Neighbor, 61, pulls gun on father teaching girl to ride bike



It’s yet another instance of a neighbor puling a gun on a neighbor. This time, it happened in Rosemount, Minn. while a father was teaching his 7-year-old daughter how to ride a bicycle.

Gary Drake, 61, is facing second-degree assault and terroristic threat charges after he was accused of brandishing a shotgun on Daytona Way last week.

It’s an idyllic street, but neighbors there like to talk. When Jeanne Helgeson heard rumors that a well-known neighbor had threatened someone with a gun, she didn’t believe it — until her next-door neighbor confirmed the details, that is.

“I’ve never seen a gun come out of that house ever,” Helgeson said.

Allison Nelson saw the arrest.

“We look over and he’s in handcuffs,” she recalled. “He’s walking to the cop car.”

According to the criminal complaint, Drake didn’t like the way the father was teaching his daughter to ride a bicycle.

“I guess Gary came out and was trying to give tips,” Helgeson said.

The father told Fox 9 News he’s still shaken by the encounter. He explained that when he and his daughter got down to the cul de sac, Drake began yelling from his porch. When the father responded to say, “I’ve got it,” Drake allegedly said, “If you don’t like my advice, get off the street.”

At that point, Drake appeared to get angrier — but as the father and daughter prepared to leave the area, Drake allegedly went inside his home, grabbed a Remington 870 shotgun, pointed it at the father and threatened to kill him.

Drake’s wife eventually came out and pulled the gun away, but police said he didn’t appear repentant when he was booked. In fact, he allegedly told officers, “Maybe next time. I should have shot him.”


  1. The only thing that stops a bad guy teaching his daughter to ride a bike is a good guy with a gun.

  2. This has nothing to do with the above article, but judging by the “So Long and Thanks for All the Fish” entry, I’m assuming Chris is shutting down his blog. (?)

  3. I second Dale. I hope you’re just taking a well-earned vacation. Please don’t shut down the blog! I’ve visited every day since I discovered you many, many years ago. I’m a poor little old lady with few things that bring me pleasure in life, and Cynical -C is one of those pleasures. Please don’t take that away from me!

  4. Yeah, don’t shut down. I’ve been coming here since ’08, and check in several times a day.

    But if you still decide to close up shop, you’re welcome for the fish.

  5. Thanks everyone. I appreciate the kind words but I’m retiring for good this time. My heart hasn’t been in it for some time now. And you guys have been around for a bit, I’m sure you know that it’s not what it once was. It’s time to end it and move on to something else.

    Thank you for sticking with me for so long. The truth is, I wouldn’t have done this if it wasn’t for your participation.

    1. When you start something new, do let us know about it. I’ve still got this blog saved in my RSS reader, just in case.

      1. I can’t agree more.
        Chris, I’ve loved your blog more than anything on the intertubes for so many years now, so I’m truly saddened by this news — and I’m sort of hoping it’s just a terrible dream.. So please, do let us know whenever you launch something new. Until then, I’m going to greatly miss you and my fellow Cynics.

    2. I feel like I’m at the end of a really good concert. On one hand I want the show to continue for a few more hours and on the other I realize that the artist has already given me plenty of good times to remember (Including an encore!). Good luck in whatever you do, Chris, and if you ever DO get the itch to give it another go, well, try and let all us comment-makers know!

      1. Thanks TDavis. Yeah, I learned a lot during the encore. Last time I quit, I got such an outpouring of support that I thought maybe I had pulled the plug too quickly.

        But no, I just had nothing left in the tank.

    3. I’m sorry to see you go too, Chris. But I fully understand your observation that your heart hasn’t been in it for a while. I do hope you’ll leave the site up as a resource. Best wishes on whatever new ventures you devote your newly-free time to. Stan.

    4. You’ll be missed. Thanks for all the great posts over the years. I still use Ingersoll quotes and wouldn’t have known about the guy if it weren’t for you.

    5. You’re going to be seriously missed. I’ve checked your blog every day since 2006 (I think)… maybe 2005. Holy hell, that’s a long time. I wish you all the best!!

    6. Great stuff man – I have enjoyed your blog since I think 2006 where I stumbled on to it while living in China. Please let everyone know if you start up another endeavor!

    7. I already miss it! I’m so accustomed to checking Cynical-C every day for a has been a dose of sanity. Thank you for it all!

    8. OK, Chris. If it must be, then it must be. Good luck and good health to you and yours in the future.

    9. Thanks for the bloggings… I have no idea how I found this blog years ago but it was always a nice insight to parts of American culture for me. Interesting reading from an outsider. Good luck with whatever you do now on.

      take my fish

  6. NNOOOOOO!!!! I haven’t missed a post since ’06, but now (sniff) I’m missing them already (full break down).

    This will be missed, sir.

  7. One of my fondest memories of Cynical-C was the live chat during the vice presidential debate between Joe Biden and Sara Palin. Many laughs were had.

    This site has been part of my daily routine since stumbling upon it. I’ve gone from lurker, to commenter, to lurker again and I can’t believe that about a decade passed.

    Chris, normally I would say “Auf wiedersehen,” but since what “auf wiedersehen” actually means is “’till I see you again”, and since I think you really mean it this time, to you, sir, I say goodbye.

    And thanks.

    1. I think the blog peaked from about 2008 – 2010 which would right be around that time you mentioned.

      Those were good times. Thank you for being a big part of it!

  8. Thank you, Chris! Thank you, Cynikitty! Thank you, cynics! I’m sorry that I haven’t commented as often as I once did, but I still read and enjoyed your blog every day. Best wishes to you, Chris, and thanks again πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks Meg. I understand. A lot of people weren’t commenting any longer. I think the blog had been stale for too long and I didn’t have it in me to rejuvenate it.

  9. Woke up this mornin’

    Don’t you wish you didn’t function
    Don’t you wish you didn’t think
    Beyond the next paycheck and the next little drink
    Well, you do so make up your mind to go on
    ‘Cause when you woke up this mornin’
    Ev’rything you had was gone

    You’ll be missed Chris. Stay lucky.

      1. Maybe you could just start up a home gardening blog. Where people send in photos of their home grown plots. Got two strawberries and two cucumbers ready for tonights table. And maybe dropin a couple of Ingersoll quotes from time to time. Who knows, maybe the odd link to gun madness? A book review would be nice, or asking your fellow gardeners what were their favorite books. Could be an idea. Seems to be an audience for it. πŸ˜‰

        Runs away.

  10. Thanks for the time you put into running the blog and all the interesting/funny things I read over the years. You’ve been a staple bookmark from PC to PC to PC to Laptop to Laptop. Good luck in your future endeavors!

  11. I still look back, from time to time, at the “Caption This” series you had going for a while. I laugh out loud at the genius comments, mostly from myself and MacCrocodile.

    I owe a lot to you and your blog. From TV shows I’d never heard of, to books I’d never read.

    best of luck.

  12. I’ve been coming here every day for almost a decade. Thank you VERY much for everything you’ve done. I went from being a religious guy who believed in all sorts of woo to learning about the skeptical movement, figuring out that Ayn Rand was a freaky insane person, attending skeptic’s conferences and coming out as an atheist to my family. I’m a happier, healthier person for having read much of what you posted, and I’m grateful as hell.

    If only we could send you the beer of your choice via PayPal πŸ˜‰

    Thanks, Chris!

    1. ^ Yep.. same here. I researched and learned so much from reading Chris’ blog.

      True story: last year, I had to spend some time in the hospital for a bleeding ulcer, and when my mom and my significant other visited, I used their iPad and iPhones to check cynical-c. I needed laughter and cynicism. It truly helped me through that time.

      Cheers to you and yours, Chris!

      1. Thank you so much. It’s very touching that something I started on a lark could be comfort to people who just needed a distraction from life’s shittier side.

        Thank you Niel for your years of comments that made this blog so much more than a collection of links.

    2. A decade of reading and you never came across any of the hundreds of posts where I declared beer as an unfit beverage for human consumption??? πŸ™‚

      Thanks Andrew. A decade….. shit, where did the time go?

  13. I can understand that you want get on with your life and try some new things. I wish you success and happiness in everything you undertake. Many thanks for everything from the Ingersol quotations to garden posts, to all the interesting things you found and shared with us. I will miss you, but I understand. I will miss the Cyical-C family, too. Can’t say Adieu or Adios, and even Good-bye means God be with you. So I guess the best bet is Farewell!

    1. RIGHT??? God, just thinking about the amount of stuff I’d never have known about if not for this blog, and the tons of people I’ve shared it with… I’m going to seem much less interesting now, lol

  14. Sorry your shuttin er down.
    Gonna miss you and all the things
    you’ve introduced me to like Ingersall.
    Wishin you and yours all the best.
    Hope your new endeavors are as great
    as this blog turned out to be.
    19,768,908 visitors, that’s a hell of a run!

  15. Chris, I hate to see you go. I’ve been visiting multiple times a day since sometime before 2008. A lot of lurking and not a lot of comments, but I’ve enjoyed it tremendously. I drop by the Peppermill every time I’m in Vegas and would have never known about it if you didn’t suggest it. Thanks, and good luck out there!

  16. Thank you to Chris and all the other Cynical regulars. From the Cynichats to QOTD to all the other fun stuff, it has been a great ride.

  17. I never write comments, but it’s a bummer to see you go. I discovered this site while I was in Iraq back in 2005. I’ve really enjoyed reading your stuff over the past nine years. Can I at least facebook stalk you or something? πŸ˜€

    1. And to think my decision to retire came to “If only I had one more comment I’ll stay!”

      Thanks Miles for sticking with me so long πŸ™‚

  18. I don’t believe I’ve missed a post since being pointed to your site around 2008/2009. I’ve always enjoyed it and appreciate you keeping it running, even after your gut told you it was time to shut it down. All the best!

  19. I don’t remember when my big brother clued me in to Cynical-C (trust a big brother to tell you about good stuff — when he’s not making you carry his book bag and trombone home from school) and I know I’ve read far more than I’ve commented…but I’ll really miss you.

    Thanks for all the wicked good laughs and smart remarks!

  20. Grazie di tutto Chris!
    Your blog has been an inexhaustible source of inspiration over these years, you’ll be missed a lot.

    I do believe this time the Bialetti coffee machine wouldn’t be enough for you to keep the site open, am i right?

    Saluti dall’Italia

  21. Cool that you’ve taken the time to thank each member for his/her comments. And again, YOU’RE WELCOME!

  22. Chris, I’m super impressed you replied to all those people.

    I’m sure going miss all of those fun posts! You always had an interesting mix of content that made it worth coming visiting Cynical-C regularly. I think the name of the site is not very accurate because I saw a lot of positivity on this site and not as much cynicism as I thought there would be (that’s not a complaint by the way). Definitely fitted with my outlook on life anyway.

    All the best for the future in what ever you and your family chooses to do!

  23. Have enjoyed your blog for a long time, Chris. I’ll miss it, but also know that all good things must come to an end, eventually. Wish you success and joy in whatever is ahead for you, Mrs. C and Cyni-Kitty. Godspeed!

  24. Chris,
    Do not feel obligated to reply, because I just want to say adios and wish you the very best in all future endeavors. There’s nothing I can add that hasn’t been said already, but you will be missed. Go be great at something that makes you happy. Peace.

  25. what they said….
    (took me a while to find this comment thread… been visiting and hoping it wasnt really over, even though i knew it was)

  26. Thanks for the encore effort Chris! I was a very fond lurker and sometimes commenter for years. Onward and upward…wishing you all good things, and an awesome garden this year. πŸ™‚

  27. Oh fine. Now where am I supposed to vent my snarky comments? Truly, though, will miss this part of my day. From one atheist to another, via con Dios!

  28. I am sad that you are leaving and i wish you the best now my list of web distractions just got a lot smaller.

  29. Oh Dang!
    I’d been wondering the last few days what was up, and only just now checked out this comment section.
    So long and Good Luck Chris. I’m gonna miss this blog, I don’t know of any other quite like it.

  30. So, while you are replying to comments Chris…found any good stories on the web that you want to share?

    Anything you may feel cynical about?

      1. OMG! Ubuntu on a kids laptop! This is outrageous!

        Surely if we want our kids to learn they must have Microsoft Windows, MIcrosoft Office, Microsoft SQL and Microsoft Visual Studio. Do we not want them to go to school? Come on now.

        Satya N

  31. Your blog has had some of the best posts online, I appreciated the humor and the interesting finds you had. I’ll truly miss it

  32. You can’t lye in front of the bulldozers forever! Just got the Galaxy reference. A nice final nod! So sorry to see you go. I have had you as a favorite for what i think is 7 years. You will be missed.

Comments are closed.