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Jealousy, a Love Triangle, & The Tall Poppy Syndrome

Doug Garland
Doug Garland
4 min read
Jealousy, a Love Triangle, & The Tall Poppy Syndrome
A lonely but lovely rare red (as are white and pink) California poppy. Photo by author.

Table of Contents

It is not love that is blind, but jealousy.
Lawrence Durrell

The last blog dealt with envy (Envy, the Capollas, & The Tall Poppy Syndrome). Presently, we will examine jealousy. For your review, we will define them again.  

Jealous people are concerned about losing something or someone they have or have already lost. Three people are involved such as a love triangle. Jealousy has its dark side and can be a cutter in TPS. Jealousy is losing something one already has and involves three people.

Envy occurs when a person lacks another's superior quality, achievement, or possession and either desires it or wishes the others lack it. Some even state that the envier wished the envied lacked the given trait and wished their happiness was eradicated. Envy covets what one does not have and involves two parties (see The Tall Poppy Syndrome - The Joy of Cutting Others Down).  

Our case study involves an unmarried couple living together but taking a hiatus in their relationship. The male began seeing another woman which provoked jealousy and the death of the new female companion - the ultimate cutting down (see Texas Woman Found Guilty Of Murdering Elite Cyclist Due To Love Triangle).

Kaitlin Marie Armstrong was born November 21, 1987, and grew up in Livonia, Michigan. She attended Schoolcraft College and Eastern Michigan University. Armstrong worked as a yoga instructor.

Colin Strickland was born in 1986 in Johnson City, Texas. He started cycling as a form of transportation. His first experience with bicycle racing was winning an alley cat race in 2010 - an alley cat race is an unsanctioned bicycle race that usually takes place in cities and is organized by bicycle messengers (people who are carriers).  

He won the Gravel Worlds in 2017 and 2018, and his 2019 victory at Unbound (the world's premier traveler event at 200 miles) led to a contract from EF Pro Cycling. He earned sponsorships from Specialized and Red Bull.

Anna Moriah Wilson was born in Littleton, New Hampshire on May 18, 1996.  She grew up in Kirby, Vermont, and graduated from Dartmouth College in 2019 with a Bachelor of Engineering.

Wilson developed a passion for cycling and became a gravel cyclist. She worked for Specialized, a bicycle manufacturing company. In April 2022, she quit her job to become a full-time professional cycling racer.

Strickland and Wilson met in September 2021 at a four-day gravel race in Idaho. Strickland was pausing his three-year relationship with Armstrong although they were still living together in Austin.

In late October 2021, Wilson traveled to Austin where she and Strickland had a brief dalliance. She returned to her home in San Francisco and Strickland returned to Armstrong. After that, their relationship continued but was professional and platonic.

Strickland claimed in January 2022 that he purchased guns for himself and Armstrong, who wanted a gun as a means of protection. What were "they" thinking???????

Here is what Armstrong was thinking (the mind controls emotions). A person - who was with Armstrong in January 2022 when Armstrong discovered that Strickland had a romantic relationship with Wilson - claimed that Armstrong "angrily stated that she wanted to kill Wilson." Another acquaintance stated that Armstrong had contacted Wilson repeatedly and told her to stay away from Strickland.  

What was Armstrong doing? She was going to the gun range with her sister to learn how to fire her weapon.

On May 11, 2022, Strictland picked Wilson up at a friend's apartment around 5:45 pm for a swim. After a light dinner Strickland dropped Wilson at her friend's apartment shortly after 8:30 p.m. Strickland's friend returned around 10 p.m. and found Wilson bleeding and unconscious. Wilson was pronounced dead.

Armstrong had access to Stickland's Armstrong laptop and tracked Wilson to the apartment where she was staying through a fitness app. She shot Wilson three times, twice in the head and once through the heart.

Police examined neighborhood cameras and identified an auto similar to the one Armstrong owned at 8:37 p.m., one minute after an electronic lock recorded Wilson arriving at her friend's apartment.

Armstrong was arrested at her home on May 12 for a misdemeanor theft warrant. This warrant was related to Botox injections at an Austin medical spa in 2018 where she left without paying. Armstrong was questioned by police and released.

A search warrant was obtained and on May 12 the couple's house was searched. Investigators found a 9mm handgun belonging to Armstrong that matched shell casings found at the crime scene.  

The day after the interview, on May 13, Armstrong sold her Jeep.

On May 14, Armstrong flew to New York, where her sister lives. On May 18, she flew to San Jose, Costa Rica, with a ticket purchased in her sister’s name.

Armstrong arrived in Santa Teresa and introduced herself as “Ari” in the late spring of 2022.

She stayed at Don Jon’s hostel and spent most days on her laptop computer in the common area. Occasionally she joined others for drinks at a local bar. Armstrong then traveled to San Jose where she, under an alias, spent more than $6,000 on facial-altering plastic surgery.

By June 23, U.S. Marshals began interviewing people in Santa Teresa. Six days later, US Marshals arrested Armstrong at Don Jon’s. She was extradited to Texas to face prosecution.

On Oct. 11, Armstrong was on her way to a doctor’s appointment outside the jail facility when she escaped custody. She was captured after a short chase.

Her murder trial began Nov. 1 and ended  Nov. 16  with a guilty verdict of first-degree murder. She received a 90-year sentence, with eligibility for parole after 30 years.

This tragic tale began with a fit of jealousy and moved through many other dark emotions - hate, anger, revenge, and grief - and ended in murder. It is difficult to follow Wilson's thinking and understand how plan A could achieve a satisfactory conclusion.

Before You Embark On A Journey Of Revenge,
Dig Two Graves” ~ Confucius

This case study is a tragic tale of jealousy - revenge and digging two graves. One grave turned out to be literal and the other was a life confined to a grave. The outcome differed for the cutter in another blog regarding revenge but the jury is still out regarding the last chapter - see Yevgeny Prigozhin Is Tall Poppied by Vladimir Putin.

The Buddhist antidote for jealousy is sympathetic joy.” Sympathetic joy involves taking joy in the success or happiness of others. The Germans call it freudenfreude - the sense of happiness and shared joy we feel when others succeed. Easier said than done.

We cannot blame others for our problems. One must look at one's self and seek improvement. A win-win strategy is best while Armstrong's lose-lose is the worst.    

For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death. 2 Cor 7:10  
jealousyenvyrevengetall poppy syndromeAnna WilsonKaitlin Armstrong

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Douglas Garland, M.D. practiced orthopedic surgery for 37 years in Southern California. Doug was also a Clinical Professor of Orthopedics at the University of Southern California.

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