Sunday, September 30, 2007

Good ol' Darth.

Darth Vader slams McCain and then panics some donations out of the GOP faithful by making book on Hillary winning all the marbles in '08. (He claims she's got an 80% shot.)

He thinks things look grim for the Repubs. Or is that just what he wants you to think?

(Personally, I think in a one on one national race, Hillary might edge Giuliani or Romney, but Fred Thompson would beat her like a drum. She would look like a shrieking harpy on stage next to Mr. Folksy, and your average American just isn't ready to vote for the Shrew over the baritone Paterfamilias. They'd better run somebody with more charisma than Rudy or Mitt, though, because to your average Survivor-watching 'Murrican who reads no news other than the sports page, those are just another couple of white guys in suits, but they know and trust D.A. Arthur Branch and Admiral Painter because the TeeVee and Tom Clancy told them to. )

Being Evil...

SayUncle notes that Google's being evil again, and not in the cool kind of way with snappy uniforms and TIE fighters, either.

Once upon a time... advertisement for Hiram Maxim's patent firearms mufflers showed a trio of well-dressed ladies walking a city street with their bonnets and fur hand muffs and their silenced .22 rifles, obviously on their way to do a bit of pigeon-potting at the park. My, how times have changed. An actual city government panicked into stasis because of a PSH-filled letter worrying about the fate of some feathered rats.

Iranian parliament to US:

"I know you are but what am I?"

I can almost hear the sing-song playground tone...

What an odd thing to make the AP wire...

Slow news day in Wisconsin, I guess.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Today In History: Wooden walls.

While Thermopylae makes for good cinema, the sacrifice of the 300 would have been in vain if not for the activities of the allied Greek fleet on this date at Salamis. (...and by "activities", I mean "ten-foot-tall butt kickery".)

Let's give them a pony, too!

WASHINGTON (AP) Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said Friday that every child born in the United States should get a $5,000 "baby bond" from the government to help pay for future costs of college or buying a home.
She can't possibly be this dumb. This has got to be a naked attempt at buying votes. Please tell me this is a naked attempt at buying votes. I mean, everybody knows that if you give everyone a lump sum of X dollars to help them pay for Z good or service, then the price of Z good or service is going to rise by X dollars across the board, since the sellers just take the increased affluence into consideration, and we're all right back where we started. Hillary's got to be smarter than me; she has to know this and yet she proposed it anyway, so this has to be something sinister and Machiavellian. Because the alternative is just dumb.

EDIT: I need to check out Marko and PDB before selecting my topics for the day. I see that great minds snark alike, however.

A year in a night.

Ever woken up from one of those dreams full of people, places, and things that just went on and on and on? It's almost vertigo-inducing; I mean, I remember doing a year's worth of stuff, but I know it's only been one night...

The worst part is I know I'll spend the rest of the weekend pestering people with "I had a wonderful dream, Auntie Em, and you were there, and you were too, Ben."

Friday, September 28, 2007


Best. Ad. Ever.

I can picture the light bulb going on over the ad guy's head as he walked through a parking garage.

Another freebie quote.

The state of Michigan, fast approaching the point of bouncing checks, is considering a government shutdown. As always in these situations the obligatory statement was issued containing the wording
[The governor] said non-essential services will stop...
which leads to the inevitable question "Well, if they were non-essential...?"

Always a time for introspection...

Little Miss Attila tries to decipher the mysteries of the Instalanche.

(H/T to Dustbury.)

In honor of the guys with buzzcuts and slide rules...'s Cool Fifties Technology Day at VFTP.

In 1959, the USAF and the Big Science guys at North American and Reaction Motors finally answered the question burning in every ten-year-old's mind "What would happen if you dropped a bigass rocket with a guy inside it from a B-52 and lit the fuse?" The answer was "X-15". In the X-15, if you wanted astronaut wings and didn't want to mess with all that Cape Canaveral rigamarole, all you had to do was yank back on the stick.

At the other end of the scale, in 1960 two guys climbed into a six-and-a-half foot metal sphere and took four hours and forty-eight minutes to travel not quite seven miles. But they traveled those almost-seven miles straight down, to the bottom of the Challenger Deep, in the bathyscaphe Trieste. I don't know about you, but sitting in a little steel ball for eight hours knowing that external pressures were rising as high as one Volkswagen per postage stamp and the nearest air was seven miles away would give me a terminal case of screaming claustrophobia. Not these guys, though; they just sat around, calm as test pilots, munching chocolate bars and looking at weird fish.

Cool stuff.

Are they trying to provoke a revolt?

The government of Myanmar, in an attempt to... to...

Well, truthfully, I don't know what they're attempting to do, actually. Make themselves look like even bigger jerks? Trigger world outrage? Create sympathy for the protesters? Anyhow, in an attempt to (whatever) the government of Myanmar thinks it has "turned off the internet" in its borders, cutting millions of Myanmarese off from Viagra spam, porn, and 419 scams, and cutting the outside world off from pictures from inside Myanmar. Like the one that just appeared on CNN a minute ago. Because, hello? Myanmar Government? You do know that they have teh intarw3bz on wireless things now, too, right? What are you going to do now, throw a big mylar blanket over the country so we can't watch you beat people up on Google Earth?

Thursday, September 27, 2007


Random Numbers (which is short for "G&$%#?n it Random Numbers You Little $#!t") is purring, chirping, chortling, head-butting my feet, rubbing up against my legs, and prairie-dogging her little noggin up into my lap. Her food and water bowls are full and her litter box is empty, so I haven't a clue what she wants. She must want something; she's a cat, she's not doing this because she likes me.

Maybe I'm getting old...

I've been thinking about a ditching the Z3 2.8 for a Lexus SC400 (or 6-speed SC300) or a first-gen Infiniti Q45 if I can find one with 80k-99k miles on the clock. In a perfect world, that person would want a zippy Nazi slot car with all (and I mean all, as in power top, heated seats, the works) the options, and we could trade...

Overheard in a car...

Inside a Ford Taurus, on I-140.

Me: "Geez, that's ugly."

Gunsmith Bob: "What is?"

Me: "The gear selector there. I know some guy armed with a twenty-pound brain, a degree, and a pocket protector plugged the average measurements of the human hand and arm into a supercomputer, and had whole focus groups grab clay sticks to get measurements to boot, but the end result looks exactly like a bent dog turd sticking out of the steering column."

Talk about your freebie quotes...

20 years since The Princess Bride?


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

More PDB: Asking the wrong question...

Everybody's probably read PDB's post about the convenience store robbery by a pair of ninja grrrls, which he closed by rhetorically asking "You people are carrying your damn guns, right?"

My first thought was "Gun, hell; I'm going to keep a couple of pirate chicks handy to fend off the ninja grrrls."

We're the only ones whiny enough...

Squeaky links to the tale of a woman who was pulled over for speeding in Pennsylvania. When she handed over her papers, tucked in among them like a mordida for the federales was her "Family Brass" card, which her husband's employer, a police department in New Jersey issues to our betters the king's men the nomenklatura family members of cops. The Pennsylvania cop asked what it was. She explained that her husband was a police officer. The PA officer said words to the effect of "That's nice," and resumed writing the ticket.

Caesar's wife, being not only not above reproach, but actually beneath contempt, then got hubby on her cellie and complained to him that she was being treated like a common criminal for actually, you know, committing a common crime. She tried to hand the phone to the officer who had stopped her, but he explained that he really didn't feel that talking to her husband was relevant to the current situation in any way. She was left with a ticket.

Here, however, is where the story gets good. Instead of manning up and accepting the consequences, Officer X from New Jersey goes and posts his tale on a special web page where, get this, people who are sworn to enforce the law go to complain in public about having the law enforced on them. Grown men whining about receiving tickets for fishing without a license, kayaking without a life preserver, speeding, and all the other little laws that are only supposed to apply to us peons. Obviously all the complainants are anonymous, which is odd for people who are so convinced that they were wronged somehow (unlike, say, one Trevor Putnam, who broke his internet anonymity when he actually was wronged by a police officer.) The only thing keeping my breakfast down is the fact that most of the pusillanimous jerks on that site seem to hail from NJ and NY, which are far from where I'm seated at the moment and therefore their ripe stench can't interfere with my digestion.

Skate Wanks strike back. Slowly.

A couple of mouth-breathing troglodytes serve up the finest in unintentional self-parody in PDB's comments section. It's made even better by the fact that they had almost exactly two years to come up with their replies.

I especially like where the one kid threatens to have Tony Hawk beat PDB up.

Words you thought you'd never hear:

"Oh, I was wondering where I'd left my severed leg."

That'll put you right off your feed.

Another member of the Triangle of Death...

...wonders "Where's our payola?"

I've said it before, but it bears repeating: "Poor Lefties; they've been playing on astroturf so long that they don't know grassroots even when fed a mouthful of divot."

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

I guess it would have spoiled the surprise...

So the conservative blogosphere was all out of shape over Ahmadinejad being invited to speak at Columbia University. This is because Columbia told everyone they'd invited him to "come speak", and didn't let on that they were actually inviting him to "come get verbally horse-whipped".

Geek for the win!

Some people take their vidjo games really, really seriously.

"Hearsay evidence shall be admissible..."

If the car of every city councilperson in Rockford IL hasn't been impounded on the word of anonymous tipsters by Friday, juvenile delinquents have gotten a lot less imaginative since I was one, er, a kid. I'm just sayin'.

Striking out.

Say you work for a company on the ropes, with its profits (such as they are) vanishing into an ever-growing sinkhole of pension benefits and forced to pay its workers far above market rates, and now the national economy looks like it's about to go in the toilet, with a mortgage crisis looming and the dollar in free-fall against foreign currencies as the specter of inflation looms. What do you do? What do you do?

Why, go on strike, of course!
“We’ve done a lot of things to help that company,” said Ron Gettelfinger, the union’s president...
If by "help" you mean "help go out of business", you simpleton, then that's sure the truth. Maybe Toyota will buy what remains. Given the way the exchange ratio's headed, they should be able to pick it up on the cheap.

Today In History: Crusadeish.

On this date in 1396 an attempt at a fresh crusade against the Ottomans fizzled when the Europeans got pasted outside the walls of Nicopolis by a superior Ottoman force. They might have had a chance if the French knights hadn't charged the enemy impetuously (they were apparently taking a break from charging English longbowmen impetuously) and caused the Western plan, such as it was, to disintegrate.

To whoever my faithful reader is... the Epps FBO at (I'm guessing) PDK, howdy!

I miss working in aviation. I sometimes even miss Atlanta. (But then I think about Atlanta traffic and that feeling goes away.)

The new definition of chutzpah.

The definition of "chutzpah" used to be the kid who murdered his parents and then begged the judge for clemency on the grounds that he was an orphan. No more. The new definition of chutzpah is Hillary Clinton spurning public campaign funds in order to have no ceiling on private contributions, getting burned by tainted dough, and then saying
"The only answer to this entire set of circumstances is public financing," the New York senator said during an appearance on ABC's This Week. "The cost of campaigns … and all the things that people have to do in a modern campaign are just out of control."
And it got reported with a straight face.

Say what you will about the woman, she ain't lacking in brazen gall.

Boomsticks: Condition Is Everything.

A phrase you'll hear often in the world of firearms collecting is "Condition is everything." This is handily illustrated by the two Colt Pocket Hammerlesses shown in the above photo. Both are extremely early specimens: The top gun was made in 1904 (second year of production) and the lower pistol was produced in 1905.

Despite the upper sidearm being a year older, its value is roughly half that of its newer sibling. Both handguns originally had the bright, almost purple, blued finish displayed on the newer piece, with small parts such as the safety and trigger showing the almost rainbow hues of case hardening. This type of bluing tended to fade, however, when exposed to acids such as those found in sweat, and could even be faded by extended exposure to bright sunlight. The result was the dull gray found on the upper gun.

Note also how extended carry has blunted the corners on the older piece, leaving it with a "bar of soap" look. The newer gun (and photos don't do it justice, at least 'til I can get it to Oleg) shows very little evidence of having ever been carried. Many experienced collectors who have seen it have pronounced it the nicest one of its vintage they've seen for years.

The result? The pistol on top is one that I have no qualms about shooting or stuffing into a hip pocket as I wander the back forty, while the lower one I am nervous about touching too much without an oily rag handy with which to wipe it down. This is because the upper pistol is, in today's market (which is crazy about anything that has a Prancing Pony on it), worth maybe $400, while the lower pistol is worth at least twice that figure.

Because condition is everything...

Monday, September 24, 2007

I have an idea formin' in me head...

...for a cross-post tonight here and at The Arms Room.

Here's a pic to tease y'all and remind me:

The forgotten Spice Girl...

My secret is now out. Some Canuckistanian reader armed with Google technology has discovered that I was once...

...Porch Spice.


Lose your voting rights cheaply!

For the heinous offense of dodging only $47.50 in excise taxes, Tennessee will happily make you a felon!

Lose your guns! Lose the vote! Discover the exciting career world of hair nets and name tags!

All over 250 little tax stamps and a quick drive to Asheville.

I tell you what, I just loves me some gubbermints. (And by "love", I mean "wish a plague of disfiguring boils on...") You have to wonder, does the tax increase cover the operating expenses of the new geheimes staatspolizei they'll need to stake out every cross-border convenience store and supermarket?

(Don't get me started on what the Feds can do to you for misreading a ruler by 1/8"...)

Behold, the power of teh intarw3bz.

The ColtCCO saga was the most-emailed story at the Knoxville News-Sentinel's online website thingy. Say Mr. Silence:
Over the weekend, this story got more hits than several of the UT football stories...
In this town, where a story on a man charging into a blazing building to save a basket of kittens would have a hard time getting more eyeballs than one about the Vols' third-string punter, that's saying something.

Funny video...

...with a three-star drink spewage alert.

Today In History: Black Friday.

On this date in 1869, which became known as "Black Friday", a financial panic was triggered by a sell-off of the U.S. government's gold reserves during the stunningly inept Grant administration.

Coincidentally, last Friday the U.S. dollar hit parity with the tiny Canadian dollar, which is metric or something, for the first time since the stunningly inept Ford administration. Draw your own conclusions.

Through the Looking Glass.

In the world of Tony Karon, the Shrub is an evil wizard who can put a hoodoo on the president of France by serving him magic hamburgers and Ahmadinejad is a poor, put-upon innocent who is being thwarted from his plans of building peaceful nuclear power plants in a bid to seek energy independence for his country (despite the fact that it's sitting on a measurable portion of the world's known oil reserves.) I hadn't read any of the big newsweeklies in quite some time, and so was a little taken aback by the tone of an article that sounded like a collaborative (no pun intended) effort between the Daily Worker and Al Jazeera. Had the rest of the magazine gone this wonky? I clicked on another article at random. Yup, it had. Jeez, this was worse than Earth First! Monthly er, National Geographic. The prize, though, was over in the list of "Most Popular" articles, where I saw a link stating simply "Bush to Veto Kids' Health Care". Next thing you know, he'll be sending them to bed without supper. Or maybe eating them.

I wonder what color the sky is in that world?

Sunday, September 23, 2007


I can't even remember how I got there, but this is the funniest thing I've seen on teh intarw3bz all weekend.

The Sunday Smith is up.

All on time, too!

Almost 200 feet of shelves...

...books piled on the floor and the furniture, and not a damn thing to read.

Have you ever just stood in front of the bookshelf thinking "Nope, I remember the ending to that one too well. Not in the mood for this one. Not feeling like SF/fantasy/historical/whatever today. Read it last month. Too heavy; don't want to prop up a big ol' hardback on the porch..." It's the dead-tree equivalent of 57 channels and nothin' on.

*le sigh*

I reckon I'll finish re-re-reading Warlords; it's been sitting around a couple of days with a bookmark a quarter of the way in.

Hey! Teacher!

Leave them kids alone!

A little Sunday morning game.

It's easy to play; it's kind of like "Where's Waldo?", except it's called "Spot The GOP Candidate". Ready? Go:

I have now seen it all.


(via Cowboy Blob.)

News: "Your papers, please? Thank you, Valued Customer; here's $100."

In a blurring of the public and private that strikes me as more than a little creepy, it seems that the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, a "non-profit" that has generated enough non-profit to keep $1.35M worth of lobbyists on the payroll, wanted to gather some survey data on roadblock results. So they did what any other company suckling at the Wo(S)D/MADD teat would do when they needed some field research; they rounded up a friendly Sheriff's Office (in this case Gilpin Co. Colorado) and they set themselves up a few roadblocks. To say that some of us view this kind of high-handed crap with distaste would be the understatement of the young millennium.

More love for Rudy.

We got us a movement.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Today In History: Illegal combatant.

On this day in 1776, 21-year-old Capt. Nathan Hale of the Continental Army was hung(Dammit!) hanged for the crime of spying in the British rear area while disguised as a civilian. Behaving with great dignity and composure at the execution site, his alleged last words may have come from the play Cato, by Joseph Addison:

How beautiful is death, when earn'd by virtue!
Who would not be that youth? What pity is it
That we can die but once to serve our country.


Zendo Deb has a post up concerning commentary found on a St. Louis area LEO message board about the now-infamous Brett Darrow video.
A user calling himself "STL_FINEST" wrote the following item, presented unedited and in full:

in reply to "Who is this terd?" I hope this little POS punk bastard tries his little video stunt with me when I pull him over alone- and I WILL pull him over - because I will see "his gun" and place a hunk of hot lead right where it belongs.

Why vote for Cthulhu?

Oh, jeez, it's started already. I found this in comments at KdT's:
The place to make your displeasure known about Rudy is in the primary, not the general. Are you folks really trying to tell me you wouldn’t vote Giuliani in the general over Hillary? WTF? How irresponsible is it to hand the war effort over like that because you’ve got a bug up your ass about “true conservatives”.
Well, Henry, that's exactly what I'm trying to tell you. This is the sad impasse your party has come to; if the best thing you can offer me on election day is the gun-grabbing mayor of NYFC or the governor of Taxachussetts, I don't see any reason not to stay home. Don't ask me your tired "Would you rather see Hillary as president instead of Rudy?" questions because the answer is that between the two, you might as well flip a coin from where I sit. This ain't a high school football game, sport; I'm not waving pompons for the guy just 'cause he's wearing the jersey.

Get that through your head: From my viewpoint, and the viewpoint of many others, in a Clinton v. Giuliani or Romney v. Obama election there would be no lesser evil. I'm not going to vote for someone who is politically opposed to everything I believe in just because there's an "R" next to his name, capiche? He is not on my team, nor am I on his.

Friday, September 21, 2007

One Angry Man.

Don't click if you don't want blunt, honest language... (Gratuitous profanity alert, too. You've been warned. This cat ain't happy.)

Thankfully collectibles, especially ones that go *BANG!*, traditionally do well in an inflationary environment...

(H/T to ExistingThing.)

Finer 'n a frog hair split four ways...

...and you?

Just because Reagan is dead, it doesn't mean I'll kiss Rudy.

I'll admit up front, I don't usually read Ace Of Spades, because straight-up GOP politics bores me to tears. I was directed there by a link from Cold Fury to read a post called "Ronald Reagan is dead". The gist of the post was that Ronald Reagan is dead and mean old social conservatives aren't lining up to board the Rudy train because they're waiting for another Ronnie.

Ace, people aren't lining up to board the Rudy train because he's another RINO, anti-gun, big city, northeastern politician; Kerry with an elephant; Dukakis with more red in his bunting. I'm about as "socially conservative" as... well, metaphor fails me. I'm not at all socially conservative, but I wouldn't vote for Rudy Giuliani at gunpoint, and neither would anyone else I know South of the Mason-Dixon or West of the Mississippi. If the GOP wants a sure loss in '08, they're welcome to continue with this big media Giuliani circle jerk, but don't expect me to join in.

Interesting choice of words...

Via Marko, I heard about the creepy family who kept a mummified baby as a sort of heirloom living room knick-knack. When a judge ordered the remains to be interred, rather than allowing them to continue being used as a bookend, Mr. Creepy was quoted as saying "I'm just washing my hands of it". One can only hope he meant that literally.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

An official apology...

...has been issued to ColtCCO by the Knoxville PD after one of their officers roughed him up for the non-crime of carrying a handgun while in possession of a handgun carry permit.

Headline Confusion:

So, the CNN article was headlined "Senate Democrats' Iraq plan defeated": I was unaware that "Run away! Run away!" had been elevated to the status of "plan".

Today In History: H-h-h-h-heresy!

The Church puts Galileo Galilei on trial for saying preposterous things about the Earth not being the stationary center of the universe. The Inquisition looks a little silly when it is unable to subpoena the turtle on whose back they suppose the Earth to rest.

...And get off my yard!

In comments to my cranky geezerette post, BryanP thoughtfully pointed out
Kids wear stupid stuff. When they get older their kids will wear stupid stuff. Mostly they get over it. You're about my age I think Tam. (I'll be 39 at the end of this month). Seen any girls wearing a single lace glove lately? Wearing so many plastic bracelets you think they'll develop popeye arms?
Frankly, this is probably why I'm going to be so good at being old and cranky; I hate fads. The Flashdance look; the Material Girl look; bell-bottomed hip-huggers the first time 'round; I pretty much ignored them all. I've been wearing the same dull straight-leg or boot cut jeans (not pre-faded or distressed; I'll wear them out myself, thanks) and tee shirts that aren't too baggy and aren't too snug since I can remember. I figure if an article of clothing has stayed more or less the same since the 1940's, I don't have to worry about whether it's in style or not.

Speaking of which, when did adolescent males start sporting hip-huggers and BeeGees hairdos again? When did that happen?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Boche Spice.

A turbocharged V-10 powered R8? Yowza. That'll sell a Powerball ticket or three.

Today was a good day...

Driving home from visiting Marko, the Munchkin, and the Sprog-ette, I was stopped by a school bus heading the other way. I took advantage of the pause to power down the top, which met with enthusiastic approval from the kiddies, and motored home under severe clear skies, 80F and dry, Heaven Or Las Vegas up loud on the CD player, and a half-case of Ruination IPA in the passenger footwell, having just left hanging out with a good friend and showing off the 1904-vintage Colt Pocket Hammerless I picked up at the gun show last weekend. The weather was so perfect that for the last bit of twisty road through the forest, I crawled along at about 10 or 15 MPH and just goggled at the woods all around me. I saw a wild turkey, too. It's days like this that I think it must suck not being me. ;)

I guess I'll go soak up the wonderfulness on the porch for a bit, since reality will be back to tread on my dreams tomorrow.

Turn your hat around, cut your hair...

...pull your damn pants up, and stand up straight. And stop frickin' mumbling while you're at it; a little enunciation will double your apparent IQ. Oh, and take that metal crap out of your face before I find my rare-earth magnet, 'cause anything that'll lift an engine block off a lake bed is going to do nasty things to your burger-flipper-career accoutrement. "Tribal tattoos"? Give me a break. "18-y.o. Skinny White Kids From The 'Burbs" isn't any tribe I've heard of.

Kids these days... It's enough to make you want to go clothesline a skate wank right off his board.

Let's elect the crazy guy. No, the other crazy guy.

His platform makes as much sense as anything being offered by Hillary Giuliani or Fred Obama:
My platform for President of the United States Of America is Criminal Law. It is developed from my Method of Education. I was ordered to create and or invent by the United States Army that is now intact regulating the United States Government protecting it through Military Intelligence Computerization Management a new Disipline I invented and the Administration of Criminal Law Laws across the board.
Really, folks, could he do any worse than what we've had in the White House for the last fifty years or so? It would probably at least be fun to listen to his speeches.

And who knows? After the Praetorians slaughtered everything Caligula-shaped in the palace and dragged crazy old Claudius out from under the stairs and made him emperor on a lark, he didn't do half badly by Rome...

(H/T to Matt.)

Cause of Death: Terminal stupidity.

Zendo Deb serves up more tasty smoked goblin.
After after being confronted, Jones came down from the ladder and began to advance on the homeowner, according to his account to officers. Gullatt fired two shots into the ground as a warning, but when Jones kept advancing he was shot at close range in the chest, with the bullet apparently passing all the way through Jones' body.
When the man with the rifle says "stop", listening to him might be a good idea.


I was kinda hoping my Dire Straits/Hillarycare II parody would get some legs.

Goes to show you can't win 'em all. Thanks to those who did link it. ;)

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


The delayed-by-the-gunshow Sunday Smith is up at the other blog.

This week features my favorite Smith, and the star of my small collection.

If you like antiques, don't click the link.

Xavier experiences forgiveness of near biblical proportions.

...and to think that I flinched last night when my little '43-vintage Duo clattered to the flagstones. That crack in the grip panel had already been glued once...

Quote of the Day:

Marina in comments over at Unc's place:

I’m a self-employed, independent woman who pays her own bills and enjoys the company of the opposite sex but does not “need” a partner to survive.

That said, I’ll never, ever identify myself as a feminist. Naming a movement that is allegedly about gender equality after only one gender is like announcing a new campaign to end the Ethiopia/Eritrea conflict and calling it “Ethiopianism.” That’ll make those Eritreans draw up a peace treaty then and there…

Below market rate.

PDB takes a tack in the illegal immigration debate that I hadn't considered before. Go read.

Raise your hand...

...if you bought the last issue of the Weekly World News when it went on sale a couple weeks ago? I mean, could you resist something that said "Collector's Item - Buy now, sell on eBay tomorrow!" right on the cover?

Monday, September 17, 2007

I want my, I want my, I want my docs for free.

Now look at that Clinton, that's the way you do it
You play the class war on the ol' tv
That ain't campaignin', that's the way you do it
Health care for nothin' and your docs for free
Now that ain't campaignin', that's the way you do it
Lemme tell ya that gal ain't dumb
Maybe look righteous waggin' a finger
Sure to get a vote from some bum.

We gotta worry 'bout Middle East countries
Immigration and trade treaties
We gotta balance the fed'ral budget
And that don't play on soundbite tv.

See the little Clinton with the earrings and the makeup
Yeah buddy that ain't her own dough
Givin' away other people's money
Always makes for a real good show.

We gotta worry 'bout Middle East countries
Immigration and trade treaties
We gotta balance the fed'ral budget
And that don't play on soundbite tv.

I shoulda learned to play th' Class War
I shoulda learned to court them bums
Look at that mama, she gonna promise free insurance
Votes? That's gonna get some.
And she's up there, whats that? Socialist noises?
Bangin' on the wealthy like Noam Chomsky
That ain't campaignin', that's the way you do it
Health care for nothin' and your docs for free.

We gotta worry 'bout Middle East countries
Immigration and trade treaties
We gotta balance the fed'ral budget
And that don't play on soundbite tv.

Now that ain't campaignin', that's the way you do it
You play the class war on the ol' tv
That ain't campaignin', that's the way you do it
Health care for nothin' and your docs for free
Health care for nothin' and docs for free.

Sunday, September 16, 2007


Two Words: "CZ", and "Duo". Oh, and two more words: "Nearly free."

Gotta jet. More later.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Gun Show! Yay!

I'll be at the Expo Center gun show today, helping out my friends from Elite Tactical Systems. Come say hi. :)

With any luck, I'll find a cheap old milsurp or top-break Smith to keep the jones at bay.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Blog Stuff: On the upside...'s raining pitchforks and taxicabs out there, which we sorely needed.

On the downside, it's the very definition of a terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad hair day.

Living in the future.

I'd noticed recently that first generation iMacs had become stupid cheap on ebay and decided to try to score a couple. Well, originally, I figured I'd just get one for the museum, but then I realized that a second one might come in handy, too.

At less than a hundred bucks, shipped, these are some of the earliest "obsolete" machines that incorporate USB and run a fairly modern operating system, so if I scooped up an iMac DV and fitted it out with WiFi, I could park it atop the dresser in my bedroom and have a fairly compact DVD player/web browser that looked cool and didn't take up a ton of real estate on the dresser. Plus, the iMac DV I settled on is convection cooled, which makes it nice and quiet.

I arrived home from work last night to find a huge box on my front porch and eagerly dragged it inside, tore it open, and plugged the machine in. Easy-peasy iMac setup; plug unit into wall, plug keyboard into unit, plug mouse into keyboard, turn on. It burbled to life, and I figured I'd pop in a DVD, lay back in bed, and enjoy living in the future. (A computer in every room!) I grabbed my boxed set of the first season of Futurama, considering that to be futuristic enough, and opened the first DVD case. Ah, how appropriate. There was my missing disc of the director's cut of Bladerunner. Even more futuristic than Futurama!

As all of you who've met me in real life have heard a thousand times, when I'm rich and famous, I'm going to have a flat-panel screen hanging on the wall of my house doing nothing but playing Bladerunner with the sound off on an endless loop; it is the pinnacle of lush cinematographic eye candy. My DVD had been missing for a couple of years, so it was with no small sense of anticipation that I put in the movie, cut off the light, and hopped into bed. It may not have been a flat screen hanging on the wall, but it was a totally extraneous computer in my house whose only job at the moment was to make me feel like I was living in the future by playing Bladerunner. I felt sorta rich and kinda famous, and it was really great for a second, but pretty soon I had an epiphany; I suddenly realized something about living in the future that I hadn't counted on.

Living in the future means you're older. Because for the first time, I realized that Harrison Ford in Bladerunner looked young.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Guns don't kill people...

...hardware stores do.

Blog Stuff: I've been waiting for this.

A blog is usually something that just happens. You stumble across it on the 'net and think "Wow, that's cool. I should check back here often!" A blog is not something you normally anticipate happening. There are exceptions to this rule, of course, and one of them just occurred.

JPG, father of my good buddy Matt, is someone whose musings I've been reading online on various fora for some seven or eight years now, so naturally I've been hoping he'd start his own blog. And now he has. Go read.

I wish the world was more exciting...

On this morning, I saw a link to a video entitled "9/11 mystery jet possibly 'doomsday plane'.

Mystery plane? Huh. Never heard of it. So I clicked the link and the video started. The voiceover gave the standard "Towers collapsing... Pentagon burning... White House evacuating... Mystery Plane overhead..." narrative and then cut to video of said plane. I immediately thought "Oh. That's just 'kneecap' (NEACP). Nothing odd about seeing that plane there on that day," and toddled off to the Smallest Room while leaving the video playing.

From what I heard wafting from the computer's speakers while I was in the head, that's a very exciting plane to people who don't know what the hell they're talking about. I envy those folks, I really do; ignorance seems so thrilling. I wish my world was that exciting.

Downsides to everything.

So my new gig has me mostly working second shift hours, which is more suited to my natural rhythms (asleep at three or four o'clock and up by ten AM is pretty much what I run to when left to my own devices) but has thrown a monkeywrench into my blogging until I get used to it.

See, I have to wrap my head around blogging before I go to bed, rather than just after I wake up because, when it comes down to it, I'm as much of a link whore as the next blogger and posting at 11AM means you've missed the morning news cycle and any chance at linky-love from most of the blogs that follow it. I'd been waking up at five or six in the morning to do my posting, and this played merry hell with my sleep schedule the first couple days of this first week at the new job. It pretty much guaranteed I'd be sitting in front of my monitor, half-asleep and drooling after four hours' sack time and incapable of writing anything coherent or witty, not to mention that I'd be hanging on my chinstrap by 2300 hrs at work that night.

I seem to be getting my internal clock reset, though, and that should hopefully fix the lack of content that's plagued this joint of late.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Today In History: The Gates of Vienna.

In a real life "Battle of the Pelennor Fields", the well-timed cavalry charge led by Sobieski's winged hussars shattered the Ottoman infantry before the gates of Vienna, turning the tide of Turkish expansion into Europe. Put that in your Polack joke pipe and smoke it.

Fairly elegant that it falls on the same day as Marathon.

News: Dog bites man.

When a power-tripping little napoleon of a cop goes all belligerent on an innocent Joe Citizen and gets caught on tape, it's news. The far more common occurrence of a drunken Joe Citizen pouring himself out of his vehicle and getting all belligerent with a long-suffering peace officer, however, is so common it hardly rates mention.

Unless the Joe Citizen in question happens to be State Rep. Joe Citizen (D-Nashville). In that case the video is news. How is Mr. Briley going to live down being such a big baby for the camera? I hope he looks good in orange.

Just in case you were wondering...

...about the definition of a mensch.

News: Silly Little Tribes.

You stay classy, Rutgers.

Today In History: Family tradition.

On this date in 490BC, Darius I of the Persian Empire began a family tradition of getting imperial troops stomped by the Greeks. On the beach near Marathon, Greek hoplites chased the Persians into the surf amid the usual amount of chaos and slaughter. Also, Pheidippides got so excited that he invented a new sporting event, and then croaked on the spot.

If you don't like the hand you're dealt...

...just deal yourself some new cards.

If Khrushchev had tried that, the KGB would have killed him... er, sooner.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Major nerdy accomplishment.

Someone just hit my blog by Googling "Deathtongue lyrics".

"Clearasil messiah from the shelf,
Zapping zits from here to hell..."


Serving and Protecting.

"Ever get smart-mouthed with a cop again, I'll show you what a cop does! You understand me?"

(H/T to Unc.)

News: There must be a special school...

...that police department spokespeople get sent to in order to be trained to make the kind of inane remarks they sometimes do.

Some scrote in Minnesota attacked a 24-year old woman and took her keys and her phone. Then he took off her shoes and licked her toes before dashing into the night. Thankfully he was apprehended four blocks down the road.

Commenting on the incident, one "Commander Kevin Casper" said the attack was, and I quote: "weird sexual behavior".

Thank you, Captain Obvious. We out here in the peanut gallery never would have figured that one out without your expert input.

On the perishability of geek skills...

Once upon a time, I considered myself to be a fairly capable computer geek. I modified my own machines to make them better gaming rigs. I set them up for friends and relatives. When we'd have weekend-long LAN parties, I was the one who got all the machines talking to each other and was responsible for little chores like downloading patches so as to make sure that everybody was running the same version of whatever game we were playing and had the same mods and hacks loaded.

Then I moved to Tennessee and my new roommate was an actual working IT dude. It got easy to just say "Hey, it's acting wonky; can you fix it?" When I moved into my own place, the LAN parties had stopped, and I didn't really play games all that much myself. It's got to the point that I haven't cracked the case on a PC and installed a card in about four years.

Worse, there are some really cool-looking games out there now, and my P4 2.2 ain't quite the racehorse it used to be, and I'm completely lost when it comes to upgrades anymore. I used to actually read the gaming magazines and stay on top of what was cool. Now I know that my GeForce 4 Mx440 is old and busted, and I haven't even got a clue what the new hotness is. I feel like an auto mechanic who knows how to set points and synchronize SU carburettors; that's about how useful being able to write a good autoexec.bat file or set up a 10BASE2 network is these days. Four years of not paying attention, and I might as well have dropped out of computing back in the days of the Mattel Aquarius...

Monday, September 10, 2007

And I'm off... my exciting new career as a tiny cog in the giant petrochemical machine. I have a fantastic story to tell when I get home, though. :)

Blog Stuff...

Well, they forgot to put the picante sauce in my bag at the drive thru window at %$^&*@ Mickey D's this morning, and the %$&#? intarw3bz have been down all #$&*@! day, but other than that, I'm peachy.

How're y'all?

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Gun Bloggery.

The Sunday Smith is up at the other place.

It's a gun that's an interesting product of the Late Great Rivalry between Smith and Colt in the 1950s.

ph33r m3.

As nerdy as I wanna be. says I'm a Cool Nerd Queen.  What are you?  Click here!

I couldn't resist the test. Sorry, Matt.

(H/T to Marko.)

I'd make such a great bohemian...

...because eight hours of wearing a nametag has squashed my creativity like a bug. I've been sitting here all morning and not found anything to make fun of, other than myself for killing my Wall Street's battery so thoroughly that the only way to fix it will be to round file it and order a new one. (...and they're pretty proud of Wall Street batteries these days, let me tell you.) I had thought about lugging it along to work, but the nearest WiFi signal belongs to the adjacent fast food joint, and they want a pretty penny for their bandwidth, make no mistake about it. On the bright side, it looks like I'll be able to pick up any slack PDB may have left in the Making Fun Of Skate Wanks market, which is a blogging niche that demands filling.

I see that President Bush is sending another tropical storm hurricane tropical storm to kill poor people rich people everybody, this time in the Carolinas, and that Fortune magazine says that everybody is to blame for the subprime fiasco except me, which is cool, although I'm sure that a diligent enough round of finger-pointing could peripherally implicate me, my cats, and the weird lady with the shopping cart under the freeway overpass, too. I need to drag out the camera for the Sunday Smith bit at the other blog before I head into the store this afternoon, but this next one should be a doddle of a writeup. Lastly, I just need to accept that the story of the MAS 49/56 is impossible to tell without a few expository paragraphs on the problems the Frogs faced because of being the first kid on the block to have a smokeless cartridge. So... Off to typing. :)

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Every now and then...

...Mother Nature really gets her freak on.

That may be the most bizarre thing I've seen so far this month.

(H/T to CGHill.)

Today In Geek History: Boldly Went.

Space...the Final Frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise. Its five-year mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no man has gone before.

On September 8th, 1966, Star Trek aired its first episode, "The Man Trap".


I seem to have accidentally got myself a job, and I have to be there today at 2PM. On the upside, 40hrs a week will feel like part-time after the last few years.

Now to rack my brain for something to type between now and then. Something more exciting than "Sell your stocks! Hemlines are falling!"

Friday, September 07, 2007

Today In History: Won't say "Uncle!"

The Jerries give London a drubbing. London gives the Jerries the finger.

September 7th 2007 marks the 67th anniversary of the start of the London Blitz.

Apparently after the dinosaurs got off the ark...

...there wasn't enough oxygen in the air and they got so slow that we ate them all.

I'm speechless.

Blog Stuff: I have some very, very smart friends...

...and sometimes the best and most perspicacious stuff is buried in their comments sections. You don't want to miss out on this whole discussion. It shouldn't be buried in a blog comments section; it should be on the front page of a textbook someplace...

Like a one-man one note chorus.

A movie is being made about the My Lai massacre.

Three guesses who's making it.

Please, Ollie, give it a rest. We know you were in Vietnam. We know you think it sucked. But for Vishnu's sake, can't you make a movie about something other than all the horrible baby-raping mother-killers for once?

News: Misleading headlines.

The link at the homepage said "Bush spars with South Korean president", and I got all excited and clicked on it, but when the page opened, there wasn't any kung fu fighting, just an argument about Iraq. Quelle pisser.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

News: Who didn't see that coming?

A couple months ago:

Trendy Friend: "Hey have you seen the new iPhones? Neat, huh?"

Practical Friend: "Well, they look like they have some cool features."

Trendy Friend: "I can hardly wait. I'm gonna run get one. How 'bout you?"

Practical Friend: "I think I'll wait for the inevitable price cut..."

It seems that Trendy Friend didn't think the price cut was insanely great.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

"Oh, yeah? Well how has the War On A Noun inconvenienced..."

I'm sure we're all safer for Marko hand-carrying the baby clothes to the post office. Achmed could never figure that one out.

Security theater for the microcephalic masses...

How I know an author's good...

Terry Pratchett has written how many books? A bazillion? Two bazillion?

The largest used bookstore in the region (McKay's) had exactly two, count 'em - two, Pratchett paperbacks in the shop: Guards! Guards! and Going Postal. There are damn few authors anywhere near that prolific that are that sparsely represented in the used book stacks (*coughHeinleincough*)

(PS: It was weird; today was the first time I ever carried books into a used book store. Whoever gets the copy of the 2nd edition of the Standard Catalog of Smith & Wesson that says "TAM" in Sharpie inside the front cover, use it in good health...)

(PPS: FireFox's integral spellchecker recognizes "bazillion" as a word. But not "spellchecker".)

Big Media & Corporate America: Still out of touch.

Representatives from several big media companies are reportedly arguing with Apple over the best way to command the tide to stand still. Should the tide stay right where the heck it is, or should it be allowed to come in at $1.99 a bucketful? Meanwhile, everything in the known universe is still available via YouTube, BitTorrent, and a million other cracks in the dam. The entire content ship is going under, and folks keep arguing over how the deck chairs should be arranged...


Samuel L. Jackson can has cheezburger.

There's a Jeff Cooper quote I can't remember... the top of my head, but it goes something like "If you don't understand weapons, you don't understand fighting. If you don't understand fighting, you don't understand warfare. If you don't understand warfare, you don't understand history. And if you don't understand history, you might as well be living with your head in a sack." It lends a certain poignancy to this article.

"The refusal of many history departments to meet the enormous demand for military history is striking — the perverse result of an ossified tenure system, scholarly navel-gazing, and ideological hostility to all things military. Unfortunately, this failure is more consequential than merely neglecting to supply students with the electives they want. “Knowledge of military history is an essential prerequisite for an informed national debate about security and statecraft,” says Michael Desch, a political scientist at the Bush School of Government and Public Service in Texas. Many voters, for instance, don’t know how to contextualize the nearly 23,000 U.S. military casualties in Iraq since 2003. That’s a pretty big number. But it’s also roughly the level of casualties suffered at Antietam in just one day, and a small fraction of the more than 200,000 casualties endured in Vietnam.

Critics of the war also have plenty to gain from a public that has a better understanding of older conflicts. “People might have realized that we have a poor track record of using the military to do nation-building in Third World countries,” says Desch. “The model isn’t Germany or Japan, but Nicaragua and the Philippines.” Finally, the population of Americans who have served in the military is shrinking, and with it their knowledge of what armies and navies do."

Today, more and more Americans seem to be walking about with their head in a sack.

News: Totally Toxic Barbie

Guess what?

More toys out of China with 125% of the USRDA of lead. This is getting monotonous, and the implications haven't fully played themselves out. Remember the bib recall? Are we checking other cloth products out of China? How about that tee shirt you're wearing? Was it tested? Are you getting your RDA of formaldehyde? See where this is going?

If Chinese textiles start turning up with toxic dyes, that's going to give consumer confidence a whack. There's no telling where this could go...

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Blog Stuff: ...but I'm a recovering geek.

Not for fifteen years, actually. Although I did work the computer gaming room that year ('92?) with a couple of guys from Pennsylvania. Ah, back when Wing Commander and Aces of the Pacific were still the shizznit and required high-end machines to play...

And no, I didn't dress up like anything. I used to like DragonCon because it made me feel so very, very UN-geeky by comparison. In the land of the hopelessly dweeby, the moderately socially competent is queen. At least for the weekend.

That's death in the big city.

Fifteen people came to violent ends in gun-free Chicago over the four day holiday weekend.

Here in the sleepy outer K-Town 'burb of Concord, I stubbed heck out of my toe on Sunday.

This kept me from feeling like going up the hill to add to the noise of gunfire coming from the back yard; it sounds like they've got hanging steel up there now, though, so I should probably go check it out...

(H/T to Zendo Deb.)

Robyn Ringler Wrapup Redux.

Don Gwinn has an amusing take on the tale of poor Robyn.

News: Hunters dwindle as hoofed rat population soars.

The common whitetail deer remains the most deadly non-primate mammal in America, killing more people than grizzly bears, mountain lions, or scary-looking dog breeds. This is because mountain lions don't usually hop into suburbanite's laps at 60mph after jumping through their windshields.

In a development perhaps not totally unrelated, the number of hunters over the age of 16 has declined in this country by 10% over the last decade. Reasons claimed for this decline range from the reasonable, such as a loss of available hunting land and the suburbanization of the American East, to the bizarre, like the thimble-headed gherkin in Maryland who blames the Triangle Of Death NRA. Of course, since it usually (but not always) takes hunters to raise hunters, the decline will be hard to reverse.

This, however, has not stopped professional liars politicians from making their every-four-years ritual forelock-tugging obeisances to hunters, which are frequently the comedy highlight of Election Season. Last time 'round, we had Kerry's ludicrous claims of going after deer by wriggling around in the woods on his belly with his trusty double-barreled shotgun like Elmer Fudd having a gran mal seizure, which could only have been successful if Bambi laughed himself to death. This year we have Mitt Romney claiming to be a lifelong poacher, which is what you call someone who hunts without a license in most states. With any luck, we'll get a candidate offering up an hilarious photo op, too, before all is said and done.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Boomsticks: Bad Idea #352,179

I love my .405 Win rifle. I like the round. Factory loads toss a 300 grainer at 2200fps; more than enough wallop for anything in the Lower 48 and most African game, too. It has that cool Teddy Roosevelt panache about it.

Using it to go after an elephant, however, is a splendid way to wind up as pachyderm toejam.

The meanest thing I did all day.

Both the cats were in Pathologically Affectionate Mode, tangling themselves up in my feet and climbing into my lap while I was trying to do something with the computer. Also down at my feet is the subwoofer for the PC's sound system. The thing I was trying to do on the computer was to rip the Mortal Kombat soundtrack CD into iTunes.

When you suddenly turn on K.M.F.D.M.'s "Juke-Joint Jezebel" with the volume turned to eleven and the cats almost on top of the speaker, those critters will just flat disappear.

We members of the Triangle of Death...

...often own cute and fluffy kitty cats as part of our disguise. That's how nefarious we are, baby.

(At the next meeting, I'm going to motion that we change it to the "Triangle of Doom", anyway. It sounds cooler.)

How To Not Talk To Tamara.

*ring, ring*


"May I speak to Tamara please?"

"This is she."

"Do you know who this is?"

"No, who is this?"


"I hate playing guessing games."

"Well, if you answer ten questions, I'll tell you who this is, how I got your number, and who put me up to calling you."


"How old are you?"

"What the hell kind of question is that? Who is this?"

"Answer the questions and I'll tell you."


"Okay, then. 'Bye!"

Whoever gave this guy my phone number, please don't do that again. Especially if he's going to call at nine-o'-damn-clock in the morning when I'm trying to enjoy the day's first cigarette in peace. The people I want to have my phone number already have it, because I gave it to them.

Things I've learned about blogging...

In late August of '05, I started typing here. In the intervening time, VFTP has gained a modest audience and seems to be doing okay for a B-list personal blog in the backwaters of Blogger. So, two years and almost 2,000 posts later, this is what I've learned about blogging.

1) Remember who you're doing it for.

SayUncle has a great little line in the top left corner of his blog: "Remember, I do this to entertain me, not you." If you didn't have at least a little bit of the egotistical exhibitionist in you someplace, you wouldn't be schmearing your private musings across the intarw3bz, now would you? So be true to your primary audience: Yourself. It can be a little disheartening to put out something that I consider profound or witty, and watch nobody comment or link, but if it made me chuckle when I wrote it, then it was worth it.

2) Post something every day.

That said, if you didn't want people to read your stuff, you wouldn't be putting it out there for them to read, right? If there's nothing to read, folks won't come read it. Even a "Too busy. Gotta jet to work. More later," will let people know to check back tomorrow.

3) Don't worry about the standard Popularity Contests.

I can't tell you how many times I've seen a blog that is a Large Mammal! in the Ecosystem, with a Technorati score of One Hojillion! and then I open its SiteMeter and it's getting 100 hits a day, all from random Google searches. It turns out that they're on every reciprocal blogroll known to mankind. Feh. That doesn't get you the eyeballs; good writing gets you the eyeballs.

4) Have a schtick and stick with your schtick.

You can't be all things to all people. Folks don't come here for recipes or child-rearing advice or thoughtful philosophical discourse; they come here for smartassery related to current events or history, and a bit of side chatter about guns or books or whathaveyou, but always with the snarky angle. Find what you're good at and do it, and people who want to read about it will find you and keep coming back.

...and now it's back to blogging. Have a swell day! :)

I would have paid good money... be a fly on the dashboard of that cop car.

Boomsticks:, musket?

Kids watching a re-enactment at George Rogers Park near Dayton, Ohio got a twofer on Sunday: A history lesson, and a graphic gun safety demonstration.

One of the reenactors suffered severe burns when sparks flying from the pan of his musket ignited the charges in the ammunition pouch hanging over his shoulder. Spare charges for a musket are stored as a ball and loose powder wrapped in a twist of paper, and a spark landing in the cartridge box or pouch would easily set them alight. If the reenactor had closed the flap on his pouch safely, then it was indeed a freak accident. If he hadn't, well, he just got himself a reminder for next time...

As the old joke goes: "Here is safety lecture: Is gun. Is not safe. End of safety lecture."

Today In History: De jure Independence Day.

On September 3rd, 1783, the Treaty of Paris was signed, ending the American Revolutionary War and formally recognizing the independence of the United States of America.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Blog Stuff: K-town occasional blogger bash on Tuesday.

It'll be from 7:00 to 9:00PM at Ray's near West Town Mall on Kingston Pike. (As I learned when I moved to Knoxville back in '00, almost everything is on Kingston Pike.)

Details here. Be there or be square.

Boomsticks: Color me dense...

Since my buddy Marko has got into reloading, I decided to gather up a few beads & trinkets around the house for him. Among the geegaws in the care package are a couple of the little "gimme" Hogdon reloading data brochures. I was perusing them before tossing them into the sack and, for the first time since I picked them up, flipped as far back into them as the "Cowboy Action" data...

I never had stopped to think before that you could just toss a Pyrodex pistol pellet into a .44 Magnum case. Apparently a 240gr SWC seated over one gives a reasonable ~1075fps at crazy low pressures. If one has a stainless .44 Magnum revolver (and this one does,) could there be an easier reloading gimmick? Load. Shoot. Wipe the cack off. Smile. No weighing or scooping or measuring or futzing about with charge weights... It's a lazy gal's reloading paradise. I am so there!

Boomsticks: It's that time again...

New post up at The Arms Room, with another contender for Gem Of The Collection. Definitely my nicest small-frame Smith.

Today In History: "Whatever happens, we have got...

...the Maxim Gun, and they have not."

109 years ago today, Kitchener mowed down the Mahdists at Omdurman.

Also, a young war correspondent embedded himself with the 21st Lancers (who suffered 25% casualties in their heroic charge) and discovered the thrill of being shot at and missed.

New Day's Resolution.

Kind of like a "New Year's Resolution", only not.

Today I promise I am going to catch up on at least some back email so that folks won't think I don't love them anymore.

East Wind, Rain

It seems that Japan is back in the aircraft carrier business after a sixty year hiatus caused by the USN sending all their previous efforts to Davey Jones' Locker. While no Japanese MoD officials have been seen with bundles of F-35B brochures or kicking the tires of Harriers on used fighter lots, tourists are still taking an awful lot of pictures in Pearl Harbor.

(H/T to Insty.)

So, is breaking up hard to do or isn't it?

Despite a recent study that suggests that perhaps breaking up is not the life-ending tragedy that teen movies and pop songs make it out to be, some folks seem to have major issues in this department. Usually, those that didn't get the word seem content to confine their inappropriate behavior to unwanted contacts, usually via letter, phone, or email, but sometimes by personal visits, which can be quite alarming to the visitee. The reason these visits can be so alarming is that there's a certain percentage that has a funny way of expressing their unrequited love, oftentimes with ball peen hammers or shotguns.

Stay alert, Squeaky.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Books: You could look it up.

I'm bored... here's a picture of some books. A good reference library is important to a geek in much the same way that piles of coins are important to Scrooge McDuck; we like rolling in piles of them about as much as we like reading them. It gives us comfort.

I've totally filled this unit and another just like it. I've probably got another five or ten shelves worth of big hardbacks on the floor, awaiting the day I can shanghai a friend with a truck to go with me to the Particle Board Forest in WallyWorld and chop down another shelving unit or two.

(The empty Ruination case on its side is being filled with Car & Drivers, preparatory to filing.)

We're the only ones qualified to...

...commit egregious violations of Rules Two and Three.

If he hadn't had his booger hook on the bang switch, and hadn't compounded the error by pointing the gun at his buddy while doing so, nobody would be limping right now.

Remember, kids: The Four Rules are life. You have to violate two of the four to pull off a stunt like that copper.

1. All firearms are always loaded
2. Never let the muzzle of a firearm point at anything you are not willing to destroy
3. Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot
4. Be sure of your target and what is behind it

Today In History: Case White.

On this date in 1939, German forces launched the invasion of Poland, code named "Case White". Within two days, England and France would honor treaty obligations and declare war on Germany. The Second World War in Europe was well and truly underway.

And no, the Poles never "charged tanks with cavalry", nor was the invasion the fifteen minute bloodless one-sided walkover that your eighth grade history textbook made it out to be. The Poles did employ cavalry formations, but so did the Germans and the Russians; somehow, however, Polish cavalry has entered the collective cosciousness as a symbol of military futility. For what it's worth, the US Army didn't make its last "boots & saddles" cavalry charge until January of '42, in the Philippines.

Boomsticks: Another bleg...

How about a mag follower and spring for an M1903 Siamese Mauser; anybody got one of those lying about for sale?