Oh what a wonderful place the South is. I had nearly forgotten how much of an absolute joy it is to dine at high class establishments such as Waffle House and... well, Waffle House. And also that Waffle House over there. They certainly haven't gone out of business since I left the South in 2004. Oh sure, some of you may be saying "but weren't you in Louisiana just a couple of months ago for work?" And to you I say: prove it. I admit to nothing to do with that state, now or in the past. May it be barred from my memory as well as yours.
But I'll tell you what, no where on earth can you have a more in-depth conversation about politics, socio-economic dynamics, or how we should just make various third-world countries into parking lots than the counter at Waffle House. And all over a healthy, low-fat meal, I might add. Ahh yes, good times.
So now I am sitting and killing time in my hotel room in Nashville after completing a 3 day Urban Escape & Evasion course hosted by On Point Tactical Tracking School. The course was considerably laid back -- almost to a fault -- but offered up some very useful tidbits of knowledge regarding movement around a city. Nashville provided quite an interesting back-drop for the course, as it seems to be sort of a country western version of San Francisco. Just replace all of the hippies with failed country singers -- who sit on the corner playing Hank Williams songs as opposed to Grateful Dead -- and that's pretty much it in a nutshell. Oh and there's no China Town. I don't think they take to well to "their kind" around these here parts.
Our practical exercise took place yesterday, with the students being assigned tasks to complete around the city, all while attempting to avoid being seen or caught. Three of us started in a hotel room, hand-cuffed to one another with hoods on. Boy am I glad the maid didn't come in at that time. Once freeing ourselves we made our way through town doing things like picking padlocks and bringing them back to the instructor, collecting information from various "sources," and moving without being caught.
The instructors of course made things a little more interesting by being in disguises; most of the students did the same. I ran into one of the instructors but managed to lose him by pulling off what will probably become known as one of the greatest escapes of all time: when he looked down to call the other instructor with his phone, I ducked into a parking garage. Yeah, I know. Pretty freakin' awesome. I'm like some sort of James Bond or something, except better looking and way more successful with the ladies. They would write books about it, but I would have to kill them for talking about me.
All in all it was a pretty good time, but I think it could have been a lot more intense. Not to say that I didn't learn anything, but I'm a pretty big believer in being pushed; I like to feel as if I was really challenged. Like that time I watched Predator for the first time. Man, just trying to wrap your mind around the dynamics of that masterpiece was like an emotional and intellectual marathon.
And so now I sit in front of my hotel room TV flipping between Fox News' brilliant analysis of the Scotland terror incident -- it's boiled down to news commentators discussing other news commentator's opinions -- and... a whole lot of nothing else. I could go back to the Waffle House, I suppose...