So upon finishing my book (see previous post), I decided to head on down to Seattle Centre (Center?) and check out the Experience Music Project. It was pretty cool (though smaller than I expected), but I’ll talk about that in a sec. On my way out from EMP, I was held up by a couple of kids with a gun in the parking lot across the street, right outside my car. It was pretty freaky. One kid, with scraggly startings of a beard, had a small black gun in his hand (though not pointing at me, I certainly knew he had it). The other guy was clean-shaven. They both had on black capri-style jean short/pants, plain grey t-shirts, ball caps. The one without the gun had some kindof grey head-wrap thing under his cap, so both that and his cap were at angles. I think the price-sticker was still on his cap. The ball caps were black, or nearly, but I don’t know if they had any particular logo on them or not.
So I was walking to my car and I see these two across the lot (it’s a small, pretty open lot at a 5-street intersection), take note of them, and kept heading to my car. Normally, I take out my keys to unlock the door, but they were blocked by my camera, which was in the same pocket, so I hadn’t yet – I was just kinda fishing for them. Anyhoo. So I look up, and there’s these two, maybe 10 paces from me, the bearded guy showing me his gun, the other guy says to me ‘gimme your cash’ (or something like that – I didn’t really hear/understand him – but I understood well enough). So I immediately pull out my wallet, take out the cash that I have, hand it over. It was maybe 25-26$ USD, so not that much money. The guy without the gun took the cash, and they turned and headed up the street. I just kinda stood there for a moment, wallet in hand. They didn’t want my cards, they didn’t ask what else was in my pockets – thankfully, or I might be carless, cameraless, ID-less, rather than just out 25 bucks (even though it was my last 25 bucks). So I was pretty lucky, really. I’m not hurt, I didn’t lose anything important. But just kinda shook up. And a shitty thing to happen, to mar this so-far-great trip to Seattle. It was interesting talking to the police officer – a very friendly woman who was nice and reassuring, and put me completely at ease while I recounted what had happened to me to her.
So you know what really sucks? It’s that feeling of emasculation that comes with not being able to defend oneself. It’s that worry that if say, Leah, was there with me and they wanted to hurt her I would just capitulate. It’s that complete control over me by someone else. Just sucks. Angering. And of course, fear. I’ve wandered around, often alone, in all sorts of places I shouldn’t be, without incident. Now, will I be able to? Or will I see a couple of kids with a gun in every lot that I cross? That will probably fade in time, but I don’t think I’ll be heading back to downtown Seattle alone this trip.