Ben Trovato’s Art of Survival – Chapter 5

Chapter 5

Talking vs. Doing


Whether you are facing six crowbar-wielding varmints or an angry wife, you always have the choice of talking your way out or fighting your way out. I suppose you could also just kill yourself, but more on that later.

Women make far better negotiators. This is largely because they are in a position to offer unique incentives.

“If you come out of that bank with your hands up, I’ll give you a blowjob in the back of the van,” is a lot more effective coming from a woman than a man. Unless, of course, the bank robber is gay. But dog day afternoons don’t come around all that often.

If your husband is holding you hostage, you might want to think twice about negotiating. Listening to you talk non-stop for the last fifteen years is probably one of the reasons he snapped in the first place. Shut up and let him do the talking. There is a lot that he wants to get off his chest and this is the first time he has had a captive audience.

If you are more of a doer than a talker, you will probably prefer to fight your way out of a dangerous situation. Good for you. Here are some weapons you may wish to use. Always make a point of carrying at least two of them on you at all times.

Guns have been around ever since Samuel Colt invented the revolver. It was tested extensively on the American Indians and once the survivors had been herded into reservations, the gun was pronounced an unmitigated success and went into mass production.

Today, you can choose between a revolver, a semi-automatic pistol, a rifle or a shotgun. Most South Africans choose to have all four. Sometimes they have two or three of each and an entire room in their house set aside to store them. If one of them kept shooting around the clock and never ran out of ammunition, I estimate it would take no more than three or four days to kill every varmint in the country. That’s assuming they cooperated by forming an orderly line. It would take longer to get them all if they had to start running away.

To own a gun, you must first obtain a licence. To do this, you have to lodge an application at your nearest police station. It may seem hard to believe, but having a white skin no longer automatically guarantees you a gun licence. In fact, it may even count against you. In which case I suggest you get your domestic worker to apply. Once she gets the licence, take it away from her. Threaten to fire her if she refuses to cooperate. Tippex out her details, insert your own and photocopy the document. Now you have a gun licence.

If the domestic worker gets herself a gun and threatens to shoot you if you try to take her licence away, you can lodge your application with the Nigerian on the corner. He will sort you out in no time – with a licence or a gun. Or anything at all, for that matter.

In America, most criminals favour .38 calibre handguns. Here, most criminals favour anything that doesn’t have a serial number and can be relied on not to blow their hand off by unexpectedly jamming.

In America, around 70% of all murders are committed with handguns. I have no idea of the figure for South Africa because the government says we cannot be trusted to be left alone with statistics of any kind.

You should not feel obliged through any misplaced sense of convention to purchase one of the standard .357s or .45s or .38s or .22s or 9mm handguns on the market. Don’t follow the herd. You are an individual. Choose something different, something special. Remember, an exotic weapon is an erotic weapon and women will show their appreciation in many new and interesting ways. Here are some weapons you may want to consider as alternatives to that tired old workhorse, the handgun:


Forever linked to a 14th century lunatic by the name of William Tell, the crossbow will intimidate the criminal while winning his admiration and respect. The beauty of the crossbow is that you can shoot any number of varmints who have slipped into your house late at night and not worry about scaring the dog. No loud bangs, no acrid smell of cordite, no splattered brains on the walls. Just a soft swisshhhh followed by a dull thud. No mess, no fuss. If you have a son, you might want to practice on weekends by shooting apples off his head. If you don’t have a son, use your daughter.

Flensing Knife

They slice through Minke whales with the greatest of ease, so you can imagine what they would do to a housebreaker. Try to get your hands on one with an Oosik handle. Oosik is an Alaskan term for the penis bone of an adult walrus. A well-hung walrus can provide you with a handle two feet long. Put a titanium blade on the end of that boner and watch those varmints run.

Lead Piping, Rope, Spanner, Candlestick

These weapons are particularly effective if you find yourself in a rambling old house with Professor Plum, Colonel Mustard, Miss Scarlett and the Reverend Green as guests.


This piece of field artillery is highly effective against your smaller, less organised army, like the Dutch. Should you find yourself being threatened by a neighbouring state no bigger than the Netherlands, you should consider investing in one. If you are a patriot, try getting your hands on a G6. These babies can drop a 155mm shell on a pinhead 30kms from your front door

You will need to knock out a few walls if you plan on bringing it inside. Otherwise leave it in the garden. It is big enough not to get stolen and you won’t hear another peep out of your neighbours. If you feel unsafe leaving the house without it, rest assured that your bakkie will be able to tow it quite easily.

Paintball Gun

The varmint will not be expecting you to pull this out from inside your jacket and he will probably start laughing. This is your cue to shoot him in the eye. Watch as he stumbles blindly into the traffic. See as the bus squashes him like a bug. Now who’s laughing?

Sawed-Off Double-Barrelled 12-Gauge Shotgun

If you can’t find one at the flea market, pick up a standard-issue shotgun from your friendly neighbourhood arms dealer. All you need then is a hacksaw and half a dozen varmints trapped in your kitchen.

Sniper Rifle

This weapon is not altogether suitable for home security purposes. However, you will be able to pick off anyone who tries to break into your sister’s house in the next suburb.


Incendiary fluids like napalm show varmints that you are serious about protecting your property. In America’s case, they used it to show the North Vietnamese that they were serious about protecting their way of life. It worked very well because the Viet Cong army changed their mind about making the 18-hour flight to San Francisco.

Panthera Leo

A lion is an unusual weapon in that he operates completely independently of you. If you hear a noise outside, you don’t even have to get out of bed and shout at him to go outside and investigate. Your lion will take care of everything. The only drawback is that when he does catch a varmint, the sound of crunching and sucking may keep you awake all night.



One thought on “Ben Trovato’s Art of Survival – Chapter 5

  1. Hi

    What is your rate to publish your stories in my community newspaper called Resident-X?

    I print 12 000 copies and publish two editions per month.

    Its distributed in Brackenfell, Western Cape.

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