I’m reading a book called Breaking the Rules by Catherine Townsend. It recounts her experiences as a sex/relationships columnist in the UK. One part of the book had this story:
“A crazy man with a semi-automatic gun burst into a crowded restaurant during the lunch rush and started shooting at people. He killed, like, twenty people. Anyway, after the SWAT team caught the guy, they were interviewing survivors, and this one woman, totally in shock, said that she was there with her fiance, and noticed that most of the men instinctively used their body to shield their wife and children. But when the cops came and everyone started making their escape, what did her man do? He used her as a human shield. He put his future wife between himself and the gunman.
There are two kinds of men in the world, the ones whose instinct is to protect you, and the ones who run for the hills at the first sign of trouble. Make sure you’re with the former.”
Pretty scary, huh? When I read this to HHAries and asked him what he would do, he said he’d instinctively get in front of a woman, but after the event he’d probably think “What the crap was I doing?"
Now, while that last part is a bit worrying, at least he’d still jump in front of me before he gets a chance to think, right? I thought about it, too, and said: “I wouldn’t use you as a human shield. I wouldn’t hide behind you.”
“Yes you would.” He said, “You’ve done it before.”
What? I asked him what he meant and he said: “When something happens that you’re unsure about and that could be dangerous, you always grab my arm and move behind me a bit. Not all the way, but you do hide halfway behind me until you see that it’s over.”
“Crap, I’m sorry. I didn’t even know,” I said.
“It’s ok, it’s an instinctive thing. You don’t think about it.”
So what does that make me? Some evil person who hides behind her boyfriend when a psycho killer is shooting us? And if I do it, how can I be so shocked and angry when I read about a guy doing that to his fiance?__
There’s a huge difference between stepping behind someone in a fight and stepping behind someone when bullets are flying all over the place…right? In a fight HHAries would obviously be able to protect me, but a gun is different. I’d like to think that I wouldn’t use HHAries as a human shield if a gun was involved. I’d like to think that now that I know I’m doing it, I’ll be able to snap out of it if this actually happens. But I guess until it happens (and I hope it never does) I’ll never know.