Tuesday, September 29, 2015

If you can't beat'em, join'em.

I've been at my current place of employment for over five years and I've held the same position the entire time. That said, I've made more money every year I've been with the company and my benefits have gotten better.

At the beginning of 2015 we took what amounted to a 22% pay cut. We lost a LOT of people as a result. Since the end of May I've been working six days a week. It's sucked, even if my money situation has been pretty good so far.

Anyway, long story short I decided to give it a year to see what happens and how my pay looks long term. The company added some things to take as much of the sting out as possible (and, in fairness, it was not their choice to cut pay, it was that or go out of business) and things may balance out. But.

I don't want to stay in the position I am in forever. I'd like to advance in the company and take on some bigger roles. So this morning I'll be starting a management training program. I'll be at our corporate headquarters for two days, and then I'll be getting hands on training in our local office for six to eight weeks. At the end of that I may or may not be offered a management position.

The good part about the training is that I'll be paid my daily rate while in training. I'm a commission employee so that means they'll average what my daily earnings were for a few weeks and that will be my daily pay while in training. The bad news is that I won't be allowed to earn any over time while in training.

I'm actually going to work one more day in the field on Thursday just to help the office out, but then I'll be working five, and off two. That'll be nice. I'll also have a set schedule (probably rotating between 8-5 and 10-7).

I'm looking forward to the change and trying something new. If it doesn't work out, it doesn't work out. But I think it's the right path to start on to meet some of my long term goals.

Monday, September 28, 2015

The Tale of the Missing 1911 Parts, part 2

I got a voicemail from a woman at the local Post Office today. She didn't go into details but she said my package had been found and would be delivered to my box today. When I arrived home this evening from work I had a big white envelope from Midway USA in my mailbox.

I'm glad they were found. Kind of upset that this happened, but not know exactly what went wrong it's hard to be mad at any person. Typically my mail delivery is excellent so if this is the worst I have happen (and it's only happened once in 7 years) I'm okay with that.

Now it's time to get those new parts installed!

Saturday, September 26, 2015

The Tale of the Disappearing 1911 Parts, part 1.

So, I ordered a Wilson Combat Bullet Proof slide stop and a Wilson spring for my 1911. According to tracking they were delivered in my mailbox this past Tuesday. If they were, I never saw them.

Asked my brother, he only saw what I saw (new jacket I ordered and contact solution...I love Prime).

Checked at the Post Office just in case it wasn't left and they confirmed it was delivered but are going to check exactly where the scan happened when it was scanned delivered in my box.

I have a good delivery man and he has been delivering packages to me for years so I doubt he made a mistake, but he's human.

On the other hand, I am $85 poorer with nothing to show for it. I wanted to get those parts in and function tested by now.

Fuck my life.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Fatherly Anecdotes.

My grandfather raised me. To this day I still think of, and call him, "Dad." He was in the US Navy, he was a convicted felon, and he was at one point a drug trafficker (though the most he was ever busted with more than a few ounces of weed, just enough to get the felony in California in the 1990s).

Any time I was being a pissy teenager he would look at me and say, "You need some pussy," or "You wouldn't be so pissed off all the time if you got some pussy."

Thirty year old me thinks back on that and says, "That mean old bastard was on to something."

This was a man who claimed .22LR was a perfectly acceptable deer hunting cartridge, and that anything bigger was just a waste.  When I asked him how you humanely kill deer with a .22 he told me, "We just got close and shot them in the eye."

Some people might think he was full of shit for claiming to take deer with head shots, but I watched him put three rapid fire rounds into a coyote at least 100 yards away braced against a tractor wheel using a beat up old semi-auto .22 rifle and iron sights. I don't remember what model the rifle was, only that it had a tubular magazine.

I also saw him shoot rabbits on the run with a Ruger 10/22 using iron sights. This was after drinking a case of Old Milwaukee's Best Light.

The first time I ever tasted moonshine I was in elementary school. It was fresh from the still he'd built behind the camper we had on 20 acres he owned in the Sierra Nevada mountains. We spent most of our summers in those mountains if we weren't visiting his side of the family in Alabama.

He's been dead for years now, but I still dream about him from time to time. There were a lot of bad times, and my childhood wasn't easy, but I try to put things in the context of his life when I think about him. There were plenty of good times too, and plenty who had a worse time growing up than me.

Considering where I'm at in my life, the old drunk didn't do half bad as a substitute father. I mean, I could blame all my failures on him and say I'm only where I am in spite of him rather than because of him, but if he taught me anything it was how to be self reliant. So there's that.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Friday is my favorite day of the week.

Not for the usual reasons, but because it's my ONLY DAMN DAY OFF, and it's hotter than the surface of the sun in the Heart O' Dixie.

Image result for heatwave

I've been working six days a week for what seems like for-fucking-ever.  A couple of months now, anyway. And it also happens to be one of the hottest summers I can remember. Frankly, I'm tired of it and while the money IS good I can't help but think of how much better it would have been without the 22% pay cut that happened early this year. That, and it's all being dumped into the hole I dug myself into while we were slow.

Such is life.

Believe it or not I've found some time for shooting, though I'm damn near tapped out on ammo. I need more of this, of course. You can always benefit from more time on the range, and I would like to get in some more training before the year is out, hopefully teach some more classes too.

Still working on the novel.  It's coming along, though I've hit the fits and starts stage. I know where I want to go with, but getting there is becoming a bit of a pain. I just need to get the main plot hammered out and then fill in the rest. I have the habit of wanting to edit constantly, but I firmly believe that editing in the middle of the first draft is a time wasting trap.

Image result for it's a trap

I've had to cut down on some of my extracurricular activities both to cut costs and because of a lack of time, so my poker playing, cigar smoking, and boozing have taken a hit. It's rather a small tragedy.

But to hell with it, I'm going to keep on keeping on. Things will get better or they will get worse, and I'll handle it either way.

Image result for the beatings will continue until morale improves

Robert's Picks


Dead Eye (A Gray Man Novel) by Mark Greaney (very good)

Killing Floor (Jack Reacher)by Lee Child (good)

Scattered Suns (The Saga of Seven Suns)by Kevin J. Anderson (very good)

The Perfect Killby A.J. Quinnell (good)

Of Fire and Night (The Saga of Seven Suns)by Kevin J. Anderson (very good)