What we are up to

Dear Chris

by Chris Hicks

Is something troubling you? Getting you down? A problem shared is a problem halved. For over twenty years, I've been guiding people towards finding solutions. Write to me at: Dear Chris, 22 Birchtree Road, Liverpool, L17 0DS, or get in touch by email.

Dear Chris,

It’s like I’m losing my mind or something. I’m blatantly paranoid. It’s blatant. Everywhere, I’m looking round at the people in the street and wondering if they’re a threat to me. I size them up. I think whether they will attack me with knives or other sharpnesses. It’s hurting my friends, too. I can see them look at me and, at the same time, I think that the way they stare is also a threat. Yes, the world is dangerous, but am I normal? Do people that are normal think this too?

Please help,



Thanks for writing to me. I know it can’t have been easy.

Firstly, Sam, the bad news: you’re right when you say that the world is a dangerous place. To deny it is pointless: you just have to understand it. Understand it and live with it.

To be honest, Sam, I think you have things out of perspective. You tell me that you ‘size up’ people in the street. That’s crazy. I think that at some point, Sam, you lost touch with what 'threat' really means.

The people in the street, Sam? Wake up! We both know that modern weapons are miracles that can kill you for no reason. There’s nothing to stop you from being killed from miles away. I mean, have you even looked at the sniper rifles out there now? They make a bunch of them in 50 cal. Not some: a bunch. 50 cal sniper rifles. 50-nothing-in-a-city-block-you-can-safely-hide-behind-cal sniper rifles. Some of them are semi-auto. They’re wonderful machines, Sam, pure as a kestrel.

You know what, Sam? Forget the 50 cals: even a humble little .338 like the Long Range Rifle will punch a fist sized hole in a hard sided truck at over 800 yards if you have the right ammo. There’s nothing, Sam, to stop you from being in that truck. 800 yards. Fuck. Blam!

At that range, Sam, we are all the same. It’s magnificent, isn’t it? Sort of makes you feel good to be alive.

Take it easy, big guy.