Friday, August 31, 2007

Free Ice Cream

I've made no secret that we've been broke. When Linda retired gas was a buck and a half a gallon, prices have gone up a little since then. We knew we really couldn't afford for her to retire right then but she was just flat out tired of the grind. So we've been living on my little pension plus the $276.00 or so left from paying our medical insurance from her federal pension.

Well the other day we were cleaning out something and lo and behold we found a store coupon for a free half gallon of ice cream. When I went to pick up my cholesterol medicine I also got a half gallon of Peaches and Cream. Yum!

Today we finally see the light at the end of the tunnel, financially. We went and applied for Linda Lou's Social Security today, she turns sixty-two this November. We expected some two hundred a month less than she will actually be getting. It's no body's real business the exact dollar figures, let's just say that the way the tax system is set up we'll be taking home almost as much money as we did when we were both working. Without having to drive fifty-odd miles, one way.

So, anyway, unless that light I see is a train, the fourth Wednesday in January our money problems start shrinking fast. I'm ready. Of course we wouldn't have had this problem had we saved our money instead of peeing it away on food and house payments. Oh well, at least we paid off the house and land before she retired. All through this whole thing I've been saying that we might starve in a house with no utilities but we aren't going to lose the house.

I'm not the most financially savvy guy in the world but at least I didn't get more house than I could afford, with three mortgages or whatever is going on with all these gas station attendants and their McMansions. It ain't much but it's mine. Not mine and the banks but mine.

Unless prices go really crazy we'll be able to take one big trip a year plus several smaller ones.

I did two smart things in this life, I married Linda Lou and I paid off the house.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Oh, Larry.

So, Senator Larry Craig really stepped in it. I have no particular animus toward closet queens but it seems that somebody smart enough to be elected to the United States Senate could at least cruise adult bookstores instead of men's rooms in airports.

I would normally not care about a Senator from Idaho, even a stalwart Republican. After all, there are not many places more red than Idaho. Trouble is, Craig has always been one of the firmest defenders of the Second Amendment. I guess I shouldn't say firmest. There are lots of Republicans, not so many that are strong for the NRA.

It's time to show some courage, Larry. Resign. Resign now so the Republican who replaces you will have a little more seniority come the next Congress.

And please, Congress. We give you plenty of money for staff. If you can't keep your zipper up, hire someone to service you. Just keep quiet about it.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

A Quiet Sunday

Things are pretty quiet around the Poorfarm today. Yesterday was my AA Birthday, 22 years since my last drink. Better still, it's now been two years since that stroke. And two years since my last cigarette. I've never considered myself as all that brave but I was, and am, surprised at how frightening a stroke is. To find myself unable to speak and not knowing why, or if I'd recover...I owe the Docs, Nurses and other medical types a huge thanks. Especially the drug companies.

To celebrate all this I'm cooking a massive pot of red beans and rice with ham and red onions. I bought a football ham last Wednesday and cooked it and candied yams, two meals worth there, now I'm cooking some more of this ham with the beans. There are still four thick slices for ham 'n eggs. Food sure lasts longer now that there are just the two of us. Of course the dogs are trying frantically to tell us that three of those four slices are theirs. Fat chance.

I'm fixing cornbread muffins to go with, a half dozen plain and a half dozen cinnamon-apple. The plain to go with the beans 'n rice, the cinnamon-apple to go with ham 'n eggs. Of course I'll have to do without eggs for a couple of weeks after to get my cholesterol back down. Such is the joy of aging. I wonder how all those farm people lived so long eating eggs and biscuits and gravy and stuff every day. Probably they worked it off.

It's always funny when the NASCAR Race is on Saturday Night instead of Sunday. Linda Lou was asking who is subbing for Rush today since he is golfing in Hawaii. Oh, yeah. Nobody, today. Carl Edwards did his backflip, somehow he got to be King Of The Concrete. Whatever, his team sure has that car working on concrete tracks.

I'm staying out of politics today, I read the usual blogs and just wanted to pound my head on the desk. Actually I don't have anything to say but the blog must have posts, so...

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

How To Avoid Embarasing Yourself At The Shootin' Part Of The Blogmeet, Part One.

It seems that some blogmeets have shooting involved, no not the kind that would happen if the laws were to change and us righties got within range of the Koskids (bottom photo), but shootin' at targets or tin cans, etc. Some of us would LIKE to shoot but for one or another reason, don't. Perhaps it's a case of living where gun ownership is difficult, perhaps it's a lack of finances, perhaps there are other reasons.

The bad news is that there is no substitute for practice. There are ways to limit the shame, though. There are some tricks.

First, start with your brain. Not everyone bringing a shootin' iron to a meet has your best interests in mind. If you are familiar with cliches there is: don't run before you learn to walk. Do not grab the gun with a barrel the size of a sewer pipe. It is impossible to shoot well when you have a flinch. Save the earghesplitzen loudenboomers for the end of the session. I've been shooting some fifty years now, I still save the big loads for last.

Make sure you are wearing ear and eye protection. Every Cowboy Action Shoot I go to I get some birdshot or bullet fragments bounced back on me. It seldom breaks the skin but would not be good for my eyes. Even a .22 pistol will damage hearing.

Shooting starts with your hands and feet. You should start with your feet about shoulder width apart with your weak-side foot slightly forward. (See second photo from top)Now, take the shootin' iron and put it firmly in your strong hand, the back of the butt should not be against the web of the thumb but should be in the meat of the palm (see third photo from top).

Your trigger finger should be off the trigger until you are ready to shoot. Then, just the tip of the finger goes on for any shootin' iron with a light, single action pull. Double actions require more of the finger on the trigger (See fifth and sixth photos).

The weak hand wraps around the strong hand (fourth photo). There are two main shooting stances, the Weaver Position and the Isosceles. In the Weaver your elbows are slightly bent, this helps absorb recoil. The body is at an angle to the line of fire, the weak side foot slightly forward. (Fourth Photo again)

The Isosceles has the arms straight out, although the elbows still aren't locked, the body is more or less square with the line of fire. Note that in a scenario with several targets we will almost naturally flow from Weaver to Isosceles or vice versa as we switch from target to target.

Now, the sights. The rear sight is a notch, or groove. It may be adjustable, it may be fixed, that doesn't matter unless it's your gun. I get downright testy when someone messes with the sights on my guns. The sight picture should look like a picket fence. There should be an equal amount of light showing on the front sight and the front sight should be even with the top of the rear sights. The target is balanced on top of the front sight. Our eyes are not able to focus on the rear sight, front sight and target so focus on the front sight. The target will be slightly blurry, that's okay.

Now, hold the gun, close your eyes and bring the gun up to firing position. Open your eyes and look through the sights.If the sights are not on the target, move your feet. Repeat this process until you raise the gun and your sights are on the target. Now you're ready to shoot. Finger goes on the trigger, press and "click". Watch the sights. If you are jerking the trigger they'll go away off. A good trigger pull the sights will barely twitch.

Okay, now load 'er up and make some noise! Note, when I was learning to shoot the rule of thumb was that it takes five thousand rounds to make a pistol shooter. With the modern shooting schools this number is much smaller but still the only real way to be a good shot is to shoot. Back when I was shooting competition I would shoot one day, handload ammo the next, then shoot, then handload. Every day got some dryfire practice.That is what it took to be at the top of my game. After I gave up competition I went to shooting once a week, my scores dropped about 10-20 percent. Now, of course, since the stroke, I can't hardly hit a bull in the butt with a base fiddle. Still, I'm a better shot that 99% of the criminals out there because I've learned the fundamentals.

Since there is nothing about rifles in this post the top photo is of a rifle, specificly a Ruger 10/22 with a Shilen Barrel and Hogue overmolded stock, plus a lot of internal parts like trigger, sear, etc. How to turn a $100.00 used rifle into a $400.00+ tack driver in one fell swoop. If you REALLY need to hit something, grab a rifle.

Monday, August 20, 2007


Okay, so I wrote a long post and finally illustrated it with photos. You just don't KNOW how long it takes to upload a lot of photos with this dial up I have, either, only to discover that Blogspot put the whole thing into last month's archive because that's when I started it.

So, if you want to see pictures of me waving a few guns around, and how to wave them, step into the archives and see July 24, 2007.

I never really understood people complaining so bitterly about Blogspot, I mean it's free, it's simple to use. Okay, now I'm starting to understand.

Oh well, here is your how-to, Harv, if you want it.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Traffic Jam

I got my sitemeter Stats report today as I do every Friday. Traffic is up by a factor of some two and a half, from 60 visitors a day to one hundred and fifty-six. Woot! Seems that that link from Patterico helped, but not near as much as Blogpappy Harvey linking me to IMAO. I may become the most famous feller nobody ever heard of.

Now, if I can just manage to write something good a couple times a week I might just someday make it all the way up to Marauding Marsupial in the TTLB Ecosystem. Trouble is, I don't always have a whole lot to say.

I am about 2/3s of the way through a long article on shooting, it should be up Monday. I have to shoot the photos. I wish I knew how to caption a photo, it would make the article easier to follow, I think. Oh well, I just do the best I can.

No new dog pictures this week, soon. CAP, the most beautiful German Shepherd Puppy in the universe tuned seven months old Wednesday. I'll shoot a few photos of them while I'm taking pictures.

Other than that I got nothin'.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

We Wait And We Pray

Just about everyone has heard that we've lost another Chinook Helicopter and five aircrew over in Iraq. Some may not know that my friend Teresa, the proprietress of Technicalities, has a son serving in Iraq. That son is a flight engineer on a Chinook.

As I sit and pray for the safety of my friend's son I can't help but know that five sons (or daughters) ARE dead. So we pray, hoping that He will understand that we are not praying for someone else's world to crumble, although someone's has. Just once, Lord, five unmarried, surly orphans. No? Then, please, not my friend.

Note: If you are antiwar or antiBush, please pray anyway. We, the nation decided on this war, right or wrong. The decision was made with plenty of discussion, lots of information. Every congresscritter had access to the same information that Bush and Rumsfeld had. Some of that information was wrong. Some was right. Just like in every war in history. Just, please, don't drop a bunch of Bush lied! comments here. Not now.

Welcome Home, Karl.

Well, the television airways were dripping with hatred yesterday, Karl Rove will be leaving at the end of this month. The Left is heartbroken, he'll be walking out swinging his arms, not being frogmarched in handcuffs.

I found it really interesting the media types talking about how the Democrats beat him on immigration, the Dubai Ports Deal and the '06 electiom. Hmmph. When did Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Michelle Malkin join the Democrats?

I am really looking forward to the Congressional hearings, the Donks are sure to subpoena him "investigating" those US Attorneys. I can just see Karl answering those "probing questions"..."What part of serves at the pleasure of the President don't you understand"?

I've never really understood the hatred for Rove, or Bush either, for that matter. Those two are a lot of things, classic conservative is not one of them. Ted Kennedy wrote the Education Bill, he had much to do with the Medicare drug benefits, too. Yet with all this cooperation from Rove, and Bush, there has been no reciprocation.

I am really wondering what the Donks will expect if they ever win another Presidential election. Do they not realize that the Republicans can, and probably will, behave just like the Donks have since 2000? Now, that would be fine by me, I figure the more gridlock, the better. Just remember, if the Donks won't let a Republican President appoint judges, why should the Republicans not do the same for a Democrat?

Anyhow, Karl will come home, to a fairly small town near San Antonio. I'll be sure to wave as we go down to visit our youngest son and his wife and kids just south of San Antone.

Friday, August 10, 2007

The Party Of Tolerance.

Okay, so Jerome Armstrong got into trouble with the SEC and has to pay some $30,000.00 in fines. Now I know, because they always tell me, that only Republicans are interested in money. Armstrong, being a honcho at My DD, a far-left website, cannot be interested in money, it must have been a mistake.

Here is what I don't understand, though. After the news got out the Koskids answered with "closeted gay, Matt Drudge". Now, I don't know Mr. Drudge and have never seen his closet. I check his website several times a week, it used to be several times a day but the popups and popunders are annoying, so I found other paths to the news.

Why is it that gays spend their political money on Democrats? The Donks claim that we Republicans are the intolerant ones. Yet when the Beauchamp saga hit the news, what was the reaction from the Left? "Matt Sanchez starred in gay porn!" Now, folks on my side of the aisle didn't know that, mostly, and those of us that did, kept it quiet. Now, the only way I know Sanchez is through his reporting as an embedded feller checking out Iraq. Gay porn is not my particular kink. It's not that I'm perfect, I'm nowhere near. I have my own particular kinks, everyone does. I don't talk about them with just anyone. The kids didn't need to hear them, they got to grow their own when they got old enough. Whatever they may be. They keep quiet about them out of respect for the grandkids, who will get their own kinks when they're old enough. Hopefully the grandkids will be Republicans and Only they, and their sweeties, will know what those kinks will be.

Why is it that it is always the Left screeching about who is, or might be, gay? And please don't call Fred Phelps a man of the Right, I've never seen him at a Republican gathering. Yet the gays shovel the lion's share of their political money to the Party that sides with the Palestinians, the people who throw gays off the roofs of tall buildings. They donate to the Party that is against us doing anything to the Iranians, who hang gays from construction cranes.

Of course, the gays aren't the only ones going against their own interests in supporting the Party Of Tolerance. Remember James Byrd and the NAACP ad against George Bush in 2000? Under the governorship of George Bush, we Texans caught, tried and convicted those three peckerwoods that killed Byrd. One got a chance to turn on his "friends", he was sentenced to life, without parole. The other two? They'll get the needle, unless the Donks stop it. Yet it's the Republicans who hate blacks, notwithstanding that the Donks are the only Party with a KKK Kleagle in the Senate.

Women send the lion's share of their money to the Party of Ted Kennedy and Gary Condit. Have any Republicans in Congress killed any women lately?

The world is insane.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

More Pictures

Somehow I made a mistake trying to clear a picture out of the last entry and lost the pictures of the other dogs. Not lost forever, mind, just out of that entry. It being almost naptime I blew it off until now. Naptime is important.

The three sided dog war still goes on. Ming The Merciless is still the Alpha Dog, it is the funniest thing in the world to see her chasing CAP across the living room, CAP running with her tail between the legs. Ming convinced them both when they were puppies just who the boss dog was and won't ever let them realize how much they've grown.

CAP and Eddie stay locked in constant battle over the only toy in the world or the last bone in the house. It doesn't matter that there are piles of other toys and bones, whichever toy or bone one has is the only one and must be fought over.

Speaking of bones, my ankle is about half healed, now. I can actually stand up for ten minutes or so before it starts hurting, maybe twenty minutes of sitting with my feet on the floor. Speaking of twenty minutes, that time is about up. Stupid dog, kicking me like that.

She Still Hasn't grown Into Those Ears

We took some new dog pictures. CAP is a week short of seven months old. She is still growing like a weed. If I grab her by the front paws she can easily give me a kiss and the face, and does.

Eddie T. Dog is just about full grown.By this time next year he will be as big as he'll ever get as long as we pay attention to his diet.

In other news, our water heater has sprang a big leak. I was really hoping to avoid more catastrophes until December or January, when Linda Lou should start getting her social security. If anyone cares I'm getting real tired of being broke. It's too bad we threw so much money away when we had it. Oh well, another five months.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

On Strike!

So, it seems that the Lefty Blogosphere wants to start a union so they can get health insurance. Well, I've always had a curious sort of mind so I tried an experiment.

You see, I am somewhat unhappy with the pay and benefits of blogging. Not only don't I get any money but I have to pay for my connection to the Internets, plus buy my own computers. So, I started a union. The Amalgamated Brotherhood Of Bloviating Underwearclad Peters, local #1. The first thing was to organise, so I talked to myself for a while, my wife shook her head.

Then the ABOBUP asked management for a raise. Management (me) told the Union (me) that there is no money for a raise (or much of anything else). Infuriated, the Union had a strike vote, the vote was 100% for the strike. So, the Union made up a picket sign and the entire membership of ABOBUP, local #1 walked off the job. The Union membership started a picket line, marching up and down the living room with the picket sign, shouting Union slogans and singing "Solidarity Forever" that famous old IWW song by Joe Hill, that feller that got hanged for murder, way back when.

The picket line started off okay, the entire Union membership (me) was walking the picket line, the dogs following, right up until I started singing. That's when the strike fell apart, Cochise's Apache Princess started howling and Eddie T. Dog and Ming the Merciless crossed the picket line to get to their Mama for protection from the awful noise. The picket line being broken, the strike ended.

Management's only concession was a bowl of Navy Bean Soup and a cornbread muffin. The union foiled again.

Update 08/08/07: Commenter Triticale reminded me that Joe Hill was shot by firing squad instead of hanged. Union lore claims that he may have been innocent, I know that all the prisons in the USA are filled with innocent men, many caught in the act.

The claim is that the firing squad used soft point (dum dum) bullets, which is actually no problem. Soft points are not supposed to be used in warfare because if a soldier is wounded the powers that be want him to have a reasonable chance of recovery. The whole point of a firing squad is that the feller doesn't survive, hence the Officer coming up with a pistol to check to see if the feller is moving. There is no recovery.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Beauchamp, Again

Okay, now TNR is offering as proof of Beauchamp's truthiness that his story of how his horrible treatment of a woman wounded in an IED accident happened in Kuwait. Yes, the war is so horrible that it robbed him of his decency before he even set foot in the country.

We have a new problem, PTSD to watch out for. Yes, friends, Pre Traumatic Stress Disorder. Please write your Congresscritter, we'll need to spend a few billion studying this disease. Since it affected Beauchamp before he ever set foot in Iraq I volunteer to take a few million to study this new form of PTSD, I'm qualified because I haven't been to Iraq, either.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

And Another Thing

Since this round of Jihad started up Westerners have been killed by Hamas, Hib'zhallah, Islamic Brotherhood, AlQ, the PLO, and a host of other outfits. Islamists with no apparent connection to any organised groups have killed us, look at the DC Snipers, that African American Muslim couple of white loners.

So, with this evidence before us, why do we let the Democrats get away with saying the entire fight is with the Bin Laden bunch? When I was a kid reporters were curious, that is why they went into that business. Today it seems like their only job is to repeat Donk talking points.

Imagine if the Republicans of WW2 were like the Democrats of today...North Africa never bombed Pearl Harbor. Guadalcanal never bombed Pearl Harbor. Normandy never bombed Pearl Harbor. Iwo Jima never bombed Pearl Harbor...

We never landed ground troops on Japan until after they surrendered, thank the Lord. Actually FDR put the bulk of our forces into the ETO, against Germany and Italy, the Japanese got what was left over. You remember the Japanese? The ones that bombed Pearl Harbor.

Obama Wants To Invade?

Okay, let me get this straight in my head. Obama wants to pull our troops out of Iraq and invade Pakistan. I confess that I am no expert on the thought processes (if any) of Democrats but if they claim that our Military can't handle the 26 million people in Iraq, a country that is fairly flat, with navigable rivers, what on earth makes him think that we can swing an invasion of a mountainous, nuclear armed, country of over a hundred and fifty million?

Y'all must forgive me for bein' a poor dumb redneck but why is it that Democrats never support our military's operations that are actually happening but are always very supportive of potential operations. Kind of like how in '98 the Democrat Administration, the Democrat-led Senate and the then-Republican led House declared regime change in Iraq to be US policy.

So, Obama wins and the troops pour into Pakistan, greeted by the Paki Army, Air Forces, etc. How long before the Donks turn on the military?