'The true Soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because He loves what is behind him.' -G. K. Chesterton

19 April 2014

For Brigid

We have no words just prayers.
Six, Lu and Angus

For your Big Bro.

Poseidon's Law

When the robust and Brass-bound Man commissioned first for sea
His fragile raft, Poseidon laughed, and “Mariner,” said he,
“Behold, a Law immutable I lay on thee and thine,
That never shall ye act or tell a falsehood at my shrine.

“Let Zeus adjust your landward kin whose votive meal and salt
At easy-cheated altars win oblivion for the fault,
But you the unhoodwinked wave shall test – the immediate gulf condemn 
Except ye owe the Fates a jest, be slow to jest with them.

“Ye shall not clear by Greekly speech, nor cozen from your path
The twinkling shoal, the leeward beach, or Hadria’s white-lipped wrath;
Nor tempt with painted cloth for wood my fraud-avenging hosts;
Nor make at all, or all make good, your bulwarks and your boasts.

“Now and henceforward serve unshod, through wet and wakeful shifts,
A present and oppressive God, but take, to aid my gifts 
The wide and windward-opening eye, the large and lavish hand,
The soul that cannot tell a lie – except upon the land!”

In dromond and in catafract – wet, wakeful, windward-eyed 
He kept Poseidon’s Law intact (his ship and freight beside), 
But, once discharged the dromond’s hold, the bireme beached once more,
Splendaciously mendacious rolled the Brass-bound Man ashore….

The thranite now and thalamite are pressures low and high,
And where three hundred blades bite white the twin-propellers ply.
The God that hailed, the keel that sailed, are changed beyond recall,
But the robust and Brass-bound Man he is not changed at all!

From Punt returned, from Phormio’s Fleet, from Javan and Gadire,
He strongly occupies the seat about the tavern fire,
And, moist with much Falernian or smoked Massilian juice,
Revenges there the Brass-bound Man his long-enforced truce!

16 April 2014

My Contribution To Borepatch's "For When He Needed Killin'" Playlist

BP has an interesting little post up about such a playlist. I thought I'd put in a nomination. I'm shamelessly stealing this from my favorite author, John Ringo. If anyone really understands such playlists it's him.

If you like the Pipes, and I do, you'll love this song. It's March of Cambreadth by Heather Alexander.

The lyrics;

Album: Midsummer
Axes flash, broadsword swing,
Shining armour's piercing ring
Horses run with polished shield,
Fight Those Bastards till They Yield
Midnight mare and blood red roan,
Fight to Keep this Land Your Own
Sound the horn and call the cry,
How Many of Them Can We Make Die!

Follow orders as you're told,
Make Their Yellow Blood Run Cold
Fight until you die or drop,
A Force Like Ours is Hard to Stop
Close your mind to stress and pain,
Fight till You're No Longer Sane
Let not one damn cur pass by,
How Many of Them Can We Make Die!

Guard your women and children well,
Send These Bastards Back to Hell
We'll teach them the ways of war,
They Won't Come Here Any More
Use your shield and use your head,
Fight till Every One is Dead
Raise the flag up to the sky,
How Many of Them Can We Make Die!

Dawn has broke, the time has come,
Move Your Feet to a Marching Drum
We'll win the war and pay the toll,
We'll Fight as One in Heart and Soul
Midnight mare and blood red roan,
Fight to Keep this Land Your Own
Sound the horn and call the cry,
How Many of Them Can We Make Die!

If that doesn't stir your soul nothing ever will. That song should be the anthem for the Second American Revolution.

Angus At The Swimming Hole

It's time for some more Angus pictures. These are from his second rehab swim the other day.

"Stop messing with me old man. Put down the camera and let's go swimming!"

Trooper hated swimming. Chrisi loved it but only if there was something to retrieve waiting at the other end. But Angus? He just loves to swim.

He'll head out, swim around for a minute then come back. He scans the pond for a bit...

"What's that!?"  

And head back out. If you look closely you'll see a duck he sighted. He figured it needed some personal attention. Hey, maybe he wants to play amiright? It let him get to within a few feet before taking off in a hurricane of wings, splashing feet and angry quacks.

He ended up chasing him all the way across the pond. He kept looking back at me as if to say "Hey, this is where you shoot that thing ain't it? C'mon pal, give me a little help here." Angus is that tiny black speck you can just see way out there. It a makes my heart sing every time does that.

Angus really enjoys his swimming. We're trying to get him out to the pond every day for a session. It helps a lot. The cold water gives him relief and the act of swimming builds up his muscles and stretches everything out. It also lets his muscles and connective tissue 'remember' their proper paths. It's low impact and excellent exercise, especially when rehabbing. He comes out of the water running and walking better each time.

Time. We're back at that point. All we can do is provide him with the environment he needs and wait for the rehab to take it's course. The results are encouraging and we're praying this is the last time. All we want at this point is for him to be pain free and as close to normal as possible. The antibiotic courses are done so now it's all down to exercise and time. Patience. I am learning some.

12 April 2014

Sunday Kipling

Shot a 2 Gun match yesterday. Had a pretty good day. 4th overall and 3rd in Tactical Optics division. I'm still searching for that elusive consistency and the need to just go faster. My coach says I need to go fast enough to start missing to get acclimated to the faster pace. Or something like that. More range time before the big 3 Gun match next month. Woe is me!

No match pictures. Lu and MIL had a yard sale. Made 200 bucks!!

Angus continues to improve. We swam him Friday and he was in a state of doggy joyful bliss. Another swim tomorrow. Longer this time.

It's turned hot here. Had to fire up the swamp cooler and toss the sunscreen in the range bag. Lu's garden is doing very well. The carrots are a foot high, the strawberries are greening and we have peaches! She'll be doing the rest of the planting this week.

I hope this day finds you all at peace. God is great my friends and though we find ourselves in a time of uncertainty and chaos I am content in the knowledge that his will is being done here on Earth as it is in Heaven. What will come will come. All we must do is bow our heads and ready our hearts.

This week's Kipling is dedicated to all our 4 footed family members. May you always have such a steadfast friend along with you on the road.


I have done mostly what most men do,
And pushed it out of my mind;
But I can't forget, if I wanted to,
Four-Feet trotting behind.

Day after day, the whole day through 
Wherever my road inclined 
Four-feet said, "I am coming with you!"
And trotted along behind.

Now I must go by some other round, 
Which I shall never find 
Somewhere that does not carry the sound
Of Four-Feet trotting behind.

10 April 2014

I Am An American Gun Owner

I'm not going to link to the madness we all saw recently, The Ft. Hood shooting and the mass stabbing incident at the Pennsylvania high school, but I do want to talk about it because it will happen again.

Take a minute and read this open letter to Congress written by Lt. Patrick Cook, one of those who was terrorized by the Ft. Hood shooter and saw a fellow soldier die. It's riveting and the message inescapable.

The real question is when is it enough? How much innocent blood is sufficient for those who bathe in it and revel in deaths of the disarmed and helpless? Because Lt.Cook is absolutely right. It will happen again.

I'm not saying everyone should be armed. There are many who don't for their own personal reasons and those who just don't have what it takes to go around with a gun on their hip. I get that and have no issues with them because it's a choice. One that should be a part of every American's life. But to take away that choice from those of us who can and want to is to set us all up for more of the same. Death, tragedy and horror and all of it preventable.

Here's a clue for all those out there who clamor for more gun control and outright gun bans. Ready?

There is no such thing as a Gun Free Zone. Period.

Except in the minds of the delusional or those with visions of absolute statist control. There are only those areas where lawful carry by lawful citizens going about their lawful daily lives is unlawful and they may not possess the lawful means of protection for self and other citizens. You can call them Victim Disarmament Zones or Criminal Protection Zones or anything you like but the hard, cold truth is that there are simply no areas anywhere in these United States where you can guarantee that a criminal will never bring a gun or the means to kill or wound as many innocents as he can reach. It's not possible short of an absolute police state and not even then. Difficult does not equal impossible.

There are guns in the world and will be right up until either the Second Coming or the heat death of the world (depending on your religious views. I favor the first but that's just me). We can join hands and sing Kumbaya until the cows come home but it won't change a thing. And please spare me the whole "It has to start somewhere" nonsense. It doesn't have to start somewhere and preaching that idiocy is akin to lining up the entirety of the unarmed populace at the doors of the abattoir and saying 'so long and thanks for playing.'

Folks, there is evil in the world and that evil is armed. Asking the good, no, forcing the good to be at a constant disadvantage in the arms race is just another face of that evil. It is monstrous and intolerable. Those who champion universal disarmament are creating an underclass of people who are nothing more than potential statistics waiting for the inevitable.

We're seeing the proof literally every day. Those states that loosen the onus of personal defense carry are experiencing downturns in violent crime, especially murder, while the incidences of justifiable homicides by those otherwise at risk are rising. Look at Detroit and it's pro gun police chief if you doubt me. Women are the fastest growing segment of the shooting industry. Gee, I wonder why that is?

Gun Control advocates, and especially those who push the Gun Free Zone myth, are the very face of evil in this country. They have set the stage for every mass killing we experience and an unholy large number of murders and great bodily injury assaults. They have no excuses and deserve no mercy. It is not the gun in one's hand it is the evil in one's heart and those who would take away the means for the preservation of innocent life merit no less than those who committed the act. I detest them to the very depths of my soul and denounce them all as the murderous would be tyrants they are. Strong language? Yep. No less true for that.

I am a gun owner, a shooter and an American. I will not lay down my arms until the day I die. I know those on the anti gun side wish (and plan) for that occurrence but today is not that day. Today I will contemplate my role as protector, as champion for those who have voluntarily chosen not to take up arms or who, for whatever reason, cannot. For the weak and the innocent and the helpless. I will reaffirm my vow and my oath and I will see to my body and my weapons that I will ever be ready to preserve and defend. Because evil walks the face of the earth and no amount of hand wringing, laws or intentions will alter that in even the smallest way. I am an American Gun Owner.

I will remember the ones who died in the name of elitism and control and most especially those who set the stage for their untimely and horrific demise. Oh yes, I will remember. They have reset that stage over and over and over again. The next one is out there, right now, just waiting in the shadows like that great beast thirsting for blood and death and destruction. I reject him and all his works utterly and name his adherents as my bitter enemies.

And when it does I pray it happens within my reach because I am an American Gun Owner. The lives of my countrymen, indeed the life of America herself are within my purview. I am responsible for them and to them. No more innocent lives.

No. More.


07 April 2014

Match Photos

I promised pics. I'm extra late so by way of an apology I put up a bunch.

This is from the Berry's Bullets Steel Open. I shot with staff on Thursday so I could RO the match on Saturday and Sunday. It was great fun.

Shooting the plate rack through the barrel. Notice I'm rocking some awesome red shoes.

Some of those plates were awfully small...

The Texas Star. As you shoot off the plates the thing begins to rotate back and forth.

Behind that railroad tie is some small steel plates. You had to shoot under the beam. Plus there's a swinger that rotates a no shoot target in front of the plates. It was lovely.

Locked on target like an old, slow, fat cruise missile.

Strong hand only.

And weak hand only. It was a challenging match.

I love the shoot house. Started outside and then went in for the rest of the string. This started the Par Time stages where you had X seconds to shoot as many targets as you could. Hosing with style baby!

I was rockin' the patriotic shirt. Guns, competition and America FTW!!

Picture proof that I can still squat. A little.

The hoser stages were a blast. Set 'em up and knock 'em down as fast as you could go.

We had several Steel Challenge stages. 5 steel targets with the fifth being the stop plate where your time stopped. 5 runs and throw out the slowest time. Short, easy, simple and fun. I like them.

Surrender start. The stages got progressively harder with the targets getting smaller and further away. Want some real fun? Try these with a red dot .22 rifle. Awesome!

Lu getting stylish with the camera. Do you even operate Bro?

These guys get awful serious. That guy behind me came down from Washington to shoot this match. He's like a batter on deck taking practice swings. Yeah, he beat me.

The Sig ran well all day. I had one feed issue I'm pretty sure was a magazine problem. I'm going to order some Mec-Gars to replace my Pro Mags. Grip is coming along nicely though. I didn't drop a single DA shot in the entire match.

14 stages in 12 bays. We shot the entire match in 7 hours. These were some very motivated folks and great shooters. I learn stuff each and every time out. It was an awesome match and I had a great time. Plus fifth in Production against some top quality shooters! My finish was good enough to get me into B Class (67 percent and change) and that ain't too shabby considering. Lu came along as my range monkey and photographer. No video but I'm looking at a Go Pro. Time to up my level of commitment to the next stage.

Next match is the Southwest MultiGun 3 Gun match in May. I have a rifle class in June (that someone as yet unnamed is coming out to join me at. Yay!) with one of the finest 3 Gun competitors in the business. There may be a 2 gun later this month but only maybe. Until then it's practice, practice, practice. In fact I got in some loading work with the shotgun today. The goal is to be able to load at the rate of 1 shell per second (minimum). I'm just over that at around 1.25 per shotshell using dual loads. Plus losing that last 20 pounds or so. Sigh.

I'm on track for December. So far. We shall see.

06 April 2014

Sunday Kipling

It was a very long weekend. Shot Thursday, RO'd Saturday and today. I finished Ok. 56th overall but 5th in Production which is all I really care about since those are the folks I'm directly competing with. Good match, good folks and a lot of fun had by all. I won 2 shell holders and a plastic ammo box that looks like a military green box but is see through. Kinda cool. I'm not really shooting a lot of pistol since I'm concentrating on 3 Gun but I can't forget about it either. I'm probably going to shoot a little more pistol in the future.

Angus is doing well. He gets his stitches out tomorrow. He's been a very good boy but I know he's ready. Rehab is ongoing.

I hope you all had as good a Sunday as I did. Be well and keep your blessings in mind. All we really have is each other.

Now I'm going to relax and make plans for the coming week. That shower is calling my name. I think it's time.

Two Races

I SEEK not what his soul desires.
  He dreads not what my spirit fears. 
Our Heavens have shown us separate fires. 
  Our dooms have dealt us differing years. 

Our daysprings and our timeless dead 
  Ordained for us and still control
Lives sundered at the fountain-head, 
  And distant, now, as Pole from Pole. 

Yet, dwelling thus, these worlds apart, 
  When we encounter each is free 
To bare that larger, liberal heart
  Our kin and neighbours seldom see. 

(Custom and code compared in jest-
  Weakness delivered without shame-
And certain common sins confessed
  Which all men know, and none dare blame.) 

E'en so it is, and well content
  It should be so a moment's space, 
Each finds the other excellent, 
  And-runs to follow his own race!

03 April 2014

Match Today And Tomorrow

The Berry's Bullets Steel Challenge is today and tomorrow for range staff. I'll also be ROing the open shoot on Saturday and Sunday.

I helped set up the match and it is very interesting. A lot of hosing and every target is steel of one sort or another. Pics later if I'm not completely wasted.

Update: Wasted. We shot 14 stages in 7 hours and I'm fragged. I have to go out tomorrow and prep my stage for Saturday but otherwise I'll be resting. Pics sometime tomorrow. Promise.

30 March 2014

Sunday Kipling

Hello and a Happy and blessed Sunday to you all.

Angus is doing well. He's still sore and tripoding around but I think that's mostly to get sympathy and loves from Momma. And treats. Can't forget those. Of course she's a big ol' softy. Unlike me.

Busy week upcoming. I'm shooting the Berry's Steel Shoot on Thursday and Friday and ROing the match as staff on Saturday and Sunday. Monday is stage build day so I'll be at the range a bit. Pics and a write up as soon as I recover. Which may be sometime in October.

The weather has been nice and I'm finally back in the gym. My workouts are in inverse proportion to my remodel schedule. Since I'm being lazy working out seems the least I could do. Well, actually sitting around and eating Cadbury Creme Eggs until I turn into a sugar filled sack of oozing lard would be the least I could do but you know what I mean.

Have a great day everyone. And remember. Love means never having to apologize for lusting after a new gun. I hope.

Since I'm in a silly mood today...

 The Camel's hump is an ugly lump
         Which well you may see at the Zoo;
       But uglier yet is the hump we get
         From having too little to do.

       Kiddies and grown-ups too-oo-oo,
       If we haven't enough to do-oo-oo,
             We get the hump 
             Cameelious hump 
       The hump that is black and blue!

       We climb out of bed with a frouzly head,
         And a snarly-yarly voice.                        
       We shiver and scowl and we grunt and we growl
         At our bath and our boots and our toys;

       And there ought to be a corner for me
       (And I know' there is one for you)
             When we get the hump 
             Cameelious hump 
       The hump that is black and blue!

       The cure for this ill is not to sit still,
         Or frowst with a book by the fire;
       But to take a large hoe and a shovel also,
         And dig  till you gently perspire;
       And then you will find that the sun and the wind,
       And the Djinn of the Garden  too,
         Have lifted the hump    
         The horrible hump 
       The hump that is black and blue!
       I get it as well as you-oo-oo 
         If I haven't enough to do-oo-oo!
         We all get hump 
         Cameelious hump 
       Kiddies and grown-ups too!                
                           How the Camel Got His Hump 

26 March 2014

We're Home

Got to Vegas about 1000, which was supposed to be the time for the pick up. We got moved to 1100 so the surgeon could make a final check on his cutest patient. Paid the bill and noted the surgeon didn't charge us for his time. I thought that was fair and reasonable. One could argue that this was simply a continuation of the first repair surgery and we certainly paid the doc enough for that. Still, in this day and age it was gratifying to see him step up that way. My wallet certainly appreciated it.

1100 rolled around and the discharge nurse went over the doctor's instructions. Same one as last time and she recognized us so that went pretty quick. Then they brought Angus out. To say he was happy to see us is a vast understatement. Especially Momma. He went into immediate Whole Body Happy Wiggle mode. He was actually walking very well and we could really see the difference in his leg with the plate gone. It was so good to see him again. We really missed the little stinker.

He pulled us out the door and took a long and well deserved potty break in the gravel beside the truck. We loaded him up in the back seat with Lu and we were off home with prescriptions for antibiotics, inflammation and pain and 3 happy passengers. The trip home was uneventful and pretty easy. He slept most of the way.

Shaved again. I hope this is the last we'll be seeing of his leg skin. If you look real close you'll see that the stitches are....pink. The nurse says it's so they'll stand out against his black skin and fur but I think it's a Gyno conspiracy. Baby Girl thought they were stylish so there's that. 21 stitches total.

After he expressed his happiness at seeing us and being rescued from the Dungeon of Not Home he made sure to punish us. Angus is a sensitive dog. Not to mention badly spoiled. He'll probably hang his head and sad eye us for a few days just to make absolutely sure we understand how badly we disappointed him before he forgives us.

"Is Daddy looking? Does he look miserable and apologetic yet? Good!"

The leg looks straight to my eye and matches the other one pretty well now. The new incision is right over the old one so at least he'll only have one scar. And the surgeon did have to open it up all the way again to get the plate out.

Oh right. The Cone of Shame. We don't make him wear it when he's in direct and constant supervision of either of us but it's always there just in case. And don't think for a second that he doesn't know it. "I'll be good, I promise!"

After a few minutes at home he settled down and seems to have forgiven us. We're just so happy and grateful to have him back safe and whole. As I write this he's up on our bed, snuggled up with Momma and deep in the sleep of the truly content. It's good to be a family again. Welcome home Little Man.

Thank you all again for your well wishes and prayers. They worked. Once again. But this time I'm going to forgo teasing Murphy and tweaking his nose. We've had enough excitement with this one as it is. I'll just say that at this moment things are good and the future seems bright and leave it at that. That dude just has absolutely no sense of humor.