I was running an errand the other day in Downtown Los Angeles. As a big fan of classic Hollywood and detective fiction, I relish in the landmarks and mainstays, from the outdoor urban paradise of MacArthur Park to the crowds of bustling travelers at Union Station; from the authentic Hispanic heritage so beautifully displayed on Olvera Street to the architectural marvel of the Bradbury building (where, by the way, the most cinematic scene from “Blade Runner” was shot). But none of them tickle me as much as the iconic Felix the Cat sign atop the almost century-old Felix Chevrolet. Read the rest of this entry »
One of the greatest reads in my entire life was Robert Louis Stevenson’s 19th century novella “Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde“. In this, Stevenson tells the story of an attorney who is investigating the evil acts of a man who calls himself Edward Hyde. The investigation leads him to find that Hyde is actually an alternate personality of his old friend, Dr. Henry Jekyll. Since the publishing of this story, the Jekyll/Hyde concept is one of the most celebrated and imitated in all of literature. This is because it is, in my opinion, the most relevant piece of fiction in all of sociology, psychology and criminology. Ever. Without exception. Read the rest of this entry »
Sport fishing is a $125 billion dollar industry. No matter how good man gets at it, he is nothing compared to the Alaskan grizzly bear. At first glance you would describe one of these formidable creatures as large brutes. But let me tell you something. Although most of us know that this so-called brute is a fast runner, many folks don’t know that this beautiful creature is so agile, patient and graceful that they can catch Salmon with their teeth even when their quarry is swimming at full speed.
One of the best films of the 1980s is Michael Mann’s “Manhunter“. In this film our protagonist FBI agent Will Graham has a conversation with our favorite psychopathic psychiatrist, the brilliant Hannibal Lecktor, through prison bars:
Graham admits, “I know that I’m not smarter than you.”
Lecktor then inquires, “Then how did you catch me?”
“You had disadvantages.”, says Graham.
Lecktor asks, “What disadvantages?”
Graham replies, “You’re insane.”
It is common for a detective or criminologist to state that, in order to catch a criminal, you must think like a criminal. It is not only unnecessary to think like the criminal, it is imperative that you do not. You don’t think like a criminal and you don’t want to. You hunt them. Their values are different than yours. Their brain works differently than yours. In order to catch a criminal, you must think like someone who catches criminals.
In your career you have investigated hundreds of bad guys. You are smart with years of investigative experience and an above average IQ. But you do not, by any means, believe you are smarter than every one of the people you investigate. You think differently than they do. Your desires, motives and goals are different than theirs. You know that your advantage is that you do not think like them. Good. Don’t think like them. Hunt them.
Enjoy. Salmon tastes good.