Just wanted to share something that happened to my wife and me last Friday. We were out celebrating our 21st wedding anniversary in downtown Houston. First dinner followed by a show. The show was walking distance to the restaurant and it was a pretty nice night (with just a few sprinkles) so we decided to hoof it over to the show and work off the veal picatta, and leave the truck back at the restaurant. The show was fine, and I offered to go get the truck so she wouldn't have to walk all the way back to the restaurant. At this point it was around 10:00 p.m., drizzly, and the streets were nearly empty of pedestrians. She decided she didn't want to wait alone, so she came with me on the walk back. I've had a CCW for 9 years and have never touched the weapon while carrying concealed except to put it on or take it off. That night I was carrying my P3AT in a pocket holster in my front pocket, since it was a warm night and there was no good way to conceal my XD. We had walked two blocks when we stopped to check Google Maps on the Crackberry to make sure of where we were going. Since it was nighttime in downtown Houston, my head was already on a swivel as I quickly checked the map against the street signs, then looked around to assure the safety of both of us. It was at this point I noticed a fairly large (probably 6'1"; I'm 5'7"), rough looking urban dweller approaching straight at us from across the street at a swift walk. There were open spaces all around (we were quite alone on the street except for him), and we were not on a corner, so I felt there was something not right about him going straight at us like that. While he was about 30 feet away my initial wariness turned to heightened awareness that something was not right. At this point I slipped my hand into the gun pocket and pulled the P3AT far enough out of the holster so that the grip was past the edge of my pocket, just so it wouldn't hang if I had to draw, but not to a point where it was visible. By this point the fellow was in a pretty good trot and muttering something very quietly, apparently attempting to get me to move toward him to hear him better. I kept thinking that surely he's not going to get any closer, but he was. When he was around 10' away, my wife did exactly what I've asked her to do if something like this ever happened, and moved behind me. I realized that I had to do something, so I raised my other hand toward him, and yelled at the top of my lungs "STEP AWAY FROM US NOW!!!", and put myself into a more stable position, while leaving my gun hand partially in my pocket and gripping the gun with my finger on the side of the trigger. I did not want him to see the weapon at that point, in case this was an innocent encounter. He was startled, and he stopped. He then started slowly coming closer again saying "Hey man, I just wanted to find out if you'd...", at which point I cut him off again by yelling "STEP AWAY NOW!!!". He then walked to my right, appearing to try to circle around behind us and said "You don't need to be afraid!". This only made me more concerned. I then drew the P3 out far enough where the trigger guard had cleared the edge of my pocket and my finger was now fully on the trigger. I told him "I'm not afraid of anything, but I'm telling you for your own good to step away from us." At this point he called me an ******* and backed up. Fine. But this is one ******* who did not intend to let this guy get in close and be in a position to harm my wife. I indicated to my wife to cross the street away from this guy in a fast walk, while I walked behind her and watched the guy. He yelled another insult as we walked away. Was this an innocent encounter? That's not what my gut was telling me. I felt that he was a threat, mainly due to his insistence on trying to get in close. It was the first time I have EVER had to put my hand on my weapon, especially due to a perceived threat. I did not like it one bit, but I'm so thankful that I had that option.