Thursday, August 06, 2020

Gratuitous Gun Pr0n #188...

When you're doing a bunch of shooting with fairly generic plastic blasters for work, sometimes you have to slip in a li'l sumpin' sumpin' for fun...

Shooting this thing almost never fails to bring a smile to my face. A steel 9mm 1911 is like shooting with the cheat codes enabled...

The Big Bang

Here's a really cool photo essay on the effects of the big blast in Beirut.

That was about fifteen B-17's bombloads worth of explosive going off all at once in one place.

Tuesday, August 04, 2020

"Giant steps are what you take..."

This video shot with the new Sony A7S III is absolutely amazeballs...

It was such a wild shot that my palms forgot to sweat near the end there.

Not least because a near miss could have bagged Hemingway.

Something I've always wondered...

The Beeb had a story about Spain's ex-king, Juan Carlos, leaving the country, and that made me wonder about ex-kings...or, actually, ex-royalty in general.

When you step down from kinging, does your blood still have that magic juju of kinginess in it, that 'divine right' or whatever? Or is it like just regular people blood now?

Like, if some wizard needed "royal blood" as an ingredient for an alchemical potion, could you scrape up some extra bucks to make exile more comfortable by bopping down to the blood bank and squeezing out a pint for him, or nah?

Ignorance or deliberate misinformation or simply convention?

A tale in two pictures:

Sarah Hoyt at Instapundit types "AND OF COURSE THE MSM HERE WILL NEVER PUBLISH ANY OF THIS", which I found weird because I was pretty sure I saw it on both the local and national  network news yesterday evening...

So I expended one mouse click and nineteen keystrokes and found the following:

"Layers of editorial oversight", y'all. Remember that joke from the golden age of blogging? Good times.

"THE MSM WILL NEVER PUBLISH THIS" has become a formulaic partisan dogwhistle that isn't connected to any actual reality. I wonder how many bloggers have some variant of it in a macro?

Monday, August 03, 2020

This is the most 2020 thing I've read yet.

What gun for one million radioactive communist cannibal ants?

ETA: And yes, the story itself dates to last year and is reporting on events that had occurred years before that. But that has just given the ants time to get closer.

I did not know that...

...about John Mosby.
"Meanwhile, Mosby became active in the Republican Party and campaigned for Grant. He fought for reconciliation and tried to secure similar pardons for other Confederate veterans, but many of his ex-Confederate comrades weren’t interested—they saw him as a traitor.

He received death threats, anti-reconstructionists burned his childhood home to the ground and there was at least one assassination attempt. Years later, he wrote to his friend and associate Ben Chapman that there was “more vindictiveness shown to me by the Virginia people for my voting for Grant than the North showed to me for fighting four years against him.”

Pres. James Garfield later appointed Mosby to the U.S. Consulate in Hong Kong. After returning from China he spent 16 years in California working as a lawyer for the Southern Pacific Railroad before returning to Washington in 1901.

Dude definitely led an interesting life, being born in an era when Texas was still part of the First Mexican Republic and there were only a handful of steam locomotives in the entire twenty four united states, and dying the day before the Royal Navy's Grand Fleet met the Kaiser's High Seas Fleet in the largest naval battle of a global, industrialized conflict, a war being contested with airplanes and submarines.

Worth a Watch...

Definitely a thing worth thinking about.

Sunday, August 02, 2020

...and not a single rest stop to get out and stretch.

If it's Sunday...

There's a new Sunday Smith up at the other blog!

The drawings of the early prototype revolvers mentioned in it can be found on p.136 of Roy Jinks' History of Smith & Wesson.

Using academia's tools on academia's house.

Prof. Yamane reviews the book Land, God and Guns: Settler Colonialism and Masculinity in the American Heartland, and finds parts of it to be even more problematic than the lack of an Oxford comma in the title. (Which I had to type twice and it still makes me itch to scan it.)

Eternal Verities...

History is full of lessons regarding revolutions.

The first is that every single time, Robespierre wakes up one morning to discover he's no longer woke enough, and the second is this:

The more, the merrier...

From a reasonably even-handed (considering the source) CNN story on an increase in gun ownership among Latinos:
"Even before the mass shooting, the number of hate crimes targeting Latino or Hispanic people increased in 2018 and the previous four years, according to data from the FBI's annual Hate Crime Statistics report.

Tired of living in fear, some people like Martinez have opted to purchase firearms to feel a sense of security.
The Second Amendment is for everybody. Self defense, and access to the the means to do so effectively, is a basic human right.

Sadly, the reporter showed some evidence of missing the point:
"It's unclear how many Latinos have bought guns in the past year, as there isn't a national database of gun ownership that shows demographics."
That's kind of missing the point of the whole Second Amendment. Being able to shoot muggers or lynch mobs is a happy side effect of the constitutionally-enshrined right to keep and bear arms, but its primary purpose is as an ultimate hedge against tyranny. You don't want potential tyrants having a list of who has the means to shoot them in the face.

Saturday, August 01, 2020

Mariprofundis R'lyehianum

Just in case extracting the DNA of the ancestor of bubonic plague from the teeth of neolithic skulls doesn't trigger the final boss fight of 2020 A.D., scientists are also feeding nutrients to dormant hundred-million-year-old bacteria from the benthic mud of the abyssal plains of the ocean to wake them up and see what happens.


There is no way that HLV2514 is going to get here in time.


Gratuitous Gun Pr0n #187...

A Savage 1917 and a Fabrique Nationale Model 1899 at the range on Friday morning. You know I love my .32 Autos!

The striker-fired FN 1899 was John Moses Browning's first commercially successful autopistol design, and the .32ACP is pretty much the oldest commercially successful autopistol cartridge still in relatively common use.

Well, that's pretty gruesome...

A rent dispute between roommates in Connecticut got...well, it got about as ugly as it's possible to get:
"A Connecticut man decapitated his landlord with a sword after being told he had to move out because of overdue rent, Hartford police say.

The Hartford Police Department responded to a 911 call Saturday morning from the landlord, Victor King, who said that his roommate Jerry Thompson, 42, had been "waving a sword at him in a threatening and terrorizing manner" amid a rent dispute, according to an arrest warrant filed by Hartford detectives.
Huh. That seems like a bit of an hysterical overreaction for a normal person to have when...oh...
"Once a search warrant was obtained, police found paperwork suggesting Thompson believed he was a "sovereign citizen," or an individual who believes he is not subject to any statutes and interprets the laws in their own way, the detectives wrote."
I guess the gold fringe on the eviction notice set him off or something.

Since he looks like he's going with the good ol' pro se defense, I need to set up a Google alert for this because those are always kneeslappers.

Dinner Hour Entertainment

Bobbi and I finished up the last of Season Three of Stranger Things early this week. Loved it! The best episodes have an emotional range that is almost Pratchett-like.

Dinner-time theater for the rest of the week was the second season of Homecoming, which is basically, as Bobbi put it, the first season turned inside out. (We'd watched the first season before bingeing Stranger Things.) I loved the cinematography and the way feelings for various characters changed as layers of the story were peeled away. Good TV!

Now we have to decide what to watch next.

Friday, July 31, 2020

Easy Reader

I mentioned that I'd been doing the cleaning/decluttering thing for a set period of time every afternoon, and one of the things I unearthed was a little of the older ones...that I'd gotten as a hand-me-down from Marko several years ago.

I'd used it for a while, but it kinda got sidelined in favor of using the Kindle app on my iPad. In retrospect, that was a bad idea, and for several reasons:

  • For starters, laying in bed to read with that backlit LCD screen is just terribad for my sleep habits. I'm used to sleeping with a dim incandescent light on, but the light from the LCD screen is a very different quality. Yeah, you can put it in that special night mode, but I remain skeptical.
  • More importantly, an iPad has the entire internet distraction machine built right into it. I uninstalled the Facebook and Twitter apps, but Safari is still right there, just beckoning you to come check out a discussion on a forum or look at a news website. It's like a machine designed to fragment your attention span. This Kindle doesn't have any of that. It's just an e-book reader.

"But, Tamara! You could just read know...regular book!"

Indeed! And I'm doing that more often.

But I'm busily carting books out of the house by the carload and...well, I'd been taking them to Half-Price Books to sell, but the Time of the 'Rona means you can only do that by appointment and ain't nobody got time for that. Lately I've just been dumping them in the donation boxes of the Goodwill on Keystone Avenue by Glendale. Anyway, I've been semi-ruthlessly paring down the physical book library in the interest of reducing clutter. The intent is to get it down to books that have some significance to me, books I know I will want to reread at some point, and actually important-to-me reference material.

For recreational reading, Kindles are the berries. They're slim, light, a battery charge on this old one lasts for yonks because it doesn't have a light and the screen itself is very parsimonious with the electrons.

Anyway, I've tucked into To the Land of the Living and am enjoying it immensely.

O SHI...

[Bill and Ted] WHOAH! [/Bill and Ted]

This definitely brings balance to the Force.


So, I have an alarm set to go off every day at 4:30PM to remind me to do thirty minutes of concentrated de-cluttering/cleaning on one specific part of the house, or sorting and organizing one specific item or item category.

One day that particular task was rounding up scattered ammo boxes lying hither and yon about the house and sorting them into the appropriate storage area. In the process, I actually laid hands and eyeballs on my "in case of emergency, break glass" stash of pistol ammo for the first time in...well, apparently more years than I like to admit.

Up until early 2012, that stash was most of a case of .45ACP "Black Talon by another name" Winchester RA45T, buttressed by a few hundred rounds of Golden Saber and HST.

I know it's been a while since I laid eyes on the stash because it's currently centered on a case of Winchester RA9TA, which is the 127gr +P+ Ranger-T round, and I haven't carried those since...probably 2013?

There's plenty of other 9mm JHP on the shelves, too. I've got lots of war shots. It's the plain old shooting ammo supply that's more sketchy at the moment, simply because I have to have at least some of that on hand just to do my job.