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This tag is associated with 27 posts

This Shouldn’t Happen To ANY Gun…

So, here I am in the mid-1980’s, ‘working’ as a private investigator.  And I find myself in Phoenix Police HQ (7th Ave/Washington).

No, I hadn’t been arrested.

The shoe leather part of the job.  This, of course, was pre-Internet.

And I needed a copy of a motor vehicle accident report to get info on a participant.  Their name, address, DL#, DOB, and if/how they were cited in said accident.

Which of course, they were.

SO, I’m standing at the counter in the main lobby, along with other ne’er-do-wells (lawyers, insurance adjusters), when a voice calls out my name.

“GUFFAW!”  (Of course, he really didn’t yell Guffaw, as if commanding the people around him to laugh. :-))

I turn around, and here’s my Criminalistics professor from college!  He was one of the criminalists at PPD.  I was surprised he recognized me – it had been maybe 7-8 years since I had seen him.

He asked if I were busy.  I responded not particularly, and he offered me a tour of the PPD crime lab!

You must remember, this was before all the CSI-based TV; the procedurals where the cops catch and convict bad guys based on scientifically-determined physical evidence.  It was many times asking questions and shoe leather which ruled the day.

But, I still thought it was cool!

The water-filled bullet trap they shot into to obtain exemplars of spent bullets.  The cool old photos of how it was back in the day.  The wall of firearms!

Yes, they had (and presumably still have) a wall with just about every model of gun you could imagine.  For comparisons, testing, all manner of stuff.  Most had been confiscated from arrestees.

So they were mostly junk – the good stuff having been returned to their lawful owners or sold at auction.

They even would sometimes loan firearms to the undercover guys, to strengthen their street cred.  No police .38/.357 revolvers for these guys!  (It WAS the 80’s)

And there she was, a shotgun.  Short enough to conceal under a knee-length coat.  An over/under 12 gauge.

Sawn off to maybe 14 inches!  With a hacksaw!

A Diana-grade engraved shotgun!  Looked like it had been hand sawn and then dragged behind a car!  No doubt recovered from some hood.

500px-Sawed-off_Browning_O-U

From the internet – way too nice to be the original!

I was almost in tears.

He did tell me that one officer went undercover and carried her.  No one ever thought he was a cop until it was too late – I mean, what cop would defile such a fine machine like that?

Walking In A German W(u)onderland!

I’ve always liked miniature stuff.  (Insert rude joke here)  H-O train sets when I was a kid; stuff near impossible to make tiny.  My ex spent many years crafting dioramas of rooms, scenes from antique homes, complete with carpet, furniture and art.  All to scale.  Not in my skill set.

I marvel at people’s ability to craft such things.  Perhaps because I was never any good at it.

A friend pointed me to this You Tube video of a German marvel that is becoming a major tourist attraction:

This tiny wonder brings millions to Hamburg, Germany every year!  And is constantly be added to and tweaked.

I suspect I’ll never get to see Europe, but, THIS would definitely be on my itinerary, were I to go.

(Well, this and BEER!  :-) )

h/t Judy

“Oh, You Mean Pinwheel Jeff!”

There’s an old joke about a woman who gets to the Pearly Gates, and wants to know if her husband is there.  She tells St. Peter that his name is Frank, and he said he would turn over in his grave if she ever had relations with another man after his passing.  St. Peter had trouble identifying which Frank, then suddenly exclaimed, “Oh, you mean Pinwheel Frank!”

I saw this thing from Guns & Ammo about a new 1911.  I became excited.  I like 1911s.  And this was a Browning!

Then I saw the caliber…!

1911 – .380 ACP

I do agree that any gun is better than none, but I was disappointed.

What’s next, a Velo-dog single-action semiautomatic?

(uh, Col. Jeff Cooper, for the uninitiated, was a big proponent of the .45 ACP caliber.  He passed in 2006.  I suspect he’s taken Frank’s place.)

h/t Maddened Fowl

“Fat Man’s Letter”

 

arrested_redditI see permutations of the above on the streets more and more.  Our tax dollars being used to support out-of-shape police personnel who’s ACLU lawsuits have made such a thing possible.

Yes, I understand many officers spend most of their shifts at a desk, or behind the wheel, and it’s more difficult to keep in shape when constantly seated.  And of course, the whole police-doughnut meme.

But, there was a time when keeping in condition was part of the job.

Back-in-the-day, there was a time when a patrolman’s sergeant would send out a fat man’s letter to the officer, advising him that he had X number of days to lose weight or be put on desk duty.  Or worse.

Now, with police unions, their right to be fat like the rest of us seems to be engraved in stone.  Or cellulite.

I remember when I worked for John’s Uniforms back in the 80’s.  At that time, there was no Internet, and very few independent uniform and equipment stores.  As a result, we sold mail order all over the country.  And our business was booming.

We filled many special orders for equipment not available through regular retail channels.  I specifically remember an order for a black, basket-weave Sam Browne duty belt (from a department in Georgia I believe).  THE WAIST MEASUREMENT NINETY-FOUR INCHES!! (94″)  It took a whole steer hide to get one in one piece.

Seriously, how does such an officer pursue a suspect on foot?  Or get into a squad car?  Or even a restroom stall?

I understand the military (with the exception of The Marines and Spec-Ops guys) have a similar problem.  Our tax dollars at work…

daily-morning-awesomeness-204At least he’s using a bicycle.  How he caught him I’ll never know!

Now, I’m overweight and disabled.  But I’m not tasked with public safety, either.

F.N.C. Makes Me THINK

I like FNC…

NO, NOT the Fox News Channel – although I DO like it, too, on occasion.

I’m speaking of the blog Free North Carolina!

They sometimes have blog fare I view as incendiary, but, more often than not, they make me think differently on a specific issue – even if I continue to disagree with them on that very issue!

One of this Constitutional Republic’s tenets I wholeheartedly endorse is speedy justice.  I know, with the judicial bureaucracy, it doesn’t always seem so, however.

FNC did post a short video of one such event:

Pickpocket, purse snatching, shoplifter?

 

How A Bill Becomes A Drill, Parts One and Two

Not THIS Bill!

Not THIS Bill!

Courtesy of pistol-training.com

One of the ‘quaint’ training drills of yore is the Bill Drill. 

Back in the dark ages when I was a serious IPSC competitor (once on the gold team and twice on the silver team) Robbie and Brian shot WC pistols and we all got together quite a bit for serious practice sessions. On one of these sessions I suggested a drill to work on front sight tracking during recoil and Robbie being the “funny man” he usually is coined the term “Bill Drill” and it has obviously stuck. Keep in mind this was the early 80s and we were all top level IPSC competitors shooting state of the art race guns/gear for the day. At the time we were all shooting .38 super comp guns out of Safariland holsters (we were all on team Safariland).

What it is:

1 IPSC Item target 7 yds downrange
Start position: Facing target, surrender hand position
Drill: Draw and fire 6 shots
Object: All “A” hits in under 2 seconds, if you get a shot out of the A zone the run doesn’t count

Remember this was top shooters using race gear. I personally can’t do a sub 2 second run with a real carry gun from a honest carry holster, more like 2.6 sec would be the norm.  (Bill Wilson, pistol-forum.com)

Seems Mr. Wilson has developed an evolution of the ‘Bill Drill’.  As follows:

Bill Drill 2

designed by Bill Wilson 

Range: 7 yd
Target: standard IDPA target 8″ -0 zone
Start position: gun in holster, hands at sides
Rounds fired: 15

This is a new version of the classic Bill Drill developed by Bill Wilson with a goal toward working the draw and different numbers of shots on target. Scoring is standard Vickers with a half second penalty per point down.

There are five strings of fire, each for time:

  1. Draw and fire 1 shot.
  2. Draw and fire 2 shots.
  3. Draw and fire 3 shots.
  4. Draw and fire 4 shots.
  5. Draw and fire 5 shots.

Bill Wilson suggests a 10-second total score as a goal.

Gotta love the old-timers teaching the young turks a trick or two!

(I, of course, usually did the Bill Drill #1 with a 3″  .357.  IF I strived (strove?) for ‘A’ hits – Well, let me explain it this way:  When Robbie was shooting in the same competition (we were NOT in the same class!) by the time I drew, shot, and reholstered, he’d driven home, changed into his jammies, popped some popcorn and was watching Miami Vice…:-)  )

APHORISMS

The Art of Manliness (my go-to place for classic wisdom on the Web) recent posted 20 aphorisms, abhored (or ignored) in youth, but appreciated as I got older.  (Sometimes)

An aphorism is a short, pithy statement that conveys a principle or contains a pearl of wisdom. Part of what makes them so powerful is that they can stand on their own without context; as the philologist Karl Wilhelm Friedrich Schlegel put it, “An aphorism ought to be entirely isolated from the surrounding world like a little work of art and complete in itself like a hedgehog.”

Indeed!

Here is one.  CLICK on it to link to the remaining 19.

be kindI always thought it should end in rewind.  Obviously, I’m old.

“Driving Mr. Guffaw” (an after-action report)

SO…

After three previous abortive attempts, Bob and I made it to the desert, yesterday.  It was unseasonably warm (81*- sorry Rev. Paul and Gloria!).  There was enough breeze to keep the sand flies at bay, but not enough to knock over targets.

That was in part because Bob brought his recently acquired steel targets!  That 3″  wide roll of masking tape in my range bag was unnecessary!

IMAG0182

And the best part of the trip (as my car – the 2000 Olds Intrigue – is not running very well), Bob took it upon himself to pick me up, drive us to the shooting location, then lunch, then back home.  Just one trip one direction was at least an hour, mostly freeway!   :-P

I, of course, shot my National Match 1911 and S&W 442 (electroless nickel).  Bob shot his Glock 19, 21, and his 10″ bbl SIG 556 SBR!  Both with and w/o the can!  (He let me shoot them, as well!)

Then, we went up the road to Rock Ridge* Springs – a famous desert freeway pit stop – for lunch and homemade pie!  All-in-all a good day…

EXCEPT, due to my not shooting very often, my skills have deteriorated.  I sense more dry practice in my future.

*a Blazing Saddles reference.  I always wanna call Rock Springs Rock Ridge!

attn FTC – we bought our own pie.  Get your own!

Military Lingo

I was never in ‘the service’.  Not for lack of trying, though.  My disability kept me 4-F until the draft was discontinued.

I admire members of the military for their tenacity; their discipline.  Always have, even when many of my generation (Vietnam and post-Korea) protested actively against the military.

Of course, with today’s volunteer military, much of the culture has become ‘cool’.  I find in conversations with many the lingo terms I use are outdated.  “No lie G.I.!”

So I found a crib sheet!

U.S. Military Lingo: The (Almost) Definitive Guide

Examples therein:

Blowed up: Hit by an IED. Example: “I been blowed up six times this year.”

Fitty: The M2 .50 caliber machine gun.  (and how sad is THAT!)

Joe: Soldier. Replacement term for GI.

Perhaps one day we won’t have a need for such lingo…

h/t NPR, Ben Brody

Please remember today’s anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor.  We lose more WWII Veterans every day.  –  Guffaw 

Integrity Diminishes…on little cat feet.

moral compassThe Art of Manliness does it AGAIN.  This time with an essay about Integrity.

I’m convinced a significant percentage of our adult population never (or rarely) considers the moral and ethical implications of their words and actions.  And we are the worse off because of this.  Most moral compasses have the needle missing.  And we’re passing this lackadaisical attitude to our children.

What Strengthens and Weakens Our Integrity – Part I: Why Small Choices Count

A segment:

It’s not too difficult to discuss this quality in a general way and offer advice on maintaining one’s integrity of the “just do it” variety. But a quick glance at the never-ending news headlines trumpeting the latest scandal and tale of corruption shows that that’s not always the most effective approach. While the foundation of integrity is having a firm moral code of right and wrong, it can also be enormously helpful, even crucial, to understand the psychological and environmental factors that can tempt us to stray from that code. What’s at the root of our decision to sometimes compromise our principles? What kinds of things lead us to be less honest and what kinds of things help us to be more upright? What are some practical ways we can check our temptations to be immoral or unethical? How can we strengthen not only our own integrity, but the integrity of society as well?

You should go and read the whole essay.  And watch for the remaining three follows-up.  Hell, you should be checking out TAOM on a regular basis, regardless!

"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

This election is not about who gets voted off the island.
It’s about who is at the tiller of this Republic’s Ship of State. - Guffaw

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The Four Rules

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.

Certified EVIL!

FEAR

"I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain." - Bene Gesserit, from Frank Herbert's Dune

Penn Jillette

“F**k Civility. Hyperbole, passion, and metaphor are beautiful parts of rhetoric. The marketplace of ideas cannot be toned down for the insane.” - Penn Jillette

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