Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Book Review

'SPECIAL AGENT' - My Life on the Front Lines as a Woman in the FBI" by Candice DeLong Hyperion Books 290 pages Price cut off of inside jacket sleeve.

DeLong has certainly had an interesting life. She became a nurse and worked for nearly 10 years in psychiatric wards. Marriage, the birth of her son and divorce didn't seem to slow her down... Nearing age 30, she was dating an FBI agent and liked what she saw of the job. She applied, was accepted and went off for 16 weeks of training at Quantico.

The FBI had just begun to accept women in the '80s and DeLong had to deal with her share of men who didn't think a woman should work in the field. They thought she ought to stay home and take care of her son insead. She gritted it ut, using humor instead of rage or tattle-telling to superiors.

Deeply interested in profiling, she became a profiler. She eventually secialed in 'Interpersonal Violence" - FBI-speak for sex crimes and taught classes in it. The last chapter in the book is advice on avoiding sex criminals -- Forthwith:

I you or your chiold is ever grabbed in a location where someone might be able to hear you, don't scream "Help!" People tend to ignore it, figuring it's a joke or a prank. Instead, scream "FIRE!" We all know to call 911 when we hear that.

Keep your doors and windows locked with sturdy locks. Don't leave the drapes wide open at night.

If you can't see through your front door (no peephole), don't open it -- make the caller identify themselves. (We have a wonderful security door -- we can see out of it, but the visitor can't see us or into the house.)

Don't tell a rapist that you have a sexual disease because it marks you as a whore and "deserving" of punishment. If someone tries to strangle you, jab your fingers into his eyes. Don't waste time trying to fight him off.

If you're going out with the girls, make sure you have a charged cell phone and cab money. If someone makes you uneasy, don't hesitate to call a cab or another friend to come and get you; you can always pick up your car the next day.

Don't go out half-naked alone and don't drink too much. Many "men" take that as an invitation.

Don't drive a clunker that could die on you at any time. Always have a least a half tank of gas so that you don't have to stop for more in a seedy area.

Any stranger that approaches the car, keep the engine running, the doors locked and the windows up. Even if he pulls a gun and threatens to shoot you through the glass. You're inside a 2,000 lb. weapon -- gas it and go even if it means running over the guy.

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