December 2010 Journal

November 29-30, 2010

Talked with the Progressive agent and appraiser. The check, as they say, is in the mail. It'll be March before I get it fixed, unless plans change. I have no complaints at this point. The check includes everything, and if costs go up between now and then, they'll do a supplemental. One scratch has an initial expense for buffing. If that doesn't work, they'll do a supplemental. They're even covering the coating... what was that stuff called? Oh well, that's what happens when I write after The Redhead has gone to sleep.

Got the shop almost ready to move.

November 28, 2010

RGR match. Started in 36° weather. By 1 PM the wind had gotten to excessive levels, with blowing sand. The match was called after 4 stages. I shot it in Frontier Cartridge with the Ruger new model Vaqueros. The left thumb is giving me too much trouble, and it was too cold to mess with Frontiersman. Not much work to shooting cartridge pistols. Where's the fun in that? Anyway, I need to shoot 2 handed a lot to get the one-handed muscle memory out. Only drew one gun and started to shoot it witn one hand. But twice I drew the left gun, and the hand was too high on the gun, and I couldn't cock it. Short stroked it. Wrap pinkie under the short grips. 1 miss. Another RGR match without evidence of good shooting on my part. Oh, well.

November 27, 2010

The ROI class went well, 8 students. All passed. It went quickly, finishing a few minutes early. No complaints. No questions unanswered. The PPS needs some tweaking, but it worked.

November 26, 2010

Last preparation for the ROI class. The Redhead put in a lot of hours on this, too. She printed the students' handbooks and tests, the signup sheets, and my instructor's copy of the ROI Handbook. She put my copy into sheet protectors and put them into a notebook, putting the cover into a protector sheet and sliding it inside the plastic of the book cover. She sharpened a box of #2 lead pencils with a 99¢ pencil sharpener that was overpriced.

 

November 24-25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving from Camp Baylor

For a Texas couple, this is a COLD Thanksgiving, high 35, low 20–in an RV(!) But all of the family is here awaiting the huge turkey that will be making turkey sandwiches into infinity and beyond.

From The Redhead, Arthur Pendragon, George S. Patton, Jr., Angelique (and her evil twin), and me Happy Thanksgiving!

If you're reading this somewhere in the Sandbox or some other hellhole because Uncle Sam wanted you, Thank you, Brothers and Sisters. I've been there, done that and know how you feel and appreciate your service. Stay safe, well, as safe as you can.

Good Thanksgivings and bad

This is a Good Thanksgiving. I compare all of them to Thanksgiving 1969. I was at a nameless little fire base off HWY 13 in Vietnam, northwest of Saigon 70-90 miles or so. I was with a Vietnamese infantry company along with a sergeant on his second or third tour. The nearest other American was several miles away. We were promised a hot Thanksgiving meal. But either the schedule of getting same to several advisory teams spread out through our AO was too much or we were at the bottom of the priority list. We waited and waited. Finally at about 5 pm we both ate some C-Rations, our first meal of the day. Naturally the Huey arrived then with our hot turkey dinners.

They've all been better than that since then.

Today's Email wisdom:


*Twas the month before Christmas*

*When all through our land,*

*Not a Christian was praying*

*Nor taking a stand.*

*See the PC Police had taken away,*

*The reason for Christmas - no one could say.*

*The children were told by their schools not to sing,*

*About Shepherds and Wise Men and Angels and things.*

*It might hurt people's feelings, the teachers would say*

* December 25th is just a ' Holiday '.*

*Yet the shoppers were ready with cash, checks and credit*

*Pushing folks down to the floor just to get it!*

*CDs from Madonna, an X BOX, an I-pod*

*Something was changing, something quite odd! *

*Retailers promoted Ramadan and Kwanzaa*

*In hopes to sell books by Franken & Fonda.*

*As Targets were hanging their trees upside down*

* At Lowe's the word Christmas - was no where to be found.*

*At K-Mart and Staples and Penny's and Sears*

*You won't hear the word Christmas; it won't touch your ears.*

*Inclusive, sensitive, Di-ver-si-ty*

*Are words that were used to intimidate me.*

*Now Daschle, Now Darden, Now Sharpton, Wolf Blitzen*

*On Boxer, on Rather, on Kerry, on Clinton!*

*At the top of the Senate, there arose such a clatter*

*To eliminate Jesus, in all public matter.*

*And we spoke not a word, as they took away our faith*

* Forbidden to speak of salvation and grace*

*The true Gift of Christmas was exchanged and discarded*

*The reason for the season, stopped before it started.*

*So as you celebrate 'Winter Break' under your 'Dream Tree'*

*Sipping your Starbucks, listen to me.*

*Choose your words carefully, choose what you say*

*Shout MERRY CHRISTMAS, not Happy Holiday!*


November 23, 2010, Tuesday, Catching Up:

Let's see if I can catch up a little. The reason for the delays since I got to Albuquerque is I started a "project from hell" (AFTER I beat the deadline on my next column). I worked from the time I finished the column until a few minutes ago on PowerPoint Presentations, a new one from scratch for the RO1 course, one that was already done by Tex for RO2, that, eventually, I decided to leave alone for now after spending too much time on it, and improvements/updates to my 2 SASS Convention seminars. In addition to that I visited the VA hospital. I'll be getting 3 surgeries there at their convenience. The first will be for a compressed ulnar nerve. The surgery is day surgery, but I'll be out of shooting for 6 weeks. I'm trying to get it scheduled for mid-March but have run head-on into the bureaucracy. At this point I'm awaiting a return phone call from the orthopedic surgeon who said he would schedule it in March if I decided on it this month. I did. He hasn't. The next 2 surgeries are for arthritic thumbs. They'll put me out of shooting for up to 3 months each. I mentioned this to Tex. That didn't bother him. When I said I would have a problem typing, THAT bothered him.

Let's go back to early November. The rains came Monday through Wednesday, keeping us in the bus most of the time. I didn't get to shoot the ROAs in the reliability test I had planned. On Thursday I helped Billy Boots and Dusty Lone Star put on the RO1 class and watched the RO2, then shot the Wild Bunch match. Tough field, shot clean and fast for me, but 5th in WBT, 11th OA out of 45. Now I don't know why we only had 45 starters out of 57 entries. Several people didn't enter WB because the website said it was full with a big waiting list bringing the total to 62 at one point and 57 just before the event.

Then came the main match, and I screwed the pooch. The nice, pretty ROAs went Tango Uniform 3 times, not firing their caps the first time. Then I got 3 stupid, unnecessary misses. That was the first day. I knew I was out of it by then. The second day was going much better, running with eventual 4th placer, Dawgtooth Dave except for a total meltdown when T-Bone showed up with a videographer. Oh well, 9th. 6 buckles.

The event was the usual Comin'At'Cha. There's nothing like it in SASS. Everything is done to perfection. The parties were super. The dinner was excellent. The fireworks were colorful.

I had an excellent posse. I would be happy to have any/all of them on my posse at any event. Things went pretty smoothly. One lady got sick and was medevaced to a nearby hospital on Friday but was back on Saturday. The CAC people managed to get her and her husband a shoot through.

Lorelei Longshot took about 300 photos with my camera. Needless to say, I haven't gotten to sort through them to post them here.

So far I've sorted one. A lady came into Mose and Bella's and asked me to take pictures of her cleavage. So I did:

Impressive cleavage

The lady told me her alias, but I forgot. If you recognize her, please let me know, and I'll post it.

We left Monday morning and made it to Vernon, Texas for the night. The next day we made it to Armadildo, where we got the bus state inspected and renewed our driver's licenses. Amazingly, by the skin of my teeth, I passed the vision test.

We made it to ABQ by Wednesday. The next Monday saw the neurosurgeon and the orthopedic surgeon, and the schedule-dancing began. That Thursday took the bus in for an alignment to Albuquerque Brake and Wheel Alignment. Mystery damage appeared on the right side of the bus, first noticed when the bus came out of the shop. After an investigation we never found any evidence that the shop did it, and we guess that while it was parked outside on the street an 18 wheeler trailer got it from a business across the street covered up with 18 wheelers. A body shop was next door, Fincham Enterprises. Talked to Lowell Fincham, the owner. He said that Progressive wouldn't take his estimate but would have to look at it. One of his mechanics fixed the damaged basement door enough for it to open and close. Getting a new basement door will take at least 3 weeks, so we can't get it fixed while we're here. They noticed cracking in my tires I hadn't caught. So we went to Purcell Tires, where Cindy, the assistant manager, said she though she could get some help from Michelin, but, to look at the DOT #s and serial numbers, 5 of the 6 tires would have to be demounted, having been put on with the SNs on the inside. She promised to call Michelin Monday. As of time of writing, Tuesday, Nov. 23, she hasn't called me back after I called Monday afternoon.

The Progressive agent was quite pleasant. Apparently we have a disappearing deductible, so at least it won't cost us. The appraiser has not called us as of now.

Today visited the VA dietician. I'm down to 171 by their measuring, and what they call the waist, the belly 1" above the navel, down to 37, The rest of the visit was with the bureaucrats at Orthopedic Surgery and Neurosurgery. To be continued.

On the shooting front, I put slightly heavier springs in the ROAs and shot them at Saturday's RGR match. Edward R. S. Canby put on stages that will be similar to those on the NM State Championship next January at Las Cruces. Fast Hammer likes aerial shotgun targets, so there were 5. I missed all 5 and shot those stages poorly, the rest semi-okay, only one under 30, a 23 where 12 would have been good. But I had trouble cocking the pistols. The thumb is just too screwed up. I'll probably shoot Sunday's RGR match in FC.

On Saturday, November 27th, I'll be doing the RO1 class at RGR's Tunstall Store. Several people have told me they'll be there. The Redhead did a fantastic job of getting all of the printed materials done. It took her all day Sunday (after we picked up supplies at Wally World.)

Note: November 14, 2010

The Blog hasn't been updated since November because of too many things ganging up on me at once. I'll catch up when I can. Explanation will probably occur then.

Joke du Jour

Helping the Destitute

The wife came home early and found her husband in their bedroom making love to a very attractive young woman.

And she was somewhat upset. 'You are a disrespectful pig!' she cried.. 'How dare you do this to me -- a faithful wife, the mother of your children! I'm leaving you.. I want a divorce right away!'

And the husband replied, 'Hang on just a minute love, so at least I can tell you what happened' 'Fine, go ahead,' she sobbed,' but they'll be the last words you'll say to me!'

And the husband began -- 'Well, I was getting into the car to drive home, and this young lady here asked me for a lift. She looked so down and out and defenseless that I took pity on her and let her into the car..

I noticed that she was very thin, not well dressed and very dirty. She told me that she hadn't eaten for three days.

So, in my compassion, I brought her home and warmed up the enchiladas I made for you last night, the ones you wouldn't eat because you're afraid you'll put on weight. The poor thing devoured them in moments.

Since she needed a good cleanup, I suggested a shower, and while she was doing that, I noticed her clothes were dirty and full of holes, so I threw them away.

Then, as she needed clothes, I gave her the designer jeans that you have had for a few years, but don't wear because you say they are too tight.

I also gave her the underwear that was your anniversary present, which you don't wear because I don't have good taste.

I found the sexy blouse my sister gave you for Christmas that you don't wear just to annoy her, and I also donated those boots you bought at the expensive boutique and don't wear because someone at work has a pair the same.'

The husband took a quick breath and continued - 'She was so grateful for my understanding and help that as I walked her to the door, she turned to me with tears in her eyes and said,

 

'Please ... Do you have anything else that your wife doesn't use?

November 2, 2010, Tuesday

Angelique at the end of her morning Kitty Walenda act on the top of the shower. She fell (or jumped, that's her story, and she's stickin' to it) inside once. The shower was dry, but she couldn't get out. She let us know she was there.

Rain, lightning, storms, power loss. Wonderful. The lack of power meant no working in the shop. The sold gun cart was sitting out in the rain. Worked on computer stuff. Power came back. Went into shop. The AC had leaked again. Got out the 5 gallon buckets. Dried the floor.

The Dooley Gang Guns

Took pictures of Omaha John's Dooley Gang gun. T-Bone got 20 .45 Colt New Vaquero Bisleys (via Lefty Guns-Alas, who, in real life, is manager of the Prescott Ruger plant) with serial numbers ending in 01 through 20. There were 20 original Dooley Gang members. He had them laser engraved. John had just gotten 2 .38 special New Vaquero Bisleys done by Cowhand, short stroke action jobs. He managed to get them sent with the others for engraving. The others have 1 of 20, 2 of 20, etc. engraved on the backstrap. These have 21 and 22 on them. I would have had 21 of 20 and 22 of 20 on them, (There's that sick sense of humor again.)

Dooley Gang New Vaquero Bisley #19 of 20

Left side view, Ruger Bisley Vaquer

 

22 ct. gold plated front sight

November 1, 2010, Monday

A package arrived from Lassiter, the barrel(s) for my SKB 100, properly repaired. SKB's have a problem with the front lug on the barrel, the one that attaches the forend, coming unsoldered. You can't just re-silver solder it in place. Gunsmiths and I have tried several things on this one. Wild Bodie Tom used TIG, 4 spots on the lug/barrel interface, and one on the back of the rib/block interface. It worked for a while, but it fell off, too. I sent it back to him. He looked at it and decided the condition of the ribs,etc. made it too much for him. Fortunately Lassiter went to Border Town, and Tom gave it to him. Lassiter explained what he was going to do to me. I'm no welder. He was going to weld like porcupines make love, very carefully so as not to damage the innards of the barrel. (Can't get a picture of the inside of the barrel, but it's pristine!) Anyway, here is the result:

SKB 100 Barrel lug

It arrived this morning. I showed it to Gunz Brokus, an SKB expert. He explained how the least little misalignment could be a real problem. It fit perfectly. I went out and put a box through it. Love it. Thanks, Lassiter!

I also test fired the .45 Colt '73 that Cowhand worked on. It works perfectly, too. One of the lever springs had worn out. I had a spare, already thinned and prepped by Cody. This gun wasn't a Codymatic. It was done by Jim Bowie back when the earth was flat and dinosaurs roamed, pre 9/11. Johnny Meadows had fixed some things when he had it. Very smooth now.

Talked with Mose about something to personalize the newly obtained "large gear bag" on the new gun cart. It has the manufacturer's logo in the middle. He'll make a big red circle of adhesive backed cloth with a gold SASS (life) badge with my # in the middle and "Captain George Baylor" around it. It'll be stuck and then sewn on. He mentioned that several people have flags they fly on their nylon tricycles so they can tell them from the others. These are the Zombie gun carts taking over SASS. They don't look cowboy, but they're lightweight, easy to push, and fold into a 41" long area in the trunk. The problem is there aren't enough colors. I got the purple one because there won't be many of them. I'm thinking of a design for a flag to identify mine. I'm thinking a cartoon of a naked babe wearing a cowboy hat, guns, and boots with the caption, "Naked Cowgirls Shoot Clean."

This is cropped from a True West cartoon I use in my costume seminar at the convention, a starting place, even though not naked:

Naked Cowgirls Shoot Clean

 

Probably won't be allowed, though.

A bunch of people came over for Margaritas, kind of two shifts. Omaha John and Patti discovered the Rockin' Rooster is closed Monday.