Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Gratuitous Gun Pr0n #251...

The Walther PD380 isn't exactly a new model. In the auto industry, this is what would be called a "mid-cycle refresh" of the PK380. Not that there's anything wrong with that; Glock's been doing in for something like forty years now.


"Incompetent trust fund failsons"

I've known some bush-league versions of the type of dudes he's referencing...
"As usual, you have to go over to independent media outlets like Defector to find something vaguely resembling the truth: that Vice was run into the ground by a rotating crop of utterly incompetent trust fund failsons who created unrealistic, hype-fueled company valuations, hoovered up exorbitant salaries, implemented numerous incoherent strategy pivots, and set giant piles of money on fire on a rotating crop of increasingly stupid ideas..."
It's a specific GenX/Millennial digital age variety of the Jack Welch-flavored idiocy that has gutted numerous American businesses.



In retrospect, it was probably a rumble of thunder that woke me.

All I know is I was laying awake in bed and the curtains over the window flashed white. I thought that someone must have been in the yard, playing the beam of a flashlight across the house. As I sat up and pulled the curtain aside to peek out, the tornado sirens started going off.

I decided to go wake Bobbi, who turned on the TV, and sure enough we were about to get smacked by a hella strong front, barreling straight for Indy at 55 miles per hour.

The house rattled with hail, like someone was throwing handfuls of pebbles against the walls and windows. Bobbi was like "Okay, if we head for the basement, you grab Holden and I'll get Huck," and for a hot minute that seemed like a possibility, but then the first wave was past us and the weather settled down to a normal, albeit heavy, rain. At least it would have been easy to grab the cats, because when it started blowing outside, they both jumped up on Bobbi's bed, looking for some soothing.

There were at least two more lines that passed over us behind that first one, but neither was anywhere near as dramatic.

Still, I didn't get a lot of sleep between two and five AM...


Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Shotgun Rocks

I thought this photo was interesting.

Rifled Foster-type slugs from a semiauto 12ga with some sort of inexpensive folding backup irons, either Magpuls or a knockoff, mounted atop it. Notice the smoke from the muzzle brake and the not-yet-ejected spent shell still traveling rearward visible in the ejection port.

Between the brake, the gas operation, and the inline nature of the stock, the recoil is driving the gun straight to the rear with virtually zero muzzle climb. However, the inertia is also causing the rear folding BUIS to flop rearwards.

Monday, February 26, 2024

Differently Triggered

We live and we learn... Well, hopefully we do. I know people who haven't changed an opinion in years, or even decades. In my most recent column at Shooting Illustrated, I talk about triggers...
"This is going to be another in an intermittent series of columns examining the various topics on which I’ve changed my mind over the last 20 years or so as a result of being hip-deep in the defensive-pistol world.

This particular column is going to be all about triggering people by discussing what I’ve learned about triggers over that time—and why what I thought I knew about triggers before then was wrong, possibly even counterproductive...
I really wish I'd gotten the Model 19-5 onto Denny Reichard's bench before he passed. I suppose I can just swap factory springs back in myself, but it ain't the same.

Casualty Vampires

A writer on the death of Vice:
"I feel like running the very famous and cool brand Vice – especially with how little they paid people – would be a slam dunk self sustaining business if only 45 people at the top doing nothing weren’t making like $19 million a year.

The death of Vice is the same story as the death of every other company in this country. It's a story of extraction of wealth at all costs for the few with malign indifference for the workers who actually gave the thing its (vastly overinflated) value in the first place.
It happens in all kinds of industries now. Buy a thing, slash costs to boost profits, extract as much value as you can, sell off any parts of the organization you think you can make a buck off of & outsource and/or offshore their functions, and if you can't find a buyer for the husk, just toss it. We've seen it happen with everything from Remington to Sports Illustrated. It's happening in slow motion with Boeing right in front of our eyes.


The digital sewers will overflow...

Folks who moderate the comment sections on their blogs should brace for nuisance lawsuits if SCOTUS upholds this.

It'll be lulzy.

Remember, kids, it's either put up with jannies or be hip-deep in literal Nazis.


Sunday, February 25, 2024

Currently Reading...

Professor Yamane sent me an advance copy of his forthcoming book, Gun Curious, which will be shipping in June.

I'm enjoying it rather a lot, as he's not only a smart and thoughtful dude, but also a pretty decent writer. I've known more than one PhD who couldn't write their way out of a paper bag when it came to crafting engaging prose, and this book ain't like that.

Anyway, it's available for preorder at BezosMart. Publishers really like pre-orders. You should do that if you want to help him get the word out.

Why you need a quarter (to call someone who cares.)

Ubiquitous (adj.) : existing or being everywhere at the same time : constantly encountered : WIDESPREAD
Sam Waterston just appeared on his final episode of Law & Order last Thursday night. Do you know how long he'd been playing the character of Jack McCoy? Well, when he first appeared on the show in the mid-Nineties, detectives Briscoe and Logan still had to pull over and use pay phones to call the precinct.

Pay phones were everywhere, just a part of the landscape. There were banks of them at the airport, and you'd use them to call home to let them know your flight had arrived and you needed a ride. If you were broke and had a bit of larceny in your heart, you'd place a person-to-person collect call to "Homer" and they'd know you were ready to be picked up, saving you that crucial twenty-five cents.

The neighborhood weed dealer would be loitering by the pay phone out in front of the Majik Market waiting for calls from customers so he wouldn't have to talk about that stuff on his own phone line.

Once, when out for a late night walk with a friend, we were drawn to one whose kiosk was glowing hypnotically blue in the muggy Georgia summer night. On jiggling the coin return handle experimentally, it disgorged several bucks worth of silver like a slot machine that had just come up jackpot. We bought sodas and Slim Jims with our windfall and continued our stroll.

Nowadays? They're practically gone. It's an oddity to see a free-standing payphone these days. It's probably safe to say that the majority of Americans under thirty have never used one. I can't remember the last time I did, but it was almost certainly before I finally gave in and got my first cell phone in '03.


Saturday, February 24, 2024

The Wrong Lens

I almost threw the big 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6D VR lens on the Nikon D3 when I headed out the door for lunch yesterday, but opted to stick with the old 80-200mm f/2.8D push-pull zoom instead.

The latter doesn't have as much reach, but it's lighter and less bulky, and the fast aperture makes it a pretty fair jackleg portrait lens.

So of course I no sooner round the corner at the end of the block than I encounter three squirrels chasing each other all over a tall-ass oak tree.

A 200mm lens on a full-frame camera is long, but not wildlife-photography-long.


Tab Clearing...

  • Basically, nowadays Twitter is just 4chan but with a constant barrage of ads for crypto schemes and janky Chinese consumer goods, except 4chan doesn't keep pestering you to give them eight bucks a month.

  • Flaco the owl's glorious year of freedom has come to a sad ending.

  • Some men just want to watch the world burn.


Friday, February 23, 2024

Muck Raker

I've seen a lot of things in the canal up in Broad Ripple Village proper since I first moved here years ago: bicycles, lawn furniture, a picnic table, ducks, electric scooters, drunk fratbros, Indianapolis Colts punters (but I repeat myself), but this was a first...

The big tracked excavator in the background, the one atop the pile of rock, was scooping up loads of rock and dumping it into this tracked dump truck. (Googling around says this is technically a "crawler carrier" with a "dump chute", I guess?)

The dump truck would then trundle its load along the canal to the other tracked excavator, which would scoop it out and use it to reline the banks. It'd drop a couple scoops and then use its bucket to... WHAM! WHAM! WHAM! ...smoosh the rocks it had just dropped into the bank of the canal.

Thursday, February 22, 2024

Automotif CDLXIX...

1956 Ford Thunderbird in what I think is called "Mandarin Orange", a sort of metallic shade lighter and redder than root beer. Alas, I was standing on the Red Line platform as he approached yesterday and this was the best shot I got.


Good plan, GOP.

I was trying to think of something that would poll worse among the general population than "hating Taylor Swift and football", and here comes the Heritage Foundation with "ending recreational sex".

On the Left, their Extremely Online weirdos may have taken over the faculty lounges, but over on the Right, the "Needs to Turn Off Their Computer and Touch Some Frickin' Grass" demographic has hijacked the think tanks and is about to finish conquering the party machinery.

I got news for the Heritage Foundation: The guy who wanted to ban dancing was not the hero of Footloose. It's like these guys are running around finding every 80/20 issue they can and jumping on the 20% side of it with both feet. The problem with segregating yourself into little social media agreeing bubbles is that you end up thinking that the percentage of the voting public made up of Terminally Online dorks with Roman statue profile pics is a lot bigger than it really is.

It's one thing to accidentally step on the occasional rake. It's another thing to go to the store, buy a bunch of rakes, scatter them across your lawn, and run around stomping on them on purpose.

Man, I remember when I took the Heritage Foundation seriously...


"Special Hand-Selected Test Guns..."

Feast your eyes on this front sight installation on an Avidity Arms PD10 and remember this picture the next time someone tells you that reviewers get sent special samples with extra attention paid to QC.

Anyway, the entirety of the text of my review of the PD10 from issue number 37 of RECOIL: Concealment is up on the web right now. It doesn't have all the photos and captions, though. If you want those you gotta go to the newsstand like the good ol' days.