Sunday, December 31, 2006
Monday, December 25, 2006
Here is what I don't understand, we are all going to die because the ice will melt and the seas will rise a whole foot or so. Just how much of Holland is below sea level? When did the Dutch build those dikes? Long before my time, right? Except for New Orleans, aren't the rest of us smart enough to put up some dikes? Are we not as smart as the Dutch of a couple hundred years back?
I have a lot of trouble adjusting to Algore telling us we are all going to die because it will get a few degrees warmer. We have people living everywhere from Yuma, Arizona to Anchorage, Alaska, we seem to be a pretty resilient bunch. Perhaps Algore will die over a few degrees, the rest of us will move a hundred miles north. Except, of course, in Australia. They'll go south. It warmed up at the end of the Dark Ages and our ancestors survived. I'm told that if it warms up some, the growing seasons will be longer and there will be more to eat. Of course, looking at Algore lately, maybe that is the problem. Nobody will be hurt by the heat, Algore is just worried that he'll explode.
I figure my grandchildren are pretty smart kids. If it gets too hot for them to live in Texas, Arizona and North Carolina, where they are now, they can move to Siberia and wear tank tops in January. The way the Ruskies are dying off, they might as well. There will certainly be enough room.
And another thing, in between all of us dying from the coming ice age to all of us dying from the big hot spell, were we not all supposed to die from Nuclear Winter? How's about we figure out how many nukes we'd need for a Nuclear Springtime? We could drop the first one on Tehran and just work our way down a list until we have perfect weather. One on Khartoum would stop the genocide in Darfur, a nice small one on the Aswan High Dam in Egypt would let the rest of Islam know what it means when they talk about throwing Israel into the sea.
We could start a little pool, how many nukes would it take to make for good weather and would that be enough to calm Islamic Rage Boy down a notch or three or will we have to rebuild the Napalm refineries. We can Napalm 'till there is global warming, nuke until it cools off and just repeat until the surivivors of Islam decide to play nice with the rest of the world.
There, I've solved the two big problems of the world, all from staying home today so as to not bring this cold to the grandkids. With a little luck the cold will be over by William's birthday party. If I don't get over the cold by then, somebody give me another big problem to solve.
Wednesday, December 20, 2006
Linda Lou got herself a new camera, an itty-bitty HP Photosmart M527. We are still learning to use it but here are a couple of doggie pictures. I am still not real happy with a camera with no little window to look through, especially on moving targets like children, dogs and suchlike. Oh well, our old camera has the little window so it lives hanging from my guncart so I'm not endangering the new one at a Cowboy Action Match. Not that anyone would shoot it, but Linda Lou worries about me dropping it.
Our old camera is a Toshiba PDR-M61. As far as I can tell, photo quality is the same, although I may need new bifocals. The big difference is that we can't carry the old one around in a shirt pocket. Of course I never carry it that way and Linda Lou doesn't have very many shirts with pockets.
I suppose there is some sort of scientifical reason than these electronic cameras wait when you push the button to take the picture, usually until the dog has moved so we see nothing but the dog's butt. Or maybe the camera makers are Malthusian types and just want my blood pressure way up there.
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
We, as usual, got our share of strange looks, even in Texas people look at you funny for wearing the old-style cowboy clothers. Or maybe it was the frijoles.
It looks like I'm going to have to pay a visit to the Fabled Tequila Mines Of Cuervo. I was drinking a cherry limeade from Sonic the other day and somehow Eddie the Pug Puppy got 'hold of a lime slice. I have never seen a dog that loves lime slices before, Eddie may be the first. I tested Ming the Merciless with a lime slice, she wrinkled her nose and backed away which is more like it. Oh well, if we load him up with Margeritas we'll have a lot more peace and quiet. With my luck he'd be a fighting drunk.
Linda Lou's minivan is in the shop so we're driving a rental. A Dodge Caliber. It's okay, just another small car except to one thing. You can wear a hat inside. Most of the little moterised roller skates these day you just can't wear a real hat, there isn't room. Even the bigger cars you can't get in and out while wearing a hat. I am beminded of Walter Chrysler who, when the longer and lower craze first started said "I build cars to drive, not to p--- over."
When we bought the minivan we were also looking at a Jeep Grand Cherokee, I then drove one while the minivan was getting some kind of service, we upgraded the rental that time. I could not get in and out without taking off my hat, the roofline was too low. The new Grand Cherokee may have this fixed, the guy from the rental company was driving one for the pickup at the dealership, and, at least on the passenger side of the front, it worked for me. I didn't use to care about wearin' a hat. Right up until I didn't have enough hair left to keep my head from sunburning.
Well, that's all I have, it isn't much.
Friday, December 08, 2006
Meanwhile they had no testimony from a single Lance Corporal in The Corps or a Staff Sgt. in the Army, nor any Colonals running Regiments or Brigades.
After all this study they want us to involve Iran nand Syria in the solution to the problem when probably half, or more, of the fighters and weapons killing our troops come from Iran and Syria.
Did this crowd study LSD?
Friday, December 01, 2006
Of course, I don't get out much, is Britney Spears' Crotch the name of a new rock band?
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Two tsp sugar, one half cup lukewarm water, one package yeast. any cook knows the drill, dissolve sugar in water, add yeast, dissolve. Let stand ten minutes.
Scald one and one half cups milk, add one half cup sugar and one half tsp salt. Cool.
Add two beaten eggs, , three cups all purpose flour, yeast mixture and three more cups flour.
Knead a little. (May need to add a little more flour)
Cover and let rise for twenty minutes.
Knead on lightly floured board until dough springs back when punched with finger.
Let rise until doubled, about an hour.
Roll out and spread with eight ounces of soft margarine or butter.
Add three cups brown sugar and eight tsp cinnamon.
Roll in long roll, cut in one inch slices. Twirl the slices into rolls. Place in nine by twelve by two inch cake pan.
Let rise until doubled.
Bake at 350 degrees F for twenty to twenty five minutes.
Flip out of pan.
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
We have a standby here that we try to never be without. It's her Grandma Hagen's Oatmeal Raisin Cookies. Linda Lou eats six of these cookies a day as a meal and has lost a WHOLE LOT of weight on this diet. Oddly this started before she retired and her diet consisted of six oatmeal raisin cookies and a Sonic double cheeseburger and tater tots each workday. I make no guarantee that anyone else will lose weight on this diet but it worked for her.
At any rate here is the recipe...Grandma Hagen's Oatmeal Raisin Cookies:
Two sticks margarine, the cheap stuff
One cup sugar
Two cups flour (all purpose, not self rising)
One tsp baking soda
One tsp Cinnamon
One half tsp allspice
one half tsp nutmeg
Pinch salt (new salt, not an old salt like Harvey)
Two Cups quick oats
One cup cooked raisins (note cook raisins in a small pan with water. Bring to a rolling boil, turn off heat)
five tsp raisin juice. (Raisin juice is the the water the raisins boiled in.)
Soften margarine. Linda Lou puts the margarine on top of the stove, in the back where the over vent is. She has it unwrapped, in the mixer bowl. This is first, she does everything else while the oven preheats.
Blend in sugar and eggs.
Blend or sift flour, soda, spices and salt.
Add flour, oatmeal, raisins and juice.
Mix until the dough forms a ball. (If you don't have a mixer use a stout spoon, this dough is thick. Until we got a mixer I had one arm like Popeye)
Spoon onto lightly greased cookie sheet. (Linda Lou squirts the cookie sheet all over with Pam and then wipes the excess off with a clean paper towel.)
Bake at 350F for ten to twelve minutes.
Did I mention that Linda Lou lost a lot of weight eating six of these cookies a day?
Sunday, November 26, 2006
Saturday was another cowboy action shoot and also it was Anvil Al's Birthday. His wife and a couple of confederates cooked up a mountain of brisket and beans, potato salad and sundries to celebrate.
I think Anvil Al ought to have a birthday on the second Sunday and last Saturday of every month. I have no pictures of the actual eating, this is after all, a G rated Blog. Had y'all been there you would know why we have those bandannas around our necks.
The shooting was going along nicely, right up until I "missed the bucket", again. The residual damage from the stroke I had made the ring and little fingers of my right hand numb and weak. Those are the fingers I use most when reholstering a shootin' iron. Ooops! I was going along in my first clean stage of the shoot and then, all of a sudden there was a six shooter on the floor of the Sportin' House. Fortunately I only seem to drop the iron when reholstering so it's only a stage disqualification. Had the gun been loaded it would have been a match DQ.
Anyway I was my usual slow but semi-accurate self, shooting black powder and putting up clouds of gun smoke, the barbecue beans, later, added more smoke.
The smoothing out of my shotgun chambers helps a lot, without that stage DQ I would have been in the middle, someplace, insead of next to the last. It doesn't matter all that much where I place, I'm never going to be a champ at this. The champs have better nerves and reflexes than I do. Cowboy action is just plain fun, no matter where I place and the shooting is okay practice. So what if my main defense revolver is a double action? Shooting is shooting. Since most bad guys never practice, even at my worst I'm better than they are. Cowboy action has certainly helped my shotgun shooting, my buckshot loads don't kick near as much as those black powder cowboy action loads.
Anyhow, the weather was near-perfect, cool and cloudy in the morning, clear and warmer by the time the shoot was over. I like shooting black powder when it is cloudy and humid, it makes more smoke. It's harder to shoot fast, though, not only does the smoke hide the targets but the flame and sparks from the gun going' off is distracting. Instead of swinging to the next target and searching for the front sight I'm watching the flames.
Oh well, good company, good food and a pretty nice day.
Friday, November 24, 2006
Linda Lou and I were sleeping the sleep of the just, the sleep of only those with a good conscience when the phone rang. It was the vet's offices telling me that someone had found Eddie. Well, we dressed fast and headed out.and, sure enough, there he was, at a "resort" and marina about three miles off. Maybe a mile and a half as the crow flies, not being a crow I'm not positive. At any rate we drove among the house trailers and the feller that found him was outside with him. Eddie was glad to see us.
As soon as I opened the car door, Eddie jumped in. We both got a ton of puppy kisses and Ming The Merciless, peas be unto her, barked hysterically at Larry. Eddie is fine, skinny as a rail and covered in ticks. He's been eating his little head off and has had a bath with flea and tick soap.
It's too bad he wasn't found yesterday, he would have enjoyed the cooking of the turkey breast. He got a hunk of turkey today, though. I have decided to leave his food dish down all the time until Monday and let him get filled up good and then go back to the housebreaking routine.
You might guess that Linda Lou is really happy.
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
I am not sure what adjustments we are going to have to make in our household routine but we just discovered that Ming The Merciless is a Muslim dog. I guess I will have to write to "Ask_The_Ayatollah.com" or "Query_The_Q'ran".org" or somesuch to figure out what to do.
At any rate her Muslim background may explain why she bites my fingers when I give her a treat, she's so small that's the best she can do with her Jihad.
One might wonder how we discovered that Ming is Muslim, let me explain...
I was eating dinner and shaking rather more than usual and dropped some peas. Ming snatched them up before they had a chance to bounce or roll, ate every one and begged for more. This prooves she is Muslim, because..............
Peas Be Unto Her.
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
So, here is my question... Here is a business giving away it's product and services and each individual share is worth FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS! What does a shareholder get? How in the world does a company that gives it's service away make a profit to the stockholders?
I don't understand, am I an idiot or do folks with disposable income just enjoy throwing it away?
Didn't we just go through this same thing at the end of the Clinton Administration with the bursting of the Great Dot Com Bubble?
Update: in comments my Pal, Teresa, who is pretty smart even if she's some kind of Yankee, says that Google makes bazillions of bucks from advertisors. Okay, I believe it but then I must ask, who reads the ads? I read some at first but quit because when they're ads claiming to have what I'm looking for I always managed to find it cheaper. So, I never read the ads.
Granted I might be just a little unusual but I'm certainly not unique. I don't know for sure but somebody, the advertisors or the stockholders will eventually get sc, um, oh well, I just hope they're all getting kissed.
Monday, November 20, 2006
Anyhow you can find KD over at her blog, The Life Of The Wife.
While we wait for his return we might all take turns worrying and praying so that KD can maybe take a two minute break every once in a while.
Saturday, November 18, 2006
A while back I was looking over the classified ads on the SASS Wire, the cowboy action bulletin board, and noticed that a Pard was selling some Horsefly pants. No, not pants for a horsefly, that is just the brand name. The guy who made these is retired now but was quite well known for the quality of his work.
Anyhow, the guns and holsters are only a small part of the expense involved in the sport of Cowboy Action Shooting, the "right" clothes are real expensive. That shirt I have on in that picture is forty-bucks and not even perma press.
So, when I saw four pairs of these pants for ten bucks a pair I sprained a finger typing "I'll take 'em" and posting it. Now, a minor difficulty is that I didn't NEED four pairs of button fly, no belt loop, three pocket pants, iron every time you walk past pants. There are those who are really into the costume part of the sport, I'm really just there for the noise and stinky black powder smoke but, for a few days I was the Pants King of Lake Tawokonie. As luck would have it, though, another Pard, out California way wanted to buy those pants, too. So I sold him two pair and instead of the Pants King I am merely the Trouser Duke.If anyone cares this is the first pair of green trousers I've had since back when I wore Uncle's Suit.
Thursday, November 16, 2006
Saturday, November 11, 2006
Just as Decoration Day morphed into Memorial Day, Armistice Day turned into Veteran's Day. A day to remember not just the heroes, the Chesty Pullers and Silent Lew Walts, the Manila John Basilones and the Audie Murphys, but the other guys like me, and now gals, who put on Uncle's suit and did what they were told in unglamorous jobs.
I don't often think about my time in the Service, life is in the way. Every once in a while, though, I think back. I don't remember the lack of sleep and the bad food, I don't think of the hours of boredom or the moments of terror.
Instead I remember that once I stood with heroes.
Friday, November 10, 2006
Fast forward a little bit and my then-fiance, Linda Lou wanted us to marry on a day I couldn't forget. So, November tenth. Semper Fi, twice.
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
By popular demand, puppy photos! Don't nobody dare tell me that Quality Weenie isn't popular.
In other news the Donks seem to have got some new law on the books. It seems to be against the rules to stand in the driveway of the polling place with a gun and a sign "No Donks!" Foo. I never have any fun.
Anybody know how Frank J is doing with his ASP Baton?
Monday, November 06, 2006
Of course, it is easier for me, there are very few RINOs running here in Texas. Still, even a RINO will prevent a Speaker Pelosi. A RINO will help prevent a Donk taking our tax cuts away and, most importantly, will keep up the fight against Islamic terrorism. Nor should we forget judges.
It is somewhat easier for me, too, because I knew all along that Dubya is not, and has not been, a classic conservative. I knew that from the time I met him when he was first running for Governor of Texas. That was during my big political career when I was a Republican Precinct Chairman.
So, vote. Hold your nose if you must, just vote. Don't forget, the polls are supposed to be crowded this year so we Rupublicans vote Tuesday and the Donks vote Wednesday.
Friday, November 03, 2006
My computer just quit going online. I paid to have a modem put in, it seems to have made the problem worse. I could at least play solitaire on it, now it won't even do that.
Sunday, October 29, 2006
I was listening to Rush on (last) Monday, when he first mentioned the Fox commercial. A couple of things should be noted from the start. First is Rush's admiration for Fox as an actor. The second is Rush's puzzlement. Although Rush is, and was, aware of Fox's bout with Parkinsons he had never seen Fox acting as he was in that commercial. So, he asked a simple question, was he acting or was he off his meds or what. I understand that Rush tried to illustrate what he was talking about on the dittocam, not watching TV or having that service on line, I only know what I heard.
Later in the program Rush mentioned the E-mails he was getting discussing that Fox has written that he does go off his meds when he wants to illustrate the symptoms.
This started a tidal wave, seems that it is illegal, immoral and fattening to notice a Donk's disease. It is quite all right to notice a Repubs's. Just look at how Limbaugh's addiction and deafness are treated compared to say, Courtney Love's or any one of a dozen other Hollywood types. Except, of course, Mel Gibson's. But I digress.
One thing about this controversy that is important is that one side is lying. The ad that started all this is about the Missouri Constitutional amendment about cloning. Since this amendment has very little to do with stem cell research the proponents have named it the stem cell research amendment or some such nonsense. Please note that adult stem cell research is perfectly legal, even supported by Federal tax dollars. There is also much research done with fetal stem cell research, existing lines of these stems cells are eligible for Federal money. New lines are perfectly legal, too. They just do not get Federal cash. Considering that there have been zero (that is less than one) disease that has had any progress noted through fetal stem cell research, that sounds pretty fair to me. If private research comes up with any progress, fine. Then we can discuss a change. I am not sure that my twilight years are worth the death of a fetus but, fine, let us talk. Just, please, don't misname the amendment. Don't claim that backdooring human cloning is making cloning illegal and that it will cure me.
Don't promise that I will never shake again if only we elect Democrats. Don't attack Rush for asking questions. Mr. Fox has injected himself into this story and we aren't supposed to talk about it. Y'all bemember how no Donk talked about Rush's addiction? This a pretty good deal for the Donks, they make up these rules that they say whatever they please and we have to take it and keep our mouths shut..
I don't buy it. Nor do I care that Rush is not an expert on Parkinsons. That is my neurologist job. I don't ask Rush for medical advice, I don't ask Doc Walker for political news.
By the way, anybody notice that Fox's foundation is putting durned near two million dollars to support research in a viral therapy for Parkinsons? Not fetal stem cell, viral. Hmmm. So, HIS money is going for something showing some hope. Good. I like that. So, how much of his own money goes to fetal stem cell research?
Friday, October 27, 2006
As some know, I have Parkinsons and will comment on the Limbaugh/Fox kerfluffle, I will be somewhat unique there because I have listened to Limbaugh all this week and have yet to see or hear Fox.
The other thing in my head is an appreciation of the .30-06 cartridge, I need to get that out while it is still the centennial year since some ordnance types dreamed up the old warhorse.
Friday, September 08, 2006
I shall never forgive that scumbag McCain. I expect the Democrats to be anti freedom, that is what they do. I would not vote for a Donk, anyway, not on a bet. I will, though, never, ever, vote for any Representative or Senator who voted for this bill.
John McCain is a crook. He was in the Keating scandal up to his eyebrows. He claims that we are not supposed to spend our very own money because he is a crook. Wouldn't have been better for him to retire instead of attacking our freedom?
McCain is a crook. Pass it on.
Thursday, September 07, 2006
We had a special treat this week, three of the four kids were in town so we had seven of the grandkids in one place. I have them in some kind of order, it is, from top to bottom, Ethan, Nathaniel and John Mark, belonging to Robin and Meleah.
Next are William and Josiah Dean, they go with Stephanie and Dean. That is Linda Lou holding Josiah. She is responsible for this whole mess.
The bottom two are Michael Jr and Alexandra Dawn, those are Michael and Jennifer's.
Now it is time to nap for about two months.
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
Here is a picture of my new grandson, Josiah Dean. I guess it is time to change my blurb at the top of this Blog, he is grandson number seven, grandchild number eight.
Those who care about such things he weighed seven pounds four ounces and was born at 8 38 AM, Central Daylight Time yesterday morning.
Mothers and those who expect to become mothers will be exceedingly jealous. The kids got to the hospital at six AM, the boy was in the outside world two and a half hours later. Mother and baby are well as is the father. Grandparents are all proud as peacocks.
Monday, August 14, 2006
A better idea about how I did is that I was 18th overall, still down toward the bottom of the pack. I think I might have gotten closer to the top fifteen had I not blown the order in which I had to engage the targets. That mistake cost me a ten second "P" or procedural penalty. Other than that one disaster I managed to run the match with only one other miss, I think. I'll know for sure when the club puts the scores up on the website. My time is improving, too. Granted, the top shooters in Cowboy Action shoot a stage in twenty to thirty seconds and I am still just over a minute per stage but then the top shooters are not shooting .45 Colt with black powder loads, either. I am not going to cry about shooting ten rounds, from two handguns plus ten tounds from a lever action rifle and then four rounds from a starting empty mule ear double shotgun in a minute. I suspect that, as I practice I shall get the time per stage down to 45 seconds or so. I'm still having some problems drawing and holstering and picking up and grounding the long guns. The problems are more due to that stroke than poor equipment. Still, an hour or so of practice three or four times a week would help, too. Too bad I don't practice.
At least I managed the shoot without dropping a gun, that's something.
I need to put off road wheels on my guncart. It is so dry around here that there is a real danger of breaking an ankle stepping into the cracks in the black earth. It hasn't rained around here since Moby Dick was a minnow.
The Big Lube Boolits are a real success. I finally got around to shooting the .454 diameter 250 grain Pigeon Roost Slim slugs in the rifle. The .452s shot very well in my revolvers but poorly in the rifle. I have no idea why the revolvers are so much more forgiving than the rifle. It may be just a matter of expectations. I EXPECT a rifle with a 24 inch barrel and a Marble's Tang Sight to shoot a group of around an inch, inch and a half at fifty yards and two inches or so at a hundred. The .452s did not do so with the only load I tried in the rifle. Perhaps a different load would tighten the groups up. I suspect that a full charge of The Holy Black would cause the base of the bullet to slug up to completely fill the barrel. Then I'd have to put up with the complaints about my "hot" loads being hard of the steel targets. With the .454s I had no problem with my load of 28 grains of GOEX FFG, a .7 CC scoop of instant grits, uncooked of course and the bullet. Note that I fired sixty rounds, over six stages. There was plenty of time between the stages for the black powder fouling to harden and tie up the gun. In that heat it would have. The last round was just as accurate and chambered and extracted just as easily as the first.
The only differnce between the Big Lube Boolit and a regular cast bullet is that the Big Lube carries at least five times the lubricant as a bullet made for that newfangled fad smokeless stuff.With my home cast bullets I only get ten rounds or so until the fouling turns too hard and starts giving problems in the revolvers. In the rifle I started having problems right off the bat. Twenty-four inches of barrel is just way too much for two skinny grease grooves.
Of course my homecast bullets shoot just fine with a grease cookie underneath the bullet. That what I will be shooting when I run our of the Big Lubes, at least until I can afford the new mold. There are only two reasons for using the Big Lube Boolit instead of the regular one. The grease cookie takes a lot of room in the case that can be filled with powder. That is not important for Cowboy Action since I download anyway. The time spent loading rounds makes the Big Lube matter to the handloader. It is just so much faster to por a scoop full of dry grits into the case than it is to take a freshly powdered case, push a sheet of beeswax over the casemouth, making a wad. Then we have to push the wad down on the powder. Then put a dollop od soft black powder lube in the case and finally add a card or vegetable fiber wad on top of all that and now seat and crimp the bullet.
Whew! I'm tired just writing that, it's worse doing it. What is even more fun is having to make the sheets of beeswax since no one seems to make sheets. Linda Lou does not much like me making the beeswax sheets since I always manage to drip wax all over her kitchen. Speaking of which, if I cook at least half the meals, how come it's her kitchen?
The other main advantage of the Big Lube Boolits is that it took four patches to clean my rifle and not much more than that to clean each revolver.
The Big Lube Boolits also come in full size rifle sizes, too. There are two for the .45-70 and other .45 caliber rifles, a 390 grain and a five hundred grain, and a 240 grain for the .38-55. These would be really good for long range rifle competion and for hunting. I have heard some rumblings about molds for cartridges like the .32-40 and the various .40 caliber rifles, too. If enough people are interested Dick Dastardly will be pleased to have to molds made. Big Lube Boolits.
Update: 8/20/06. Don't ask why I forgot to finish and post this all week. Too busy playing with a puppy, I recon.
Friday, August 11, 2006
Ming is sick, mainly seems to be abscessed teeth that will have to come out. It wouldn't be so bad except that she fights the antibiotic tablets that we have to give her twice a day to get the swelling down so that the Vet can do the tooth (teeth?) removal. She was refusing all food and water a few days ago, now, after some of the antibiotic pills she is eating food that we have soaked in water. Still, the pills are a battle. We've wrapped them in cheese and peanut butter and soaked dog food, it doesn't matter. It is going to be fun trying to shoot this Sunday with my fingers torn off.
I am having some luck with Eddie. He is peeing on the paper and outside. Unfortunately he enjoys firing the other barrel near the paper. I keep explaining to him that I have a perfectly good brick with which to beat him. Sill, he comes bouncing in from outside and runs right to the paper and then poops alongside it.
I have managed to load up enough ammo for the Shoot this Sunday. I ave loaded up one hundred rounds with the new Big Lube Boolits, the .454 diameter 250 grain Pigeon Roost Slim bullets.I already have quite a bit of ammo loaded with the .452 diameter bullets for the handguns. This is all loaded with GOEX FFG black powder, also known as The Holy Black and the One True Powder. The .452 bullets are as accurate as anything in my revolvers but very inaccurate in my rifle. I am hoping that the .454s will cure the problem. If not I shall go back to my home cast bullets and a grease cookie along with those Remington .455 swaged lead bullets.
I also have all my all-brass shotshell cases loaded up. I finally got around to weighing the shot charge, right around an ounce and three eighths of my mad scientist mix of number six and number nine birdshot. No wonder the recoil is somewhat sporty, that is a heavy load of shot. Three drams of Black Powder behind those shot charges. I am on my last bag of the now discontinued Winchester Red Wads in those shotshells. I have most of a thousand of the Circle Fly fiber cushion wads that work beautifully when I want a super open pattern, poorly when I want the patterns that work for the game I play.
It seems to have something to do with the way the forcing cones are cut in modern shotguns as opposed to the old shotguns. Old guns work best with the fiber wads, modern ones with plastic. Although my mule ear double looks old, it has the modern forcing cones.
I also filled up the rest of the box of .45 Caliber Shot Capsules with number nine birdshot for the blowing away of snakes. I have three more empty boxes for when I manage to buy some number twelve shot. Mike Venturino, a noted authority on the arms and ammo of the last half of the Nineteenth Century, swears by number twelve shot in handgun shotshells. This 12 shot is deadly on snakes at handgun ranges, trouble is that it has so little mass that it won't hold velocity for ranges for anything else. The shot caps hold just over 157 grains of number nine shot. There is the problem, fifty rounds of birshot shells is a lifetime supply. So, what to do with the rest of the bag of shot?
I have been following the War on Terror with great interest, in Britain, Israel and Lebanon as well as here. There are many, far smarter than me commenting. I have just one question, why can we not terrorise the Muslims a little bit? Say just enough that they have to stay home to keep us from killing them? Just a thought.
Wednesday, August 02, 2006
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
Here are the pictures of the new gunleather that I promised about two months ago. This rig is from Etowah River Leather in Baird, Texas. I try not to stay up nights trying to figure out why a one-man holster company in Texas is named after a river in Georgia.
The rig starts with a three inch wide, lined belt. Note to those considering wearing heavy iron: the wider the belt the better. A heavy shootin' iron worn on a narrow belt is an instrument of torture. Bemember those half to three quarter inch belts that were popular back when I had a full head of hair? Put an N Frame S&W revolver holster on one of those and the rig would slowly cut you in two. This particular belt has no cartridge loops. For one thing, the holstermaker, Brazos Jack, known to the IRS as Jim Simmons was making this rig to illustrate his pattern for a Single Six Rig and a row of heavy caliber cartridge loops would not fit the pattern. Instead he included a pouch on a clip That fits where I want to put it. It is easy enough to put as many rounds as I need for the rifle and handguns in. Most stages do not need a reload, anyway. I simply keep a couple of rounds in the pouch in case I miss a "must fall" knockdown target or accidentally eject a live round. There are other reasons for no cartridge loops, too. Such as Jim didn't know if I was shooting a .45 or a .38. I shall not complain, if I decide I'm desperate for cartridge loops I'll pay him for a belt slide like the shotgun slide that clips on the front of the belt. Assuming, of course, that I ever see any cash again.
Next on the lineup are two straight draw holsters. These holsters are lined with smooth leather. This is great for the finish of the revolvers. The rough leather of an unlined holster can catch dust and grit and act as if it were sandpaper. The downside is that we need to be more careful about engaging the hammer thong as the iron can fall out easier. I seldom stand on my head while wearing a pair of shootin' irons, though. If I must I'll slip the hammer thongs on.
There is still some controversy about straight draw verses a strong side and a cross draw rig. I have pretty much decided that I am a two straight draw man, primarily because of the "crossdraw shuffle" that CAS requires. This is so no one breaks the 170 degree rule as they draw. Oddly if one simply stands with the left foot forward he can draw from a left side crossdraw holster without violating that rule. It doesn't matter, though. If one tries the crossdraw without an exaggerated swaying of hips there is a whole lot of hooraw from people who think that to shoot a gun one must be a choreogpher. Without them I'd wear a strong side right holster and a cross draw on the left.
Brazo Jack is one of the few holstermakers I know of that does not believe in wet molding the holsters. I'm still getting used to that after some forty years, or more, of dunking a holster in the horse trough and letting it dry around a well greased gun. I can't complain about the speed, though. The irons come out of the leather like they were jet propelled. I should have taken a picture of my hideout holster for my Ruger SP101, it is wet molded.
A look at the very bottom picture shows how the top of the holster is slightly rolled out, this makes it a lot easier to reholster the weapon. A look at the pictures shows the border tooling done on this rig. Every one of those tool marks was put on by hitting a little chisel with a small hammer.
This rig is further embellished by a "State Of Texas" concho on each holster.
Brazos Jack does not keep a stock, each item is made to order. He is fairly fast, I would be surprised to see a basic rig taking more than six weeks or so, unless he was real busy.
One can also order the patterns and plans for several of his rigs if you are the kind of person who is handy.
Jim's website is and is well worth checking out. I also have his snail mail and phone number, a note will get it to you.
This issue of Shoot Magazine has a nice article with professional pictures. I don't know how much their website will give you but it is here.
Line two of what? Which memory, the computer? Blogspot? Me? I will confess that my memory is really awful, since the stroke but I don't know that the computer knows about that.
Update: Whatever it was fixed itself. Good.
Blogspot seems to be over it's tantrum and is allowing me to post some pictures.
This is Ming. Linda Lou didn't much like that name but it seems to be growing on her. That's good since it's the name that Ming has had since she was seven weeks old.
Monday, July 31, 2006
A short verbal description: Ming is a female Pug that just turned nine while she was in a rescue home. She had been given up because of someone in her home having allergies. Please do not ask why the allergies just popped up, I have no clue. Perhaps some new person came into the house.
At any rate Ming had been with the same woman since she was weaned. Her color isn't perfect, she is what the dog show people call "muddy". She is fawn, with too much black on her back and tail. Since we aren't show people, nor are we breeders of Pugs, we don't care. Oh, in case anyone is curious, we are done breeding anything else.
Anyhow Ming is kind of shy but seems to be warming up fairly fast. She is already my pal. Kids and dogs have always liked me, it's adults that I can't hardly stand. Long before bedtime she was in the recliner with me and then I got her to sleep with Linda Lou. The puppy gets to sleep in his crate until the ordeal of housebreaking is done.
The puppy manages to pee on the paper but has that terrible habit of poop, two steps, another little poop, two more steps, etc. He starts on the paper, ends up halfway to the other end of the house. As long as we get him outside at the right time he is fine. This will improve, he's just a baby. We are not yet able to take them both out at once, though, at least not with only one person trying to hold both leads. This, too will come.
Oh well, more pictures when Blogsplat is over it's tantrum.
Sunday, July 30, 2006
Friday, July 28, 2006
This morning it was up early to go to Carrollton, a suburb north of Dallas. There was a Pug in Doggie Jail there and his people had not come after him. Today was the first day he could be adopted. We got up there about thirty minutes before the shelter opened. Good thing. There were two other people there before the shelter doors opened, each behind us, each after Wilbur the Pug.
Wilbur is another Black Pug Of Doom and he and Linda Lou did not quite hit it off. Instead we let the other woman there have him, in part because his eyes were full of goo and he wouldn't stop coughing, in part because he wouldn't calm down for Linda Lou but did for the other lady. And in part because Wilbur looked too much like Captain Fatbob.
Instead of a grown dog bailed out of Doggie Jail we spent $500.00 on a new fawn Pug puppy. Quite frankly I would have rather waited around and found a grown dog from the Pug Rescue people and not had to deal with the chewing and house training but Linda Lou liked the little guy. So now we have a new puppy that we have to teach how to be a dog. I'll have a picture or so up within the next few days and finish the great saga, too.
We have not yet figured out his name, it usually takes a few days for the personality to show through. He was born on May 16 and is cute as a bug.
Wednesday, July 26, 2006
We got into the city of Colorado Springs and drove over and saw the Garden Of The Gods, a lot of red rock, piled up in amazing fashion. We did not take the time to drive up on Pike's Peak, we had miles to go. More than I knew at the time.
We did drive over to the cliff dwellings nearby. When I saw how much it was going to cost I was for turning the car around, so was Linda Lou. I'd seen some cliff dwellings before, maybe not so well preserved but still, this wasn't our dime. Brian handed the money over from the back seat, We asked if he was sure he wanted to pay for this, he said sure. We got out of the car just as they were getting ready to have a display of some of the Indian Dances. When the drum started up I was about ready to dig out the shootin' irons but it was just a demonstration. Fortunately they seem to have stopped torturing their captives to death. I have no big desire to be staked out on an anthill or suspended over a fire.
What was surprising was how cool it was inside the houses, it shouldn't be, I suppose. I used to do some cave climbing. Solid rock is some pretty fair insulation. We then went through the souvenier stand, er museum. The sign said museum they sure were selling a lot of stuff, though. Anyhow, the cliff dwellings of Colo Springs is a worthwhile stop but it's close to ten bucks a head.
A quick lunch and back on I-25, headed south. We blew past Fort Carson, I didn't get to moon the Doggies, either. Phooey. Then it was just miles and miles of miles and miles.
We got into New Mexico and started seeing herds of speed goats, the American Antelope. I had never been through that part of New Mexico before. I-25 through that part of Colorado and New Mexico is right at the top of the plains, the Rockies are right there in the right and we ran into a few foothills but mostly it was just the high desert plains.
The Antelope co-exist nicely with the cattle and horses, grazing on the same pasture. I am not quite sure about what the cows think about the antelope leaping over the fences that stop the cows. I'll have to ask a cow psychologist next time I see one. I am not sure how New Mexico's hunting regulations go, if they're anything like Texas those ranchers will make a pretty penny on hunting leases.
Just north of Santa Fe we ran into the Sangre De Christo Mountains and the road started doing some fancy twisting, I noticed the compass in the car saying we were going north a couple of times.
We stopped in Santa Fe just to pee and head on, it was our intention to spend the night in Albuquerque and we'd spent so much time in Colorado Springs that we just didn't want to spend any more time stopped. I can out of the john and Brian was on the cell phone, saying that we didn't have the money for another motel room. So I decided that, rather than have anyone wire more money that we'd just try to drive staight through. After all, three licensed drivers and it was already getting dark, surely someone could get some sleep and then drive when I crashed.
Drive I did, we filled up the car in Albu-Q and headed west of I-40, the heir of Route 66. It's been a long time since I drove that route, it filled up with Indian Casinos since last I drove it. That's why they no longer torture their captives, they've found a new way to scalp the whites.
Anyhow we charged through the night and all I can say about that stretch of highway is that it was dark. I know nothing of the vegetation, wildlife or terrain, just that it was dark.
We pulled into Phoenix right about sunrise. I had got about a two hour nap in the backseat but Brian was so flakey on the road from Flagstaff to Phoenix that I took over the wheel again.
Phoenix is where all Hell broke loose. That's the next item, tomorrow or the next day.
Monday, July 24, 2006
I got a tour, by myself with one nice lady from the Hornady staff as a guide, only through the bullet making shop. I did not see where they make cartridge cases or loaded ammunition, of course the bullets were what I was interested in so that is fine. A jacketed bullet starts as a long strip of bullet jacket materiel, a compound called gilding metal. This is an alloy of copper and zinc, mostly.the strip of metal is sent through a bunch of machines, starting with one that punches out precisely sized cups. These cups are run through a series of dies that stretch and thin them until they become a bullet jacket.
Meanwhile another set of machines turn large cylinders of lead alloy into lead wire. A different alloy depending on the projected velocity of the bullet, a fast rifle bullet needs a harder core than a slower rifle bullet which needs a harder core than a handgun bullet.
The most interesting part of the tour was when I actually saw some of Hornady's new Leverevolution bullets.These new bullets, not yet available to handloaders, are the Next Big Thing for hunters. The Hornady people have figured out the kind of plastic that is hard enough to hold a point during the bullet's accelleration down the bore yet is soft enough that it can't set off a primer in the magazine of a lever action rifle. For the first time since the 1860s a lever action rifle with a tube magazine can shoot pointed bullets without the risk of the rounds in the magazine lighting off. These new bullets add a hundred or two hundred yards to the effective range of the Marlin or Winchester toting hunter, depending on the particular cartridge. With these rifles the problem is not whether or not the hunter can kill the critter it is the trajectory of the bullet. Past about 100 to 150 yards the old style bullets start dropping so quickly that a hunter needs to know the range to withing fifteen or twenty yards or the bullet misses the vitals.
These new bullets extend the range, a lot. The Hornady people say that it will be at least a year or so before these bullets are available to handloaders. Until then they are available as loaded ammo in .30-30 Winchester. .35 Remington, .444 Marlin, .45-70 Government and .450 Marlin. The .30-30 is now a reliable 250-300 yard deer rifle.
I resisted the temptation to load up on caps, T-shirt and factory second bullets, thanked everyone and went and picked up Linda Lou and Brian and we got on the road, early still. I did ask, those are soybeans growing everywhere that corn doesn't.
Next stop, Fort Kearny. Oddly this fort had no battles but it was important none the less. It was a major stop for both the Mormans going to Utah and the folks going on the Oregon Trail. Unfortunately we lost all the pictures in some sort of electonic camera accident.
The most amazing thing about Fort Kearny, to me, was a look at the handcarts with which the Mormans crossed to Salt Lake. No covered wagons, they walked, pushing and pulling handcarts with everything they were allowed to take, seventeen pounds of stuff per adult, ten pounds per child. I presume this included one big ol' Morman Bible per family. Each train had a couple of wagons for food and other supplies.
Driving off from the Fort we had a flat, I drove on the low tire to a place where we could safely pull off and air it up. We drove into Kearny and found a Wal Mart and bought another tire as we had weakened the sidewall. This is where the wheels started coming off the whole trip.
Anyway we got the tire on and drove on, we passed the museum at the Buffalo Bill Trading Post in North Platte as the tire took the time we would have spent there.
We turned southwest onto I-76 and drove into Denver where we spent the night.
More of the saga tomorrow.
Tuesday, July 18, 2006
Anyhow, we picked up my daughter in law's brother and got moving. Simply because I never have, we crossed a narrow little toll bridge into Iowa and drove up Interstate 29, caught I-80 and blew west through Omaha and Lincoln.
There is a heck of a lot of corn up here and something else that grows next to the cornfields, I suspect it may be soybeans but I am not quite sure. Linda Lou is a Kansas girl but not a farm girl, her family was railroad, the Santa Fe. Anyway, we're going to take the tour of the Hornady plant and then head for Kearny and see the Fort Kearny State Historic Park. If i bemember my history that was a fairly important Cavalry Fort in the Indian. Wars Anyhow, there is a visitor's center in an old caboose right next door by the truck stop/restaurant. I'll ask there. Then, with just a little luck, we might make it to Denver for another night. That would make it an easy trip down to Phoenix in two days. Only a couple of four hundred plus mile drives, heck some folks commute almost that far. It's an awful long one day drive, two is a piece of cake.
Anyhow, bullet company blogging coming up, for now it's time to relax some.
We got back in the car and kept driving north and he wouldn't stop panting, even after I directed most of the car's air conditioning down on him.
We started getting worried so we stopped at the last rest area in Oklahoma, I poured some water over him but by then he was unconscious. I hit the road with the flashers on while Linda Lou got on the cell phone, we found a Vet Hospital in the small town of Wellington, Kansas. Too late.
Linda Lou is heartbroken.
Monday, July 17, 2006
I have to go to Phoenix, I forgot my new hat, on top of the kid's freezer. It's too bad that this is kind of a rush trip, I'd like to stop in Oklahoma City to meet two bloggers, Rave and Hippie, of the Bad Example Family. Maybe next time.
Anyhow, it's time to go, I'll post from an overnight stay someplace.
Saturday, July 15, 2006
Anyhow, the Izzies are ticked and "the world" is telling them to act proportionately. There is no word yet on just how Putin or Chirac or Dubya would react if rockets were raining down on their cities.
I had initially thought that Syria was in deep trouble but Iran was quite safe. It is not like Israel has much in the way of strike aircraft with the legs to reach Tehran or Quom or the other areas that the Mullahs hold dear. Then I remembered Israel's submarines. Israel has not got enough subs and missiles to hurt Iran badly enough to make the Iranians stop what they are doing without making portions of Iran's coming smoking holes glow in the dark.
There is actually a way to avoid Israel sending nukes into Iran but "the world" will not take it. Only a hard military action by a coalition including Russia, China and Europe, as well as the USA will prevent Iran from continuing this attack. Seeing as how Iran won't stop how do we expect Israel to? What else does Israel have to make Iran stop? Perhaps there is someone smarter than me that can figure out a non-nuclear end to this game but I don't see it.
Assuming that, a hundred years from now, there will be historians to parcel out blame for the millions of dead and the hundred dollar a barrel oil, that grinning idiot Jimmy Carter will bear a large share of the blame.
I do not know how heavily we Americans will be involved in this fight, I suspect that will depend on what the Chinese and the North Koreans do, We may well have nothing to do but try to clean up the radioactive glass, we may be just as likely be up to our eyeballs in it.
Anyone know hoe to make Iran step back from the abyss?
I'm going for a nice long drive as there is nothing else to do.
Wednesday, July 12, 2006
Since everyone but us is stuck working we are being drafted for assistance. Various members of his family who are not on skinny pensions are underwriting this, financially. So, I get to go to some more of the country and see if there are any Bushco Gulags full of Leftists having their dissent crushed. I keep looking. There seem to be none of these in the parts of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California that I drove through. Unlike the previous administration that burned a bunch of previously harmless religious loonies to cinders.
Anyhow, Nebraska must have something going for it, Linda Lou won't let me make this trip alone. Must be all those loose Nebraska women. It couldn't be that she doesn't want me scurrying on an over three thousand mile trip by myself since that stroke.
Anyhow, I've never been though Nebraska, seems like I'll see much of it through the windshield. Anyhow, anyone know of any must-see locations in Nebraska? I must check the map and see where Grand Island is, I believe that is where Hornady Bullets is located. We'll also be going through a part of Colorado and New Mexico we've never seen.
Later...Well, I googled Hornady Bullets and found a bunch of stuff I'd written, I'll have to go to another search to see if I'll be able to drop by and say hello. I have only used Hornaday bullets for a couple of rifles, I'd always used Sierras, mostly. About all I've used Hornadays for is revolvers since the XTP Hollowpoint up until I started loading a little ammo for my son in law who is still getting used to the recoil of a full fledged .30-06. Ah, there it is, just as I suspected, right there at Hornady.com. Anyhow, the Hornady 130 gr Single Shot Pistol bullet in front of the 60 percent of the maximum load of H4895 is a real good light load that will also take down any deer. Then as he gets used to that level of recoil I upped the charge some. If he ever gets out and practices I can switch to a 150-165 gr. bullet built for the full rifle velocities. And I just figured out that I have been spelling Hornady wrong for something like forty years, now. It's Hornady, not HornaDAY. Awk!
What? I'm supposed to be writing about another trip. Well, we'll be driving on I-80 west until we get to I-76 and duck southwest into Colorado. Then it's south on I-25 and wave at the fledgling Zoomies at the Air Farce Academy as we blow through Colorado Springs, then duck down and sneer at the Hippies of Santa Fe. We have driven through Colorado and New Mexico east-west and west east, we've never happened to drive through those states north-south. It's going to be hard to drive and moon the hippies at the same time. I guess I'll have to make Linda Lou drive through Santa Fe.
Anyone know of some must see sights along that route, please let me know.
Monday, July 10, 2006
Here are a few photos from another trip out west of here, this one was in 1951. You can see me, I was the little short guy, my big sister, Carolyn, my Mom, Virginia and James, my Dad.
I have a bunch of slides from back then, too. Slides from around then and up to 1959, six or eight boxes, each with room for 150 slides. Each box has several to many empty slots, those are probably slides that were commandeered by relatives or ones that did not survive being stored in a garage.
One thing I am noticing, again, is how many of these old photos contain the cars we had. I have dozens of old slides with pictures of my folks in front of their cars, it seems people don't do that much anymore. I have seen photos of folks standing in front of their cars from the turn of the 20th Century to about the 1960-1970 period, then it seems to have pretty much stopped. I wonder if it is because we're so used to having cars or maybe it's that so many cars look alike these days.
At any rate, it will be a matter of months before I have all the slides turned into prints and scanned into the computer for blog fodder. I shall have to go through them, pick out the ones to turn into prints and then print a dozen or two out each payday.
Anyway, here is a small look at an American family fifty-five years ago.
Sunday, July 09, 2006
Just a few pictures of this last trip. I have been calling it The Vacation From Hell, it wasn't really. The downside was simply a lack of money, we were about three thousand dollars short of the minimum needed. California has been expensive for decades, and it's not getting any better.
Then we got to Arizona and had to wait until we got our checks to make it home, meanwhile I couldn't even go shooting. We couldn't afford even the range fees and even the National Forest land was closed to casual shooting because of the wildfire danger.
Anyhow, here are some pics of the one shoot that I was able to attend, plus one shot of our grandniece. This was the shoot outside of Prescott, AZ that I wrote about. I am semi-confident that the pics of the 12 gauge will prevent any potential Deb Frisch types out there.
I really don't understand that mess at all. I know that Lefties and (some) righties can be hateful but leave the kids out of it. Actually I know of no right-types that would go so far as to imply threats to a child. When we on the right tend to disagree politically, we think our opponent is wrong. When a Lefty disagrees, they often think their opponent is evil. I'm not positive as to why, perhaps it is because for so many on the Left, politics IS their religion.
At any rate, I had some words with Goldstein awhile back, over nothing really that important but it annoyed me. So I quit going to and commenting on his blog. There were no threats against anyone's family.
Oh well, lots of smart people have commented on the Goldstein/Frisch situation, perhaps someone smart enough to understand it. I certainly don't. All I know is that if someone threatens my family I'm going hunting. 'Course if anyone further away than across the street wants to threaten my family I hope they wait until payday. I'm not sure how well I'd do hitchhiking with a couple of rifles and a shotgun. Maybe if I showed some leg.
Well, I have lots more pictures to post and not much to say, so let me close this. More in the next couple of days.
Friday, July 07, 2006
It was entirely too hot to mess with unpacking, except for the miniumum, toothbrushes and stuff. So, tomorrow will be unpacking everything we own, plus stuff that we borrowed, after I spread ant poison everywhere. I have tons of pictures, everything from nieces, grandchildren, holsters, elephant seals...if it is safe for work I probably have a picture. Seeing as how this trip broke the bank I will be blogging and posting about these pictures for quite a while. For Blogfather Harvey and anyone else wanting to know about NSFW pictures, well, we are sixty years old. If we have any, you don't WANT to see 'em.
Anyhow, a few days and I'll be back in harness.
Sunday, July 02, 2006
Unfortunately, the bloggers and columnists are dead wrong. If there were one jurisdiction in America that we could haul these clowns before that was not tainted by Bush Derangement Syndrome, fine. Haul 'em up. Where is this place? Where can we go where there would not be one juror, out of the twelve, who would simply ignore the harm to America in order to get Bush.
Two out of the four airplanes of 9/11 struck New York City, yet who published this latest outrage? Where was the Millennium Bomber aimed?
I do not understand the antics of these BDS sufferers. It is not like Bush is going to be around past '09.It is not as if any of the awful things they have been screeching about since they failed to steal the '00, '02 or '04 elections have come true. The same people are still screaming before every available microphone that their dissent is being suppressed. Should not at least Susan Sarandon be in a gulag by now? Should I not have seen some new walls up on this long trip through the southwest? Or Army Wife, Toddler Mom seen some new prisons in Nebraska driving The Collective through in her Truwk? I mean somebody would notice new prisons going up, right? Would we not notice that Michael Moore or the Dixie Chunks suddenly disappearing? Would we not hear the cheering?
Meanwhile, there is an outfit killing gays. There is an outfit raping women for not wearing burkas. There is an outfit issuing death penalty fatwas to Leftist novelists. There is an outfit sawing the heads off Lefty Journalists. This outfit is not the Republican Party. It is not the CIA. It's not even me, though there is not much in this world that I would rather see than a lefty with a brass bead over his chest.
I do not see how we will get through this. Sooner or later the Islamists will get their hands on some nukes and carve a humongus hole in the middle of a few of our largest cities. The surviving Leftists will then blame us and do everything possible to keep the surviving government from responding.
It would be one thing if the Left still had some Trumans around. Is there one person in government that the country can unite around to see this war through?
We are screwed.
Monday, June 26, 2006
I do not know the languages, nor can I afford to go overseas and look for Osama Yomamoma or his pals on my own,
All these things are facts, I am not particularly happy about them, it's just the way things are. The active defense of my children and grandchildren is best left to others. I have taught the kids how to shoot, they all have access to effective defense weaponry and all the ammo they would ever need both for use and for practice.
That is pretty much all I can do. It isn't enough, it's just all there is. There are other people, dressed in various shades of blue, green and khaki, drawing their paychecks from cities, counties, states and the Feds all trying to do the same thing, protecting my grandkids.
Then we have those on the opposing side, not just the Islamist nutjobs who are actively trying to kill my grandkids but, even worse, Westerners who's hatred of out current administration is so deep that they are pleased to help those Islamists. The New York Times and the LA Times are prime examples.
I don't know how to get within rifle range of Osama. I do know where the NYT building is. It shouldn't be too difficult to get within 400 or so yards from the driveways and doors that Keller, Risen and Lichtblau use. At 400 yards I can pretty much be sure of a chest shot. I might even be able to get close enough to decide which eye I want the bullet to go through.
Can we please stop farting around and kill a few of these clowns? Pretty please? The lives of my grandchildren depend on doing this.
Thursday, June 15, 2006
We got to Colton, CA and our stomachs were flappin' in the breeze so we stopped for Taco Bell. Colton is where they sent Morgan Earp's body for burial and Virgil Earp for recovery during the Earp/Cowboy unpleasantness in Tombstone.
We made a severe tactical error, though. The place we stopped was right 'cross the street from the High School and it was the last day o' school. The place was a madhouse of teenagers. One of the many steps backwards our society has made since I was in High School, back in the '60s, is the volume of teenaged conversations. In my day we kept our voices down for fear of the adults finding out what we were up to. No longer. That is a shame.
From Colton it was due east for the Arizona border, through the California desert. The first hour or so out of Colton we rode with the radio and CD player off, recovering from the noise of the Taco Bell. The rest of the way it was the CDs up loud to cover up the new noises from the Taco Bell. Thank the Lord for the sunroof cracked open.
Once past Colton there is not much to see, one kind of desert followed by another. There are a few square miles of irrigated land visible from the highway, mostly one sees miles and miles of miles and miles. We crossed the border and stopped for gas the last time. Next stop, Phoenix.
I got several boxes of my Moms old slides, pictures from 1955 through 1958, including a set of pictures from the coastal country that I was writing about. There is supposed to be a way to scan those into my home computer. If I can't scan the slides in I'll, eventually, have a few nickels and dimes to have prints made.
Well, that's pretty much this whole trip, so far. We shall be house sitting for the kids while they take my daughter in law's brother to Nebraska so we'll be here through about July the 4th, then home. If anything blog worthy happens, I'll write it up.
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
The first place we stopped was Monterey. Things there have changed since I was a boy, Monterey, just south of Fort Ord was once a major military retirement area. Military folks who had done a tour there often retired there and I sure wouldn't blame them. Fort Ord is closed now, deactivated during the Clinton years and the Monterey area is way too expensive for the retired warriors. That would be okay but I do wonder how all those Leftists, who don't care about money, can afford to live there.
We drove down to Cannery Row, the area of the John Steinbeck book and fed a parking meter for a walk around. Parking was a quarter for fifteen minutes (See my comment about Leftists not caring about money). We walked about, Linda Lou, Captain Fatbob and me. Monterey did not discriminate against Black Pugs Of Doom like Santa Cruise did so we went down to the bay, he got his feet wet in the Pacific. I don't know how many dogs have seen both the Atlantic and the Pacific but Linda Lou's has. We heard, but could not see, a few Sea Lions and saw a Harbor Seal. There was no surf so Captain Fatbob did not send me ass over teakettle like he did at the Atlantic.
On the way out of Monterey we were behind an SUV with anti Dubya stickers and a nice big one about what Consertatives were conserving. Well, how about gasoline? And lead, I did not empty a gun in it, though it was tempting. It would have been difficult to hide the bodies, though. Sigh.
Done with Monterey, although we could have spent a month there, and thousands of dollars, we went back to the PCH and south, just a bit. The famous 17 mile drive is on the Monterey Peninsula so we took it. The average time for this drive is about two hours, except on a summer weekend when it is longer. Those who watch golf of the Teevee have seen the area, it is where Pebble Beach is. I last took this drive when, on formal occasions, I would wear a sailor suit with short pants. I think that was when we had a '49 or '50 Ford and it was a new car.
Well, '50 Fords are not new anymore and the 17 mile drive costs $8.75 but is worth every penny. I can't say much here, when we get home and scan the pictures into the computer I'll try to do it justice.
We then continued south on the PCH, about ten minutes south of Monterey we lost the four lane and it turned into a twisty, mountainous two lane road. The road did not quite twist enough for me to pat the taillights of the van as we drove but it was close. The PCH is a real road for motorcyclists and sport cars, not quite so much for a van with a guncart tied to the top. The PCH is a tiring drive that no one should take if in a hurry. It is not exactly the fastest way from San Francisco to LA. It is a road that everyone should take, though, at least some of it. We did not stop at the Hearst Castle as we were short on daylight and money. So we kept plugging south, past Big Sur and other attractions. Every few miles there is a Vista Point sign where one can stop, park and point at the vista, Spanish for view. Most were worth seeing. One Elephant Seals.of the last points we stopped at was a large one with a beach full of These seals are so named because of their long, hanging noses and their size, a full grown male is over two tons to five thousand pounds. This section of beach had more than a hundred, mostly snoozing in the sand. Some of the males were practice fighting, most were just laying about throwing sand upon themselves and snoozing in the sun. I'm not sure why the sand, perhaps to make it hard for flies to bite. Maybe insulation. I dunno, there are no seals in my part of Texas.
The seals were fun to watch, they'd come out of the water and galumph up the beach a little then collapse and snooze for a few. Then they'd galumph up the beach a little more and collapse again. I never figure out how many galumph/collapse cycles it took to get all the way up the beach because I'd watch one, it would collapse and start snoozing and I'd start watching another. I am using the word collapse on purpose, a seal would be working his way up and then collapse as if shot in the head. Then a few minutes later would start up again.
Shortly after that stop we drove through another small town, Cambria. Then it was time to turn inland on State Highway 46. This is another road that has turned into a stretch with yuppie vineyards alongside. This stretch of California Highway is most famous for a fatal car wreck. This is the stretch of road where James Dean, the actor, crashed his Porsche. I'm not sure exactly where he bought the farm, somewhere near Cholame where State Highway 41 crossed. I saw the sign about the James Dean Memorial Crossroads, I did not notice the memorial itself. Of course by then I was starting to get a bit tired. Not long after Cholame we were into the agricultural Central Valley again. After we hit Interstate Five we turned south and drove to Buttonwillow a little agricultural town noted for nothing but a few truck stops and motels, including the Motel Six we spent the night in. I was glad to see a bed.
I am not sure that it will make any big difference but what the hey, I have several red shirts.
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
We were going to stay a couple weeks longer but my sister and her husband are finally officially sick of California and they are getting their house and land ready to sell. So, they are fixing to start in the bedroom we were in. Anyone who would like a few acres of Sierra Nevada foothill gold country with a geodesic dome house and goats and chickens should let me know. Oh, and yes one can still pan gold out of their little creek, unfornately only tiny flakes. The big nuggets are a hundred and fifty years gone. Unless, of course, there is a still undiscovered mother lode.
We drove down to Watsonville and Santa Cruz the day before my niece's wedding, we drove kind of the long way around, State Highway 88 down through Lodi and Stockton to Interstate 5, south to State Highway 152 and then east to Watsonville. We drove through some of the finest farmland in America, the cherry harvest was just ending and the illegals, er undocumented workers were picking strawberrys. The artichokes were just about ready, too. The almonds and walnuts were ripening, the lettuce and cabbage growing, and, of course, the citrus. Of course the country is going to get mighty hungry in another couple of generations as the farmers are fast being replaced by yuppie owners of vineyards. We won't have much to eat but we'll be drunk enough not to care. It used to be the Napa and Sonoma Valleys for wine and table grapes in the Central Valley, now it is one wine tasting place after another from the foothills of the Sierras, through the Central Valley and back to the coast. At any rate we took all day on a three or four hour drive but we saw a lot of pretty country.
We got to Watsonville and checked in to a $79.00 a night Motel 6. On the coast of California no one needs to worry about me boycotting the Hilton bunch, I can't hardly afford Motel 6. We cleaned up and drove the fifteen miles or so up to Santa Cruz in plenty of time for the rehearsal. Not that we needed to be at the rehearsal but that was the only way to get to the night-before dinner, us not being familiar with the area. The nieces, all four were there, all the kids and a regiment or so of other relatives, some that I had not seen in more than thirty years.
After the dinner we then drove around the area until dark. We went to bed early and, after we got up, drove up to the beach at Santa Cruz. That is where we discovered that dogs are not particularly welcome there, we got chased off the big pier and could not go on the boardwalk. They will be sorry for disrespecting the Black Pug Of Doom.
Then the wedding. Poor Larry, the groom, had about three relatives total. The preacher made the bride's family and friends sit on both sides of the aisle for fear the church would tip over.
We then drove to the Elks Lodge, up the hill from the beach, for the reception. Nice dinner, loads of family, the usual thing. Since my niece is like forty or so, we had folks from toddlers to people in walkers but it was fun. Not much to talk about, though, my family is like any other. From the reception we drove over Highway 17 to San Jose where we met Springfield Slim and I bought some of the Big Lube Bullets. The trouble was that Linda Lou and I were both tired and the directions were on a recording on the cell phone that we could not hear very well. We went the wrong way on every turn but finally found the place. There is something serious wrong with driving around lost with $3.23 a gallon gas in the car. Then back to the motel. Things got interesting the next day but that is also the next blog entry.
Monday, May 29, 2006
The Cowboy Club, the High Country Cowboys shares the range with an IPSC outfit so the shooting bays are more set up for the autoloader boys than us, it works pretty well, though. This outfit runs it's shoots a little different than my home club, it has smaller posses for one thing. Still, it was close enough to what I'm used to that I was not lost. The slope was steeper and the range more spread out, I thought I was going to have a heart attack dragging my gun cart back to the car.
At the shooters meeting, before the Pledge of Allegiance, we had a moment of silence for Memorial Day. Then we broke into the posses and got started. The shoot started really well, I shot the first two stages clean, meaning no misses. I'm still slow, there is no hope for that, not after the stroke, but I am pretty accurate. The third stage, though, was my downfall. It had the first Texas Star I have ever seen, much less shot at. The Texas Star is an interesting target, a large, five pointed star. At each point is a six inch steel circle. You hit the circle, it falls off the star. Then the star starts to spin, it then slows and stops, until the next circle is shot off, the star spins some more, etc. There were more than a couple ugly words used during this stage. Worse, this wqas the firt time this club had ever used the Texas Star with only five shots to remove all five "points" There were two other targets for the second handgun. Needless to say, there went my clean match. The Texas Star is not a real common target yet, they are very expensive, for one thing. The difficulty makes them sort of unpopular, too. I have somewhat mixed emotions, myself. I think a few practice sessions and I would be able to hold my own on one. It would take a little practice before I got used to the spinning. So, three misses.
Worse, this was my first shoot wearing the new leather and I "missed the bucket". I went to put my left hand gun in the new holster and missed. A dropped empty gun is a stage disqualification so, instead of three misses, I had a complete blank. That is no way to win the Cadillac. It could have been worse, a dropped loaded gun is a match DQ. I knew to look the gun into the holster, I was trying to figure out if I could salvage a decent score.
With the exception of that dropped gun, the rest of the match went well, five clean stages. It was not easy shooting those last three and kicking myself at the same time. I did not kick myself too hard, it is a common happening, dropping a shootin' iron. Having to draw and reholster two revolvers, plus having to handle two long guns through six different stages in a one day shoot gives plenty of chances to screw the pooch.
This was my first (Cowboy Action) shoot away from home, there were a couple of differences. For one thing the Arizona air is a whole lot drier than that of northeast Texas. This makes a huge difference with black powder, there was very little smoke. I am used to big clouds, except for the smell and the BOOM! instead of the bang I wouldn't have known I was shootin' the Holy Black. There is no mistaking that smell, though. Note to those not familiar with Black Powder...the more humidity, the more smoke, if you want huge clouds, shoot in the rain.
I don't know how much the altitude affected me, I could blame droppin' the gun on that but it seems I don't really need altitude for doing something stupid. I will blame the altitude on the trouble I had dragging the guncart. I was really dragging by the end of the match.
I regret not having the right software installed on this little vacation laptop as I have a whole passel o' pictures, I really want to show my new leather. The irons came out of the holsters like they had rockets attatched. There is no fast draw connected with SASS shooting but these holsters are downright quick.
Well, we won't be leaving Phoenix until Sunday, then we will enter the People's Republic of California for a month. Be still my beating heart.