Thursday, August 22, 2019

Probably the coolest thing ASP makes...

The Key Defender is a neat little gizmo, but best reserved for people who are physically fit and have some hand-to-hand skills. It's a tiny spay vial with three-ish shots of a fairly short range cone-type spray.

The range problem is common to the smallest form factors of OC spray, like the little keychain size unit in the picture below. It can be mitigated some by going with a stream instead of a spray, but then you have to aim better to walk it across the eyes. Get an inert trainer and take some test shots so you have an idea of how far the thing will shoot and what the pattern looks like.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Back home again in Indiana...

While the drive out to Topeka wasn't brutal, I benefitted by gaining an hour, and I hadn't just spent two days in class.

On the return trip, I decided to exploit my Holiday Inn loyalty status by snagging a discounted hotel room halfway home. This meant I could depart Topeka late enough to miss morning rush hour and get into Wentzville, MO on the far west side of Saint Louis before evening rush hour started there. Then Tuesday morning I could make another leisurely departure and roll into Indy somewhere around 2:30-3:30 in the afternoon.

Along about Effingham, halfway across Illinois, the sky got ugly. Shortly after that, it opened up into an apocalyptic downpour. From Effingham to Terre Haute, I-70 occasionally slowed to a 40mph crawl as I tried to squint through rain that was like like a cow peeing on a flat rock just to see the taillights of the car ahead of mine.

I pulled off at Terre Haute to get gas, and got back on the interstate. It was only raining within normal parameters until I got to the I-465 perimeter highway around Indianapolis. From there into downtown Indy it was again raining streetcars and taxicabs and I could barely see twenty feet in front of the car.

Siri then started chirping for me to bail on the interstate miles before I normally would. I resisted for one exit, but by the second, traffic on I-70 had slowed so much that I got off at the Harding Street exit, then had to resist Siri's blandishments as she kept trying to steer me through the geographically quickest route home...through some of the sketchiest neighborhoods in town.

"No thanks, Siri, I'll just cut over to Illinois on 16th and head north from there. I'm good."

The East Is Red

Everybody all over social media is all a-twitter (if you'll excuse the expression) over what the Chinese government is doing to protestors in Hong Kong. I'm all "Forget Hong Kong, look what the Chinese government did to Maverick's jacket! That's my childhood they're messing with!"

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

School Daze

Since I was already in Topeka for Handgun Tests and Standards, I stuck around for Chuck Haggard's OC Instructor class. I've sat in on Chuck's two-hour pepper spray blocks at Tac-Con and Paul-E-Palooza and it was apparent that he had so much info on the subject that he could barely cram some of it into two hours, so I was definitely interested in seeing what an 8-hour day would include.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Pet Peeves...

The phobia some cultures have for pocket knives, no matter how small or innocuous, is one of those things that just grinds me to a halt.

Dude, understand this: In the ancestry of H. sapiens are many different predecessors. Go back far enough and the genus name changes from Homo to Australopithecus.

Do you want to know the difference between Homo and Australopithecus? The former had the sense to carry around a sharpened rock against expected need, and that's what made them human.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Have you forgotten?

Why, yes. Yes, I have forgotten.

Every trip I forget something.

This trip I forgot my portable HDD, which I use for photo storage. Worse, I also forgot my CF card reader, so it looks like I won't get to play Photoshop until I get home tomorrow.

A long day on the range...

More tomorrow...

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Under the spreading chestnut tree...


The New Original Sin...

Do you know what causes Republicans? White people.
"At the core of the strategy is Trump’s consistent drumbeat of equating the white European immigrant experience with the American ideal, setting those on his side of the divide against the politically correct elites, outsiders, immigrants or nonwhites who he implies are unfairly threatening what is good about the country.

His strategy is sharply reminiscent of that waged by segregationist George Wallace in multiple presidential campaigns beginning in the 1960s. Republican candidates including Richard M. Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush have since used milder variations of race-based politics to try to pry white voters from the Democratic Party.

But Trump has been notable for repeatedly saying out loud what earlier candidates merely hinted.

Do you know what causes gun violence and keeps us from passing those oft-referenced "sensible gun laws"? White people.
"White Americans’ attempt to defend their status in the racial hierarchy by opposing issues like gun control, healthcare expansion or public school funding ends up injuring themselves, as well as hurting people of color, Metzl argues.

The majority of America’s gun death victims are white men, and most of them die from self-inflicted gunshot wounds. In all, gun suicide claims the lives of 25,000 Americans each year.

White Americans are “dying for a cause”, he writes, even if their form of death is often “slow, excruciating, and invisible”.

Do you know what causes divisive discourse in this country? White people.
"As a white writer who writes extensively about race, I've been observing this situation closely since well before the 2016 election, and I've been dismayed by the unwillingness of so many of my white peers -- people who are personally horrified by Trump and his success -- to come to grips with what is happening in our country. Among white centrist Democrats and liberals there's been a great deal of talk about the importance of civility and free expression, and an explosion of anxiety about how the Democratic Party has lost touch with a monolithic entity called "the white working class." There's been much less discussion in the national press about the underlying political transformation that made Trump's election possible: the rapid growth in racial resentment and white nationalism as primary issues -- even single issues -- among conservative and right-leaning white Americans."

Interestingly, all three opinion columnists, as well as the quoted sociologist, Dr. Metzl, are whiter than sour cream, a fact for which they seem almost desperate to atone. This ain't healthy.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Holliday Park...

I visited Holliday Park today. I needed some sunshine and fresh air in my life...