A Visit From Officer Friendly
I know given the tragic events of this past week, it’s hard not to feel a little afraid right now (in spite of what I blogged about just last Monday).
That’s why I’ve asked Officer Friendly to stop by this blog.
You all remember Officer Friendly, don’t you? He used to stop by your kindergarten and first grade class to talk about safety, such as: Look Both Ways Before You Cross The Street, and Don’t Play With Matches (wait…maybe that was Smokey the Bear. Well, whatever).
Anyway, Officer Friendly was kind enough to stop by this blog today to give us a few simple, common sense safety tips about what to do in dangerous situations, in case any of us (okay…me) feel like we need a refresher course.
Only guess what? It turns out Officer Friendly is my brother, Police Officer (soon to be sergeant) Cabot!
Because, with almost a decade on the force, Officer Cabot–who has received multiple decorations for bravery; knocked down the doors to many, many crystal meth labs; and saved numerous lives in the line of duty–knows what he’s talking about!
(Although I would just like to add that back when we were kids, I used to be able to make Officer Cabot cry just by pinching him. Sadly, that hasn’t been true in quite some time):
So tell me, Officer Friendly. How can my readers help keep themselves safe?
First of all, you can keep YOURSELF safe by not calling me Officer Friendly.
Second of all, statistically, young people ages 15-24 are far more likely to die of the adverse effect of a non-vehicular accident than of homicide.
They’re more likely to die from some kind of accident–like from falling off something, like a roof or a ladder–while goofing around, than from anything else. So my number one piece of advice to young people is to look where you’re going, and watch your step.
Thanks. What else have you got, Officer Frie—I mean, Cabot?
Well, after that, the second leading cause of death for that age group is vehicular accidents. So my next tip would be to buckle up, turn the music down, keep your eyes on the road, and don’t drink and drive.
Okay. And then?
Well, after that, then you’ve got your homicides.
And what can we do about those, Officer Frien–Cabot?
Meg, I have been on close to 100 SWAT calls where people have taken hostages, shot themselves, shot victims, and shot my partners. I have even been in a couple of raging gun battles where they were shooting at ME, and I back at them. And what have I learned in all of these violent incidents?
I don’t know, Officer Frien—I mean, Cabot. What HAVE you learned?
That when bad things happen, people will always do one of two things….They’ll do THE RIGHT THING or THE WRONG THING.
And what’s the wrong thing?
Doing NOTHING is ALWAYS the wrong thing.
If something violent is happening to you, DO SOMETHING. Don’t be the person who just stands there and does nothing. If you do NOTHING, your chances of being killed increase profoundly. Be the person who does SOMETHING.
You see the curtains catch on fire at a concert? LEAVE NOW!
A guy pulls up to you and tells you to get in his car? RUN AWAY!
Someone tries to pull you into a dark alley? SCREAM!
A carjacker tries to drive off with you in the passenger seat? JUMP OUT OF THE VEHICLE!
Someone is attacking you? FIGHT BACK!
Your immediate decision to do SOMETHING versus DOING NOTHING will decide if you live or die.
I hope your readers will always choose to DO SOMETHING as opposed to doing nothing.
Sometimes bad things happen in our society.
Officer Friendly will not always be around to save you.
Be aware of your surroundings, be assertive, take care of yourself, and always DO SOMETHING, and your chances of surviving a crime or disaster will increase profoundly.
Thank you, Officer Cabot. I’m sorry about all those times in the sixth grade that I played the soundtrack to the musical Annie at seven in the morning as loud as I could as I was getting ready to go to school.
That’s all right. I know now that the sun’ll come out tomorrow.
And honestly…at six foot eight inches tall, could anybody really ever feel afraid knowing THIS guy is on the job?
Except the perps, I mean. They should be afraid. They should be VERY afraid.