Friday, May 29, 2015

It's true.

The first thing I noticed...

One point for the Nikon F5 over the EOS-1N: I was pedaling through Broad Ripple yesterday after lunch, getting a workout with the big Canon on a strap around my neck, shooting a test roll through the camera. The test roll was some FujiFilm 200 that Amazon sells cheap in 4-packs of 24-exposure rolls.

Out in front of Broad Ripple Vintage, I snapped a photo of some interesting colored neon and *WHIRRRRRR*. That was it. That was exposure number 24. You're done with this roll, kiddo.

The Canon reads the DX code on DX coded film and, if it says it's a 24-exposure roll, then 24 exposures is what you're gonna get. There might be some way to override this in the camera's profusion of custom submenus, but I haven't checked in the camera's 120-page instruction manual to see. I think there was a hack we used to do with tape, too, but it was so long ago that I used to do this stuff...

The F5, on the other hand, will let the starving artist eke out those extra couple frames you can usually get on any film roll. Further, at the end of a roll, it merely flashes "End", and gives you the choice of either initiating the motorized rewind by pushing the right combination of buttons, or saving the electrons and noise and using the classic manual rewind crank atop the camera.

Because the Canon cut me off at shot number twenty-four, when I pedaled around the corner, I had to paw my Nikon P7000 out of my pocket, stab the "ON" button, listen as it warbled its musical bootup chime and whirred its little servo-powered lens out and opened its little lens cover, in time for...

Drove right out of frame as the camera sluggishly responded to my frantic "YOU TAKE PICTURE NOW!" commands.
Which is not a slam on the little P7000; it comes to life pretty quickly for a digicam; if I'd had it in hand instead of starting with it in the pocket, I'd have gotten the shot. But if I'd still had that couple of bonus frames in the camera around my neck...

Thursday, May 28, 2015


I look at this picture and can't help but see the price tag from 1995, which was decent new car money back then. Now the total value of everything in the frame is hardly even a good weekend vacation for two, unless your car gets good highway mileage and  you're willing to book a twin at the Bedbug Suites.
The penultimate film bodies from Canon and Nikon. In Nikon's case, it's the last one marketed directly at the globetrotting pro photog. Canon had one more evolution with the EOS-1v. Fifteen or twenty years ago, the edges of every sports field or fashion runway would have been crowded with these things, blazing away.

For casual snapshooting around the neighborhood, these are like getting your groceries in an M1 Abrams, or taking a Group B rally car to the post office. Only a fool would do that... and I am that fool.

Oops, fell into the internet...

Googling something up on the Nikon D1x, I stumbled across this blog and have fallen into the archives. Love his writing and his eye.

I'll have the free ice cream machine turned on soon, I swear.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Ugh, pollen.

Spent yesterday with the bones in my skull creaking and squeaking like the hull of the sub near the end of Das Boot, when it was sitting on the bottom.

Spent most of my life in Atlanta and Knoxville, two of the most pollen-y cities around, and not a problem at all, but there's something around here that's got my number. Looking back over older posts, it's sometime in April or May that my throat closes up and my head fills with mucus and I start coughing up lungs.

I need to go re-stock on Claritin. Whatever it is, it seems to have hit later this year, but it's worse than usual, as if to make up for its tardiness.

I need to save this as a text-file... I can copypasta it every time Indiana's weird deer regs get brought up in conversation:

Here's an interesting .pdf of a PowerPoint presentation on deer overpopulation and its impact, on page five of which is a map showing the estimated deer range in the US in 1947.

Note that in the crosshatched "scarce or extinct" area, you can see the borders in Michigan and Minnesota that are currently the demarcation lines of where rifle hunting is legal and where in those states it's shotgun-only to this day. Ask any Bubba in MN or MI why the south half of his state is shotgun-only, and $5 says he'll give you something about how its "flat and densely populated".

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

"Stop Touching It!", Part the Whateverth.

Don’t take the gun out of the holster. Problem solved; problem staying solved.

Also… Stop Touching It!

(Seriously, the single most dangerous thing most people ever do with a loaded handgun is put it in a holster. Why would you not want to cut down on the times you have to do that?)

Tab Clearing, Iraq Edition...

Some links I had open for a post that's just not gelling yet...

Automotif LXXXIX...

Does that look like the vehicle of a person with any f***s to give? No. No it does not.

Monday, May 25, 2015

UnMemorable Day...

Go read...

Right here.


Drove up to Public Greens with Bobbi for lunch today. Despite the drizzle outside, the joint was jumpin'.

Across the table, Bobbi had the
Bahn Mi Lettuce Wraps
Pork Loin, Pork Pate, Pickled Carrot & Radish, Scallions & Cilantro, Chiles, Maggi Sauce
In front of me are (clockwise from top):
Pimento Toast
Olive Oil Drizzle, Roasted Peppers
1st of the Season Basil 
Dank Pesto, Chick Peas, Carrots, Radish, Scallions, Quinoa
...and the pièce de résistance...
Pork Nuggets
Deep Fried Bacon, Pickled Scallions, Rhubarb Chipotle BBQ
On sampling one of the pork nuggets,which were cubes of some rich bacon deep-fried w/o batter (so it's gluten free, if that's your thing!) Bobbi declared "I've found a new religion..." as her eyes practically rolled back in her head. The rhubarb-chipotle BBQ sauce was delish. That was a big ol' bowl brim-lippin' full of umame right there.

Truthfully, either of the two bottom bowls would have made a dandy meal in its own right for me, especially given how rich the pork nuggets were. Needless to say, a takeout container was required.

Automotif LXXXVIII...

1969 Corvette Stingray spotted in the drive-through line at the local Steak 'n Shake. I was two cars behind him, sitting in the Zed Drei with the top down, but pulled out of line to grab a couple shots with the D1x. We exchanged smiles, waves, and thumbs-ups, and then I pulled around and got back in line. I'd lost a spot in line in the interim, but who cares?

Memorial Day 2015


Sunday, May 24, 2015


L to R: Canon EOS Rebel XTi, Canon EOS 20D, Nikon D1x

SLRs from the big Japanese manufacturers have come in three distinct size/price classes for years and years now.

There are your basic consumer-grade cameras, with polymer bodies and pentamirrors instead of pentaprisms. The next step up are your "prosumer"-grade cameras, which are usually more ruggedly constructed, feature-rich, and offer some other benefits, such as powering up faster. On the downside, they're bigger and heavier, but not terribly much.

Then are the "pro-grade" cameras. These are big, heavy things, packed with batteries and usually with a built-in vertical grip. They've got pretty good sealing against rain and dust, although you wouldn't want to jump in the pool with one, and are built to take a beating.

My first DSLR was a Canon Rebel XTi (400D overseas) and it was your pretty typical consumer DSLR. It takes nice pictures and is actually my newest DSLR, and has the most megapixels and autofocus zones and what-have-you. However, when I was visiting with Marko a couple years ago and got to coonfinger his Canon EOS 10D that was a hand-me-down from Oleg, I got sold on the idea of a prosumer camera and ordered a used 20D from KEH.

Although the 20D is two years older and has a sensor that gives up a couple megapixels to the one in the Rebel XTi, it powers on slightly quicker and has a confidence-inspiring heft in the hands. I know these are just machines, but they're also conduits for inspiration, and so seemingly woo-woo factors like being inspired by the camera can matter. There are cameras I don't mind leaving on a shelf to collect dust, and then there are cameras that I can't keep my hands off of, that I want to pick up and paw and play with, that make me want to get out there and make photos: Which one do you think will give better results?

That brings me to the really honkin' big pro cameras. A kind reader sent me a Nikon F5, gratis. Now, the F5 may be a completely superseded 35mm film camera, but I remember when it was the mack daddy of them all. I am so madly, passionately in love with this thing, so unable to keep my paws off it, that I ordered its digital stepchild, just because, even though it's a totally outclassed camera in this day and age.

All this is a roundabout way of saying that, when I needed to do some macro photography of the Glock the other day, I pulled out the Rebel XTi, because that's where I keep the 60mm macro lens parked these days. After more than a year with the EOS 20D and my recent dabbling with the big Nikons, that Rebel felt so tiny and light! I want to put a little 40mm pancake lens on it and go walkabout in Broad Ripple!

Saturday, May 23, 2015

QotD: Not A Fine Line At All Edition...

From Popehat:
"The line between free speech and X" is often the rhetorical equivalent to "the line between vegetables and rutabagas": the author doesn't have a coherent argument that rutabagas aren't vegetables, but doesn't like rutabagas and thinks you shouldn't either.

Gun Nerds

Somewhere in this house is an old Powerbook, I think a 190, that I used back in '01 or thereabouts to keep a spreadsheet into which I assiduously copied all reported chrono data from gun magazine reviews. I even had a column that would automatically calculate the Taylor Knockout Value. I almost certainly used this data to argue on the internet. It occurs to me that I may have sounded like this guy, and I just want to cry.

If I can find that laptop this weekend, I am going to power it up one last time, just to delete that file.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Speaking of magic bullets...

10mm Auto Glasers: There's so much different hype I'm believing there that it's not even funny. I'm practically crossing the hype streams.
Once upon a time, I used to think Glaser Safety Slugs were the heat. Glasers, for those who don't know, are basically a copper bullet jacket wrapped around, not a solid lead core, but rather a lightly-compressed bunch of small birdshot pellets. The idea being that, on penetrating, the bullet basically comes apart, sending tiny little birdshot pellets into the assailant like a shotgun blast inside them.

The "safety" name comes from the idea that the bullet won't overpenetrate the bad guy. Further, should you miss and hit some solid object, the bullet will just disintegrate, rather than ricocheting or going through the wall and hitting the school bus full of nuns and orphans on the other side.

This all sounds great in theory, but the bullets hardly ever work that way in practice, and there's a reason that no serious users recommend the things. Ever heard the one about how fishing lures are designed to attract fishermen, not fish? Bullets are like that, too. Anyhow, my favorite Glaser Safety Slug story...

It must have been back about '87 or so, and I'd read some folderol about how devastating these Glasers were compared to normal rounds in an issue of Combat Handguns, borrowed from the magazine rack at work.

So we went to the gun store and bought some .25ACP Glaser Safety Slugs, which the writer in the magazine had sworn did more damage to a shoulder of beef than his .44 Magnum. There were even some fuzzy black and white pictures of what purported to be said shoulder of beef, all blowed up. But we were dirt poor and had blown our dough on the Glasers and couldn't afford a shoulder of beef, so we bought a chicken at the grocery store instead because... well, we were, like 19, okay?

That night we drove up to the old quarry on the mountain just outside town, which we frequently used as our informal shooting range (at least until the cops showed up.) We loaded one of the precious Glasers into our only pistol, my FIE Targa .25, and put the chicken on a fence post and drilled it. It was pretty underwhelming. The chicken didn't explode or anything, or even get blown dramatically off the fencepost. It just kinda rolled off and plopped on the ground.

We hopped into my friend's car and drove off, leaving the chicken for the coyotes, poorer and sadder but no wiser...

QotD: New Math Edition

Because it's my blog and I can have two quotes of the day if I want to...

McThag, in a post discussing the New Economics Math (which postulates that $8.50 x 35 is a smaller number than $15 x 0) dropped this verity:
"I keep repeating, jobs are the side effect of a successful business.  If the costs are such that it can't be successful, then there won't be a business and thus there won't be any jobs."

QotD: I Don't Drop My Gun Edition

From a Go RTWT post at Joel's Place:
"Nobody who’s got your best interest at heart would ever demand that you be helpless."

Thursday, May 21, 2015

What fresh hell is this?

There are checkered flags hanging all over town at a time of year when local meteorologists include "track temperature" along with humidity and air temp...

...and I'm having to drag long-sleeved shirts back out of the basement where they'd been hung up for the season two weeks ago and am going to have to zip up my jacket to avoid a chill when bicycling to the store today.

Brand Recognition

Hydra-Shok® jacketed hollowpoints enjoy tremendous name recognition and are still steady sellers almost thirty years after their introduction, despite being superseded by newer and better-performing bullet designs from the same manufacturer (to say nothing of offerings from other makers.)

While they did expand often, which was an advance over some previous JHPs, it was often erratic and frequently involved jacket separation when it did happen.

Still, the distinctive post in the middle and the dramatic name ensured the sort of attention that makes for strong brand recognition and strong brand recognition makes for good sales. Good sales make for continuing presence in the catalog, and thus the cycle perpetuates.

Judging by responses, it's one of the favored loadings of the internet and of gun store denizens everywhere, right up there with not-sold-in-two-decades Black Talons*. "What kind of ammo do you carry?" is met with the answer "Hydroshock[sic]!" in the same tone that would be used for "Hammer of Thor!"

Now, mind you, bare ballistic gel is about the most favorable environment for getting catalog model pictures of expanded bullets. It's of a uniform texture and doesn't have any substances in it or on it that could clog the nose cavity or impede uniform expansion; the only thing better for taking runway model bullet pics is shooting straight down into a big tank of water. Given that, it's almost disappointing to see the results turned in by Hydra-Shok® in this day and age of perfect mushrooms.

Where's your Hydroshock god now, internet?
In a pretty typical P9HS1 performance, the cavity is rolled back, barely larger than the shank, and the bullet went about 18" into bare gel, leaving a pretty ho-hum permanent cavity.

Of course, this not being my first day on the internet, I have no idea why I'm bothering to post this. This is where some guy who invested $25 of his ego in a box of bullets and marketing is going to say "Well, let's see you stand there an' let me shootchu with one!" and I throw up my hands in disgust and say "Whatever, Cletus..." and walk off, shaking my head.

*The idea that someone is carrying around 20+ year-old Black Talons, that they lovingly polish like the family silver and can't test-fire, in their carry gun, in the mistaken belief that they are better in any way than current offerings from Winchester, falls somewhere between "ludicrous" and "disturbing".

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Dirty Glock

So, back to the Glock that's been woefully neglected since last month...
Two thousand rounds of shooting, two years of neglect. All the ammunition represented by the empty boxes in that photo went through it, pretty much never more than fifty rounds at a lick, over the course of a little over two years. While not as spectacular as going out and dumping two cases of ammo into the berm in two hours while you have people loading mags for you, it's probably a lot closer to the lifestyle of the average pistol. Plus, it's not like someone's sponsoring this and that stuff costs money and time.

There was a weak round of Sumbro that didn't cycle the gun at round #1,392 and a light primer strike on a round of Brown Bear steel-cased garbage at round #1,057 but other than those two instances, the gun did not fail to go through its complete cycle of operation whenever it was asked.

All the ammo was all factory new. Four hundred rounds of steel-cased, a hundred 'n' fifty rounds of aluminum cased CCI Blazer, and the remainder was brass-cased ammo (including a hundred rounds of filthy, erratic Sumbro Macedonian 9mm.)

The muzzle end is pretty crusty-looking, as one might imagine.

 Not a terrible amount of carbon buildup on the bottom of the slide.

The feed ramp and the whole breech end of the barrel has a pretty good amount of carbon caked on it, however.
The RSA is full of cack.

Since it's not a carry gun, I'm not going to go overboard with cleaning it. I'll wipe off the worst of the dirt on the outside and on the internal working parts and give it a few squirts of the Slip 2000 EWL I picked up at last week's EAG carbine class and decide what to do with it from there. I may keep it, on account that everybody should have a G19/17/34 on hand, or I may sell it and use the money for something else to abuse.

Stay tuned...


"Ice Soccer": You heard it here first.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

My morning belly laugh...

From the reporting on the raid at Stag Arms, WeaponsMan found the money quote:
"The anti-gun reporters at the Hartford Business Journal breathlessly reported that, “a large cache of gun parts” was found — at the gun factory. Layers and layers of editors!"
Oh, man, that's rich. A cache of gun parts? Oh noes! They must have been up to something! Like maybe they were planning on making guns... AT THE GUN FACTORY, YOU SIMPLEMINDED CRETINS!

What's next? Finding a cache of pepperoni at a pizza parlor?

Telepathy is a curse.

Automotif LXXXVII...

1975-76 Porsche 914
I thought these were so cool when I was little. They had pop-up headlights! How cool is that? Pop-up headlights added 100 cool points to any car in my childhood reasoning.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Ah, the Reynolds Wrap Yarmulke crowd...

...they're just the gift that keeps on giving.

Never stop being your kooky selves, kids; you have no idea how much entertainment you provide to those of us who know the real secret behind the chemtrails.

Dimmer Skies Are Safer Skies!

(Seriously, though: If I were deliberately trying to discredit patriotic, liberty-loving Americans, I'd pay people to spout this kind of BS to sucker the gullible and make our side look risible. Alex Jones does more damage to the patriot cause than Mike Bloomberg could buy on his best day.)

Art Fair and Other Stuff

Shootin' Buddy showed up early yesterday morning with his new bicycle in the back of his truck, and we pedaled into Broad Ripple village for breakfast at Public Greens before heading on to the Art Fair.

In a triumph of optimism over thinking things through, I packed both pro-size Nikons in my camera bag. According to what data I can find, that's 2.3 kilos of camera bodies alone, exclusive of batteries, lenses, and whatnot. I like the heft of the big Nikons taken one at a time, but both together are a bit much. It would have been more excruciating without the well-shaped shoulder pad on the new bag.
The weather was threatening, and I wound up not snapping very many pictures at all, and most of what I got wasn't very good. If I hadn't stumbled across that Mustang on the way home, taking the cameras at all would have been a scrub.
In a demonstration of one of the weaknesses of film versus digital, I didn't take any pics with the F5. See, I'd loaded the camera with 100 ISO T-MAX the other day in anticipation of shooting pics of old radio stuff in a sunny outdoors setting. The gloomy overcast at the Art Fair wouldn't have been very conducive to good results with the slow, fine-grained film.

When we left the Art Fair to head to the movie, the sky to the south looked threatening, and that's when I got a chance to deploy the handy, built-in rain fly on my new Lowepro messenger bag for the first time. It worked well once I figured out how to thread the shoulder strap through it. It's also just exactly sized to fit in the basket on the back of my bicycle, which is super convenient and I wish I could say was because of foresight and not happy accident...


Sunday, May 17, 2015

Automotif LXXXVI...

1967 Shelby GT500
I nearly wrecked the bike trying to hit the brakes and fish the camera out of the bag...

Your Full USRDA of 'Splodey Stuff.

Just got back from seeing "Fury Road" with Shootin' Buddy. Absolutely over-the-top action flick. Non-stop adrenaline. I was afraid that in the middle of the chase scene, a movie might accidentally break out, but they managed to hold that off 'til the end.

Also, electric guitars with built-in flamethrowers on the war-drum dump truck because, sure, why not? The Lord Humungous and his crew look like Webelos compared to the road pirate gangs in this one.

There was supposed to be some feminist propaganda or something, but I couldn't find it. Some old ladies busted some caps in dudes, but that's pretty much what I'd do if I saw some guy in a leather banana hammock coming at me with a chainsaw, so I didn't find that part terribly unrealistic. Maybe if you squinted your eyes just right, the fireballs from the explosions looked just like the profile of bell hooks?

Saturday, May 16, 2015

What the heck, I'm in for $25.

One of these archaic pre-Enlightenment concepts is not like the others:
  • Trial by Ordeal
  • Bleeding
  • Ptolemaic system
  • Witch burnings
  • Asset forfeiture
If you guessed "Asset forfeiture", you're absolutely right! While you'll only read about the others in history books, you can still see ridiculous case names like The United States of America, Plaintiff, v. $107,702.66 in United States Currency, Defendant right here in 21st Century America.

"Siri," you might ask your smartphone, "how in the name of Isaac Newton does the government get away with using this obviously ridiculous medieval dodge to take people's money?"

"Let me check on that," Siri will respond, as baffled as anybody else by how this is still allowed to go on, despite legal underpinnings as wobbly and archaic and full of hocus pocus as the Divine Right of Kings and the transmutation of base metals to gold.

A guy I know made a wisecrack about riding around with $30k in his pocket, just waiting for the inevitable seizure. I said if he was gonna do that, I'd be in for twenty bucks just to watch the show. So now there's a Kickstarter. It probably won't happen, but it'd be funny if it did...

Friday, May 15, 2015

I love my neighborhood...

Looking north up College Ave from 54th Street. Canon T50, Kodak 400TX
One night, not too long back, Bobbi and I walked to Twenty Tap for dinner after she got home from work. She had a mojo going for one of their pork bánh mì sammiches. Alas, it was crowded and we didn't feel like waiting, and so we went next door for gyros at Sam's. We could have gone to Fat Dan's on the other side for barbecued stuff or, if we'd been up to crossing the street, gotten bar food at Moe & Johnny's, Cajun at Yat's, or a nice dinner with live jazz at the Jazz Kitchen (or picked up a pizza to take home from the Jazz Kitchen's spinoff, Bebop Pizza.)

Digital and film...

Nikon P7000 digital
Leica R4, Ilford FP-4 Plus 125 Kodak T-MAX 100

Nikon P7000 digital
Nikon F5, Fujicolor 200
I haven't fiddled with the images any, other than resizing the digital ones down by 50%. The film ones are the scans that were provided by The Darkroom along with the negatives. I need to get a negative scanner of my own.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Good Day

Rode the Broad Ripple SUV into the village for lunch and then a quick stop at the grocery store. It's nice to be able to grab a twelve-pack of Diet Dew and a bag of cat litter on the bike. Handy baskets are handy.

After lunch I rode over to the Bike Line and got a new bike computer. While they installed it, I went out and sat by the trail and people-watched.

No headphones or backpack, bright colors, did not give off a fug of patchouli, Axe body spray, or ganja... Probably a tourist from Carmel.

Ripped jeans, backpack, big headphones... This dude's a local.

As is this guy, who is the reason I was sitting on the bench out by the trail instead of in the shade of the little shelter.

Later, another hobo came walking down the trail, entered the bandstand, and kicked his feet. I thought I was going to get to watch a bum fight, but instead I just overheard a tale of woe when the sleeper noticed that his bicycle had disappeared while he slept it off. His buddy commiserated, and then tried to bum a cigarette from his distraught, now-bikeless friend.

I don't get it.

David Rothkopf is the publisher of Foreign Policy magazine. Like most Progressive internationalists, he practically decorates his cupcakes at the idea of the U.S. cozying up to foreign nations and hopping into bed for all sorts of trade agreements, peace treaties, pacts, bilateral understandings, and other foreign-policy-type ménages à trois.

As long as the foreign countries being cozied up to are not England or Israel, that is.

Guys like Rothkopf just hate England and Israel with a passion, and so are willing to grade the Obama administration's objectively disastrous foreign policy on a very generous curve because, whatever its failings elsewhere, it has kicked the "Special Relationships" with the UK and Israel right in the Jimmy:
"In part, the decline in the relationships has been due to historical reasons that have made both countries less important to the United States. The United Kingdom is a shadow of its former self, the sun long ago having defied the old saying and actually having set on the former empire. British school children no longer study maps that show a quarter of the world in red or pink to depict the lands loyal to their monarch. Even Britain’s last great claim on global domination — in the area of TV car shows — suffered a devastating blow this year when “Top Gear,” broadcast in 214 countries with an audience of hundreds of millions, saw its blowhard, politically troglodyte host Jeremy Clarkson unceremoniously booted off the air for behaving like an ass, thus shutting down production."

Be alert for horsemen!

I wonder what size ice skates the devil wears? Because I find myself nodding my head in absolute agreement with this video:

A CCW permit is not a Junior G-Man badge. Never get out of the boat.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Fight The Future!

"The U.S. counted just 190 one-hour photo shops in 2013, according to new Census data, down from 3,066 in 1998. Extinction looms over other retail niches oriented around analog media. The number of newsstands dropped by nearly half over the past 15 years, and video-rental stores dwindled by 85 percent. But nothing can rival the 94 percent death rate for America's photo-processing shops, which are vanishing faster than all business categories tracked in the Census."
Good thing I found The Darkroom!

(Also, I am such a nerd that I read that paragraph and saw the animated map and my first thought was a couple lines from "The Battle of Maldon":
Will the harder, heart the keener
Courage the greater, as our strength lessens.
Normal people immediately connect dwindling numbers of photo labs with old Anglo Saxon war poems, right? Right?)

So, this happened...

The evolution in question involved firing five rounds at a fifty yard target from a standing position, executing a speed reload, firing five rounds from kneeling, executing a speed reload, and firing five rounds from prone. The target was an eight inch circle, roughly corresponding to the A-zone or the 9-ring, and the par time was 25 seconds.

By the time I was finishing up my kneeling shots, I was beginning to feel distinctly behind the 8-ball, time-wise, and I may have rushed that reload as I dropped into prone. And by "rushed", I mean that I may have not properly performed an important quality control step.

Not properly performing this important quality control step had the predictable result, visible below the break...

True Fact

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Note To Self:

Dear Me,

When you read this tomorrow morning, and are not all stove up (or at least not as much), put the black MS-2 sling back on the gauge where it belongs and put the MS-3 on the BCM middie. You'll thank yourself come October.


Oil can! Oil can!

Not to put too fine a point on it, but I need to think carefully about where, and in what position, I stop moving tonight, because I'm probably going to be stuck that way for a while.

Man, I am stove up.

Monday, May 11, 2015

The future...

Last night, packing up for gun school today, I realized that the charger for the battery in my Nikon P-7000 was nowhere to be found.

Thank you Amazon Same-Day Delivery! The battery had enough ass left to make it through one day, and the new charger was waiting for me when I got home from gun skool.

Tab Clearing...

Gun School!

Another box checked on the gun school bucket list today: Carbine 1 with Pat Rogers up at the Boone County Sheriff's Department range.

Packing up last night was fairly easy; as often as I go to the range, most of my range crap just stays in the trunk of the Zed Drei. I just staged 5.56 ammo, magazines, and a carbine by the back door. I'm most likely going to be shooting a school loaner, but better safe than sorry.

The gun I grabbed was the newer of the two. Not my trusty MGI switch-barrel gun, but the BCM midlength I took to New Hamster and Blogorado last year. While retrieving it, I noticed it was missing its sling...
"I hope I didn't leave my sling in somebody's truck at Blogorado... Wait, that's exactly what I did. But they mailed it back already. So what did I do with it? Must've put it someplace 'safe'."
Luckily, I had a Magpul sling on the shotgun that was easy enough to pop off the gauge and on to the carbine, rather than rummage through boxes and cases looking for the errant one. I put some fresh sunscreen in the soft case with the gun and mags and I was good to go.

Saturday, May 09, 2015


Awesome new shower curtain at Roseholme Cottage. I still smile every time I look at it.

Nanny State County

So the polls were open last Tuesday and although the county had predicted a low turnout (I heard they were expecting 13%) only nine percent of eligible voters trudged to the polls to do their citizenly duty.

Much finger-wagging and chiding occurred in the various media outlets over the low turnout, despite very little noise being made in the run-up to election day, I guess because none of the candidates wasted any money on campaign ads.

Myself, I'm not having any truck with their guilt trip. This was a municipal primary election: That is, where the members of the Republican and Democrat parties go and pick their candidates for the ballot in November's general election. I am not a member of either party, and so I have no business weighing in on either party's candidate selection process. Further (and I checked) there were no ballot questions such as "Do you want to get milked for more dough to support some useless project?" to which I could say "No."

Ergo, there was no reason for me to go to the polls on Tuesday, so I didn't. I'll go in November, when they're actually asking me questions.

Thursday, May 07, 2015

Freeze Peach

Somewhere, up in the attic, I have a thin little tome entitled something like Can We Really Win? It was published by one or another of the various Communist parties of the USA, and it discussed the chances of the proletariat rising up and defeating the capitalist mercenaries of the imperialist plutocrats in Washington, D.C. in the wake of the then-fresh crushing victories of said mercenaries in Desert Storm.

It was a book about the possibility of overthrowing the government of this country in an armed proletarian revolt.

I'm pretty sure it had an ISBN number.

Even though I have no truck with the beliefs of the book's authors, I had to buy it when I saw it because THAT is Free Speech, bitches.

Battling Entropy

Canon EOS 10S w/EF 40mm f/2.8 lens and Ilford DELTA 3200.

The Part Where I Lost My $#!+.

So, I'm driving to the range yesterday while listening to NPR, as one does, and The Diane Rehm Show is discussing the Garland, Texas incident. There's a guest or two fighting a valiant rear-guard action for the First Amendment, trying to explain to the hostess that it even protects people's right to be icky and Republican.

Then they opened the lines for callers and I very nearly drove into the ditch, yelling at the radio and gnawing on the steering wheel in impotent frustration:
"Welcome back, I'm Indira Lakshmanan, sitting in for Diane Rehm. We're talking about the Texas attack, ISIS, and the limits of free speech. I'm gonna read a post that we got here, an email from Jean, who says that if someone published cartoons of women, LGBTs, blacks, or a dozen other protected groups, wouldn't they be prosecuted as hate speech? And why does offense of anti-Islamic speech get a pass in the name of free speech?"
Jean you ignorant slut, do you know what they call it when people publish "cartoons of women, LGBTs, blacks, or a dozen other protected groups"? They call it the internet.

This is America: You can go to the bookstore and buy yourself copies of everything from The Basketball Diaries to The Motorcycle Diaries to The Turner Diaries. The frickin' Ku Klux Klan has a website, honey; I'm not going to give them a link, but it's three letters followed by a ".com", you should be able to figure it out. Or maybe not; you don't seem very bright.

If you rabbit people would stop looking for someone to expose your bellies to in submission for five seconds and listen... Look, you like Donna Shalala, right? Y'all are sympatico, right? On the same team? Try this one from her:
"You can't have a university without having free speech, even though at times it makes us terribly uncomfortable. If students are not going to hear controversial ideas on college campuses, they're not going to hear them in America."
How about bell hooks?
"The political core of any movement for freedom in the society has to have the political imperative to protect free speech."
Salman Rushdie?
"Free speech is the whole thing, the whole ball game. Free speech is life itself."
I'll give the Quote of the Day to Ken at Popehat:
Seriously, yesterday's Diane Rehm Show was the scariest thing I've heard on the radio since I listened to Mystery Theater on a battery operated boom box sleeping out in a friend's treehouse when I was twelve. It used to be that if there was one thing you could at least count on liberals for, it was a vigorous defense of free speech; it's a cause that has found the ACLU in bed with the NRA on at least one occasion I can think of. This new turn is... chilling.

Automotif LXXXV...

Beetle infestation. Leica Z2X, Kodak Portra 800.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Well, poo...

Leica Z2X, Kodak Portra 800
Well, the Leica Z2X has a funky artifact that shows in the top right corner of the image. It's less visible in dimmer light and seems to go away at longer focal lengths. Still, compared to the stellar titanium Contax TVS and its Zeiss T* glass, the plastic-y Z2X with its slow lens is a bit of a disappointment. I'm glad I didn't pay too much for it.

It's blue, actually.

Chugging along.

A quick range trip this morning and a hundred more rounds through the P320. It was sunny and unseasonably warm so, rather than my plan of setting up a paper target for some timed drills, I just shot the plates from 20 yards and packed up again.

I should look into holster availability for the thing, other than the plastic gun bucket it came with.

Fifty rounds of steel-cased Russian ball and fifty of Federal 9BPLE, with no malfunctions to report. That makes 820 down, 1180 to go. Probably more to come on Sunday.