Monday, March 21, 2005

Blogfest Wrap Up

  • Me, shooting a fully automatic Uzi.

  • To be honest, the shooting was not bad. I enjoyed it, although I think I more enjoyed the company of El Capitan than the shooting itself. In order to enjoy shooting on it's own, I would need a great deal more money, guns would need to be quieter and not so lethal. Nonetheless, this was a new experience for me an apparently I am not a godawful shot as I was afraid because when I was done most people would comment nice grouping. Of course, for all I know, that might mean you suck because I wouldn't have a clue.

    I did not shoot myself, so that was an improvement (by any standard) over the previous time I used a firearm.

    I believe that I fired:
    .22 automatic pistol
    .45 caliber revolver
    Colt .45 1911 (El Capitan's baby)
    Ruger .22 (my favorite)
    Mossberg .410 pump action shotgun
    9mm Uzi Submachine Gun

    So, in one day, I exponentially increased my knowledge of firearms. I would like to say Thank You to the folks at the DFW Gun Range because they opened early to members of the Texas Blogfest and were unfailingly informative and polite.

    I'm glad I did it, but I probably will not do it again. I simply am not completely comfortable with that kind of power in my hands, not with the anger that I sometimes feel, not with my alcoholism. I still believe that if there had been a loaded gun in the house on my last night of drinking, either I or my wife would be dead now. Maybe both, probably both. That means my pets would have been homeless, my daughter would not have been concieved. It means a nightmare too terrible for me to dwell on this fine spring morning.

    I did learn that most of the folks attending the Blogfest met via some ultraconservative chat room. Actually, I gather that when I said I was coming there was some active discussion of hey, should we tell him not to come? What if he doesn't feel welcome? What if there is a weekend of arguing and everybody leaves angry? I'm glad they didn't do that. Blogfest attendees, from my perspective, were decent people. I disagree with them - strongly - about political matters, but we have a deep love of writing and reading in general and that is a pretty potent set of common grounds. There was one person who I felt was an asshole, but one out of twenty some odd attendees is not bad; I simply either ignored him or tried to change the conversation to innocuous topics.

    We're talking about doing it again next year and I guess my challenge will be to find some pagans and some progressives to join in the festivities. It was good to see El Capitan, especially to meet his shock, gasp, Lady Friend, Kosher Red. She is a neat person and I hope something special develops between them.

    Unrelated to the blogfest, my prayers go out to the Walton family. Our friend, Winn has lost his father and that is very sad news indeed. His father was the last parent. It is somewhat unsettling to realize we have entered an age where we are not thinking about grandparents dying, rather we think about our parents dying.

    Hi-ho, hi-ho, it's off to work I go!