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Jared Lougher, de facto ” Arizona Assassin ” is my latest pick for the super psycho list I compile.
He stands above regular criminals by dint of ruthlessness; victim status; casualties and possible motive.
This wasn’t a botched robbery nor a runaway domestic situation. It definitely wasn’t an upgrade of old school duels where each side at least had the equal chance fore knowledge and weapons accord participants.
He joins America’s bizarre battalion of super psychos. I won’t bore you my selections but feel free to mentally review your own while reading.
Fortunately super psychos aren’t numerous. Tragically their misdeeds severity overrides scarcity.
Police and psychologists unite to profile such personalities. Motives and actions tend to stretch the definition of reality but must be examined to avoid future episodes.
While comic book super villains don’t exist, real life super psychos are menaces whose death toll sadly isn’t fictional.
Concerned citizens must shoulder the burden of learning how to identify legitimate super psychos before they strike. Fingering people whose politics or other factors you dislike doesn’t automatically equal potential super psycho.
I can hear would-be inquisitors on the Imperial Left and Imperial Right saying, ” Darn! ” in frustration. That said, waiting for government or others to do so may literally be too late in some cases.
Paranoia won’t work nor draconian speech codes fueled by narrow partisan agendas.
Super psycho rampages are often stopped like this one: on scene by folks who ended the madness first hand! That’s how up close and personal this can become.
We outnumber super psychos and this should always be stressed in the reams of print; mega bytes of keyboard typing and oceans of sound bites this attack produces. No matter how horrible the headline, there are still millions more of us whose self-expression doesn’t sink to mass murder and intimidation.
Remember: we.outnumber.them.
NADRA ENZI AKA CAPT BLACK promotes crime prevention and self-development. http://www.captblack.info

Basic First Aid Kit

Before I begin, I will leave you with this word of caution: IF YOU COME UPON AN EMERGENCY FIRST CALL 911, OR HAVE SOMEONE ELSE DO IT! Then render aid only as your level of medical knowledge permits.  If a person is conscious and alert, you must ask permission before treating them, even if it’s just putting a band aid on.. you may not render aid if they refuse for any reason.
When you’re out on a patrol, or an Outreach, you should always carry a first aid kit with you as part of your standard equipment load out.
The typical First Aid Kit contains things like (and I’m using a general purpose military first aid kit as an example):

  • x2 2” x 6 yds. Bandage Gauze
  • x1 6” Elastic Bandage
  • x2 3” x 4” Sterile Sponges
  • x16 3” Bandage Strips
  • x1 Ice Pack
  • x1 Tweezers
  • x1 Scissor
  • x1 Pill Bottle
  • x1 Eye Pad
  • x1 Hand Soap
  • x4 Pain Relievers (I carry both Ibuprofen and Acetaminophen)
  • x1 Magnifying Lens
  • x1 First Aid Instructions
  • x6 Safety Pins
  • x1 Pair Examination Gloves
  • x4 Aspirin
  • x1 First Aid Cream
  • x1 Triple Antibiotic
  • x1½” Tape
  • x3 Alcohol Wipes
  • x3 Iodine Wipes
  • x3 Antiseptic Wipes
  • x3 Clean Wipes.

This is a pretty standard set-up that you will find in most $10 store bought kits.  I suggest buying additional items for refilling the kit, or adding extras for items you may need more of.  I also suggest a First Aid pamphlet, or handbook.  But make sure you are familiar with the information before hand, so you don’t have to desperately look things up while someone is bleeding.
As you can see, such a kit would quickly become depleted after a few uses. But many of the most commonly used items can be bought at a $ dollar store, so making a kit from scratch, and having more uses than a standard kit, is relatively cheaper and easier.
I strongly suggest a couple pair of blue nitrile gloves.  Never treat a wound without a barrier between you and bodily fluids. (At the time of this writing, KnightOwl is working on an article about applying medical attention in the field.)
Of course, keep the kit water proof.?

A RLSH Attacked

” You can try pulling the wings off an angel but he remains an angel still. “
-Capt. Black after hearing the following:
A real life superhero ( RLSH ) friend of mine was recently attacked while on patrol. While shaken, this saintly man still wants to hit the streets again to help others.
Simply offering yourself for the public good doesn’t guarantee favorable reception, no matter how well intentioned.
I don’t think some RLSH realize how inadequate they make some folks feel.
The other side of inspiration is indignation. People parading around being their full selves slaps envious onlookers in the face. Being a RLSH takes a rare kind of purity. It’s also a mirror causing some to attack those they wish they could be.
My friend is coping but ironically, the real victim is his assailant and tortured souls like him. Attacking RLSH is a cheap way for miserable individuals to finally feel happy.
To would-be super villains who cross the line into committing real would mayhem, there’s a four letter word for you: sick.
NADRA ENZI AKA CAPT BLACK promotes crime prevention and self-development through outreach. http://www.captblack.info (504) 214-3082.

Grappling Hooks, Smoke Bombs, and the RLSH.

Of all the many different wonderful and fantastical devices that the big screen and all the different blockbuster movies on Super Heroes have have put in the public eye as the big “tools of the trade” that Super Heroes have on our utility belt, the two I get asked about the most are the “grappling hooks” and “smoke bombs“.
People new to the RLSH community – often people with no experience or skills – will often make the incorrect assumption that these tools are OK to use and should be carried around as part of the standard gear “that all RLSH must carry to be legit”.
This is incorrect. In fact the opposite is more true.  If I see a guy claiming to be a RLSH who uses smoke bombs I’m going to treat him as at best , a noob with no real world experience, or at worse, a poser who is looking for attention.
I can however understand why people would feel this way.  It is not hard to get the vision in your mind of Batman or other well known Super Heroes just oozing cool as they extend their arm and shoot a grappling hook into the depths of the dark skyline above them, the soft “clink” as it hits telling them to test the line with a soft pull before optionally speaking “the catch phrase” and then silently and quickly fading into the darkness above, all while a small smoke bomb obscures the view so it looks like they just vanished into thin air.
The problem is, it doesn’t work like that in real life.   As somebody who has experience with both of these tools and as anybody who has actually tried this can confirm, both of these tools are just not practical and will usually get in your way and make it harder to do good works.  And as somebody who actually does go out and fight crime I can say that in general these two items are more trouble then they are worth.
Despite the fact that I have been doing this RLSH thing since 1999 I find it odd that people still think I am being “lame”, “uncool” or even “a stick in the mud” when I attempt to give them the benefit of my experience and explain for the 9001th time why these two items are usually not even functional, and are in general not even considered legal to use.
The mythography of the grappling gun or smoke bomb is so ingrained in the american culture of “cool super hero tools” that you just cant get it out of many peoples heads.
Sadly, due to this fact a lot of people would win a Darwin Award if not for the advice I post here, so it is my hope that in this blog post I can better explain the issues involved, as well as provide a resource I can point to in the future for the people in the community who want to learn and do good.
First Item: The Grappling Hook
You see multiple versions of this in the movies or available to buy online. From really expensive to suspiciously cheap, a lot of smart retailers have learned that even if its not practical or even legal to use, they can still sell them to inexperienced people who have more money then brains and make a fast buck.   This ranges from buying the hook and everything separately, to half finished kits – sold that way to help mitigate any legal liability the company has when you hurt yourself – that require expensive to buy one-use gas cartridges to function.
A fast google search finds a lot of “ninja gear” packages when you type in “grappling hook”. Basically, since most people are uncreative and generally ignorant enough that they do not have the skills or experience to tell how bad quality these “kits” are, a large market exists for pre-packaged “You want to be a ninja? Buy our stuff and you will be a ninja.” tool-sets.   Most people doing this usually have no idea what the Ninja (Shinobi) really are, and even more people somehow along the way forget that Ninjutsu is actualy an entire education system that teaches its students much more then fightings skills, as even meteorology (The study of weather patterns) is taught.. but that is a different subject.
Looking at the kits I find in Google the breaking strengths of each hook varies wildly. You know why? Because they the sellers often do not know themselves.  Here is a direct quote from the marketing used by one of the suppliers:

Most grappling hooks are large, heavy, bulky, and risky to use because the breaking strength of the metal is largely unknown.

.. and every single one I can find online in a fast search now is from 1.5 to 3 pounds, or about as much as a half gallon of milk. So what happens when you are 100 feet up in the air – lets just say you are in shape enough to be able to do it – and the hook breaks? Looking at item comments on Amazon, I find that many such items that are sold to the inexperienced people who buy them break easily, and there are many stories of people falling or worse. Look it up yourself if you do not trust me.
OK so what about line? Rope is surprisingly cheap, but good rope that will take the weight of a large muscled guy, body armor, and the rest weights about 8 pounds. About as much as a full gallon of Milk. Would you carry a gallon of milk with you on patrol on your belt, on the off chance that you may need it?
But wait. Lets say you do not mind walking around with a gallon and a half of milk worth of climbing equipment gear on the off chance you “might” need it. Lets say you are very physically fit and have no problem scaling a smooth un-knotted rope while wearing full ballistics armor and all your other gear.  So how do you actually USE it without breaking the law or damaging somebody else’s property?
We all know that breaking other peoples stuff is illegal. If you break somebodies window, or crash into a persons car, you will usually end up paying a huge fine and possibly even going to jail as such acts are considered vandalism or even theft in the wrong situation. The same is true of peoples houses or commercial buildings, the building just costs more to buy or repair.
The biggest issue I have seen that keeps people from understand this issue is that people do not understand how a grappling hook actually works, and as such they do not understand that to function the hook must damage the property it is being used on in order to get a secure enough hold on the building that the person attempting to climb up has a good enough anchor to do so.
In order to function, the grappling hook has to “catch” on 2 (or of they lucky, more) of its hooks. These hooks dig into the stone (or whatever the buildings is made of) and sink into it with “teeth” in order to get a anchor. To work, this has to at least scratch up or otherwise damage the building.   In fact if the grappling hook catches the wrong thing, its entirely possible that the brick of a building will be pulled to the side enough that the very top pf the wall where it catches will break and come tumbling down on top of the person who attempted to climb. That really depends on how old the wall is, but do you really want to risk it?
A Real Life Super Hero would never damage somebodies home or property, so this alone makes grappling hooks just not worth the trouble. Add the rest of the issues I have discussed, and they become impractical to carry on your nightly patrol long before the issue is legality comes up. And yet because of the damage they do to property Grappling Hooks are illegal to actually use in most countries of the world, and for this reason and the fact that using them damages others property they are antithetical to the spirit of altruism and good works that a true Real Life Super Hero has.
Bottom Line: If you want to be a real life super hero, show others how cool and experienced you are by not even trying to use a graping hook.
Second Item: The Smoke Bomb
Smoke Bombs may look cool, but they are actually pretty toxic and can create great harm to innocent lives if the smoke is breathed in. While many will debate about exactly HOW TOXIC the smoke of different types is, the fact is we all agree that smoke is toxic and breathing smoke of any type is bad for you.
If you think smoke is good for you, or otherwise don’t think I am right, feel free to go ahead and ask a fire fighter or doctor – somebody who actually goes to training classes to learn about smoke/etc – what his or her opinion is.
Still think Smoke Bombs are a good idea? Let me ask you this: What happens if one night you use a smoke bomb to get away from a bunch of thugs you don’t have the experience or training to otherwise deal with directly.. and a baby on the other side of the window above where this all happens breaths in the toxic fumes and dies? They can not get away because statistically they are in a crib, possibly asleep. You would have murdered the baby. The same goes with peoples well loved pets (Birds are well known to be sensitive to smoke, and older pets of any type can not move as fast as they once did) the elderly or disabled (who may not be mobile at all), or anybody with a breathing problem, has weak lungs, or just cant get out of the way of the smoke. You could end up killing an innocent person or animal without meaning to.
Since I’m going to assume you want to fire smoke bombs at night, what about the people who are sleeping soundly and may not be able to wake before they suffocate to death because of your desire to “be cool” and use smoke bombs?
Tell me, would the crying mother who just lost her baby to smoke inhalation because you used a smoke bomb think you were cool?
But lets say you get really lucky and nobody gets hurt. Smoke bombs are also considered illegal under many local laws, and can be considered illegal anywhere in the united states if you do a strict reading of the laws, so you may get lucky and just be charged with a misdemeanor.  It goes on your criminal record, you have to go to court, you pay a fine, and then when the police look at you claiming to be the good guy they can print out your criminal record and tell you “no, your not your a criminal, its right here on your criminal record”.
A Real Life Super Hero would never knowingly harm innocent lives, so this alone makes smoke bombs not something you want to use as they are antithetical to the spirit of altruism and good works that a true Real Life Super Hero has.   Add to it the other issues I have discussed, and they become not only impractical to carry on your nightly patrol, but actively harmful to YOU and your efforts to be seen as the good guy or do good deeds.
Bottom Line: Smoke bombs are not practical, not worth the risk to innocent lives, and are often considered illegal anyway so they are not something a real Real Life Super Hero would ever actually use.

Mad as hell

Photo by Brian Jacobson

Photo by Brian Jacobson

Originally posted:http://thirdcoastdigest.com/2010/10/podcast-mad-as-hell/
By Mark Metcalf
The children (and now, adults) of Generations X and Y spent their formative years deeply immersed in a culture of fantasy. Between comic books and Saturday morning cartoons, the cultural fascination with super heroes — specifically those who, underneath the masks and capes, are just average people — grows with each new generation.
But America’s love, and in some ways, yen for a hero is nothing new. In fact, those well-known characters of fantasy were all borne out of a collective desire to have control when the world seems to be going down the toilet. When senseless crime is on the rise and the people and institutions put in place to protect us can barely keep an adequate staff on the payroll.
He calls himself the Watchman. Armed with a flashlight, pepper spray and a cell phone, he spends his weekend evenings hunting out suspicious activity in Riverwest.

He calls himself the Watchman. Armed with a flashlight, pepper spray and a cell phone, he spends his weekend evenings hunting out suspicious activity in Riverwest.

In pop culture, people have found hope in fictional Everyday-Joe-cum-caped-crusader stories since the early days of Spider-Man. But in real life– and right here in Milwaukee — there are a few among us who have taken the concept and run with it.
Several years ago, Tea Krulos caught wind of a real-life superhero movement happening right here in the Midwest and, as he learned, beyond. Though apprehensive, Krulos immersed himself in their world, interviewing as many people as possible and traveling as far as Vancouver and as near as his own backyard of Riverwest to learn more.
Local author Tea Krulos.
What he found was a diverse group of people, fed up with the state of their own neighborhoods and cities who decided to do something about it… mask, cape and all.
You can learn more about Tea’s book Heroes in the Night here, and more about his research here. Be my hero and subscribe to Backstage with Mark Metcalf through iTunes.

Picture Show: Real Life Super Heroes

Originally posted: http://www.good.is/post/picture-show-real-life-super-heroes/
By Patrick James

Photo by Peter Tangen

Photo by Peter Tangen

In the real world, no man can outrace a bullet. No woman commands storms with her mind. No one spins webs from his wrists or flies across continents or shoots lasers from his eyes. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t super heroes among us. Inside every human is the capacity to do something kind, brave, and strong for our fellow humans; some among us simply choose to do so in secret. In the spirit of the heroes who fill the pages of comic books, an unlikely assortment of men and women have been donning masks and costumes, and venturing into their respective neighborhoods to feed the hungry, comfort the sick, and protect the innocent.
The Real Life Super Hero Project is the photographer Peter Tangen’s attempt to document the work of these loosely affiliated individuals; it’s also a gallery exhibit designed to raise money for the causes with which these men and women are affiliated. Highlighting the people who do good under the secrecy of masks with no hope for personal gain, the Real Life Super Hero Project is a call for all of us to engage with and help those around us.
“Celebrate and honor them,” says Tangen. “And find the hero in all of us.”

Superheroes Anonymous Workshop

When? Thursday, September 2nd, 7-10 PM
Where? SpaceCraft: 355 Bedford Avenue @ S. 4th St in Brooklyn
Superheroes Anonymous Logo
Superheroes Anonymous will be holding a COSTUME WORKSHOP on Thursday, September 2nd, at the wonderful venue,Spacecraft Brooklyn! This event will help aspiring and active Real Life Superheroes develop anddesign superhero identities and realize their inner superhero. With the materials and skills of the SPACECRAFT team – we can create nearly anything to accompany your superhero uniform! It’s the perfect time to become acquainted with the work of SUPERHEROES ANONYMOUS and to create a unique superhero costume that can never be bought in a store!
The price of admission is $20 and will include materials needed to turn a normal wardrobe into a fully functional SUPERHERO COSTUME! We will also be providing FREE BEER for those 21 and older.
Though we will be providing materials, participants must bring a BASE WARDROBE that they want to be modified. That means a basic shirt and pants (or spandex!) to be turned into a super-heroic uniform. For example: we can help you make a mask, design a cape or breastplate or sew cool designs and accessories onto your jeans or a shirt, but we won’t be able to provide the spandex shirts or motorcycle jackets.
PRICE: $20/person INCLUDES: Costume Materials & Unlimited Beer
DIRECTIONS: L train to Bedford Ave, walk South to S. 4th St.?
PLEASE RSVP TO [email protected]