A killer lurks the streets of Bremerton. Well I’ve never seen him so I know little about his gait. Mayhaps he skips? Silly, knife-wielding homicidal maniac, you shouldn’t lurk…skipping is the ticket. I’d be laid out on the concrete having lost three and a half pints of blood before I suspected that the guy who just skipped up to me, shanked me. But this all is really beside the point. And it is not my purpose to give out tips on clandestine conveyance to people who kill people. Telling a serial killer to skip around as a way to gain the upper hand over his victims would be like building tanks for emotionally immature ex-jocks to run amok through some distant desert. Totally UN-American.
This is a newish development in the fair city of Bremerton, at least as far as I’ve noticed, Bremerton has been fairly safe. Don’t get me wrong I’ve fallen victim to some crime. I had a bicycle and a lawn-mower stolen from my backyard. I imagine it was the work of some rich, white aristocratic savage who donated it to a papist, non-profit outfit like St. Value De Goodwill, as a means of salving his conscience over the fact that his millions were pushed through the sweating pores of backs much darker than his own. Regardless, his offenses against me fell fall short of running a knife through me. Beyond that, I’ve my cars broken into a couple of times, and my car was once hit by another car, that was being driven by a Hispanic gentleman, who promptly cursed at me and sped off…I kid, I don’t know if he cursed at me…I don’t speak Hispanic. More excitement mixed with disappointment than any real danger.
Citizens of Bremerton, at least the ones that I know are doing their level best to protect themselves against this threat, and this really is the true violence being done against the town…this man will take some lives, sure, but his physical reach will be impotent in comparison to his psychic reach. The idea that a predator is stalking the streets of a town you love…or tolerate, does unspeakable damage to your mental space. As a result, it is far too easy to become a prisoner to fear gripped by its terror, and give yourself over to the idea that every move you make must be carefully precise so as not to fall victim to your own misstep being the very weakness this lunatic could expose. Self-defense, the insidious bulwark of the terminally stressed. Stress is a legitimate reaction to the news that one person you may or may not pass by every day has it in his mind that he wants to stab you, but we control how we allow this fear to change us…he doesn’t deserve that kind of power.
I’ve heard tell of people walking the streets with their handguns looking for this guy, an idea that is possibly a little more scary than some guy with a knife. To me, at least. I can imagine a hypothetical where-in a man is walking about, with a gun in his pocket and pending manhood on his mind, mistaking me for a light-skinned black man who stands around six feet tall…(an excerpt of an eyewitness description of Stabby). Concealed handguns only work well against maniacs with knives if they decide to run at you from about 25 feet knife held above their heads screaming “it’s stabbing time”; most serial killer stabbing scenarios leave much to be desired in the way of reaction time. And really who is to say that “six foot tall light skinned black man” are reliable descriptors of this man? In order to test the validity of this description, I’d have to know the race and political proclivities of the eye witness. Certainly it is no well kept secret that white people who are politically conservative tend to remember things a bit bigger and darker. There remains the possibility…plausibility, that this killer is an Irish grandmother; trust me they possess all the mis-wired gray matter one might need to think stabbing fellow citizens is a good way to end a stressful day. All that to say, if you are one of those fine folks roaming around with his or her pistol in tow…be careful.
I understand the instinct, I feel naked walking around without my Gerber switch-blade, not that I’m some bad-ass…I mean I could probably cut you, but I wouldn’t stand a chance against a rabid human honey badger with blood on his thoughts…for me the cut-off is: I could probably defend myself against people who know how to use the Internet (this is an approximation, I’m sure I wouldn’t fair well against people who frequent survivalist, and white supremacy sites, as they possess the same potential for melee madness), but some stark raving mad Irish grandmother roaming the streets sans a device to navigate a WI-fi hot spot ends with me in a pool of my own cooling blood. Frightening.
This person will one day stop killing the tax-payers of Bremerton. At which time we will be left with the realization of how much our personal ideas about humanity changed because of one asshole. My hope is that the people I love have no regrets about the way this changed them. Self-preservation should always work in concert with grace, it is a piss-poor replacement for grace.