How to Befriend a Mugger
A nerve-wracking standoff between two drunk college kids and a goon with a gun leads to an unexpected meeting of the minds.
Illustration by Ben Bertin
We were drunk, and it was dark. True story.
Clinging to a bottle one summer night in college, I was with my girlfriend, talking as we did until the whiskey ran out. Her cat, Bella, was outside on the porch of her second-floor apartment with us. We were nearly done with finals. Our bellies were full. And we were tired, her from spending the afternoon cleaning out her car and other chores, me from drinking. Everything was as it should have been.
Except for the man rushing up the stairs toward us. He must have thought he had struck gold: two drunk, swaying college students, wallets, keys and cellphones splayed out around them. He stopped just shy of the landing where Amy and I sat, looked at me through the slit in the T-shirt covering his face, and said, “Give me your fucking money.” Another T-shirt covered his outstretched arm, which seemed to hold a gun.
In Savannah, Georgia, this was a fairly common experience for the white college student. Though, to be honest,…
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