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What’s In YOUR Basement?

Armory Blog had this little snippet:

1927 A-1 Thompson Found in Grandma’s Basement

March 12, 2014 Rifles

1927-A-1-Thompson

I stumbled upon this post on Reddit a while back but forgot to post it. The person who found it since deleted their account (which was a good idea), not before they posted “Cleaning out grandma’s basement. This was in a box marked “christmas”. Yes, its real.” I wonder how many other hidden relics are in other basements and attics around the country.

I’m SO jealous!

And I used to enjoy fantasies of finding some dusty relic in my family’s effects and find out on The Antiques Road Show it was worth a gazillion dollars!

Of course, they won’t be able to keep it…

I’m Guessing She’s Not An N.E.A. Member?

Stormbringer reminded us of a teacher of yore.  We need more like her, today.

Here.  Now.

Meet Captain Nieves Fernandez, the only known Filipino female guerrilla leader and school teacher. When the Japanese came to take the children under her care she shot them. She didn’t hide in a closet, she didn’t put up a gun free zone sign, she shot them in the face with her latong (a home made shotgun).

Note she has an M1 carbine with a 15 round magazine – illegal in the Gun Control States of California and Massachusetts.

She then went on to kill over 200 Japanese soldiers during the war with a group of commandos and holds the distinction as the only female commander of a resistance group in the Philippines.

In this photo she is showing U.S. Army Private Andrew Lupiba how she used her bolo to silently kill Japanese sentries during the occupation of Leyte Island.

Can you imagine an American school teacher in the day & age having the chutzpah to pull off a class act like this?

h/t Theo Spark

For Whom The WerBell Tolls…

Tam did a recent post mentioning “Cobb-ray”, which was a memory flogger for me.  In my callow youth, when I was first interested in things firearm, I remember lusting after a Cobray-Sionics Ingram MAC-10 submachine gun.

2007-11-14  mac_m11_380

WerBell

WerBell

Then I saw Mitchell Livingston WerBell III on the Tomorrow Show.

And I was transformed.  Here was a real spook, mercenary, soldier-of-fortune, firearms manufacturer and trainer.  Right there in my living room!

Of course, who knows how many of his exploits were disinformation, propaganda or hype?

Even though it’s been surpassed by the H&K, the MAC-10 still holds a place in my heart.  Even got to fire one once, with a suppressor.  All one hears is the clackety-clack of the bolt-hammer operation.

Pretty cool.

I think of folks like WerBell when I think of the history of covert ops.  The predecessors of today’s Special Forces, Delta, SEALs and other folks, many anonymous.  You should visit the Wiki link above, especially if you are not familiar with him.

(The name Kardashian never crosses my mind…)

h/t Wikipedia

You’ll Never Be A Ninja!

no ninjas“You’ll never be a ninja!”

I used to announce this, dripping with irony and humor, at my former workplace, usually to the women whose fashion choices included clogs, sandals, and stiletto heels.  All of which I thought were designed to make the loudest and most annoying sounds possible.  Repetitively.

(Unless you count the folks who sit at their desk, and unwrap their (snacks, lunch, spare socks, etc.) contained in those plastic grocery bags!  It would take them five minutes of incessant rustling just to extricate the object. Then another five to roll close the $%^*&^^$#% bag!)

Initially, we were required to wear dress shoes, but eventually, the East Coast management figured out we were largely more casual here in Arizona, and kept making up pointless contests wherein we peons could ‘win’ the privilege of dressing ‘casually’.  We went from white shirts, ties and dress Oxfords, to chinos, polo shirts and athletic shoes.  And sometimes even blue jeans!

But the women continued to largely wear noisy footwear.

When I was in my 20s, even with my physical limitations, I thought I could be pretty stealthy.  Two years of karate and all.  And I lived in athletic shoes.  Quietly.

Now, being medically retired, I live in Wranglers, colored T-shirts, and my orthopaedic shoes.  One built up to accommodate my leg disability.  And, as I put more weight on the opposite foot, that shoe tends to wear out sooner.

And now is making squeaking noises.

I’ll never be a ninja.

Karma is a bitch!

Road Trip

women and guns

No, not my roommate

I like women.  I like guns.  I’m funny that way.

I especially like it when women and guns get together.  Not much is better for me than to see a woman take control of her own personal security by owning a firearm, training with it, and carrying it!

Ah, there’s the rub.  Literally.

Most of my female shooting students have had difficulty over the years with the whole male-dominated gun culture.  And as a result, they either don’t carry or cannot find a comfortable way to carry which meets their needs.

Fortunately, just like firearms themselves evolving, the carry equipment industry has evolved, too.

My roommate has a number of .45s, mostly 1911s and mostly compact (for carry).  But what to do?  Like most women, she is structured differently. :-)  And, she rarely wears pant belts, and it’s usually too hot here for a shoulder rig.

Then she ran across The Well-Armed Woman based on advice from you blog readers.  And what a find!

Numerous products for female carry.  Below the chest area, waistband (with and without belt), belly bands, and many other choices.  As they are HQ in North Scottsdale, we had to take a road trip.  And she spent money.  Got three concealment holsters of different varieties, and another (sigh) handbag – this one by Gun Tote’n Mamas!

There may be a little banging of the feminist drum, in that these businesses are for women, by women.  But Imarvin don’t care if the holsters and handbags are designed by Martians, as long as they do the job!

This far, my roomie loves her new stuff.  I sense another road trip in our future.

C2 Tactical

No one I know...

No one I know…

I got to go to a new indoor shooting range yesterday!  Huzzah!

The range is called C2 Tactical (seriously?) and isn’t far from my house.  It’s affiliated with the Caswell Shooting Range in neighboring Mesa Arizona.

First impressions:  It was busy, but, after all it was a Saturday.  Lots of cool stuff in the store:  handguns, rifles, knives, suppressors (!)  They even rent ARs with a can attached, and a Thompson Submachine Gun!  No, I didn’t ask the prices.  Well staffed, mostly young, pretty people.  Armed.  The rangemasters (yes, that’s plural) in the handgun range (there’s also a rifle range) were attentive, friendly and polite.  There wasn’t much of a space on which to place multiple pistols, revolvers and ammunition, though.  The shooting bench was pretty spartan (see photo above).  On the good side, the electronic control to move the targets to-and-fro was pretty high-tech.  Punch in the distance, hit enter, and off she flies!  It’s programmable, somehow. (I’m guessing for advancing targets during training or competition).  They make a big deal on promoting ‘the most advanced ventilation system available’, as well as their air conditioning.  Unfortunately with the onset of the Arizona monsoon, the humidity’s up and the range still resembled a sauna, albeit a cooler one.  My roommate, who already has breathing issues, asked to leave early; the environment made it difficult for her to breathe.

We did enjoy the short time spent there, overall.  The store seems well-stocked, including women’s purses from Galco and Gun Totin’ Mamas.

We will return, during the week, soon (?), when it’s less crowded and hopefully less humid.

(FTC – C2 Tactical, Caswell, Thompson, Galco and Gun Totin’ Mamas give me nothing.  Go find your own range!)

Adventures in Burgers, Dogs and Beah(s)

I hesitated to post this, as most gun bloggers who post about food post about fine food:  seafood, chili, gourmand cuisine.  Think Brigid, and many others.

I like to cook, and am not half bad at it – traditional American fare:  lasagna, deep-dish pizza, steak, hamburgers, hot dogs.  Baking.  Some sugar-free stuff.  But, with my various infirmities, standing and cooking usually isn’t a pleasant experience.  (I need to eat more salads, anyway).

So, I’ve taken to finding foods I like near my new digs.  Mexican food, bar & grills, pizza.  Usually accompanied by alcohol (or diet soda :-) ).  Much depends on how close it is to ‘payday’.

We used to frequent a pizza place near my old house.  Our favorite waitress appeared to be a recovering tweaker from Boston – always pronounced beer as beah, so we adopted that.  For fun.  (Yes. sarcasm and mockery are our stock in trade!)

Of late we (my roommate and I) have found a couple new places.  One had excellent burgers and fries – at steak prices, and 52 craft beers available.  We took immediately to Mr. Pineapple Ale, then found out the mr pcraft beer was $7.00/pint!

As much as we liked the food, we went on the hunt to find Mr. Pineapple, and found it at another place we have been known to frequent.  For $4.50/pint!  Have three beers and you’re saving money!  (see what I did there?)

The problem is, the food at the cheaper beer place, while good, is not as good (or as costly) as the expensive beer place.  They do have 1/4 pound BACON-WRAPPED hot dogs, though!

A friend recently gifted me with a fine single-malt Scotch.  Perhaps I should just stay home with that.Scotch & chocolate

I’m certain my doctor would agree.

Probably without the dark chocolate, though…

FTC – San Tan Brewery gives me nothing.  Now go away!

‘Of all the vehicles I’ve loved before…’

The lovely Tamara had a recent post regarding personal vehicles, with political stickers there-a-fixed.  The consensus among correct-thinking-folks is to maintain a low profile.  No longer is a pro-gun, gun rights or even a libertarian rear plaque or bumper sticker deemed appropriate.

At the very least it’s considered non-tacticool.  Don’t want to alert potential auto-burglars of the Glock possibly stuffed under the seat in our absence!  (One of the Bob’s had one stolen outside a coffee shop in broad daylight!)

In my callow youth, I owned a number of nondescript cars, mostly with libertarian bumper stickers attached.  Never had a problem.  One did read ‘Question Authority‘.  Never had a problem during traffic stops for not current registration.

But, as the 90s appeared, and political clouds foretold of personal liberties being trashed (the Clinton Assault Weapon Ban, for example), I opted to be less visible.  Not concerned with the bad guys (criminals) as much as the bad guys (government).  And I attached fewer stickers.

After the accident, I acquired my dream vehicle – a 1989 Isuzu Trooper.  Molly and I had been looking at them, as the ‘gee, perhaps one day’ car to take us to the desert to shoot.  She never got to see her, but she paid for her.

She was christened Molly’s Trolley with a dash placard.  And once my time payment Life Membership to the NRA was paid off, I affixed an appropriate sticker on the driver’s wing window.  Remember those – wing windows?

But no other defilement was allowed.  Low profile, in a silver 4×4 with a cammie spare tire cover.  Yeah right.  And many trips were made to the desert, and to friends in New River.  And other places.

trooper2

My youthful dreams of joking magnetic door signs reading ‘ANFO Distributing‘ never happened.  And I never even considered the ubiquitous gun show sale bumper sticker, ‘Vote From The Rooftops‘.

I did see (once, during the Nixon years) a sticker on another car reading, ‘Where is Lee Harvey Oswald When You Need Him?

I don’t think that would fly, today.  No one remembers who he was.

h/t Siddhartha, Tam

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly (Phone)

I’m kind of an old-fashioned guy.  Or should I say old-school.  I still like revolvers.

But, this doesn’t mean I’m a luddite.  I DO appreciate what technology brings us.  Anesthesia, antibiotics, magazines that hold more than 7 rounds…

And cellular telephones.  Brought to us as a result of the Space Race.

I bought my first cell phone at a gun show (quelle surprise!) in the mid 90s.  Why?  Because I spent more-and-more time in the desert, and thought (presuming service was available) that modern communication was preferable to walking in 20 miles, if my then 8-year-old Isuzu Trooper failed.

And, just like advances in home computers, I’ve grown to appreciate the advances made in cell phones.  But, with my financial condition, I was never able to afford anything past the basic flip phone.  And I’ve kept them long past their expected life span.  Two in eight years.  My last one was on four years, had a screen failure, and was over her contract.  I was paying month-to-month, not able to improve my technological lot.

Until 10 days ago…

My roomie, a savvy businesswoman who lives and runs her business on her smart phone, decided she wanted to upgrade her phone to the new Apple IPhone – and she asked me if I wanted her ‘old’ smart phone!  At first I balked, because I was unfamiliar with the operation (okay, it scared me a little), and I started trolling the Internet looking for new smartphones.  Then, I saw their price!

htc oneOkay, you got a deal! :-)  She got her Apple, and I got her htc One S.  And yes, Virginia, it IS a steep learning curve!  But not insurmountable.

The fact that I can surf the Web, check all my email accounts, take wonderful photographs, do text messaging (which I loathe), and even make telephone calls is amazing!  AND, if my four-year old-PC fails, in a pinch, I can even write this blog from there!  That, and check email without climbing stairs – which is a good thing with my disabilities.

Thanks, J. for your kindness and generosity!

PS – I like semiautomatic pistols, too!

PPS – attn FTC, neither htc nor Apple gave me anything.  Go find your own phone!

A Cut Above…

Collectors Weekly takes us back to another time – to a more elegant weapon.

“When I got this sword, it was completely covered in blood rust.” Sword maker Francis Boyd is showing me yet another weapon pulled from yet another safe in the heavily fortified workshop behind his northern California home.

“You can tell it’s blood,” he says matter-of-factly, “because ordinary rust turns the grinding water brown. If it’s blood rust it bleeds, it looks like blood in the water. Even 2,000 years old, it bleeds. And it smells like a steak cooking, like cooked meat. I’ve encountered this before with Japanese swords from World War II. If there’s blood on the sword and you start polishing it, the sword bleeds. It comes with the territory.”

Swords, sword history, swordmaking, swordcraft.  This is the domain of Francis Boyd, swordmaker extraordinaire.

100YearDouble

a 2000-year-old, 100 layer sword in his collection

I’m fascinated by weaponry.  Especially that which I might be able to own and actually employ.  Sadly, while most equipment is now out of my reach, I still enjoy the appearance of fine craftsmanship.  The long dedication of the master gunsmith or sword-maker.  No plastic here!  (Sorry Gaston Glock!)

You should go to the link above and learn.  I did.

“If there’s blood on the sword and you start polishing it, the sword bleeds.”

h/t Miss Cellania

"One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas - how he got in my pajamas I dunno!" - Groucho Marx as Captain Spaulding in Animal Crackers

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1. ALL GUNS ARE ALWAYS LOADED.

2. NEVER POINT YOUR MUZZLE AT SOMETHING YOU ARE NOT WILLING TO DESTROY.

3. KEEP YOUR FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER UNTIL YOUR SIGHTS ARE ON THE TARGET AND YOU ARE READY TO SHOOT.

4. KNOW YOUR TARGET AND WHAT'S BEYOND.

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