On November 1, 1974, my friend Dave and I were walking our bikes up a freeway overpass in Southern California. We were headed to high school. Out of nowhere a guy in a blue van stopped in front of us at the top of the overpass. He got out of the car and began to yell at us saying that we had almost killed him. My friend Dave was in front of me. This wacko grabbed Dave and began to scream at him and threaten him. He was too close for comfort so I backed away to get help and started to head down the overpass. I quickly realized that I had just left Dave and decided to return and help him. That is when I realized that the bad guy had gotten back into his van and was now after me. I peddled as fast as I could down the road into a mobile home park and literally jumped off my bike and kept running. Why? Because the guy in the van cut me off. I dodged him and bolted away. He got out of the van and started chasing me on foot, screaming that he was going to kill me. My friend Dave was nowhere to be found.
I ran as fast as I could, changing directions as frequently as I could, so as to try and gain distance between him and myself. It worked but I was getting exhausted in the process. I decided to run across a boulevard to get away from this guy. So, dodging traffic I managed to cross the street and go into a parking lot. It was about 7:15 in the morning and there was a restaurant with a bar next to it. I managed to run into that parking lot and get some cars between the guy and myself. But, he was determined to get me and he would bolt around one direction, then another, and another, trying to fake me out. But I was too scared to let him get close and I just kept running and dodging. If it weren't for those cars, he would have gotten me. I could tell that he was not going to give up and since I was getting exhausted, I decided to run through the nearest open door I could find. I hoped to find some people in there and maybe get some help.
So, without knowing what door led to where, I bolted in through one and found myself in a bar. It had only one door. At the back of the bar there was a juke box. All I could do was run as far as I could and with my back against the wall I watched as the assailant entered. He stopped to let his eyes adjust and then when he saw me he headed right for me.will go ab
There was a large man just a few feet from me sitting at the bar having a drink. I said to him that this guy was trying to kill me and pleaded with him to do something. I then collapsed next to the juke box. Right before the bad guy got to me, this large man stood up and blocked him and told him there wouldn't be any fights in the bar. The assailant sized him up and realized he was no match for him. So, he threatened me and told me he would wait for me outside.
I stayed in the bar for 20 minutes, maybe a half hour. Nobody said anything and finally I had enough courage to get outside. The police were there. They thought I had been kidnapped since they couldn't find me. I guess they hadn't gotten to the bar yet.
My friend Dave had gotten to the restaurant a few minutes before I went into the bar and there was a Mexican cook out back doing something. My friend tried to communicate to him that someone was trying to get him. The cook retrieved a knife and was waiting outside. When I was still in the parking lot trying to get away from the assailant, I saw David and the cook and tried to make my way over to them. But the bad guy kept blocking my escape route. It turns out to be a good thing because the cook didn't understand that I was in trouble. In the confusion he thought I was one of the bad guys. Whew!
Long story short, the police took us into the station and took a full report. We never found out who this idiot was or why he was angry with us. We did nothing wrong that day. We were just going to school.
So, every November 1, I think about that time, about the running, about the fear, about hiding in a bar, and about the police station.
So, happy anniversary.
Looking for a theological moral? Here it is: When bad guys are chasing you....run!
|I'll be in Charlotte, North Carolina next week. There is an apologetics conference I will be attending, not speaking at, just attending. However, there will be a few "CARMites" around and we're going to meet on Saturday night at a local restaurant. If you're in the area and are interested in joining us, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll give you the location info. I leave for North Carolina on Wednesday the 8th.|
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