Wicked Yankee Girl
Did you ever meet Evil walking?
This is an odd question, but most people have their bad spots and good spots. I've seldom met someone that seemed either purely good or evil to me.
However, tonight I met an evil person in a public meeting. This is maybe the second or third time in my life I've met evil walking, and I'm 66 (I don't socialize a whole lot though). OTOH, I've know quite a few exconvicts (mostly either CNAs and building tradespeople). They seemed/seem just like anyone else, sometimes bad, sometimes good.
I'm not at all sure why I felt that way. It wasn't just the fact that she was scamming the crowd and obviously ready to pounce on the assets of 3 of the nicest people I know. I've met a lot of greedy people, and a lot of self-centered ones. This was just More somehow, but I can't really describe it.
Have you ever had a sudden feeling that someone you met was just plain bad? What signals made you think that? In the long term, were they really bad?
I'm trying to understand my "just got whacked alongside the head" reaction to this woman.
I think I had an experience like that. Like you, I find it hard to pin down exactly what I found disturbing about the person.
I was in the university computer lab, and this guy was standing around, just talking to these two buddies of his that were working. And this guy was talking about some girl that was "hot" and how one of his buddies should try to get her in bed because she was "hot." Really, the content was nothing out of the ordinary, nothing I hadn't heard before. There was just something about the way he was speaking. I don't think I can really explain it either. I can say he had this really smooth, slow, unperturbed voice. He sounded like he was very aware he was in the center of attention in the room, and was taking his sweet time anyway. I had the sense that he had this completely dehumanizing attitude toward the girl he was talking about, that he saw her as a thing or something. The guys he was talking to were just laughing like he was a great comedian.
And I felt this deep unease and revulsion, like I'd never felt before. I couldn't put my finger on why. I wondered why his buddies couldn't perceive anything wrong. I was just sitting there, wishing he'd shut up and leave. He finally addressed the rest of the room in that same smooth, unhurried voice: "Ya know, listening in on other people's conversations is rude. Just sayin'." (You could hardly help but listen in; he was making no effort to be quiet and his attitude was somehow very commanding of attention.) I was annoyed at that, but I averted my eyes, because he was really giving me the creeps. He left shortly after.
I can't say for sure if my feelings were based on reality, because I never encountered the guy again. But I do know what you're talking about with the "this person seems downright evil and I just can't put my finger on why" experience.
I do transcription of interviews, etc. for pay. I've done a series of interviews of prisoners, some who were there for violent crimes, and I didn't get this kind of a reaction from any of them. There were a couple who I strongly disliked, and who I wonder may have triggered that in me if I'd actually encountered them in person or listened to them in different situations, but most seemed nothing like that. Most seemed like they had some feeling there, some humanity, even though a lot of them rationalized and justified their crimes (quite similarly to the way people rationalize anything else).
I think some people could well be born sociopaths, incapable of empathy or any sense of right or wrong. There's a decent book called "The Sociopath Next Door," that describes "everyday" sociopaths, those that seem like ordinary, decent people, often with professional jobs, families, etc. I don't buy the author's figure of 1 in 25; I think it's rarer than that. But it's got some good descriptions of what everyday sociopaths might look like, how they might try to take advantage of people, what kind of things can look similar to sociopathy but aren't the same, etc.
I don't think it's quite accurate to think of these people as "bad" or "evil," but if they are devoid of a conscience and would have no qualms about doing anything at all to take advantage of someone, then the sense of revulsion you get happens for a reason. I'd listen to it. (It could be mistaken about someone, of course, but when you're dealing with a potential threat, it's better to err on the side of caution.)
and... World Peace!
My dad's younger brother is walking evil. He's got mental issues that he wont address, but it's way more than that. You can literally FEEL it. It sets me completely on edge. I'm not one of those that sees demons lurking around every corner, but if there ever was a case for demon possession my uncle is it.
I get to be as lucky as my dad because my younger sibling (not bio related, adopted - and it was a whole big mess even before my family came into the picture) also has no regard for others. We are just things that should be used and discarded. He is in jail straight out of high school because of his doing unspeakable things to children. He also wants me dead and has told several people how he dreams of me being battered and bloodied on the ground. That, that would make him smile. So, yeah, I've been very close to evil for years now.
Wicked Yankee Girl
Rachmaninoff, Yes that encounter is very similar. And yes, the tag "bad" or "evil" is not accurate, but honestly, I don't have any better words. Sociopath is such an extreme label, I'm avoiding it. And since you so often here the neighbors of serial killers and such found them quite ordinary and were astounded to find out they were serial killers, I'm assuming that they don't whack you upside along the head as being evil walking, either.
I'll try reading that book about Sociopaths, because my neighbors are going to need it to fend off the next act of the year long staged drama. I had never really met the woman before now; said hi in passing and such. I was edgy about her because something about her reminds her of the evil person in my life, whom we suspect arranged the murder of my dad (an unsolved mystery to this day). The 2 people look nothing alike, but there is something in the manner, the consciencelessness of their utterances (similar to what Rachmaninoff described of the man speaking). The clear inability to see anyone outside herself as something other than prey.
The evil woman in question (& her husband not as much evil), have moved into our neighborhood. There have been a series of bizarro world incidents.
The incidents were geared to paint 3 of the best people I know as villains. All 3 are much, much nicer than I am. Two are the kind that volunteer every week in the soup kitchen, the wife even while going through chemo for ovarian cancer, fighting lymphodema, exhaustion, and having to hurl all the time. They volunteer for Habitat for a vacation. They take in people in trouble. They will do absolutely anything to help a neighbor, too, and I have often been the recipient of their kindnesses. They are the kind of Christians that make you want to be more like them. The other is a kind of scatty 74 year old who will fix anything you have broken, just because you need it fixed, etc.
All 3 of these people are genuinely hurting that somehow they have been painted as villains over the period of the last year, and that people might believe that of them. I keep telling them, "You need to get a really good lawyer right now," but they brush it off. And the nasty lady looks nice to the cops because she doesn't press charges (If any of this went to court, it might have fallen apart, because it is all BS. But now that there is such a pile of BS, it looks like something other than manure.)
The evil couple have been wangling to gain possession of a strip of the city street on the little cul de sac they live on. Last night they got it (To protect the woman who is SOOO SCARED from her eville neighbors)
The properties on either side belong to the 3 nice people. The nasty people would like to own those properties without paying for them, or at least prevent the owners from using them (one is a garage on a lot, the other a barn on a lot). With those 2 properties, their property would become quite some spread. It became clear from what was said at the meeting that they are manufacturing a civil suit against at the very least my next door neighbors, and possibly the fixit guy as well. You could see the woman trying her testimony on for size, how harrassed she felt, how terrible the last year has been.
The scary woman is claiming they are being persecuted by the nice people. They have video cameras in every window of their house. Every day they go through the photos and videos, and if anything looks odd they make a police report, always with videos and photos. We've had the police here for a man snowblowing his driveway in the middle of a blizzard and these folk claim that he was doing it to damage their house by blowing driveway gravel into it. A man arrested for parking in his own right of way. A man arrested for parking on the city street. A man arrested for killing weeds with Roundup in his own driveway because it was to deliberately kill the evil woman's grass. Once he threw a rock out of his driveway. Of course, if someone takes thousands of pictures of you, some are going to look odd. Furthermore if you attack people, screaming and yelling so every word can be heard a football field away (and I've heard the nasty people yelling), people get their backs up, since none of the 3 normally nice people are perfect. You might get angry. You might make a face. You might give someone's house the finger.
Naturally, the nasty people do not give out videos to the cops of when they are attacking the neighbors like rabid dogs.
It became clear at the meeting that both the mayor and the police chief have bought thoroughly into the story (the woman does not scream & yell at them..and there are the photographs & videos. I wouldn't be surprised whether photoshop hadn't been used on some of them.
It's a disaster.
Last edited by dorispulaski; 09-04-2013 at 12:57 AM.
Wicked Yankee Girl
Toni, That's horrible about your adopted brother and uncle. All I can say is, my prayers are with you.
The point that you made about demonic possession is perhaps apt. When you get this (perhaps irrational) feeling that someone is evil walking, perhaps that is how you might decide that demons were involved. At least that makes the inexplicable somehow describable.
There are indeed people who would do anything to anyone for gain. There are others who would do anything to anyone just for enjoyment, with no possibility of gain.
Toni and Doris, I hope and pray that the ones in your lives are stopped.
Toni and Doris, I'm so sorry you have encountered these psychopaths. But you both have wisely listened to your gut feelings. It's sad the couple won't get a lawyer because those people will keep up their campaign. Hopefully, the town will get fed up with frivolous lawsuits and those who know the good guys will come forth and support them.
Bullies and boundary violators need to be removed from ones life. I've had a few too, some family, some not. These two situations are terrible and I feel for you both.
and... World Peace!
My uncle told us not too long ago that he prayed to god to destroy our entire family (all of my dad's family not just my immediate one). Dad doesn't know what his brother was diagnosed with, but we know he refuses to take his meds because he doesn't like that they don't make him high... he's self medicating with booze and dope... He actually is starting to look like Charles Manson, it's scary.
Originally Posted by dorispulaski
I think that people who have been helped by your neighbors should get together and help those people invest in their own video cameras, for a start. It would also be interesting to find out what the interlopers' previous history is. I guarantee that they have practice in this behavior, and it might help to know whether they used the law for their own ends in a previous place of residence. It might influence the authorities in your town to look differently at their actions.
Originally Posted by Scrufflet
When I hear about people like these, the quote from Macbeth comes to mind: By the pricking of my thumbs; something wicked this way comes.
Wicked Yankee Girl
Yes, I am trying to get them to invest in a really good lawyer and a private investigator, Olympia, and I also believe they have done this before.
Just investigating myself, I find the husband has at least 6 AKA's, and the wife a couple too. And I can tell from some of the stuff in his D&B that he is most probably cheating on his income tax.
I have never reported anyone to the IRS and do not have the least idea how to do it. I wonder whether it would be good to get some agency on their tail that would keep them busy with something other than tormenting the neighbors. And if they got hit with a big enough fine, perhaps they would have to sell out of here, since this is their second home.
Does anyone here know?
I don't know, but a lawyer might. The one thing I'd advise is to be careful whom you talk to about this in your community. Play very close to your chest, because these people are not ones you'd want to cross.
Funny how "sociopath" seems too extreme, but "evil walking" doesn't. I do see where you're coming from, since "sociopath" seems used almost synonymously with serial killers, historical dictators, etc. even though according to the literature, most sociopaths never do anything high profile and many never even get charged with a crime. I know if I'd mentioned that word to someone else in the computer lab that day, they likely would have thought I was being absurd. I think it's kinda too bad in a way, because it allows people to put a finger on something that's hard to define or understand, that doesn't necessarily have anything to do with serial murder, etc.
Originally Posted by dorispulaski
As for being able to sense them or not...well, it didn't exactly look like the guys yukking it up in the computer lab were whacked upside the head, either. They didn't seem to notice anything amiss at all. From what you've described, the woman you're talking about isn't giving everyone that reaction either; it seems like the cops, at least, are buying her sob stories. It seems sometimes people have strong, inexplicable reactions and sometimes don't notice anything wrong at all. For all I know, I've encountered others and it went right over my head. (Actually, there's a specific transcription assignment I had that comes to mind. I did a series of cop interviews concerning a sex-offending priest. I actually thought the accused himself sounded kinda likeable, vulnerable and sympathetic...at least until the interview for one of his victims painted a very different picture. So I guess I can be fooled, too.)
I don't know. I really don't know what makes the difference in whether one is fooled by them or whether one sees them for what they are. From what I've read, they tend to be good at wearing masks, but sometimes they drop.
One interesting thing from the book: the author states that one of the biggest warning signs of a sociopath is that they frequently try to appeal to others' sympathy. They want people to feel sorry for them. This is often a surprise to people when they first hear it, but it makes sense when you think about it: it's a very effective manipulative tactic. And it certainly sounds like the woman you've been describing knows how to play that game.
and... World Peace!
that sounds very scarily like my sibling. He's way too good at emotional manipulation... and he mimics compassion well, when it suits his needs.
Originally Posted by Rachmaninoff
Wicked Yankee Girl
It definitely sounds like both the scary woman and the family member that I am uncomfortable with. Both want to appeal to your sympathy, for sure.
The question of why one sociopath would ring your personal bell and another not is an interesting one.
I knew a guy who murdered his wife. He did not ring my personal sociopath bell (he has since died).
I knew a guy who had been an interrogator for the Greek army during WWI and happily did vile things to people in defense of his country. (since dead) No bell. He was a charming, interesting guy. He was the father of the scary family member though.
I can't say why the 2 women I'm talking about make me want to hide under the bed and buy amulets against evil. That's why I find this response so puzzling. Perhaps because personal experience of the family member (knowing she is utterly ruthless) leads me to feel anyone who is like her is equally a sociopath.
It's odd, but when I described what went on last night at the meeting, my lawyer's comment was clearly the woman is a psychopath (old skool for sociopath. My lawyer is nearly 70)
I used the phrase "evil walking" rather than psychopath or sociopath because I wanted to describe accurately my response to her rather than picking an accurate description of what she really was.
Doesn't matter to me if we say evil, psychopath or sociopath; they are dangerous people we need to avoid and protect ourselves from. I find your remarks about some ringing your alarm bells and others not, interesting. I'm wondering if the "non-ringers" were selective in their actions and so maybe you did not feel in danger while your"ringers" make you feel that anyone who crosses their paths is in danger all the time because its their way of life?
Originally Posted by dorispulaski
I met a murderer once who was elderly and basically living out his life in a mental asylum. Any fire had gone out of him and he was quite benign.
I used to work with a woman at an educational institution who was clearly a psychopath and people were terrified of her. She bullied students and colleagues alike. Administrators were loathe to challenge her because she would involve the union (she set a record for number of union grievances). She set out to ruin me and render my job obsolete. It was very difficult to survive! I discovered a few important thing throughout this. First, these people adore laws. They love to manipulate them to their own ends. So a union environment or city council is their idea of heaven. Second, worst thing you can do is enter the fray and do the same nasty stuff they do. They will always be better at nasty and it poisons you. Thirdly, you must defend yourself; define boundaries and hold your line. Draw on your support system. Don't bully back; just refuse to be bullied. I was lucky enough to have a good support system outside of work. And I was able to leave the job on my own terms, not hers.
I think too that sometimes we get odd feelings because we know that the ringer has somehow breached our personal security barriers but we're not sure where that spot is and so, we don't know how to fix it yet.