Friday, December 31, 2010

Year End Retrospective.

2010 sucked.

I've spent the vast majority of the year in the red in every single category.  I dumped my savings, tax return, and what credit I had left into getting my car fixed twice because the first person I took it to was moron.  A week after my car was fixed I got laid off from a job I really liked.  I found another quickly, and it pays more and has benefits, but I went five weeks with no income and no savings.  I'm just now getting back on top of things after nine months.

My romantic life went, well, nowhere.  Probably my fault more than anything.  Was very, very tempted by someone I cared a great deal about, but I just didn't have the time to really get to know what being with her would be like.  She wanted too much to fast and it ended badly.  I regret that, but I don't see how it could have ended differently.  Every other attempt at dating or a relationship has ended in abject failure.  I take full responsibility for that.  I'm bitter and mean, and that's not something anyone deserves to deal with.

I met not a single one of my goals that I'm aware of.  I was hoping to be in a new (to me) vehicle about this time.  That didn't happen.  I was hoping to be most of the way out of debt.  That didn't happen.  I hoped to meet someone that made my heart stir.  That sorta happened, but I fucked that up too.

It wasn't all bad though.  While I had to let a lot of my guns go I was able to pick up a cheap 1911 pistol that I really like.  I've been spending a lot of time on the range.  Not as much as I'd like, but more than I every have before.  I'm seeing definite improvement in my shooting.

I worked today, and I'll work tomorrow.  My feet hurt, and I'm tired.  I'm going to have a few drinks, eat some wings, and go to bed.

See ya next year.

Acute failure of the victim selection process.

Here.  Sorry about the stupid advertisement.  I would have used the YouTube version but the AP cut of the story there was atrocious.  CNN's is much better.  Take a look at it for a little education on spin.  All the facts are the same, but the conclusions are different.  All with a little careful editing. 

"Of course it's silly. I mean, all they got was a $150 and one of them got shot for that.  It's not worth it." 

If only more people shared this guy's attidtude...

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

With all due respect.

With all due respect to Col. Cooper and the Scout Rifle concept, I've never seen the point in a bolt action M1A.

I'm honest enough to say I don't spend a lot of time lugging rifles around.  I wish I did, but I don't have the rifles to do it.  Being a bit of an outdoors man I do understand the need to keep weight to a minimum, but for a rifle around ten pounds, with optics and a full magazine, doesn't seem so bad to me, especially if you have a sling to carry it on. 

YMMV

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Quote of the Day: Gun Safety

For the love of John Moses Browning, don’t get your toys that go bang and toys you like to bang mixed up. -Jennifer, at In Jennifer's Head

'1911s Suck.' And they hate you.

Found this post via Robb Allen's blog. The gist of it seems to be 1911s don't work and even if they did you're too stupid to carry a single action pistol:

It’s a 100-year old design. It needs tools to disassemble. It has unreliable magazines. It is finicky about ammo. And, as a single-action pistol, it is unsafe for 95% of its users to carry.


In my original complaint, I forgot to mention the issue with slide-stop failures, and the whole internal extractor/external extractor situation. Either of which would be serious enough to kill any other design’s reputation in the shooting world.

I'm not going to bother defending the 1911, anymore than I would defend a Glock or an HK if I carried one of those (I did actually carry two HK pistols for about a year each).  What I will say is I have not experienced the problems he describes aside from having to figure out what magazines work best and how often to clean it to avoid failures.

As I said over at Robb's place:

Meh. The 1911 doesn't work for him. Good that he's realized that. Too bad he has not realized the simple truth that what works for him, or doesn't, will not be true of everyone else.

Larry Corriea wrote that same post...about HKs. I'm sure there is one about Glocks out there somewhere. 

Monday, December 27, 2010

On The Range #36

Today being such a pretty day I had to get outside for a little shooting.  Pretty it might have been, but it was also on the chilly side.  I stayed mostly warm in a flannel shirt and fleece vest but the breeze could be a bit biting.

I wanted to do two things today.  One was to see how tight I could get my RIA to group at 25 yards from a rest.  The second was to shoot Dot Torture again at 7 yards.

I shot five groups of five rounds each from a rest at 25 yards.  My 'rest' was a rolled up fleece jacket on a tool tray and a stool to park my butt on.  Nothing fancy, but it worked.






There is the visual evidence.  I'm partial to blaming my own shooting, but I don't do enough rest shooting to really know.  I was able to get a couple of tight groupings (1.25" on the second group, 2" if you count the fifth shot low left) but nothing consistent.  Also had a few wide flyers.  
Just for a comparison I shot a 5 rounds offhand at 25 yards just to see how I'd do.  As you can see, not very well.  

Moving in to 7 yards I burned through twenty rounds to see how fast I could keep my shots on target and work on reloading as quickly and smoothly as possible.  I need to work on maintaining my grip and smoothing out my reloads. 

Here is the result of those 20 rounds:


Finally, I shot Dot Torture at 7 yards.  My final score was 27/50.  Pretty terrible, but still an improvement over the first time I shot it at 7 yards.  Hopefully I can keep on improving.  

Robert's Picks

Books:

More Than Honor by David Weber and various authors (good)

Worlds Of Honor by David Weber and various authors (good)

Changer Of Worlds by David Weber and various authors (good)

In The Service Of The Sword by David Weber and various authors (good)

Crown Of Slaves by David Weber and Eric Flint (good)

Movies:

Savior (very good)

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Movie Review: Savior

Savior is a 1998 film starring Dennis Quaid.  I dropped it in my Netflix queue a while back because the story sounded interesting.  It arrived a couple of days ago and I had the opportunity to watch it tonight.

I was completely blown away.  This is one of the most emotionally gripping and heartrending movies I have ever seen.

With the war torn Balkans as a backdrop Dennis Quaid's character is a mercenary who has lost everything, and just doesn't care anymore.  His sole purpose in life is to kill.  As it's Muslims who took everything he loved, it's Muslims he seeks out by taking up arms with the Serbs.  It's easy to see how a man faced with what he was faced with would become exactly what he became, and also how he found his way back.

I guess this movie hit me hard because I could easily relate to Quaid's character's motivations.  It was with a certain satisfaction that I watched him walk out of the room in the US embassy in Paris where his wife and son's bodies lay in caskets, victims of a bombing by Muslim terrorists, down the city street to a Mosque and coldly start shooting Muslims at prayer.  Yes, a horrible thing.  But I could understand it.  And I don't know that, faced with the same situation, I wouldn't be severely tempted to do the same.

I highly recommend this movie to anyone wanting a look at an ugly war.

Firearm Purchase Plans for 2011

There are a lot of guns I want to buy in the future.  A LOT.  However, as is typical, funds aren't available for all the things I want.  There are a few things I'd like to pick up in 2011 though. 

The first is another AR type rifle/carbine.  I had an S&W M&P-15t which I loved, but I was forced to sell it after being laid off.  I wouldn't mind picking up another but they've gone up in price a bit since I purchased mine.  I remember admiring the S&W MOE ARs and liked them quite a bit, and recently Bushmaster started making a version.  I've decided, unless I happen to come across a better deal, to pick up a Bushmaster MOE:

 
I like the Flat Dark Earth, but I might go with classical tacticool black. 

Another purchase I would like to make is another 1911 pistol.  I can think of no more appropriate purchase in 2011 than a 1911 pistol.  I've gone back and forth over various 1911 I'd like to have, and generally I'd like to have all of them.  I can't.  For 2011 I want to pick up either a STI Trojan or an STI Ranger II:

 STI Trojan
STI Ranger II

Both are in the $1,200.00 range MSRP-wise.  That's about all I feel I can really put into a 1911 pistol in the next year or so.  I'd love to drop a few grand on some super custom job but I just don't have the funds, and to be honest I've been more than a little impressed with my Filipino slag gun.

My first instinct was to go for the full size gun, but I've always wanted a commander size 1911.  It'll be a coin toss when it comes time to buy, and hopefully that time will come sooner rather than later.  

For the moment I have a serviceable 1911 carry pistol that I'm very happy with so my first purchase off this list will be the AR.  I've considered picking up a .30-06 or .308 caliber rifle.  I want both of these at some point, but having had an AR before I know that they are a both a lot of fun, fairly cheap to shoot, and handy.

So there you go.  Those are the guns I plan on picking up in 2011.  

Saturday, December 25, 2010

It's raining.

For Holiday cheer I suggest you look to many of the fine blogs to the left on the sidebar.  I'm afraid it is a fault of mine that I am lacking it, for while I realize there are many others whose Christmas day will be far worse than mine, and mine won't be all that bad, spending it alone still sucks and knowing it sucks worse for others has never made me feel any better.

However, I did get to sleep in...I find that bad of money and I just might smile.  Maybe.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Eleven hours.

That was work day.  Eleven hours, no lunch, up since 4:30AM not home until after 8PM.  It wasn't a bad day except the last job was stupid and the hardest of the day, and it's Christmas Eve. 

It's possible I may be working tomorrow.  I won't know until I wake up and check to see if I've been routed. 

Bah-fucking-humbug.

All I Want For Christmas...

Is to sleep in, and to wake up to a large bag stuffed with hundred dollar bills.

I'll consider myself lucky if I get either.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

On The Range #35

This past Sunday I wasn't routed for work so I decided I'd get a little shooting in.  My friend Logan joined me.  I hadn't done any shooting since before I went to Florida for work, and I was happy be on the range again.

I did not shoot Dot Torture, but I let Logan shoot it.  It's helped my shooting a lot and I think it will help his as well. 

What I did do was about 50 rounds of press outs.  I also did some shooting on the move, and some bull's eye shooting at 7-8 yards.  Nothing impressive, and I can see that trigger control remains my biggest foe.

  
I also took the time to send my iPhone straight to Hell!


After I finished shooting I cleaned my gun for the first time in a while.  I also let Logan detail strip just to show me how it's done.  


Logan needed the practice, and I needed to actually watch someone do it up close and personal.  I'm still not all the confident about doing it myself, but I think when I hit two thousand rounds I'll make the attempt to give it a good cleaning inside and out.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

New(ish) execution drug.

I actually think Weer'd suggested this on VC when the whole (deliberate) shortage of sodium thiopental came up:

(CNN) -- An Oklahoma death row inmate received a drug commonly used to euthanize animals Thursday because of a nationwide shortage of sodium thiopental, the drug usually used as the sedative in its three-drug execution cocktail.
Where there's a will, there's a way.  And now that we have a successful test of this stuff it's going to make it harder for future challenges to carry any weight.  That OK judge was rather savy in that regard.

The Focus it is.

After doing a little research into the two new phones I was interested in it's become clear to me that the Samsung Captivate is a POS.  There seems to be a serious issue with the GPS, which is one of the most important features for me as I use it often at work.

Instead, I'll be purchasing a Samsung Focus running WP7.  I'll probably be going to pick one up in the morning, after which I will be disposing of my dead iPhone.

Yesterday.

Was a good birthday, all in all. 

I've never been one to make a big thing of my birthday.  More often than not I'm working. 

Yesterday I took it easy, did a bit of reading, and a little window shopping.  I decided to pick up a Samsung Focus running Windows Phone 7 to replace my iPhone, and I picked up a book.  Also had lunch at Five Guys Burgers and Fries.  It was good, but no better than a good small town diner.

I came home and did some more reading while smoking a Romeo Y Julieta Vintage Maduro which was quite good.  

My friends John and Jennifer had me over for a delicious dinner, and surprised me with a birthday cake.  I had a good night.  It was nice to spend some time with friends after being out of town for a week and half. 

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Monday, December 13, 2010

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Decisions.

I have some decisions to make when I get home.  The one good thing about this time in Florida is that I've had plenty of time to think.  Especially about stuff I don't particularly like thinking about.

There are things in my life that have to change.  I'm not on track, my course has gone awry, and not to the better.  Sometimes the unexpected comes along and that's a good thing, but for the most part it hasn't been.  It's time to get away from short term and start thinking long term.  Everything needs to be better evaluated.

I'm about to be 26 years old.  Where am I going to be when I'm 30?

I'm working out of town, but frankly the money is not what I was led to believe it would be.  There just wasn't enough work down here to justify sending four of us.  As a result I'm barely getting the work I'm supposed to be getting at home, and that's working 6 days rather than 5.

It's really frustrating, and I don't think I'll ever do this again.  Not to mention the management staff has made it a very hostile environment.  Either they're being extremely anal about stupid, meaningless shit or they're playing childish games.  The end result is I don't want to work with the office/management staff and as a result of avoiding them I'm suffering in the money making department.  I can't wait to get home.

The 'Ick Factor' is not a legitimate basis for laws.

We have a lot of stupid laws in the country.  I would posit that more than a few are the result of someone going, "Ick!  We can't let people do that, that's disgusting!"

Which brings us to this.  David Epstein, a Columbia professor, has been arrested for incest.  Definitely ick.  However, here is the rub for me.  The 'crime' was committed with his adult (24 years old) daughter.  She has not been arrested (equal protection, anyone?).  Incest between adults is, quite frankly, a malum prohibitum issue.  It's icky, and in general none of us want to think about it, but when it comes right down to it I am a libertarian.  Some Lib Prof and his adult daughter making the beast with two backs in no way affects my personal liberty.

I have the same reaction to this story as I do to people eating bugs or seafood.  Should I advocate laws against the eating of bugs and seafood?

Let me use a better analogy.  I've engaged in sexual acts with other consenting adults that 'go against the Bible.'  Should I go to jail for those actions because someone finds them icky?  Hey, there are people out there who get off on smearing themselves in shit or throwing up in each others mouths.  It's fucking disgusting, but the idea of making it illegal for them to do that if they choose to is even more repugnant.

Maybe I'm jaded.  Maybe I've read too much Heinlein.  Or maybe I just really mean it when I say people should be left alone as long as they're not hurting anyone but themselves.

That said, I don't want to hear a single fucking joke from any liberals and/or Democrats about cousin humping hillbillies and rednecks.  Ever.  Again.  Because I can and will bring up Epstein penetrating his daughter's delicate flower with his pulsating tower of patriarchy. 

H/t Instapundit

Cuteness overload.

Here and here.

On the bridge of the Titanic, shortly after impact...

"Captain, I'm worried we're running low on caviar and champagne!"


The idea that it's this that might jeopardize social security, and not the fact that is faces constant jeopardy because it's a fucking Ponzi Scheme makes me think of a village of prehistoric humans getting nervous because Ugh Jr. decided he wasn't going to leave an offering at the foot of the smoking volcano.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

I'm looking at you, Fox News!

Military personel killed in action are NOT 'military victims.' 

They were referred to as such by the dumb twit on Fox News tonight when reporting on a story about wreaths being placed on graves at Arlington. 

Monday, December 6, 2010

A.R.S Knives

I just found out from a friend of mine that A.R.S. Knives is a Birmingham, AL company.  I was unaware of this even though I had heard of them.  You may have their advertisements if you read the gun rags.  I'd actually considered picking up one of their Dog Tag Survival Knives.


The friend I just mentioned was recently hired by them as a machinist.  He's been looking for a job since he finished gunsmithing school in Colorado.  From what he tells me they've applied for an FFL and are going to be branching out into firearms starting with assembling ARs.

Anyway, check their website out at the link above.  They've got some really nice looking stuff.  I may see if I can get my hands on one or two items to review.

Why you should carry in your home.

Home invasions happen quickly, and you probably won't have time to retrieve a gun, especially one that it unloaded and locked up.

Two men initially forced their way inside the residence in the 1800 block of River Road, which is west of Helena near the Bibb County line, according to the sheriff's office. Then two more men entered and began looking for items, authorities said. Cash, three guns and a TV were taken. The incident was reported at 5:30 p.m. The married couple, whose names were not released, suffered minor injuries.
Read the comments.  These people lived in a rural area, not in some ghetto in the city.  They owned firearms, but obviously didn't have them to hand.

I admit I don't always have my gun on me when I'm at home, but I do always have one within reach.  And I've always got one in hand when answering the door when I'm not expecting visitors.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Just so we're clear....

WAR EAGLE!

Empathy.

I'm feeling it right now. A friend is going through a rough time. Probably one of the worst times ever. I wish I could help, but when it comes right down to it you usually have to face the hardest things in life alone because only you can suffer what you suffer, feel what you feel, live your life. No one else can do it for you. Even if, like me, you'd like to take a little of the burden upon yourself.

Maybe wanting to is enough. That, and knowing that it's not yours to carry no matter how much you want to help.

Friday, December 3, 2010

I'm here.

So I made it into Florida and checked into my hotel room a couple of hours ago. Took the time to hit the local Wally World and got a six pack of Dr. Pepper and some Snickers bars.

Yeah, this kind of sucks. I'm having to share a room, something I was not informed of until this morning. I'm not happy about that. The room I was given is a smoking room. I don't smoke. I hope the guy I'm rooming with doesn't either (he hasn't arrived yet) because I won't be able to handle that. That would be absolutely, totally unacceptable.

On the plus side the hotel has free wifi.

Cracker Barrel

One of the better parts of traveling by car in the South is the Cracker Barrel County Store and Restaurant. They are as common as McDonald's in states like Alabama and offer food that is typically Southern and of a much better quality than any fast-food.

I'm currently sitting in the Cracker Barrel in Greenville, AL. It's bustling with activity, an ant hill pouring forth with fluffy biscuits and hearty entrees, like Country Fried Steak and Chicken and Dumplings.

I'm sure when I finish my meal I'll take a few minutes before hitting the road again to browse the country store, maybe even pick up some candy.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

On the Road.

I'm heading to Florida for work. I may be gone as long as two weeks. Hopefully my hotel will have wifi.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Quote of the Day: Alternate Reality Addition

Regarding the proposal to freeze federal pay increases:

"By focusing exclusively on federal employees, the administration runs the risk of reinforcing the myth, pushed by some for politically convenient but cynical reasons, that America suffers from a federal government comprised of unproductive and overpaid civil servants. Nothing could be further from the truth," Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., said in a written statement, calling the pitch a "piecemeal approach."

You've got to be kidding me, right?

For maybe the second time in two years I'm actually in agreement with the President, although I hope he realizes that this one little change can only be the beginning if he wants to actually have an impact on the deficit the country faces.

I have GOT to get me one of these!

Thompson conversion kit for a 10/22.

H/t SayUncle

Robert's Picks

Books:

Echos of Honor by David Weber (excellent)

Ashes of Victory by David Weber (good)

Dirty White Boys
by Stephen Hunter (good)

Movies:

RED (excellent)

Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows, Part I

Friday, November 26, 2010

Wow.

I've always had a thing for older women.

Good Citizenship.

Today while I was working in a customer's home I saw that one of his children had an award for 'Good Citizenship' laid out on his bed. I remembered those same awards being given out when I was in school, and I started thinking about why exactly you got them.

You got them for good behavior. You got them for respecting authority. You got them for doing what you were told without question. That's what the public school system, the government funded and run school system, thinks makes a good citizen. That bothers me a great deal.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Stessed.

I'm just realizing, or just acknowledging, that for the last week or two I've been seriously, seriously stressed. In general that means I've been seriously pissed off. Minor annoyances become major ones, and my mood is an angry, dark cloud.

One of the problems with this is what little of my scathing personality I tend to hold back isn't held back anymore. I'm meaner than usual, and I just want to be left the hell alone. And nothing is more likely to set me off than someone pointing out that I'm in a bad mood. Go figure.

I've had a four day weekend, but I feel like I just finished a rough work week. I've done my best to keep my head down and stick my nose in a book. I actually finished Stephen Hunters I, Sniper yesterday and have been plowing through my reread of David Weber's Echoes Of Honor.

Still, every time I take my eyes off the pages I'm right back to finding something that curls my lip and makes me want to set off on a profanity laced rant...

An unexpected ecounter with law enforcement.

I was on my way home from trivia night at one of the bars downtown when I saw that harbinger of unpleasantness that is blue lights suddenly filling my rear view mirror. This was, in fact, the second time in three days I'd seen this particular phenomenon of civilization.

The first, luckily, was just a sheriff's deputy who needed an excuse to pass me and the car in front of me on a double yellow. I'd at first presumed he was responding to a radio call but not long after I saw what I believed to be the same car pulling out of the parking lot of a popular, local Barbecue restaurant.

The second, unfortunately, was all about me. I pulled over as soon as possible and wondered if I'd been speeding. It was a possibility because I hadn't been paying attention, though there had been a car in front of me I wasn't gaining on. I also mentally kicked myself for not taking the interstate home rather than driving directly through the city.

The officer approached my car and very politely asked me where I was heading and for my driver's license and my proof of insurance. As I always do when I pulled my driver's license out of my wallet I also showed him my pistol license and informed him I was carrying a gun in a holster. He thanked me for the information and waited as I started digging for the proof of insurance.

For some reason my insurance cards like to hide, and are always a pain to find. While I dug through the reams of paper work he told me he'd pulled me over because my tag light was out. I guess my surprise was kind of obvious. I'd never even considered that but kind of shrugged and said I understood why he had.

At this point he walked back to his patrol vehicle and told me to hold the insurance paper out the window if I found it. I did a few minutes later and dutifully held it up. He came back and politely asked me a few more questions, mostly about where I was from and what I did for a living.

In the end he thanked me for telling him about my firearm, got the number of my place of work after asking about the hiring process, and advised me to get the light replaced as it did give probable cause for a stop. I thanked him and we both went about our night.

I was really impressed with this encounter. My last experience with law enforcement officers in their official capacity left me with a real bad taste in my mouth. It was back when I was having car problems and they unnecessarily harassed me after I explained the reason I was pulled over was an overheating engine and then performed an illegal search.

Anyway, this Birmingham PD officer was very polite and respectful, and in return received the same from me. He did not disarm me, which I wouldn't have particularly been offended by considering the situation. He did not lecture or harass. He did not ticket me, though he had the legal option. He advised me on the best course to avoid further encounters with the police.

That is what I want in a police officer (not necessarily the no ticket part, but that's definitely a bonus!); respect, politeness, and an attitude of helpfulness. It really does go a long way.

Monday, November 22, 2010

My dear Hindu friends, learn from our Muslim brothers.

If you don't like the way someone is depicting one of your religious figures, threaten to kill them and they'll stop it.

Go. To. Hell.

Read. This. Now.

"My belief has always been . . . that wherever in this land any individual's constitutional rights are being unjustly denied, it is the obligation of the federal government -- at point of bayonet if necessary -- to restore that individual's constitutional rights."
-Ronald Reagan

H/t Borepatch

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Interesting discussion at TFL.

Do you wear gun related clothing or post gun decals on your bumper?

My first thought was, "Of course I do.  Why wouldn't I?"  Firearms are the central hobby of my life. 

If I was a scuba diver, I'd have a diving sticker on my car, and probably a diving shirt or two.  I wouldn't avoid them because someone might steal my valuable scuba equipment.  Ham radio operators often have stickers or t-shirts to that affect.  Somehow I think they don't worry too much about people stealing valuable radio equipment.  And they shouldn't. 

Someone said, "I'm not afraid to let anyone know I keep and bear arms."  To the point.  I've never been a fan of 'tactful' disagreement myself.  I calls'em like I sees'em.

One of the moderators opined, "Most of us are not. But it's not about whether you are afraid to own up to your convictions. It is about taking on unnecessary risk. Bringing it on yourself, some might say."

Yeah, exactly.  "I didn't rape her.  She was asking for it wearing that short skirt."

If someone is the victim of a crime, the criminal is to blame.  If they were targeted because of their religion, sex, hobby, politics, ass hat opinion, objectionable t-shirt, or Rolex wrist watch THE. CRIMINAL. IS. TO. BLAME.

It's one thing to be aware that there are criminals out there, and that they will steal your valuables if they can.  It's another to advocate hiding from criminals.  Yes, hiding.

I'm annoyed by the attitude of, Wear what you want, it's your right.  Dumbass.

The 'dumbass' goes unspoken, but it's there.

I find it amusing that everyone posting on the board who objects to advertising gun ownership because they don't want to be targeted by a criminal who might want to steal their guns does not for a moment consider the irony that they are advertising that they own computers and making themselves targets for criminals who want to steal those.  And hey, if you've got a computer you've probably got a tv, maybe an iPod, and probably a car too. 

Oh, you won't put a gun sticker on your truck because someone might want to steal a gun from your truck?  Your truck is probably worth more than your gun, genius.  And a truck isn't hard to steal for a criminal who knows his business. 

Don't wear gun related clothing, or put gun related stickers on your vehicle because someone might target your guns.  Also, for the ladies, wear a burqa so you won't be targeted for rape. 

And don't wear that nice watch, or those shoes, or drive that nice car.  Criminals might target you.

Give me a fucking break.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

This amuses me.

I heard this on Down Range Radio.  Thanks Michael Bane!

On The Range #34

I put a hundred rounds down range today with my 1911.  It was nice to do a little shooting.  I tried to apply some of the stuff I've seen on the Magpul Dynamics DVDs.  Hopefully I'm getting it right. 

I shot three Bill Drills at 7 yards, and two El Presidente drills at 10 yards.  I shot a group of five shots at 25 yards which had a good 6" spread on it, minus one flyer.  I shot another group at 10 yards, this one 3 shots, which was 2".  I want to do some shooting from a rest at 25 yards to see how tight I can get the RIA to group. 

Last but hardly least I shot Dot Torture at 7 yards.  I scored a 23/50, which is pretty damned bad.  Hopefully I will improve on that next time I go shooting. 

If you happen to have an extra three grand...

I really, really want one of these!

Movie Review: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part I

I saw this last night.

Personally, I felt it was one of the worst book to movie adaptations I have ever seen.  It was a great movie, and moved the story along, but it also seemed to assume you've read the book.  That's all good and well except it left me constantly asking, "What does that mean?  How do they know that?  How did they come to that conclusion?"  And I read the book.  I knew the story.  They didn't just cut out filler and extraneous details, they cut out key fucking elements of the plot. 

All of the books, and the movies, have basically been mystery stories.  You follow the actions of the characters as they figure things out.  You see the evidence, the conclusions it leads them to, and how they react.  I enjoy that about them. 

This latest movie seemed like they filmed that, but then edited out all but the action scenes and high tension moments.  It left me feeling like I'd missed parts of the movie.  If I hadn't read the book I'd have been going, "Huh?" the entire time.

At the very least it suffers from terrible editing that left the story feeling disjointed.  Maybe some of that will be cleared up in Part II, but I doubt it. 

Friday, November 19, 2010

Movie review: RED

I went and saw this Monday night.  It was good.  I really enjoyed it.  I think the best thing was that it was nothing like I expected.  Bruce Willis rocking a 1911 was great. 

I give it a 10 out of 10 for a good action/comedy type movie.

Cowboys & Aliens.

This is one movie I can garuntee I will be seeing Summer 2011.  Hell fucking yes.

H/t Instapundit

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Figured that.

I pretty much called this one from the first I heard of the story.


House ethics committee votes to admonish Rangel to not get caught next time.

I'm oh so surprised.

Washington (CNN) -- The House ethics committee voted 9-1 on Thursday to censure Rep. Charles Rangel, D-New York, in response to multiple rules violations committed by the 20-term congressman.
In essence, if the whole house votes for censure Rangel will have to stand before congress and be told, "You've been a bad boy, now say you're sorry and don't do it again."  And then he'll be free to go do it again, but he'd damned well better not get caught or they may have to sternly tell him he's been a bad boy.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Finally!

My Magpul Dynamics Art of the Dynamic Handgun DVD set finally arrived today.  It should have been here yesterday, but apparently light rain will cause a delay for FedEx. 

I'm watching the first DVD now, and I like what I see.  I really wish I was taking the course rather than just watching it, but I think I'm picking some stuff up.  I wish the weather would permit me to do some shooting today, but it won't.

Hopefully soon I'll get back out on the range and put into practice some of the things I'm seeing. 

Monday, November 15, 2010

What the fuck is wrong with you people?

You know what?

Tar and feathers. For real.

Play time with the petty tyrants needs to come to an end. If it's not TSA wanting to sexually assault you and your children it's some mafioso pissed he's not getting his cut from a kid's bake sale.

This shit is not necessary NOR proper.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Chili. With Beans.






Topped with cheddar cheese.  Oh, and a grilled cheese sammich.

FedEx Sucks.

Recently I placed an order with Magpul for the Art of the Dynamic Handgun DVD set.  Magpul ships FedEx.  I prefer UPS, but whatever, right?  It's not like they're the US Postal Service... 

I get my tracking number and I impatiently check it 8 times a day.  When my package finally arrives in Birmingham 3 days later I get excited.  I had a bad day at work but at least I had something to look forward to when I get home.

No such luck.

I arrived home to find that no package had been delivered.  Checked the FedEx website and saw, "DELIVERY EXCEPTION, COULD NOT LOCATE ADDRESS."  It went on the truck in Birmingham.  Taking I-65N out of Birmingham you only have to make one fucking turn to get to my home.  And if you can't come directly here from Birmingham you should be able to find Mt. Olive Rd. from just about anywhere.  I shot off an email to FedEx with the shipping information and a note:

My package was scheduled to be delivered today, but when I arrived home this evening I found it had not been delivered and there was a shipping exception stating that the address could not be located.  My home is visible from the road and my mailbox is clearly labeled with the number 'XXXX' right next to my driveway.  There are no other driveways or mailboxes near enough to cause confusion.  I've also received shipments via FedEx in the past.  I don't understand the problem.
 FedEx replied the next day:

Dear Robert:

Thank you for contacting FedEx. We regret any inconvenience.

Our records show that the driver assigned to deliver your package is having difficulty finding the delivery address, and that a postcard notification has been mailed for additional information to locate your address. To help us follow up on this situation, please e-mail the following information to us:
- Your complete address with zip code
- The complete name and address of the shipper
- Your telephone contact number
- Any direction/landmark to locate your address

Once we received these shipment details, FedEx will send a message to the terminal/station and advise them of the correct delivery address. However, please be informed that an address correction is subject to charge and will be billed to the original bill to account number we have on file.

We look forward to hearing from you again, thank you for shipping FedEx.


Arun B.
FedEx Customer Service

I replied this afternoon:

Here is the information requested in the email sent to me.

My complete address:
XXXX Mt. Olive Rd.
Gardendale, AL 35071-3199

The complete name and address of the shipper:
Magpul Industries
400 Young Court, Unit 1
Erie, CO 80516-8440

My telephone contact number:
205-XXX-XXXX

Direction and landmarks to locate my address:
Take I-65N from Birmingham, then take Exit 272 for MT. OLIVE RD., turn LEFT and drive approximately XX miles to XXXX Mt. Olive Rd. on the right. There is a white mailbox with large numbers 'XXXX' printed on the side. The home is a white single wide trailer visible from the road. The driveway is gated. The front yard is fenced.

Coming from I-65, about one half mile before my driveway, there is a closed store with signs saying GREEN VALLEY GROCERY. About 3/4 of a mile past my home is a bridge that crosses a river. It is the only bridge on Mt. Olive Rd.

Quite frankly locating my home should not be a problem as my mailbox is clearly labeled with the street number and there are no other driveways or mailboxes close enough to cause confusion. If your driver was unable to locate my home I submit that he or she is either incompetent or being dishonest. My job requires that I find people's homes every day and I am more than aware of the difference between a hard to find home and an easy to find home. Mine is one of the easy ones as it requires only the simplest of directions from Birmingham, directions that require ONLY A SINGLE TURN and that one open his or her eyes rather than staring off mindlessly into oblivion.

Robert McDonald
Now, honestly, anybody with half a brain should be able to find my home even WITHOUT the street number by using the information above.  At least, anybody with a head that isn't concave.  Oh, and the best part?  I have to wait until fucking Monday, an extra two days.  Fucking mouth breathing offspring of syphilitic whores. 

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veteran's Day

It's not about being off work, eating good food, or grumbling about the Post Office or bank being closed. Try and remember that.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

On The Range #33: Moving it on out.

My friend Logan came over again today with a couple of friends to do some more shooting.  His main goal was to get his friend Brittney some trigger time on her recently purchased S&W Model 60 .38 Special revolver.  I toyed around with it a little bit, and it's a neat little gun.  I wouldn't mind having one myself.  She's a pretty good shot with it on single action.  Since I got home late I didn't get to see her do any double action shooting with it.

She also shot both of Logan's 1911s and his .22 pistol.  She's a pretty good shot, but would benefit from some good training.  Hopefully she'll come again when I have more time and I can help her with her grip and stance. 

Anyway, a lot of lead was put down range, and when they were packing up I decided to shoot another Dot Torture and a F.A.S.T.

I scored 49/50 on Dot Torture, and I've decided to go ahead and move my Dot Torture practice back to 7 yards.  I didn't shoot it perfect today, but the one miss was a called flier and my groupings were very tight.  I think it's time to move it on out, and so I shall.



I scored 16.50 on the F.A.S.T. with no penalties.  I'm slowest on the two 3x5 shots, taking almost four seconds to do that portion correctly.  Then comes the reload and four shots to the 8" circle.  I could probably speed that up some practice, but only time will tell.

It's not her, it's you.

WASHINGTON — A leading House Republican says Sarah Palin cost the GOP control of the Senate.

Questioned about those comments on Tuesday, a spokesman for Rep. Spencer Bachus of Alabama said the remarks had been taken out of context but didn't retract them.
Bachus, in line to become chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, initially blamed Palin last week at a local Chamber of Commerce luncheon. According to the Shelby County Reporter, he said the Senate would be in Republican hands if not for losses by tea party candidates endorsed by the former Alaska governor and 2008 vice presidential nominee.
Spencer Bachus is a typical politician.  He's in a firm position and wields quite a bit of power in the Republican Party.  I can't remember a time when I saw him run unopposed (a indictment of the stupidity of Alabama voters, if nothing else).  He brings a lot of money to his district, and therefore has a lot of support.  He's iffy on gun rights, and frankly nothing but a RINO, tax and spend Republican.  He is what is wrong with this country.  He is what is wrong with the Republican party.  He is what is wrong with the United States government.

And I will dance a jig when he finally goes down in flames.  I voted for his Republican opponent in the primary, and I wrote in a candidate against him on November the 2nd, and I promise to do everything I can to see this man drug kicking and screaming from his comfy fiefdom as soon as possible.  He is one of those dinosaurs of the Republican Party who refuse to acknowledge the error of their ways, and it is only the even greater stupidity of the Democratic Party that keeps him from being forced to see the truth.

Missile launch!

Well, that ain't good:

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Military is scrambling to find out what was seen in skies over Los Angeles last night after a local CBS news helicopter captured video that appears to show a major missile or rocket launch from the Pacific Ocean just north of Santa Catalina Island.
 My guess is someone seriously fucked up (though no one got hurt), and governments and military organizations being the secretive and oh so above reproach organizations they are the matter will be swept under the rug while at the same time some officer is going to be retired early rather get that next big promotion.  The matter will be classified and remain so, a matter of National Security.  

Monday, November 8, 2010

On The Range #32

My friend Logan came over today to help me turn some money into smoke and noise.  A good time was had by both of us.


For the most part we just shot pistols, but I did put 150 of .223 through Logan's DPMS AR for shits and giggles.  I ran my two most problematic Wilson magazines through Logan's Springfield 1911 to see how they functioned in it.  They worked flawlessly so I'm thinking Chip McCormick magazines are going to be the way to go for my RIA.

I put 150 rounds through my RIA, starting off with a Bill Drill at 10 yards where I dumped 3 shots too low and then continued my warm up with two magazines of press outs.  I experienced one failure to extract and one FTF.  I had no problems with my one Chip McCormick magazine as the Wilson's continued to fail to lock the slide to the rear.

Logan and I did some timed shooting against each other.  I came out on top, but I shoot a lot more than Logan and he was not that far behind me.  I shot Dot Torture and scored 43/50.  I had hoped to do better, but shit happens.  I did a terrible F.A.S.T. @ 16.95secs*. (one 2sec. penalty and two 1sec. penalties).  I think that is the worst F.A.S.T. I've shot since I started doing it. 

Logan did his shooting with the Kimber Ultra Raptor he bought from me, a Springfield GI 1911, a Glock 30, and a Daewoo pistol in .22LR.  I was not aware until today that Daewoo made pistols. 

*Looking at my previous F.A.S.T. scores I actually improved, but it was still terrible.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Gun snob.

Went into Walmart to pick up some .45 ACP while taking a break this morning. I made a point of asking for 3 boxes of 'Winchester .45 Auto' because that's what it says on the box and I wanted to keep it simple for the counter monkey.

He promptly reached for the box that in big bold writing says .380 AUTO. ".45," says I and he reaches for .40S&W. "No, the next one over," says I. Finally he finds what I want.

It pisses me off that I have to say '.45 Auto' rather than '.45 ACP', and having somebody not able to tell the difference between among .45, .40, and .380 fucking infuriates me.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Been kind of busy.

Work has actually been going well.  A lot of jobs have dropped, but at the same time a lot of jobs have replaced those dropped ones.  I'm still driving all over North Alabama, but work is steady and I'm making money. 

The rain recently got in the way of shooting this past week, but my two days off looks to be beautiful so hopefully I'll be putting much lead down range.  The slow down at work means I won't be attending the class at Shootrite like I'd planned so I finally picked up a copy of Magpul Dynamics Art of the Dynamic Handgun.  There is bound to be something in there I can use and apply even if it is not hands on training with an instructor.

Today looks to be a good day.  It's going to be cold but work should go well and I've got a hamburger with my name on it at a friends house this afternoon.  And I get to hang out with some I've been spending some of my valued free time with playing doctor.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Regarding freedom in modern society.

Something that keeps popping into my head lately is this:

People seem to equate standard of living with freedom. Just because your standard of living is extremely high, or moderately high for that matter, does not necessarily mean you are more free.

Also, universal suffrage is often touted as a great sign of our freedom, but is it really? How much of a say do you, individually, actually have as far as who represents you? Not very much. I think one thing we should be pushing for is a massive expansion of the House of Representatives while at the same time repealing the 17th Amendment.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

I voted.

Alabama is a Republican stronghold.  The incumbents here aren't going anywhere unless they die.  That's just a fact of life I've learned to live with.  And what am I going to do, try to replace them with a Democrat.  Yeah, right.  Better the crook I know.

So I voted for myself about twenty times as a write in against all the assholes running unopposed. 

Monday, November 1, 2010

Don't Scare the White People: Target Edition

Over at Gun Nuts Media there is post regarding the changing of the IPSC target from this:



To this:



The reason is to help make the sport friendlier to others who might stay away because, while they're interested in shooting, they could never shoot another person, oh no!  Frankly, fuck those people.  Those people ban assault weapons and only want carry permits issued to those who've had expensive training, been finger printed, and submitted a DNA sample.  They're also the people who tell you violent video games and movies make you a serial killer or mass murder, porn makes you a rapists or child molester, and listening to any music they don't like (be it rap, metal, or country) makes you something bad.

Fuck those people, I don't want them on my side.

Have we not learned yet that changing the features of something to make non-gunnies like it more doesn't fucking work?



Why not just shoot IPSC with air pistols?  Hell, you might get some anti-gun people do join then.  After all that's how they do their shooting in the Olympics.

Personally, I like these targets.

It's the Open Carry debate all over again.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Halloween party tonight.

There will be much drinking of alcohol and other forms of debauchery. 

I'm going as Jayne, cunning hat and all.  Hopefully there will be pictures to share.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Sweet and Sour Chicken.

I made Sweet and Sour Chicken tonight.  The sauce was store bought (and not great, but manageable) but everything else I made myself.  And it was pretty damned good too.  I paired it with Sam Adams Imperial Stout.

On The Range #31: Rifle Shooting

I got off work early today and rather than burn through more of my supply of .45 ACP I decided to do a little rifle work. 

First up was the Mosin Nagant.  I put 25 rounds through the Mosin, shooting five groups of five.  I shot three groups at 25 yards.  I managed some pretty good groups with a couple of fliers, but I think I can do better with more practice. 

I moved back to 50 yards and shot two more groups.  These were pretty pathetic.  The first had three shots grouped tight but off the paper.  The second was pretty scattered all over a 6" circle.  Hopefully I'll be able to improve that as well. 

I think my goal for the Mosin is going to be to keep all my shots in an 8" circle at 100 yards, and I've got a long way to go if I'm going to get there.

After I finished with the Mosin I decided to shoot some more with my Ruger 10/22.  My main goal here was to fix my zero with my iron sights, which I did.  I put around 80 rounds of .22LR down range, and shooting from between 25 and 30 yards I was able to keep my shots fairly tightly grouped, but not tight enough. 

I need more rifle practice, and I'm definitely going to take a NRA Basic Rifle class at some point in the near future (I hope).

Rolling, rolling, rolling...

I'm spending a lot of time on the road at work lately. So far in two days of work I've had to make the 45 minute trip to my office and the turn around and drive an hour and a half in the opposite direction, back past my home, to get to my first customer.

Hurray for out of the way jobs that require non-standard equipment!


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Robert's Picks

Books:

I, Sniper by Stephen Hunter (good)

In Enemy Hands by David Weber (good)

Kinda thin, I know.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Quote of the Day: Common Sense Gun Control

JayG shows us what 'common sense gun control' gets you:

You would need a minimum of an FID card to possess that pen in the people's Republic of MA. A. Stinkin'. Pen. Because it is made out of an actual piece of brass - a component used in the manufacture of firearm ammunition - it requires a permit (fee: $100, plus whatever the cost of the required Basic Firearms Safety Course) to own. A. Pen.

Gear Review: Howard Leight Impact Sport Electronic Earmuffs

I've been considering buying some electronic earmuffs for a while. I wanted something that would amplify sounds I want to hear, like conversation, but cut off gunshots. So I picked up some Howard Leight Impact Sport Electronic Earmuffs:



Academy Sports and Outdoors was selling these for what seemed to be a fair price so I picked some up last week (here is the Cabela's page for them). I wore them for my last shooting session and I will admit to being impressed.

They are adjustable and fit well, even though I was wearing both sunglasses and a hat. They come with a jack for plugging in an iPod or similar device if you're into that.

They work well for amplifying ambient sounds but block out 'impact' noises such as gunshots. All I heard from my 1911 was a good thump that was felt as much as heard, but I could carry on a conversation with a soft spoken person between stings of fire. They have an on/off knob which also adjusts volume and they come with an automatic cutoff switch which activates after four hours of continuous use. They came with 2 'AAA' batteries. Battery life is supposed to be around 350 hours.

They are fairly comfortable. I don't think I'll enjoy them all that much in the summer, but that probably applies to all ear muffs.

I did notice that while you'll have no problem hearing sounds, knowing which direction they're coming from can be a problem. Everything you hear seems to be coming from forward. I guess this could be a result of the microphones being being on the front and facing forward. Not really an issue, IMHO, but it may be to some.

All in all, I like them. I like what they do, I liked the price, and I actually like the way they look too. If I notice anything important about them in the future I'll be sure to share that as well.

Friday, October 22, 2010

On The Range #30: This and That

I picked up some electronic ear muffs today.  They're made by Impact Sport.  Wore them on the range today and I'm pleased with them so far.  I'll do a full review next.

Anyway, the shooting went well today.  I started off shooting a couple of Bill Drills at 7 yards (I believe the drill is intended to be done at 10, but walk before you run and all that noise).  I actually managed to get all my shots where they were supposed to be. 

And look!  I got video! 


video


Mainly I wanted to do a little self assessment, see what I'm doing, maybe catch some things I need to work on.  I've never seen myself draw before, and I wanted to see that as well.  Constructive criticism is more than welcome. 

After the Bill Drills I did some shooting on the move.  No video of that, but maybe later on.  I went forward, backward, side to side.  I know most people think moving forward is stupid, and I tend to agree, but why not?

Next I shot Dot Torture.  I scored even better than last time, with 47/50.  I came close, but I dropped one shot and I think I got a little rattles after than and dropped two more.  Oh, well.  Live and and learn. 


After Dot Torture I did a F.A.S.T.  I did better than last time even though I dropped two shots.  I'd rather have all hits.  I dropped the first 3X5 shot again, and then dropped one out of the 8" circle.  Not proud of that, but time was 17.99 after penalties.  I got video of this too.

video








I enjoyed myself.  I don't think I look too terrible on the videos, but then again I don't know enough to really be able to give myself a good critical review. 

"Muslims who saved Jews from the Nazis."

That was the tag line that caught my attention on the CNN main page.  Interesting story, really.  Praiseworthy as well.

With rising anti-Muslim sentiment across the country, an untold story is raising greater awareness about the Muslim faith and the teachings of the Quran. That awareness comes from an unlikely source: a small Jewish congregation in Creve Coeur.
Temple Emanuel is premiering a groundbreaking exhibit of photos that reveals Albanian Muslims who saved 2,000 Jews during World War II.

Unfortunately, those aren't the kinds of Muslims that I'm worried about.  Nor are most people.  It's the ones who will blow themselves up in crowds, kill those who disagree with them, and cut off the heads of any Westerner they get their hands on that worry me.

And while this story is one of great compassion I still find myself more moved by the Nazi who risked his life to save Jews from the Nazis.

Both of these stories bring home to me one of the most important lessons I ever learned, and one that some people still need to learn.  That is that people are individuals, and should be treated according to their individual actions.

You CAN buy RPGs without a background check!

Not long ago antigun bigot Joan Peterson commented that you can buy grenades and RPGs at gun shows without background checks.  Quickly thereafter the gun blogs exploded with laughter.

Weer'd Beard reminds us that you can, in fact, buy RPGs without a background check

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Shootrite.

I've been whipsawing back and forth about whether or not I think I'll be able to take a course a Shootrite Firearms Academy.  I've decided at this point I'm going to go for the 1 Day Basic Handgun if there is room in the class for me.  It's a $200 class, and I think the ammo will only run me another $110.

It'll suck, but I can make the four hour round trip the day of the class.  It'll be no worse than going to Six Flags in Atlanta for a day.

I have my concerns about whether or not I should take my car on such a long trip.  I still worry about it and don't entirely trust it.  I wouldn't want to get stranded, but what's life without risk?  I'll be sure to change the oil, give it a good once over, and hopefully put a couple of new tires on it before I go. 

Being pessimisstic fuel will cost me between $60 and $70 for the whole trip.  Throw in another $30 to $40 for food and drinks and we'll call it $120 for random expenses.

I'll use a vacation day so I'm not losing too much money being away from work. 

$430

I should be able to swing that.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Monday, October 18, 2010

Quote of the Day: Government Health Care.

Posted on facebook by an old friend from high school who recently became a Lieutenant in the US Army:

Government provided healthcare is not that good....trust me
 I'm guessing he's been on the receiving end recently. 

On The Range #29: 100 Rounds



I started to just do Dot Torture today when I decided to go shooting after breakfast, but I needed more than that.  I had a little over 100 rounds of .45 so I decided I'd put the whole box of Winchester I had down range.

I started my shooting off with a Bill Drill at 7 yards.  I failed epically with a time of 9.32 seconds and three of six shots dropped low, left.






After that I set aside 56 rounds for Dot Torture and F.A.S.T.

With what I had left I shot a lot of Mozambiques, did some shooting on the move, and practiced reloads.  I experienced quite a few failures today.  A failure to extract resulting in a double feed, and I have one magazine with which my gun will not lock back on when it's empty.  I had this happen at least once with the other mags, but with this particular one it won't lock back AT ALL.  I'm wondering if my gun is particularly dirty, or something like that.  The magazines are all Wilson Combat.

Dot Torture went very well today.  I forced myself to slow down and focus hard on the fundamentals.  This resulted in a 45/50 score, my best so far with the RIA Tactical.


After Dot Torture I did my first F.A.S.T. drill.  It was interesting, to say the least.  I think I'll be adding it to my weekly 'must do' list with Dot Torture.  I scored 23.11 seconds on the F.A.S.T., 2 seconds of which were a result of a miss on the 3X5 box.


Pay day is Friday, so hopefully I'll be picking up some more ammo and doing some more shooting next Monday.