Shhhhhh…Be Vewwy Vewwy Quiet

It’s around 10:30 in the morning...

I’m in the kind of neighborhood that bad neighborhoods don’t want to be associated with...

There are three guys who look like they just got out of prison yesterday standing around my vehicle talking…

My tint is so dark that it’s nothing but a reflection…

I have a sunshade up in the windshield…

One of the guys starts eying my vehicle…

Looks once…

Looks twice…

Third times the charm. He comes over and sticks his face in my window. Hands cupped over his eyes….

I’m quieter than a church mouse walking on cotton balls…

After a few seconds of looking at his own face in my window, he goes back to talking to his friends, satisfied that no one is in it…

Just then, my subject comes out of his house and gets in his car to leave…

As he drives off, I rip the sunshade down and hit the engine, then roar away tires squealing…

The look on Mr. Nosy’s face alone when I Bo Duke outta there is worth the price of admission…

I love this job…

How'd he do that?

The number one question I get from people is, “How do you become a PI?”

Alrighty then. Let’s chat.

PI’s aren’t like the other kids. Remember the old Electric Company song?

“One of these kids is doing his own thing…”

Or was that Sesame Street?

Who cares. The point is, as a Private Investigator, you move in an entirely different realm than the average cat.

By the time most people are slapping the snooze bar, you’ve already been at work for an hour.

While everyone else is in the bar to have a few drinks and unwind, you have a concealed camera strapped to you watching Johnny Adulterer ply his paramour with wine. (Want a concealed camera? Check out this site)

Some days you’ll drive fast and punch red lights trying to keep up with the person you’re tailing.

Some days you’re in a three piece suit testifying in court, others you’re in a tank top and gym shorts sweating it out in the back of a surveillance van.

You’ll drive more than most truckers, and fly more than some airline pilots.

You’re able to come up with a cover story for any situation off the top of your head.

You’re vehicle is your rolling office/restaurant/hotel/second home. You spend more time there than anywhere else.

Get it? It’s not for everyone. I’ve seen guys come in for training gung ho as a boot camp Marine. A week later they’ve quit.

The can’t take the solitude. Or the travel. Or the weird hours. Or any of it.

Some folks just aren’t cut out for it.

But some are. I personally believe being a PI is the greatest job in the world. The money is good. There are no specific training or educational requirements. Heck, I drug through night school finishing my Bachelor’s Degree, and make the same or less than some guys with GED’s.


Because there is no degree in street smarts. It only comes with time and experience.

So don’t be fooled by PI training courses you see on the web. No one in the industry cares about them.

If you want some free training, I have a buddy who puts out a newsletter on being a PI. He’s at He’ll tell you everything you need to know.

So what do you think? Wanna be a part of our deviant subculture?

Operators are standing by…


Dear John

You learn a lot of things as a PI that the average guy would never know.

For instance, you learn to always park on the next block up while doing surveillance. The average person knows what vehicles belong on their block, but has no clue about the next block over.

You learn how to comb public records at the courthouse for uncollected judgments that you can assume ownership of and track down the debtor on, making a pretty penny in the process.

You learn to keep a box of doggie treats in the backseat to throw the neighborhood yap dog that’s threatening to give away your position.

But most importantly…you learn where to use the bathroom in public.

Face it, kiddos, field investigators have to go like everyone else. The difference is desk jockeys have the luxury of hitting the head down the hall.

But if you want to be a professional PI, you have to accept certain realities. And going potty where you can is one of those harsh realities.

Now, there are certain acts you can perform from the comfort of your surveillance vehicle. An empty Gatorade bottle or two will get you through most cases. Not the most pleasant subject to discuss over dinner, but necessary.

Then again, there are times when only porcelain will suffice.

So get out your notepads and learn from the master, cause here’s the comprehensive list of the best places to find relief from life on the street.

#5 McDonalds – Accept no substitutes if you must resort to fast food potty palaces. Mickey D’s are generally cleaned several times per day. Always well stocked and stalls are roomy and comfortable. You deserve a break today.

#4 Wal-Mart – Wally World’s omnipresence and global dominance works to your advantage, greenhorn. Here’s the trick that separates the rookies from the seasoned pros. Never, NEVER go for the front of the store location. Waaaay too much humanity in and out of there. Head for the rear near customer service/layaways. Much lower traffic and generally better conditions overall.

#3 Starbucks – Coffee being a diuretic and all, the folks from Seattle have planned appropriately. Sparkling clean facilities and smooth jazz in the background. Added bonus, you’re generally never more than a quarter mile from one of their locations.

#2 Hotel Lobbies – The swankier the better is the key to these gems. Just stroll straight in like you’re a guest and find the lobby level privy. Hit the head early enough and you can swipe a Danish and cup o’ joe from the continental breakfast room.

#1 Hospitals – The Holy Grail/Cadillac/Mount Olympus of public toilets. Clean, cool, clinical and antiseptic. You usually leave feeling cleaner than when you walked in. Note – Try to avoid the emergency room facilities, heavy traffic can detract from the overall experience. Hit the elevator and head up a few floors. You’ll undoubtedly find a quiet little gem where you can contemplate the universe and all its glory for a few minutes.

There you have it. Feel smarter?

You’re welcome…

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