Friday, September 19, 2008

Bowling Night Report 9/18/08

Bleh. I only had enough ammo to shoot the stage once last night. The poppers got me right off the start. Okay, I'm aiming at the target. Front sight is clear, target is fuzzy. I've got all the stability I can get for recoil control and... the gun is pulling to the right. Five shots, not a one hit the popper.

Kentucky windage to the rescue! I shift the gun to where it's pointing to the left of the target. Ding! Down in one shot. It just wasn't my night last night for shooting. The shooting club has gotten some more new members and some more potential shooters in the past couple of weeks, too. I'm glad to see more folks coming out and shooting, even if the new folks are doing better than I am.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

61 years of Air Superiority

The entire letter, the entire Air Force philosophy boils down into the three last words of the letter issued by Secretary Donley and General Schwartz: fly, fight, win! This is as it should be. This is the task to which Airmen are entrusted. Maintainers keep the planes flying. Supply transfers the parts needed by the maintainers. Security forces protect Supply and Maintenance. All so some guys in funny green coveralls can go blow things up and generally make things easier for our fellow servicemen on land and sea. When our fellow servicemen need to focus on a specific mission, we take care of the rest. Why? It's to win. That's where Airmen should focus their energy.

Tonight, we a raise a toast to men like Billy Mitchell, Henry Arnold, Curtis LeMay and Robin Olds.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I'm not forgetting.

Seven years ago, sitting in a basement of a local company and helping to get bills mailed to clients, I started my morning grumbling about New Yorkers. It was mostly about how the Mets mauled the Cardinals in the previous baseball season, but there was a bit of grumbling about New Yorkers in general. I think it was my general "Big cities. Blah." train of thought. Sure, there's exceptions, like the Brooklyn-born crew chief in my old squadron who I'd run around a cowtown in New Mexico with. For the most part, though, I could take or leave New Yorkers, especially the Manhattan crowd. There was also the usual mush about figuring out how to pay off my student loan quickly and saving up for a car and house. (Things went in a very different direction for me than I'd either hoped or expected and not necessarily in a bad way.) I heard about the first tower. I chalked it up to a tragic and weird accident. Then I heard about the second tower. That was no accident.

I stopped grumbling about New Yorkers. I still don't, unless it's about the Mets. New Yorkers are my countrymen, as American as I am, even during baseball season. I'm not forgetting you guys.

I heard about the Pentagon and wondered if I bumped into someone who worked there at the time. The armed forces are a smaller world than people might think. I still pray for you guys.

I thought about my parents, both in jobs that could put them in harm's way. Dad, because of his career as a police officer, Mom, because she worked in a congressional office.

The cops, the firemen, everyone who made a bad situation better by getting thousands to safety were now paying for their heroic actions. The towers fell, and many of New York's Bravest and New York's Finest wouldn't go home ever again. It didn't matter where the other people came from, the police and firemen got them to safety all the same. You want to know I don't grumble so much about New Yorkers? That's why.

Anything I do that helps get the bastards who planned or financed or worked on the attacks is my way of saying "I'm not forgetting." Anything I do to support those who are hunting them down is my contribution to their memory. If I had a better run time, maybe I'd be back in the Air Force and getting troops from Point A to Point B or making sure they had air cover. Regardless, I can still do something, even if it's minor.

I'm not forgetting, not by any stretch of the imagination.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Bowling Night Report 9/4/08

Well, I shot like utter crap. As usual, most of my shots are going low. Saturday I headed over to my local range and shot from the 10-yard line. I was shooting low. I think I may have figured out a problem with how the XD40 fits into my hand. When firing rapidly I noticed that when the trigger resets to its full position, it's tougher to maintain good contact between it and my trigger finger. So when doing some dry-firing drills, I checked to see what point the sear resets and compared it to when the trigger safety pops back out and to when the trigger returns to fully forward. There's about an eighth of an inch of excess forward travel between when the trigger safety resets and when the trigger returns to full forward. I believe I'll need the assistance of a gunsmith on this one. If the trigger doesn't go so far forward, I have less chance of causing the gun to point downwards when I squeeze the trigger.

Well, maybe this will work, I don't know. I'll give it a shot.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

In a World Without Don LaFontaine...

People will agree with this article's last line that movie trailers will sound weird.

Leaving in 2008: Don LaFontaine. The "In a World" Guy. Anyone who can poke fun at themselves in a GEICO ad can't be that bad, can he?