Saturday, June 25, 2005

The Lion Sleeps Tonite (or) Run Through The Jungle

Chehalem Valley Shooters Club, home of Dundee Practical Shooters, hosted an IPSC match today (Saturday June 25, 2005). Unlike the match at Tri-County last weekend, this was not six but SEVEN big stages, including . . .

... The Jungle Run!

Yup, the Jungle Run is back. It's open for business and it's looking great.

I have a ton of pictures to show you. Well, as many as ten pictures, if I get all of 'em downloaded. So sit back, shut up, and wait for the pictures to download.

One interesting incident, during the match we had some hobo wander in from the nearby park and offered to Brass for Food. We fed him, but we soon learned to NOT brass behind him. Gassy, y'know.
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Some people had their backs turned. Well, that's the nature of IPSC phogtography. But in this instance, Tim is having some problems with his Glock in 9x19 Major.

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On the other hand, speaking of "view from the Back, Big Dog resents having his face displayed.
And he's not above showing his displeasure.

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We had some 'new guys' shooting the match.

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Okay, so Charlie isn't exactly a "NuGuy", but he's new enough that it's fun to watch how his skills progress from match to match. Here, he's shooting a field course fast enough that we can see the brass spinning out of the chamber between shots.

The last stage of the match was the "Jungle Run". This will be a feature of both the Columbia Cascade Section Match on august 6, 2005, and the "Croc Match" over Labor Day Weekend.

Here's the first view of the Jungle:
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Understand, this isn't necessarily the way the Jungle Run will look at any other match besides the June Dundee Match. But it's typical of the stages which will be designed for the milieu.

In THIS stage design, you're presented with a single IPSC target as soon as you start the stage. There are a bakers-dozen IPSC targets in the stage, including three US poppers at the end. This stage requires a minimum of 23 rounds to complete, as the best two hits are scored on all IPSC targets.

After you engage the first IPSC target, you make a turn uphill to the right, and there are three IPSC targets partially obscurred by the ferns (soft-cover) and also partially obscurred by a no-shoot target (serious hard cover!)

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The fifth IPSC target (to the left and far downhill of the 3-target array shown here) is so hidden by foliage that we never did get a good photo of it. But targets 6 and 7 are uphill, and on the other side of a log which crosses the trail. You have to hop over the log before you can engage these two targets. Some of the competitors engaged T5 - T6 in mid-air. Well, okay, the only one who did that (and did it successfully) was the hobo who wandered onto the range. But I have to admit, he got good hits from his unorthodox approach!.

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Having successfully engaged T6-T7, the competitor moves on down the muddy trail, threading between trees, bushes and ferns, until T8, T9 and T10 are in clear view. They can be engaged before reaching the fault line which marks the safe distance to engage the three US poppers.

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After all is said and done, there's only one conclusion to reach:

It's a jungle out there.

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Can you handle it?

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Meme Tag

Thanx to Tyler over at .45 Caliber Justice, I've been tagged.
Here's the 'survey', which is not quite like the ones out of Cosmopolitan that my ex use to make me fill out all the time:

1.) Total number of books I own:

Counting the boxes in the garage, the boxes in the upstairs hallway, surrounding my bed, in the bookcases, in my briefcase, in the 'reading room' (bathroom), in my car, in boxes on the living room floor, in every closet and every room at home, in my desk at the office --- who the hell knows? I figure, if you have any IDEA how many books you own, you aren't a serious Reader. Thank GOD for used book stores, which enable me to clean out a couple hundred books a couple of times a year and trade them in for ... more books!
2.) Last Book I Bought:
The Service of the Sword, by David Weber

3.)Last Book I Read:
The entire (13-volumes, so far) "PREY" series, by John Sandford
(I don't read books one at a time, folks, so get use to this 'cause you're gonna see a lot more 'series' and "collections" and "every thing ever written by" in the next category.)

4.)Five Books That Mean A Lot To Me:

  1. The entire collected works of Rudyard Kipling and Robert Heinlein
  2. Everything David Drake ever wrote.
  3. Also, everything ever written by John Ringo, S.M. Stirling, Eric Flint, Jerry Pournelle, Larry Niven, William C. Dietz, Mike Resnick, Rick Shelley, Elizabeth Moon, John Dalmas, Lois McMaster Bujold, Leo Frankowski, Terry Pratchett ... never mind, too many to list.
  4. Everything ever written by Stephen Hunter, Robert B. Parker, Michael Connely, James Patterson, Donald Hamilton, Edward S. Aarons, John D. MacDonald ...
  5. The entire collected works of Alexandar Kent ("Richard Bolitho" - 27 volumes) and C. S. Forrester ("Horatio Hornblower" - 11 volumes plus "The African Queen")

And my list (of folks who are 'tagged' to respond to this meme) is as follows:

1. Wadcutter
2. Rivrdog
3. Gullyborg
4. Publicola
5. Cowboy Blob

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Hump Day is Blog-Meat Day!

I've been VERY proud of myself lately.

For several weeks I've managed to post content-specific articles without once resorting to "blog meat" specifically. (For the uninitiated, the term "Blog Meat" refers to an article which contains a lot of links to articles and events which I find generally interesting, but doesn't necessarily have a single cohesive theme.)

This is the kind of article which is typical of diary-type Web Logs ("blogs"), and I usually consider it a lazy way of blogging for people who don't really have anything to say. But for someone who spends as much time as I do using the internet as a primary information source, its tempting. Very tempting.

Tonite we have a mish-mash of articles I found interesting, incidental information that I would share, and stuff I just want to say.

Let's get started:

House Approves Move to Outlaw Flag Burning
I don't like this.
Sure, I'm a conservative kinda guy, but the idea of putting some weirdo in jail because he burns a flag in the streets just strikes me as wrong.
Sure, I was in the army. I fought for causes my country thought were right ... in Vietnam we fought the "Domino Theory" , to keep other countries from falling to "Godless Communism". What I thought we were fighting for, though, was to prevent other countries from falling to oppressive governments.

This business of making a holy icon out of the national flag goes too far when it results in jail-time. The ACLU is not my favorite people, but they serve to make us really THINK about what we're doing. They say flag-burning is protected under the First Amendment, and in this case I think they're right.

If you want to burn a flag, that's your business. I do suggest that you don't come to MY house, tear down MY flag and try to burn it in MY street, because I'll kick your ass. But that's just me, exercising My First Amendment freedom of expression. I don't need no stinkin' Constitutional Amendment. I got your amendment right here, pal.

- - -

The other day I mentioned Pro-Gun Bloggers in the PNW. One of the people I mentioned was Rivrdog. He was kind enough to write back and tell me that I missed the fact that he has more than one blog going, and he specifically mentioned Paratus, which he typifies as "The How-To and Why-For of Preparation for Conflict".

Being a curious kinda guy who uses the Internet to learn things I never knew before, I moseyed over (moseyed ... is that a real word? Well, it is now) to Paratus and started reading.

I'm not done reading. This guy has threads to threads, and they're so darn well-written that I can't finish one before I switch to the next. I'm like a kid in a candy shop when the counter-man steps out for a smoke; I grab a handful of this, and before I can head out the door I see some other goodie and I go back for a handful of that. The analogy breaks down (as all analogies must) when I realize that I don't have do drop any of THIS to get some of THAT ... it's all there, just waiting for me to get around tuit. Basically, it's SHTF (translation: "Shit Hits The Fan") stuff that we don't really expect to ever need, but ain't it kewl to know this stuff?

Makes me want to type faster, so I can get back and see what else he has to say.

- - -

Fight or Pay your Parking Ticket
What a concept. A website that promises ... no, GUARANTEES! ... it can prevent you from having to pay your parking ticket.

I'm not silly enough to provide the information they require to thoroughly research this website. But if you get a parking ticket, I strongly encourage you to use this website to fight it, and send me a report on how much you saved by fighting it 'their way' vs just paying the freakin' ticket.

As the DemocRats are so fond of saying ... Move On!

- - -

Speaking of DemocRats, Dick Durbin now has a new nickname: Dick Turban.
While I think his original comment was shocking egrigious a partisan piece of shit, I don't think the Republicans are advancing their cause by these sophomoric tactics of name-calling. I know the DemocRats are trying to show the Bush administration in the worst possible light with their tactics (I don't for a minute think that Durbin is acting on his own), and the Republicans are trying to show how ugly it would be if THEY used the same tactics ... but ultimately, the Reps ARE using the same tactics, and the whole thing ends up looking like a bunch of spoiled children squablling in a sandbox, you should excuse the expression.

If these politicos don't quit fighting for bragging rights, and start working together, you and I will suffer the consequences. This BS is tearing the country apart. We can't afford such dissension.

The closest we have ever come to a 'popular' war was WWII, where our country was clearly attacked by an aggressor nation. Now we have been attacked, but the aggressors can't clearly be clearly associated with a national entity. (Afghanistan was an easy target, but getting rid of the Taliban obviously didn't remove the threat.)

Where we go to counterpunch? How do we respond? How can we put pressure on the people who attacked us?

I didn't like it when Bush attacked the political leadership of Iraq, but I think I understood what he was doing, and why.

He (Bush) moved the focus of conflict from the American soil, and goaded the Islamist Extremists to attack us on THEIR ground, where every American who was a target was armed and trained. We've suffered grevious casualties ... every American killed is a tragedy, but we've lived through that before ... and the CIA may be right when they say that IRAQ has become a training ground for terrorists.

Fine. Bring 'em on. We have seen that we will have to fight them somewhere. Better in Kabul than in Kansas City. We've suffered casualties before in the fight against aggression. We don't like it, but sometimes it is necessary.

In the meantime, getting back to Dick Durbin, we have a bunch of terrorists in Guantanamo who are NOT fighting us. Good place for 'em, I think.

- - -
Finally, for the coup de gras ...

Family: Bush's America killed loved one

A 53-year-old Arizona man died this month due to the stress of "the stolen election of 2000 and living with right-winged Americans," according to a death notice published by his family.

Corwyn William Zimbleman, of Tucson, was an accomplished artist, the notice said, and an "avid atheist, he studied the bible [sic] and religion with more fervor than most Christians."

The notice then reads:

He had strong political opinions and followed Amy Goodman's radio broadcast "Democracy Now." Alas the stolen election of 2000 and living with right-winged Americans finally brought him to his early demise. Stress from living in this unjust country brought about several heart attacks rendering him disabled.

I have so MANY punch-lines here, I'm bleeding out of my mouth from biting my tongue.
Why should I inflict such pain on myself? Here's a list of possible responses, you choose the one that works for you:

  • He has gone to a better place; there are no right-wingers where he's going ... either way.
  • It's WORKING!
  • If only we could get rid of the Far Right, this would be a perfect socialist country
  • My nose precedes me by 15 minutes. (Sorry, that's a quote from Cyrano de Bergerac)
  • If you thought Bush was bad, how did you survive Reagan?
  • When did obituaries become a political forum?
  • Is this a Leftist-thing?
  • We hope that his bible studies prepared him for his Final Exam.
  • Maybe Amy Goodwin's listeners will pray for him. Oh, wait, that's not gonna work.
  • One down, 58,999,999 to go.
But wait, there's more!

In another politically charged death notice, the family of 71-year-old Sally Baron, who died in 2003, reflected her apparent disregard for the president.

The Aug. 21, 2003, notice in the Capital Times of Madison, Wis., stated:

Memorials in her honor can be made to any organization working for the removal of President Bush.

An article in the Capital Times the same day as Baron's death notice said her children had no question she would approve.

"She thought he was a liar," Baron's daughter, Maureen Bettilyon, said of the president. "I think his personality, just standing there with that smirk on his face, and acting like he's this holy Christian, that's what really got her."

Joe Baron said his mother "just didn't trust that a big corporate guy was going to be doing what was best for her. She just really didn't trust him."

Well, you know, these "holy Christians" are ... wait a minute, he's "a big corporate guy".
Was he 'a big corporate/Christian guy' to her, or what? Did she object more that he was a "Christian guy' or that he was a 'big corporate' guy, whatever that means.

Apparently, even her own children didn't know her.

Are you surprised?

Neither am I.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Anti-Gun Campaigner gets screwed News - Latest News - Anti-Gun Campaigner Attacks 'Heavy-Handed' Police

See, here's one of many reasons why Pro-Gun people hate gun-control laws. It doesn't matter how well-intentioned you are, sooner or later the anti-gun laws will turn around and bite you in the rear.

In Scotland, a long-time anti-gun campaigner talks a gangbanger out of his gun. (Don't ask how, just suspend disbelief long enough to accept the basic premise, okay?)

Said Anti notifies the Scots police that she has a gun, and wants an amnesty deal to turn it in.

The Scots police wig out and tell each other "Omigod, Anti has a gun in her closet. Let's bust her arse!"

Well, what did she expect?

“They took my house apart searching it and even arrested my daughter.”

The mother of three said she called police at around 1.00am on Saturday to report interrupting an attempted burglary at a neighbour’s home.

She said she told them she had the weapon and invited officers to collect it.

Mrs Eccleston said she was given the gun by a young gang member she refused to identify and kept it, while awaiting a police weapons amnesty.

When police arrived she was taken to Longsight police station where she was kept overnight in a cell.

She said: “It is disgusting. How do the police expect people to feel comfortable handing in guns when this is what happens to someone known as being against gun violence.”

She was released on police bail until August 18 while forensic tests are carried out on the shotgun.

Her son, who was also known as Marcus, a 24-year-old father of two was shot seven times at close range in Chorlton-on-Medlock, Manchester, in October 2001. The gunman has never been caught.
When they arrest Anti for possession of an Evil Gun, Anti gets all bent out of shape because ... after all ... they should have realized that her intentions were good.

Hey, don't get me wrong. I'm not criticizing the cops. I just think that Anti got what she deserved asked for, the reaction she has been campaigning for all these (four) years. It's a double-edged blade (illegal in the UK).

Do you think she will have learned anything from this experience?

Naw, I don't either.

IPSC in Oregon: June, 2005

Last Sunday I attended an IPSC match at Tri County Gun Club (TCGC) in Sherwood, Oregon.

This is notable for four reasons.

First, for some reason I was ON. It was probably the best performance I have ever turned in, and at my age probably the last time I will ever shoot as well, in the 22 years I've been competing in IPSC.

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Second, I managed to catch a couple of great snapshots of SWMBO.

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Third, SWMBO was running the camera when one of the competitors ("Fish") got hung up on a spike which was used to fix a obstacle (a plastic barrel) to the ground, and he took a tremendous spill. Thanks to years of practice, Fish managed to keep the muzzle pointed down-range and finished the stage with an excellent time, considering that he spent half of it rolling in the dirt. (Sorry I can't find a host for the *.MPG file.)

Fourth, it was only FIVE stages instead of the usual SIX stages. TCGC is in the midst of a major restructuring of their range ... blowing up rock outcroppings, making over their bays and expanding their parking lot in readiness for the Columbia Cascade Section (CCS) Tournement. They only had five bays available, so the match was a lot shorter. Perhaps this explains why I did so well, as we had 83 competitors (as opposed to the usual sixty-some) and we had a lot of sitting-around time between stages. Plenty of time to rest up.

Maybe this is why this old man managed to look good in the final standings; I often run out of steam before the last stage, and this time they took OUT the last stage.

I say, let's have some more five-stage matches.
Okay, so let's not say that. I like shooting, and the more I get to shoot, the better I like it -- even if I don't do as well.

(I'm a liar, I LOVE shooting a hot match well!)

Man, I sure wish you could have seen it. It was a good match with a good mix of stages.

Did I mention that I did good?

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Pro_Gun bloggers in the PNW

I mentioned the other day that I planned to support other Pro-Gun Bloggers in the Pacific North West.

I received in return a very nice note from Mr. Completely, who mentioned some other Pro_Gun Bloggers (note the differnence in terms: replacing the hyphen with an underscore is a deliberate action, the purpose of which is not clear even to me) .

I've only had the opportunity to take a cursory look at these blogs, but I've included them in the sidebar for your personal evaluation.

I'll include a few comments here, just so you'll have the (dubious) advantage of my own initial impressions. Don't put too much importance on what I say; I would rather you form your own opinion. I hope you'll spend a little more time than I expect to spend, late on a Sunday night, but these small summaries may serve to at least adquaint you with the general tone of each blog. I won't bother to put the links in this article; they're all available on the sidebar.

The first (presented in no particular order) is GullyBorg, of "Resistance is Futile!" He's a law student (pre-law?) in Eugene, Oregon. He is the sometimes host, and the originator of the Carnival of Cordite. Every Friday, he or some alternative host provides links to the RKBA-applicable article most highly prized by the author, all over America. This provides a delightful cross-section of pro-gun information which is often more inclined toward a humorous look at the Shooting Sports, but very often includes some serious RKBA commentary on legislation, etc.

Next (as a courtesy) is Mr. Completely. His blog features a template which is as butt-ugly as mine ... in fact, he uses the same blogspot template as I do. You gotta like him, right off. He presents an eclectic mix of photos, references to GullyBorg & the Carnival of Cordite, thought-provoking questions, bitching about blog-relates software, legislation, personal observations, and whateveryouwannatalkabout. One of the best recommendations I can cite is that he claims to have "... shot at Custer ...", which implies that he plays the IPSC game. Best of all, of all, of all ... he has a lot of links to HoserCam. Anyone who is impressed by Nolan Smythe is okay in my book.

Jason's Blog is more introspective, more like the traditional format of a personal diary. He talks about his high-school reunion in Tumalo, and goings-on in Seattle. Likes Skeet & Trap. He has been blogging for over 3 years, which beats my unimpressive 7-month tenure so he must be doing something right.

Random Nuclear Strikes is an obvious fan of Benjamin Franklin, as evidenced by his inclusion of "Don't Tread On Me" flags in his masthead. (O'Shea, don't make something of this term which isn't there!) He seems to be a rifleman by inclination, has posted for over three years, and isn't afraid to talk about legislation in Washington. Funny, isn't it, how legislation introduced in Washington seems so often to be mirrored in Oregon ... most frequently by the awful Ginny Burdick? Recently, he has talked about the egrigious Kos, Gulags, PETA, Cops in Canada, 80's music, and a miscellany of popular topics. Displaying a creative collection of photos to illustrate his subject, you can usually find something startling to start your morning.

Rivrdog (no clue about why he has eschewed the obvious "e", but I bet it makes a good story), tends to be more ... ah ... SERIOUS about his choice of topics. Though they're often humorous, there's an underlying message of alarm running through it. (Apologies for dated pop-culture references here.)

For example, in a recent post he suggests a similarity between he Holloway Aruba situation, and the Jon Benet Ramsey case. It would never have occurred to me.

He includes refs to MJ and OJ, to the OSU Beavers winning, and a deep and thought-provoking discusion of Liberals and Genocide. Sure, he'll tickle you with Oregon issues and pop culture, but he'll turn right around and stab you in the heart with RKBA-based articles that will make you sit up and say ... huh?

I haven't mentioned Brian, from ARPC, who isn't regularly 'blogging' in the generally accepted sense. However, Brian is the webmaster at the Albany (Oregon) Rifle & Pistol Club and usually manages to include his personal observations when describing IPSC matches at the club. If and when Brian decides to generate a regular blog which he wishes to include here, he'll appear on the sidebar as well.

There's a reason for including a new sidebar-entry which links to PNW (Pacific North-West) based bloggers.

I think we can provide a much richer mix of perspectives and information-based discussion of the issues by providing a cross-section of observations region-wide. My hope is that you are encouraged to visit other forums/blogs, see what THEY think is important, and gain a broader viewpoint by benefiting from their evaluation of what is the important issues of the day.

The usual reason for providing links from one blog to another is that the other blog will reciprocate, and will improve your OWN traffic. Nothing wrong with this; if we didn't think we had something significant to say, we wouldn't be spending evenings sitting in our pajamas in front of a computer, chipping away at the Main Stream Media (MSM).

But there's more to it than trying to go one-better over the MSM. Those "real" reporters will write one or two poorly researched articles, and then their editors will tell them "get me something new" and they're off on another subject.

Bloggers don't do that. They get their teeth into an article, and they blog the sh*t out of it. We saw it right here in the article about BB-guns not being acceptable to the Mass. Science Fair because they (BB guns) are dangerous.

Bloggers get the bone between their teeth, growl like junkyard dogs, and spend an inordinate amount of time demonstrating that there is something rotten in the information you're getting from 'other sources'. Dan Rather saw that happen to him. John Kerry hates the Swift-Boat Veterans becasue of that. Other examples are easy to find.

We don't expect that THIS 'harmless blog' is going to have the same international impact as these examples, but maybe if you have ready access to a number of regionally related sources you can find the best examples of perspective on a number of issues which affect you, personally.

So much for the 'cross-polinization' reason for linking between regional bloggers.

The best reason, and perhaps the truest, is that these people represent a group which have intersting things to say, and I want to share their collective wisdom with you.

No, that's a damned lie.

Really, I want to get them involved as a group, and see what happens. If nothing else, maybe they will allow us all to get to know them better, and perhaps someday they'll show up at a local shooting match so we can ALL meet & greet them.

I just think they're an interesting group, and if I play my cards right I could meet them all and spend some range time with them.

What do pro-gun bloggers talk about when they meet on a range?

I figure, they just put as many rounds down-range as possible in the time available, and have a helluva good time.

That's what I'm talkin' about!