Wednesday, December 29, 2010


I realize I'm a week or three late, but: Happy Hanukkah, Happy Solstice, Merry Christmas, and Happy Holy-Crap-I'm-Glad-It's-Over to my 4 readers.

I hope you were treated well in your preferred gifty holiday...I certainly was. C purchased a shotgun with the intention of the two of us using it for skeet/trap shooting. It's a Mossberg 500 Bantam Field and Deer package - two barrels, optics, wood furniture, and it's in 20ga since his 12ga hurts me something fierce. I'm still floored he picked it up, and ABSOLUTELY CANNOT WAIT to hit the range with it.

In other news, I'll be picking up my first 1911 after tax time.

In still OTHER news, I'm planning on going to the NRA meeting in 2011...since it's being held in a city that's a day trip away from here, I really should go. Are you going?

Other other news: I have a few people who want to hit the range with me as first time shooters. Most of them are WOMEN. I love being in the position to introduce them!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Something to give you cavities...

Last year, around Christmas, I made marshmallows. They were crazy-easy and so much tastier than those store-bought lumps of squish.

I followed the recipe linked here. Go, make some...then do something creative with them.

Friday, November 26, 2010

New thing!

I've been talking with Jennifer about a good way of supporting her husband Michael and his business. If you recall, I got my super awesome purse of awesomeness from Michael about 2 months ago, and am absolutely in love with this thing.

Well, I think people need to know just how talented this man is when it comes to working with leather. There is now a banner at the top of my blog. Go give Michael some love and order a holster, belt, or purse from him, will you?

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Monday, November 22, 2010

Okay, now I've seen everything.

How is this right?

Seriously, how?

ETA: I've since read this was due to a frustrated father removing the boy's shirt "because the TSA kept trying to pat the kid down, but said kid wasn't playing. It was out of rage and frustration. The TSA agent put it back on him." I'm glad for some clarification, despite guaranteeing that child will end up scarred from this. It seems we have no escape from the bullshit, save not flying.

I suppose I'm one of the lucky ones - while I flew regularly before the attacks in New York, I have only flown a handful of times since then. Of those flights, only one encounter with TSA agents left me slightly I was unaware just how bad some of these agents really are. Now that they're given more liberty to abuse passengers, their true natures are coming to the surface, and it's appalling. C and I have elected to avoid flying as much as possible, and instead will invest in a camper for vacations. With that, we'll avoid both the TSA AND bedbugs while spending less in gas and lodging. I call that a win.

Other recent links regarding the TSA:
Rape survivors are having mental breakdowns over the patdown procedure. Next time someone says modesty shouldn't be an issue in this country, please, smack the shit out of them for me...then make them read that.
Thanks to an agent ignoring this man, he was forced to board a plane covered in his own urine.
Apparently TSA agents resent the enhanced patdown. Aww, poor babies. Maybe if more of them stood up to those enforcing these policies, something would happen. ...Not that I'd expect any of them to actually say anything to anyone about it. It's easier to whine to a reporter than it is to protest within one's agency.
The ACA wants improved screening procedures. as Breda has said, amputees have had constant issues with the TSA since their inception.
And the very best link of the day? Bruce Schneier, the gentleman who coined the term "security theater," says TSA Scans "Won't Catch Anybody". Imagine that.
If you or someone you know feels they've been abused while going through TSA screening, the ACLU has a complaint form here.

Hopefully someone will get a clue and actually do something to avoid the hell they're putting people through.

......Now if only that weren't wishful thinking.......

Friday, November 12, 2010

I really don't know how to respond to this.

It's been two days since I read this post, and I still don't know how to respond.

I find myself disappointed that someone can so wholly misunderstand the point of Veteran's day...and speechless at how selfish her comments really are.

Please, someone fill my head with kittens and puppies or something equally fluffy and pleasant.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

To all of those who are currently in the military or are former military...

Thank you.

I have things I want to say about those who seem to misunderstand the whole point of Veteran's day, but I'll save those comments until tomorrow. Today is for all of you who have put your lives on the line for the rest of us.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Friends are mind readers!

This weekend, C and I had a party...Mike dropped by and decided to bring belated birthday pressies with him.

I swear, the guy can read my mind. He somehow *knew* I needed another mag for my Bersa. He also gave me a nifty Bersa tank top. In exchange, I gave him food and fun for a weekend. :D

Mike, I love ya. :D

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Posts I'm writing but are nowhere near finished...

I'm going to corral one of my photog friends this weekend to get good shots of the +50 Purse of Awesome, and then I'll get my review posted.

I've also got a post started regarding the whole 10/20/10 purple thing. It's probably going to piss some people off.

I haven't gotten either of these posted because we're having a house party this weekend, and prep started for it about a month ago. Busy doesn't come close to describing just how insane the past month has been.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Well that's ONE good thing...

A Maryland judge has dropped wiretapping charges on a biker who caught a cop's ridiculous behavior on video. Sorry, Mr. Officer Person, but if you approach someone with a video camera STRAPPED TO HIS HEAD, it's pretty obvious you're being recorded.

Mind you, I think the guy on the bike should have been smacked with a ticket for speeding and reckless driving. He was riding like a moron, and should have been pulled over...he just shouldn't have had a gun pulled on him by an unidentified plainclothes cop for it.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

I still have a small backlog of range posts, BUT...

My cousin and I met at the range tonight to try out a 1911 and a 9mm of some sort.

Can I say how much I continue to love a 1911 in .45? If it weren't for Breda, I probably never would have shot C's 1911...and now I'm infatuated.

So. Springfield 1911 with a few upgraded parts (full length guide rod, lightened trigger, extended beavertail) makes me happy in places it shouldn't. I'm pleased to say V enjoyed it as much as I did...I think he'll be getting into the pistol game come Christmas. I'm so pleased. :)

On the other end of the spectrum, I encountered the Sig P226. Again. And neither of us liked it. It must be the gun itself, because this thing rattles like an old domestic pickup truck...and I had one feed failure out of 50. Thankfully it was easily cleared, doesn't speak well for it. On top of that, I could feel the slide every time I shot it, and that was more than a little disconcerting. It almost felt like the slide was going to fall off. I think, henceforth, I'll be shooting *other* 9mm options.

I have to finish the write-up from V's first-ever range visit, but I haven't had much time. I'll get around to it, though.

Monday, September 20, 2010


because this is on its way to me (as of some point today).

So far, the purse is gorrrrgeous. I'll post pictures of it (plus a writeup) once it arrives, of course.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Ugh, I hate Baltimore.

This hits too close to home.

Particularly when friends work in that building. Thankfully, only one person has been hurt.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

URGENT(ish) question for those of you in the know...

A friend intends to visit us in October, and he'd like to bring his pistol along. Problem is, he wants to send it to himself via UPS.

How does one go about doing this? I've checked the Google machine, and it seems the consensus is one MAY be able to ship to oneself. Maybe. Can anyone substantiate this?


Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Who approved this?

C and I are discussing the idea of getting a camper to tow behind the truck.  This would allow for more affordable and accessible vacations, with the bonus of avoiding flying (and the added stress and financial bullshit).  I think we'd be able to avoid flying for the most part...unless, of course, we were to go overseas.

When greeted by the prospect of that x-ray machine, which has a sole purpose of giving the agent at the screen either wank material or a case of the giggles, I know I'd opt for the pat-down.  That should be safer and less humiliating, right?

Maybe not.

 Now I'm facing a dilemma.  I know that I have at least one trip in my future that involves flying.  When dealing with the pat-down from hell, should I:
  1. Act overly excited before being touched by the officer, moan and groan like I'm enjoying it too much, then ask them to continue/keep going/do it harder when they're getting close to the end?
  2. Close my eyes, "lie back, and think of England?"
  3. Scream (loudly) about bad touches in my no-no places, followed by hysterical crying?
I'm torn.

At least guys have a great way of making the agents uncomfortable:

(click to embiggen)

Saturday, August 7, 2010

My cousin bought his first shotgun today. After examining everything in his price range he ended up taking home a Remington 870. I'm so proud I could pop right now.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Interesting things are afoot...

So yesterday, this happened.

In the words of my friend  (from a conversation yesterday): FUCKING AWeSOME NESSSSSSs


My friend's not so great with using his words when he gets excited. ;)

Anyway, I look forward to watching this unfold.  Who knows - with Alan Gura on the job, maybe we'll win.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Celebrating the nation's independance with rifle time?

Sounds like a gooood time to me!

The weekend of the 4th, C and I had two houseguests - P and M.  These guys are pretty close friends of ours, and we always have fun when they come to visit.  This time, we planned some time for firearms.  Turns out the guys wanted to hit both pistol and rifle ranges.  Hey Mike - sorry for not letting you know.  It was super last minute.  Next time, I'll be making plans a little farther out so I can let you know.

Anyway, I missed out on the pistol range run, as I was suffering with a migraine, but C tells me the boys shot his .45 and at least one 9mm (as well as the shotgun).  I believe he said they rented an XDM.  They sounded like they had fun, and C enjoys the XDM a lot more than the XD.

The following day I managed to remain headache-free, so we hit the rifle range...and oh, what an afternoon we had!  We took all cleaned and serviceable rifles in the house: my little .22,my Mauser, and both of the ARs.  We packed up an ammo box with enough to keep everyone happy for a few hours.

The trek to the range wasn't horrid...I'd say MAYBE 45 minutes.  It's out to the west of the city, in a less populated area.  The range was clean, covered, nicely laid out, and fortunately for us it wasn't terribly busy that particular day.  The day also managed to stay comfortable until about 2 or so, which made it pleasant under the awning on the rifle side.

We paid for a lane (worthy of note - they charge a flat fee for a lane, rather than hourly and per person.  nice!) and set up.  We had to wait for a cease-fire to set up targets, so we unpacked and set up the rifles, instead.  We started the day with the ARs...and found they both seem to have a flaw.  Throughout 3 or so hours of shooting, both had consistent feed issues.  We have a variety of plastic and metal magazines, so we couldn't easily blame the problem on those; we only had the Prvi ammo I bought off Mike awhile back and the guns were essentially identical, with matching Del-Ton uppers, sequentially numbered lowers, and identical parts kits for the lowers.  C thinks the ammo is the issue here...I intend to pick up more .223 in various brands to really test this theory.  The boys seemed to enjoy shooting them, however, so I can't complain too much.  We just need to figure out why the rifles won't feed properly.  If anyone has any tips, please feel free to share.  We'll take all suggestions given.

I set up the Mauser about mid-way through our visit, and noticed the gentleman next to us (who has a 1941 Mauser his uncle brought back from the war) watch me set up.  He caught me before I started shooting, and offered 5 rounds of Russian 8mm.  Apparently what he had wouldn't punch as much what I brought with me.*  It's true - his stuff was gentler than my stuff.  I shot one round and realized why they make gel pads...I'd forgotten how much those things kick.  I put P in that lane to give her a little exercise while I set up the .22 in the other lane for M to play with.  I shot it a few times, then rested my shoulder while I watched the rest of the patrons at the range.

Sometimes, I wonder what's wrong with people.  There was a group at the opposite end from us that had a few looked to be an older bolt-action, and one appeared to be an AK.  Now, there are signs all over the range specifying what you may and may not do, on top of the basic firearm handling rules everyone should know before going to a range.  This group apparently had little concept of those rules and couldn't read.  They were constantly sweeping the range with their rifles, insisted on tons of photos of the guys looking "hard" with the AK, and ignored the rules regarding no burst firing/full auto and keeping the rifle in the "box."  Frankly, I don't know why the range officer didn't boot them the first time they screwed up.  It's people like this who scare the shit out of me when I go to a public range.  I'd love to find a private range that allows new members (and doesn't cost a ton to join)...escaping the general population is mighty appealing after seeing that group of idiots.

Conversely, there was a family trio (dad and two boys) on our end of the range.  I didn't notice every rifle they had, but the boys were pretty competent with the AR they brought.  I applauded their father for bringing them.  It was a nice contrast to the idiots on the other end of the range.

Overall, it was a great way to kill an afternoon with some New England residents who don't get firearm exposure at home.  I'm glad we finally got to the rifle range.

*  It's worthy noting I have no idea the origin of my 8mm ammunition.  I aquired it at a gun show last year, and there were no real obvious identifying marks on it.  Probably not the wisest decision, but I figured the Mauser could handle it.  I was right.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Another newbie introduction at the range.

This was started on 6/7/10.  I'm not sure what date it will have when I hit publish.

Last Tuesday, I took off work to recover from the hell that is yardwork, and decided to take a friend to the range for his first visit.

I had him come to my house first, so I could introduce him to the two firearms he'd be shooting in the quiet comfort of my living room.  Knowing R has no experience with FPS-type games cemented the idea that this would be better than introducing him at the range itself.

I pulled out the .22 and the .380, and showed him the basics.  I explained the rules to him, waited until he felt comfortable, and made sure he understood everything I'd explained.  He seemed pretty clear on everything, so we headed out.

We only went through a box of .22LR and .380, partly for time and partly for availability of ammunition.  .380 is still hard to come by in my area.

R seemed to enjoy the .22 - he wasn't intimidated at all, and agreed it feels like an overgrown pop-gun.  He went through about 16 rounds before he decided to move up to the .380.  I think he was a little intimidated by it...even after we finished the box, he seemed to prefer the .22.  He's got to work on his accuracy, but I hope we can set another day for that.

All in all, I think he had fun.  I definitely did.  We've gotta do it again!

Wow, I'm behind.

Apologies for the silence...I'm more than a bit behind!  I'll try to get my two most recent range visits written up.  Those of you who are waiting on them, sorry!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Newbie blogger

My friend FightinBluHen51 has FINALLY joined us.  He's just getting started, but expect to see some posts once he gets pissed off enough to write. :)

Wait, what?

Criminals in Canada doing criminal things to buy guns in Canada?  Unpossible!

Monday, June 21, 2010

...Well, I'm floored.

(This is an update from this post)

After nearly 6 months, I recieved a box from one Jenny Heid in New Jersey.

It's the item I ordered back in January, plus two other prints.  I'd say I'm happy, but I'm disappointed it took this long.

At least I have what I ordered.  Thankfully.  I hope she finally gets things sorted, and stops these delays (AND stops ignoring email) for her future customers.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Local politics.

Had an opportunity to meet a local political candidate this afternoon at a community event.  I won't name names (unless she gives me permission), but I genuinely enjoyed speaking with her today.  Unfortunately I cannot vote for her, as she's not in my district, but I hope she gets the votes she needs.  She's on "our" side, all the way.  Heck, she's even all for concealed carry in the state.

I like her. :)

Thursday, June 10, 2010

CHEAP as hell air rifle on Midway.

If anyone's looking for a Gamo Whisper, now's the time to get it.  Midway has them for $100 off.  They sold 10 yesterday, and may not last much longer.

Monday, May 31, 2010

(borrowed from here)

Saturday, May 29, 2010

There is NOTHING worse than a thief.

*EDIT*  The item arrived today, 6/21, nearly six months after ordering.  Update has been posted here.

Particularly when that thief keeps carrying on like she's done nothing wrong.

There's this girl.  Her name is Jenny Heid, and she sells adorable prints.  Except, I'm not sure she ever actually follows through with those sales.  You see, back in January, I purchased one of these prints from her.

And it never arrived.  In March I emailed her through her account (which was shut down by Etsy for her unlawful behavior), and got no response.  April 1 I resent the message and spoke with her boyfriend, Aaron Nieradka.  He claimed she was dealing with a family emergency (which I already knew, thanks to the feedback she'd been getting on Etsy), and shipping had been delayed.  He claimed he would send my item out "within the next two days," and I felt that fair.  I was also promised a second item for my troubles.  That sounded acceptable to me.

SO, I waited.  And waited.  And waited.  I finally sent another message near the end of April, asking for a tracking number.  Somehow, "Aaron" (I'm not sure if it WAS Aaron or if it was Jenny) sent another email, saying he had the item marked as shipped but couldn't find the tracking information.  I also read more of her Etsy feedback, and knew she was going to screw me over.  At this point, I was annoyed, and contacted Etsy for a Notification of Non-Delivery.  By now I was well past Paypal's limit for refunds, which angered me further.

I heard from Aaron twice that day.  I haven't heard back since.  I've sent messages to her email (, her Facebook account, and her Blogspot account with no response.  I contacted Etsy for a follow-up, and they shut her site down.  I was moderately satisfied, but I knew she was still selling through Blogspot.  I was simmering on that for awhile, until a friend found her new account on, and I'm back to being furious.

She even claims she left Etsy due to their fees, which I know is bunk.  When Etsy staffers tell you they've shut down a site due to unlawful activity, they're generally not lying.

Now, I'm angry.  The item I purchased should be in my hands, OR I should have a full refund.  Stealing is bad, Jenny...Stealing is very, very bad.  You're significantly older than me, and shouldn't be pulling this crap.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Monday, May 24, 2010

Thursday, May 20, 2010

I must be babbly today.

C and I have only begun talking about Bug-out Bags, mostly to the extent of sticking extra canned goods in a box.  I'm starting to think about them more...merely for the practicality of it.  I don't think any major disasters are going to happen where I live, but political unrest is always a possibility, and I live way too close to our nation's capital to write it off as something I shouldn't worry about.

I've read about stuff before...comprehensive lists, things to avoid carrying, that sort of thing.  Somehow, they always manage to contradict each other.  Then I started reading this blog and while I'm only into HYST-Documents, everything he says makes sense.  Not only that, but most of the things he lists are common sense type things.  I think, out of every discussion I've read, I'm going to use his as the most comprehensive and realistic.  In fact, so far, I think the only thing I disagree with is leaving pets behind...but I know my cats CANNOT survive on their own.  They'd have to come with me.

What's your opinion?  Do you already have a BOB set up somewhere in your home?  What's in yours?

Well I'll be...

The governor of Maryland just signed SB411, the civil immunity bill, into law.

I'm floored.


Apparently the Coast Guard now works for BP.  Is this more proof the oil companies pretty much own the US?

Watch CBS News Videos Online

Thursday, May 13, 2010

To those of you headed to the NRA convention...

Have a safe trip, and may your car ride be less than miserable/may the TSA be gentle on your bits and bobs.

Friday, March 26, 2010

A legend will be fading away.

I've just discovered that Marlin Firearms will be closing next year.  The 140-year-old company was a favorite of Annie Oakley and lever gun enthusiasts.  While it's to my understanding their quality control has been lacking recently, it'll still be sad to see them go.

Thursday, March 25, 2010


I'm deliberately avoiding discussions about the current political crap.

Not that I'm supporting what's going on; I'm unable to articulate exactly what I think.  Blame it on spending too much time out in the yard, prepping for the food I'll be growing this year.  Got too much on my mind with planning the year's harvest, no room left for political commentary.

SO, instead of babbling about that, here's my garden babble.  Right now we've got carrots (Danvers and Thumbelina varities) and radishes in, as well as tulips/crocus/other bulb flowers.  My daffodils have popped, the lilies are coming up next, and I added to the roses in the corner of the yard.  I'm going to move a whole mess of stuff outside this week - we have 10 trees from the Arbor Day Foundation as well as a couple of surprise plants for someone (I know he reads this, so I can't elaborate on them).  It'll be nice to get the gnats out of the bedroom...

This weekend, I'll be starting my tomatoes, peppers, and various circubits in containers in the basement under grow lamps.  The first weekend in May is the last frost date, and the rest of my goodies (corn, beans, herbs, leeks, greens) will go in either that week or the following weekend.  We're also hitting a relatively local topiary garden for their season opener and plant sale.  Hoping to pick up some strange stuff this year, either for planting in the garden or keeping in the house as an ornamental.  I think we might move the "annuals" outside, as well - I managed to overwinter begonias and a few flowers traditionally sold as annual flowers in hanging pots.

While I love winter and snow, this year really killed it for me...I've had the planting itch since about day 2 of the Snowpocalypse.  The Facebook game "Farmville" has really been my only outlet, save for the small things I planted or cared for over the winter.  I never expected to fall head-first into gardening as a hobby, but it turned out to be something I love.

What are your plans for spring and early summer?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Q&A: Hunting

Someone I know asked me a list of questions regarding our reasons for getting licensed to hunt, and I have been working on answers...This list will be updated as time goes by.

Why did you get licensed?
This one's easy.  I intend to hunt, to bring down my own food.  I also intend to help control the deer population in my state.  Without any natural predators and with a crazy amount of forest edge (supreme deer habitat) covering the majority of wooded areas near me, they've become a menace.  They eat themselves to starvation and disease and they cause accidents.  Without hunters to control them, I don't even want to imagine what would happen to the local population.  It would probably end up dying out eventually.

Are you going to hunt for trophies as well as food?
Not likely. I don't care about a deer head on the wall.  I'm all about need, not excess.

Will you eat every deer you take?
Ideally, we would ONLY eat what we take.  If I accidentally kill more than intended, I will donate extra to a food kitchen.  Goodness knows they could use it.

If you weren't going to hunt, would you take the class anyway?
Most likely.  At $10 for the class, it's hard to pass up.  Besides, one can never be too prepared - should the Zombiepocalypse occur, I'd like to be able to legally shoot zombie animals before they decide to nom on my brainmeats.  And camo is the new black, or so I'm told.

Why don't you just buy beef at the store like normal people?
I do, currently, but I'd prefer not to buy in to the meat industry in the US.  I can't really afford the astronomical prices of organic, grass-fed, farm-raised meat, and I'm very uncomfortable with knowing the torture factory farms force animals to endure.  I also don't like all the chemicals the farms pump into those animals.  I enjoy eating meat, but not at the expense of an animal's health.  Deer have healthier diets, their meat is leaner, and I feel it tastes better.  If I can provide a healthier option for my meat-eating family, why not go this route and help with population control in the process? 

    If you're a newbie looking to pick up some safety skills with a firearm, or if you're looking to get into hunting, I definitely recommend the class.

    Oh, Humans...

    This will probably anger people, but so have other posts on my blog, so here goes nothing.

    I was raised Catholic. I attended Catholic schools from Kindergarten through my Senior year of High School. I went to church. I prayed. I even attended World Youth Day in 2000 in Rome.

    And then my beliefs pretty much went to hell.

    In being honest about who I am with those closest to me, I lost "friends" - they couldn't handle my honesty. They said I was a sinner, and therefore we could not be friends. They insisted I must change my ways, else I go to hell and bring everyone down with me. They did so under the guise of caring, loving Catholics who only wanted the best for me.

    Then I admitted I was questioning my faith. This brought further backlash, further inner turmoil, further alienation from those I'd known since early childhood. I wondered how this would be possible if I were a God-loving woman. I wondered if this were considered some sort of testing by my God.

    And then, I stopped it all. I stopped praying, I stopped believing, I stopped going to church, and I stopped spending time with those who were, at one point in time, the most important friends I had. And I felt free. I felt unencumbered by my fears, unfettered by those Commandments which had held me back for decades. I admit, I went a little nuts. I overindulged. I let myself experience many of the things I couldn't under the laws of the Church. And I was happy.

    I'm just relieved I was able to do much of this without the denizens of the Internet reading about my journey...because I doubt I'd have been able to take it as well as this lady.

    I know I'm tossing my 2-3 readers into the middle of this mess, so here's a quick recap. A bloggess called Mrs. G, who created The Women's Colony and who regularly contributed to The Pioneer Woman's Homeschooling section wrote a recent post regarding how she introduced religion into her children's lives. It's well written, and I certainly appreciated her approach (and seriously, go read the post her daughter wrote). She neither force fed them nor taught them nothing, giving them ample opportunity to choose whatever path they wanted to follow. I respect this.

    Many of the readers of The Pioneer Woman, however, did not. Cue massive amounts of negative comments, emails, and even two phone calls to Mrs. G's home. People were angry...for silly reasons, in my opinion. The worst of it is how so many of them were claiming to be devout Christians, yet they were insulting everything about her; from her appearance to her method of raising her kids, they made a point to bring her down.  I repeat: they called her at home to harass her.  Who DOES that?

    If anything, this has reaffirmed my aversion to organized religion. If one cannot worship in their own way (as laid out in the Bible), why bother worshiping in community at all? Furthermore, why are people so incapable of actually following the rules of their chosen religion? The most basic undercurrent of all Christian religions is one of love, not hatred for those who aren't like "us." No wonder Christians have such a bad reputation. Their loudest and most obnoxious (and seemingly least-devout) members* can't even follow the rules they preach.

    I think what angers me the most about all of this - including the comments on The Pioneer Woman - is the lack of tolerance.  There are MANY religions out there, and not every one is a fit for every person.  Why can't people understand this?  Why must there be so much ridiculous fighting over something so personal?

    Why can't we let each other find the best path for ourselves, and applaud each other once we've found the belief structure that fits best?

    *Let it be known that I'm fully aware not all Christians are like this.  I wouldn't even say the majority behave this way...the vocal minority, however, seems to overshadow those who are following their faith as devoutly as they can.  In this context, I'm referring to televangelists, snooping gossips who enjoy causing drama, and other similarly-aligned ne'er-do-wells.

    Saturday, March 13, 2010

    Hunter safety.

    C and I decided to jump on the opportunity to take the first class of the season - we haven't really started working in the yard yet, and it was cheap, so why not?

    The first two nights of the class were utterly exhausting. I'd forgotten what it was like to sit in a classroom setting and absorbing information 3 hours a night, every other night. It didn't help that there were a bunch of fidgety kids who were...well...fidgety.

    BUT. There were kids. And moms! Moms who were willing to shoot! I was floored...and pleased. Only a handful of the kiddos were boy scouts, too, which pleased C. Neither of us expected over a third of the class to be children (including the two 8-year-old boys).

    As I said, the class covered a wealth of information. Muzzleloaders, modern firearms, archery, trapping, ethics, preparedness while in the field - this course covered everything I could think of. Basically, it was a sportsman's braindump over 3 days of class.

    And the test? Well, the written was easier than I expected - both C and I passed with only 2 questions wrong. The range time was difficult, though, and neither of us managed to hit anything. We both passed that, though, since they really only cared if we demonstrated safe firearm handling.

    I'm glad we took the class, but I'm glad it's over. That was one heck of a tiring 2 weeks.

    Range time with a friend. Also: Ooooooooooowwwwwwww.

    Sunday dawned bright and beautiful, and C and I decided to hit the range for an hour. I still hadn't shot my Plinkster, he still hadn't shot his 12ga pump. We invited my best friend, L, as he hadn't seen any firearms in the past decade.

    Turns out, dude needed the range time.

    Anyway, here's a couple of short reviews.

    Mossberg 702 Plinkster: GREAT little semiauto .22. This little bugger is accurate right out of the box. I attribute it to a good set of sights - the hooded front really helps when shooting all the way to the end of the range.* It had no feed issues, but the magazine definitely needs some oiling. At $125, it was well worth the money - it ate through a box of Remington target crap ammo like it was nothing. Overall, I'm pleased with it, C is pleased with it, and I think it'll be in the safe for a good, long time.

    IAC Hawk model 982: decent shotgun. I believe it's based off the Mossberg 500 design - it certainly looks like it. There are options out there to modify it - C's has an extended tube and a new stock/grip, as well as a side holster for extra shells. He seems pleased. I only know the pain of shooting a shotgun not meant for my stubby little hobbit arms (though after our Hunter Safety course came to a close last night, I have since realized the beauty of a well-fitted shotgun).

    We didn't rent any, since L got enough jollies from that which we brought along to shoot. I also got a chance to talk with the guys who work at the range, and apparently I can, in fact, get my hands on a Para GI Expert ESP - I merely need to bug them to get it. They certainly seemed to like it more than I expected...I'd say they liked it as much as the STI Spartan (which they really do like). This gives me a good idea of what I'm doing by the end of the year.

    Sunday, February 28, 2010

    And now for photos.

    A week or so ago I posted about the Mosins we picked up at a shop that was mega far away. We got some other stuff, too.

    We came home with...

    2 of these:
    ammo can

    2 of these:
    case of ammo
    (No, I don't mean 2 cans in that crate - we got 2 crates, with 2 cans in each crate.)

    3 of these:
    the rifle in profile

    With 3 of these to match:
    matching accessory kit
    (The kits include 4 pouches, a cleaning kit, a bayonet, and a sling.)

    Here's a close-up of mine...check out the markings!:
    nifty markings

    The stuff I didn't show: 10 magazines for the 1911 and 3 packs of stripper clips.

    Saturday, February 20, 2010

    Oh jeez.

    I think C is going to apply for his C&R. Too many interesting deals are popping up. The latest? The guys we saw about the Mosins have a case of Browning Hi-Powers coming in. They're all former police pistols, and some look quite old, but I think C might get one. He's wanted one for awhile, and it would be nice to have a 9mm in the house.

    Sigh. He only had 2 guns when we started dating... ;)

    Thursday, February 18, 2010

    The current possibilities.

    I think I've narrowed the 1911 down to two options.

    The STI Spartan, as suggested to me by Mike, is attractive.

    So is the Rock Island Match.

    Decisions, decisions...

    Wednesday, February 17, 2010

    Just updated the blogroll.

    If I missed you, let me know.

    Changed the template, too. I kindof wish I knew HTML (or had the time to learn it) so I could do something funky, but that just isn't in the cards.

    Damn. I'm done with news for the day.

    In my previous post I mentioned the hand swabbing noise. I needed a pick-me-up, so I read about the withdrawing of the MD Assault Weapons Ban proposal, which put me in a much better mood.

    Now I find out that there's federally mandated DNA testing on every newborn. It's like a real-life Minority Report.

    I'm done with this emotional rollercoaster.

    Note to self...

    Don't get into any kind of shooting sports or hunting that might require me to fly. I might be labeled a terrorist if i do.

    Also: don't handle anyone's heart medication, and don't even THINK about touching the garden before flying. Because I might be labeled a terrorist. For gardening.

    So last night we went out for milk...

    and 5 hours later, returned home with 3 Mosin Nagants, 2 cases of surplus ammunition, 3 accessory kits (came with the rifles as part of the purchase price), 3 sets of stripper clips, 2 ammo cans, and 10 magazines for C's 1911.

    The trip took us quite a ways away from home, and we got lost on the way, but we found an awesome company with employees who were more than willing to help us out. Justin helped C and I pick out the best of the remaining rifles (numbers matching, clear markings, good stocks - these are all Grade 2[?] quality), and Brian helped us get the paperwork handled and get out of there so we could grab dinner.

    Sometime this weekend I'll take some shots of the rifles. Mine has a hammer and sickle stamping that's clearer than the birds on my Mauser. I'm already rather attached. :) These may become our deer rifles...I know C plans on using his for deer, and I'll have to shoot mine as well as the Mauser to make that final decision.

    Friday, February 5, 2010

    Things from around the 'net.

    I honestly do not recall how I found all of these today, but they're all worth checking out.

    First, go check out a gallery of lady shooters throughout history.

    Second, go watch this video.

    Third, this is one of many reasons I love Mark Twain's work. Also, it's worth mentioning that his insults towards those in Washington generally manage to fit the bill. Still.

    Fourth, Baltimore's currently experiencing the beginnings of SNOWPOCALYPSE 2010. If you twitter, feel free to search for #Snowpocalypse2010 - a lot of us have been babbling about it. So far, it's been nothing but immediately-melting snowfall. Incredibly lackluster, considering how we're already under a State of Emergency, and our lovely governor fears we'll run out of salt this weekend. Way to go, O'Failey. Putting salt trucks on the roads 8 hours before any precipitation started wasn't the greatest idea, now was it?

    Finally, I have a request for my three readers. I'm in the market for a 1911. My top price is $700, and I'd like similar already-installed parts as are in the Para GI Expert (this was the pistol I intended on purchasing, but Para doesn't like the stupid casing law in Maryland, so I would have to jump through a ton of hoops to get it. Not worth it for a $500 pistol...). Halp? Will take any and all suggestions.

    Have a good weekend!

    Saturday, January 16, 2010

    Stuff I should have said a few weeks ago.

    Before my grandfather passed in December, I was fortunate enough to see him one last time.

    My grandfather was, until his dying day, completely "there" in mind - it was his body that failed him. He managed to retain almost full mental capacity to the ripe old age of 92. I'm thankful for this, as it allowed me to get to know him...I just wish I'd been able to get to know him BETTER. We had agreed to meet weekly to talk about his past, but before I'd had a chance to get back to the rehab hospital to see him and learn his story, he left us. It's for the best, really, since it wouldn't have been fair for him to be stuck there forever. He was the independent sort, and the idea of staying in a hospital for weeks/months/years was a nightmare he didn't want to live. I can't say I blame him.

    Anyway, during that last visit, I admitted to him that I own weapons. I specified my .22 and the Mauser...I don't think he really needed to know much more than that. To my delight, he confirmed he knew what the Mauser was, and was amazed I intended to shoot it. He said I should gain a little more weight to make sure it didn't knock me over.

    A kidder, he was. Gods I miss him.

    ANYWAY, before I turn this into a sob story, I wanted to share this: after telling him about the Mauser and my hunting plans for it, he encouraged me. He insisted that I need to hunt, to preserve the "old ways" before the skill is lost. While no one else in my family (save my cousin) is even remotely happy I have any interest, it's nice to know Pop was all for it. I know he'll be watching over me next season, willing me to bring home meat for the freezer. I know he would love that, since he spent so many years as a butcher.

    In other news, for Christmas, C gave me a scope for my AR. Now we've just gotta get a good weekend when we're not already booked to get out there and shoot the durned things.