Wednesday, July 20, 2011


I'm in an bit of a hurry, and as usual, I forgot something.  I decide to duck into the local grocery store, grab what I need, and slip out, after paying, of course.

I'm open carrying.

I make it back to my vehicle when I notice an elderly woman sitting in the driver's seat of her car, her eyes red.  She looks lost.

I look at her and she looks up.  Her eyes catch a glimpse of the gun on my side.  For some reason, her face clears and she opens the door.

"Sir," she says, "My husband passed away recently and I've just been told by someone that my tags expire this month.  He always took care of everything and I'm not even sure what that means.  Can you help me?"

I walk her to the rear of her car, and I point out the stickers on her license plate.  Sure enough, they expire at the end of the month.  I give her directions to the nearest DMV and walk her through what she needs to do.  She goes on her way, as do I.

I couldn't quite figure out what was different about that encounter.  I guess that, as many people as walked past her, perhaps she only felt comfortable asking for help from the one with the gun.


North said...

She thought you were a cop.

O.C. = cop

Lila said...

Or her husband was a vet so she knows the basics of gun rights and figured OC= responsible. My gram would have done the same thing. She tended to trust people of similar carriage to my grandfather far more than other men and he was a vet and a quiet man so she watched for people like that to deal with.

Bob S. said...

I would posit something simpler.

You noticed her and let her see that you noticed.

You acknowledged her as a human being and your face showed the recognition of her distress.

As a gun owner, I have found that many others see things but duck them.

The see problems and walk around them.

You didn't.

The fact that you carried a firearm was the reassurance that you weren't out to harm but to protect.

The fact that you carried a firearm showed you take responsibility for your life instead of living on dependence of others (police).

Independence leads to interdependence -- who better to trust then someone exercising independence?

Jon said...

Bob S. is probably right, though it certainly could be the gun=cop thing; I've had that happen more than once.

Anonymous said...

I believe Bob S. is batting 1000
Paul in Texas

Lawyer said...

Great points! Initially, I figured she thought I was a police officer. However, the more I spoke with her, it really just seemed like she trusted me because of the gun and had no illusions that I was an officer.

I was also struck by how sad the whole situation was. It appeared she would now have to navigate life without a strong hand to guide her.

Ed Skinner said...

The open carry probably did mean "cop" to her, and also to her that meant trustworthy, law abiding, helpful and compassionate.
It was very nice you could help out and confirm her expectations.