Dad drove down to visit me and he brought his girlfriend with him. This was the first time I’ve met her and I found her sweet, witty, all-around awesome. One highlight of their visit was the following situation. We went out to eat at a local restaurant. We sat where we could watch the comings and goings of our fellow food-lovers. One particularly scroungy guy approached the entrance carrying something bulky and wrapped up in his jacket in his arms. It was heavy from the looks of it. Dad wondered aloud if this guy was going to come in and shoot up the place. While I took mental stock of if I was carrying, what and where, Dad’s girlfriend made a comment which has really stuck with me. She said, “Well, if he is, let it be a surprise.” And she continued to eat her dinner without even looking out of the window for another glance at the incoming stranger. Dad agreed with her, saying “Yah, we wouldn’t want to disappoint him.”
As you can tell, we didn’t get shot and the strange patron was a harmless one. But it was interesting to see the varying levels of situational awareness and responsibility for personal safety at the table. Dad and I both watched the door throughout our meal and also observed the happenings inside of the restaurant. None of this interfered with our dinner enjoyment or the quality of conversation around the table. But she didn’t. Dad, aware, didn’t seem to have any inclination to act, however, should a bad situation arise, and I plan to step up if there’s an active shooter situation in the establishment where I and my family are eating.
All in all, though I do like his new girlfriend. And her surprise comment makes me smile each time I remember that dinner.