Friday, January 28, 2011

Bathroom Monologue: How To Avoid Being Shot

Fall straight down. Go limp so that you’re perfectly flat on the floor in under two seconds. If you brace yourself from the bruises, bullets will rip your arms apart.

Slither left as soon as you feel the concrete on your belly. Go about one body length. If you overshoot, that’s fine. The blocks you’ve just darted behind are concrete and will absorb most of the gunfire.

Stay there. Ignore the percussion and drywall exploding around you. Look at your watch. Watch the seconds pass. At eight seconds, their clips will be empty. They’re zealous and will need to swap them out.

Run for your fucking life, preferably to the door on left. Stay below the level of the concrete blocks so they can’t be sure where you are. Of course that door is beyond the blocks. There is a stretch of five and a half feet in which they will have a clean shot. So, run faster than they can reload.

Fall through the door. Roll to the right as you hit the ground. Taking the steps would be healthier if you weren’t about to be shot. Get your ass up and behind that dumpster.

Notice how the door opens rightwards and is resting against our dumpster. Shove the dumpster. It will catch the door, close it, and moves side-to-side a lot easier than back-and-forth. Stay below the top of the dumpster because when that door doesn’t kick open like they want, they’re going to start shooting again. This is how they deal with things.

Kick the wheel locks on the dumpster as you sprint out of the alley. Cross the street. Hang left. At the end of the block, hang right. Go three blocks, take one more right, and run until you see the hospital. You probably need it for something at this point.

I recommend dropping the package under the steps of the synagogue that is half a block shy from the hospital. You can pick it up later, when people won’t ask about it or accidentally see inside. I also recommend leaving the ER before they start sweeping for you. You can do whatever you want with it, though. You’ve avoided being shot, and that’s all the advice I’m giving.


  1. Useful advice. I feel safer already. :)

  2. Great energy in this. I'll avoid asking why you seem to know so much about this. :)

  3. Gany, see? It's like a public service. What did you do with your package?

    KjM, and I'll avoid telling you. Shake?

  4. This would be great as a spoken word. Think of the guy who does the Old Spice, "Look at me" ads doing it. I love this John and thank you for writing. I'm sure it will save my life one of these days.

  5. Gee, my stomach got all clench-y with your advice. I hope I'll never need it. O.o

  6. This is so much fun, John, and has so many improbable moments, just like an action movie.
    Such as, there just happened to be concrete blocks where you fell?
    Shove the dumpster? Aren't they kind of heavy?
    Kick the wheel locks as you sprint?
    LOL - I LOVE this.... so secret agent man!

  7. My package exploded when I tossed it so I didn't make it to the ER...all that bruising for nothing.
    This was fun, John!

  8. Love the dispassionate analysis of how to respond to what could easily be a panic-freeze moment.

  9. Rachel, I was thinking of doing a recording. Would people enjoy it?

    Mari, keep an eye out for concrete blocks and you'll be fine.

    Cathy, he is pretty demanding. Secret Agent Man was a little of what I was aiming for, so I think I win.

    Laura, he never promised you'd avoid being blown up. Shameful side effect, but he denies any responsibility. It's terrible when that happens.

    Tony, I'd probably just get shot in the first second. I'm no Secret Aaaaagent Man.

  10. I like that in this action packed and dangerous scenario the dangerous instructions are given so calmly and I got a kick out of, " until you see the hospital. You probably need it for something at this point."

    Wiswellian advice the girl in my #FF could have used today.

  11. Danger, danger! Looks like I got one too many dangerouses in my comment.

  12. Wow. Strong stuff. Clearly the voice of authority, if not experience, at work here. Who knows, you probably saved a butt or two with this John. Thanks!

  13. Yes John, people would love a recording of this, as Kevin said it's so full of energy. I could easily see this "on screen". Well done!

  14. Excellent advice. I'm going to practice right now.

    But I'm really curious about what's in that package...

    My code word is Pregrane. Is that what's in the package? What is that, some sort of pregnancy/hair growth wonderdrug?

  15. If only they'd taken this advice in the Matrix there would've been no need for Neo's superhuman speed. What would I have given to see Trinity follow this useful advice and then look at Neo rolling her eyes at what a showoff he is.

    And yes, people would love a recording of this... and I can think of a few people who'd be great at it.

  16. Ha, good one! Heart-pumping little how-to. And thorough, too.

    I can see the next one: How to Retrieve the Ill-Got Package and Disappear.

    Great stuff.

  17. Note to self: only carry suspicious packages when there are concrete blocks around.

    Thanks for the tip ;)

  18. If I follow your advice and I STILL get hammered on Call of Duty...I shall be very annoyed.

  19. Harry, danger danger! High voltage! (But I really appreciated the praise, I'm only teasing)

    Mike, haha, thank you for reading.

    Deanna, if I get some good free time and the right voice down, I'll try this tonight.

    Laurita, yes. I'll officially concede the canon: pregnane is in the package.

    Bev, would you like to take a shot at recording it?

    Gracie, it could be a whole series, up until, "How to Retire Anonymously in the Bahamas."

    TS, that is a great moral to take from this piece. Aesop couldn't have put it better.

    Icy, there's a money back guarantee if you die.

  20. Informative and entertaining. What would we do without you, John?

    thoughtfully smiling face

  21. heart is racing a bit, bro

  22. So descriptive and brilliant. A fantastic read.

  23. Great stuff John, after all the xbox RPG's and shooters I've done, I know only too well the 'Wis'dom of your words.

    PS. Soddin' mugger stole my package.

  24. I'm printing this out to put in my wallet.
    Seeing Icy's comment re: COD. I convinced a Year 9 class that I didn't need to buy COD: Black Ops because I was Black Ops. Iraq, 1991.
    Being a teacher has some great perks.
    Adam B @revhappiness

  25. Cute, those movie superheros always make it look so easy.

    It reminded me of a faculty candidate in artificial intelligence who interviewed at our school and used the How to Identify a Bomb chapter from "The Worst-case Scenario Survival Handbook". Unfortunately, one of the senior faculty had received a bomb from the Unabomber. (Although, in bad taste it didn't ruin his interview, since he did get hired.)

  26. This was awesome. But, by far, the most awesome part was the end. The way you spike the ball and are all like, that's it, I'm a bad-ass and I saved your life so go on cause I've got some bourbon to drink. Kind of like when Prince did the world's greatest guitar solo, then tossed the guitar into the audience like, I'm done with this now. Bring on the George Thorogood -- Woot.

  27. Suspenseful and very Bond, James Bond. 8 seconds, though? That's for one gun -- most serious shooters carry multiple arms. Thanks for the useful info -- I'll file with my 'duck and cover' info. Peace...

  28. Fantastic! Practical advice in an unusual situation. Why do I get the feeling this would actually work?

  29. Loved the energy and immediacy. I also want to know what's in the package. I guess I'll never find out...

  30. Danni, proudinformativeface

    David/doodle and Raven, your comments made me smile. Glad this stirred you up.

    Steve, I hate it when I'm stuck up after a carefully planned mission.

    Adam, I admit to being a little concerned at all the videogame comparisons. More nervous since I've played so little of any Call of Duty. Well done on schooling your class.

    Aidan, you've met one of the Unabomber's targets? Wow.

    Lou, this is one of my favorite comments that I've gotten in a long time. Haha, thank you so much Lou for getting so into it.

    Linda, that's true. Disregard this advice if the people after you brought multiple guns.

    Virginia, he seems to think it'll work. That's all I can say!

    Emma, not unless there's a sequel. Can advice get a sequel?

  31. Har! No doubt taken from the James Bond handbook. Sounds like you have some experience in this area, John.

  32. Package? I was supposed to keep the package? You might have mentioned that up front....

  33. Good advice. Downloading it now on my PDA so I'll have it at my fingertips the next those bastards come for me.

    A man can never believe he has it all figured out and in no need of some new insight.

    Seeing what happened to everyone else's package, especially Laura's, I think I'll leave mine at the synagogue. Blame it on the fatwa.

  34. Alan, I only have experience in eavesdropping on smarter people.

    Tim, well it wasn't his job to tell you what to do with the package! Why'd you go there in the first place if it wasn't to get out of there with it?

    Stephen, the synagogue may be a good idea. But what does he know?

  35. Good advice. Though I hope I don't need to use it anytime soon.

  36. This sounds an awful like what I do when trying to hide the icecream from the kids when I get home -only without the guns. Avoidance, duck and cover, knowing where the ER is- all good parental skills.

  37. Aw shoot, toss-up on fave wise Wiswells:

    "If you brace yourself from the bruises, bullets will rip your arms apart."

    "At eight seconds, their clips will be empty. They’re zealous and will need to swap them out."

    Last liner note shot me right between the eyes, where I was laughing the hardest John, kinda with the old soundtrx from Mission Impossible theme scoring you. ~ Absolutely*Kate, very concerned about Laurita's knowing the contents of the package.

  38. This had a great tone, John... BTW, so sorry I'm late to this...

  39. Wow, talk about bringing on the tension! I was scared there for a minute. Really great, John!

  40. I'd say advice can get a sequel John - begin with ' I told you not to etc etc yet you went and ...Now this is what you must do etc etc.' and perhaps we will then get to know what is in the package?


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