and are not in a position to run away - say you are with a group of friends for example - is there a particular way to take control of this situation, or at least, of yourself? I appreciate there are always variables but would be grateful for any tips.

Thanks so much for your time.  

You have just ask what is in essence, a simple question.

Now the bad news, there ain't no simple answer.

What I can give you a reading list, many of which you can find on my Website

Peyton Quinn -- Freedom from Fear
Bill Kipp -- The Missing Link
Al Siebert -- The Survivor Personality
Daniel Goleman -- Emotional Intelligence
Gavin DeBecker -- The Gift of Fear
Jay Carter -- Nasty People
Suzette  H. Elgin -- The Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense
Sam Horn -- Tongue Fu
Idiots guide to Verbal Self-Defense
George Thompson -- Verbal Judo

The reason that the question is so complicated is that there are many motives and factors involved in both his AND your response. It is as much a matter of what you do as it is what you don't do, combined with a "it depends on him." And there are a whole lot of issues going on under the surface taht are covered in the book list I just handed you.

Having said all this, also take a look at

and follow the links there and read up

I would also recommend Peyton's book "Freedom from Fear" as one hell of a good layman's guide.

And oh yeah did I see Dazed and growing up in the 70s, I remember it well.  It was my generations "American Graffitti"  

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