Jacket Summary: "Sassy single gal, high-powered exec in high heels, carefree college co-ed, harried soccer mom -- no matter who you are, you deserve to feel secure doing your own thing anytime, anywhere. With a little help from the Safety Chick, it's a cinch. Sharing lesson's she's learned -- the hard way -- along with proven tips from a battery of experts in street smarts, Kathleen Baty gets specific about what to pack for a business trip, where it's safe to shop online, when to report a creepy co-worker, and how to tell that guy who's bothering you at the bar to get lost -- for good. Complete with step-by-step instructions on how to stop an assailant dead in his tracks with your words, your hands, or, if necessary, a few easy-to-use self-defense weapons, this book is a master class in personal safety for women of all ages."
Table of Contents:
- Foreward by Gavin de Becker
- Preface: So ... Who Is This 'Safety Chick'?
- Introduction: Safety Savvy - Why It's Hip to Be an Empowered Chick
- Chapter 1: Intuition - An Absolute 'Must Have' in Your Personal Safety Wardrobe
- Chapter 2: Girl on the Go - Travel and Hotel Safety Tips for Women on the Road
- Chapter 3: Party Girl, Watch Your Cocktail - How to Protect Yourself from Being Slipped a Mickey Out on the Town
- Chapter 4: Beauty Night - How to Feel Safe When It's Girls' Night In
- Chapter 5: A Girl's Gotta Shop - How to Avoid Getting Ripped Off When You're Trying to Buy
- Chapter 6: Guys Who Won't Take No for an Answer - How to Protect Yourself from a Stalker
- Chapter 7: Working Girl - Tips on Recognizing and Avoiding Workplace Violence
- Chapter 8: CyberGirl - Inside Tips to Help You Minimize the Dangers of Surfing the Net
- Chapter 9: Keep Your Hands to Yourself! Domestic Violence Is Not a Family Matter ... It's a Crime
- Chapter 10: Hand-to-Hand Combat - Should You Stay or Should You Go?
- Chapter 11: Pick Your Poison - Self-Defense Products to Help You Stay Safe and Feel Empowered
- Afterword: You Go, Girl! Taking Your Safety Chick Smarts to the Streets
- A Resource Guide: Empower Yourself - Organizations That Can Assist You in Your Time of Need
Then Baty gets to the "Beauty Night" chapter, on home safety ... and things start to get a wee bit silly. She starts out asserting that all women deserve to feel safe in their own homes, but then delves into a list of rather excessive suggestions that a) probably won't make much difference, and b) would tend to make me feel more paranoid and unsafe, rather than less. Yes, it's just common sense that one shouldn't open the door without knowing who's there, shouldn't engage with the Fuller Brush Man or other door-to-door salesperson if your hinky meter is going off, and so on ... but buying men's workboots to leave by the door? Equipping a windowless safety bunker with a flashlight, phone, and weapon? Keeping pepper spray or foam under the bed? Playing a tape recording of a barking dog? Maybe I've been living in a small town for too long, or am just naive, but in the absence of a clear, specific threat, this seems like overkill. The subsequent chapters weren't quite as bad (at least not consistently), but from that point on, I couldn't help thinking of a posting I'd read last week on Lenore Skenazy's Free Range Kids blog. Yes, it makes sense to pay attention to both your surroundings and your gut; sometimes, it can even take some practice to know what one or the other is telling you. But Baty's book seems to take a Homeland Security/ TSA approach: you must do something to make yourself feel safer, even if it's out of proportion to any real threat and not all that effective, anyway. Admittedly, I've never been the victim of a crime, and Baty has (she talks in the preface about a former high school classmate stalking and ultimately attempting to kidnap her before he was arrested) -- but if the alternative is a level of Constant! Vigilance! that would make Mad-Eye Moody proud, I think I'll take the risk.