Sunday, May 29, 2016

Memorial Day II

Damn it

So, I just finished up my previous Memorial Day post about "My Buddy", clicked on Tamara's link, and saw that My Buddy Ray has died.

God damn it.

"My Buddy"

Once again, Memorial Day is not about those of us who made it home, it's about those who "Gave Their All."

It's never said so in the song, but the assumption from the day it was released is that it was for a friend who never made it back from "Over There."

Lyrics are found here.

I'd never heard this version before. It may be a bit of a change from what most expect from Jerry Jeff Walker, and I think my buddy George would have liked it. There was really no reason for us to hit it off as well as we did, other than a mutual interest in guns and hunting. And Science Fiction. And a shared distrust of authority, which I suppose seems odd to those who never served, in a couple of NCO's.

But we did, and I always had a couch to sleep on if I needed to get away from the barracks, even if I needed to drive 800 miles to do it. (Long weekends. Great things, but don't tell the Army I drove that far in a night...)

Like me, George served overseas several times, but never saw combat except for on TV.

Somewhere I read that a high percentage of military, police, and fire/rescue retirees die about a year after retirement. That was the case for George; one night he stood up and then hit the floor.

Pat, his wife, told me later that when she was filing for survivor  benefits the person from the VA took one look at his retirement physical and upgraded him retroactively to 100% disabled. She also told me that he kept getting a job, and then waking out when they told him he had to join a union. He figured if he joined a union that would mean two bosses, which was at least one too many.

Eventually I lost contact with Pat and her kids. She went her way, and put her life back together. This being before cell phones, the Internet, and social media, keeping in touch meant expensive long distance bills or actually writing a letter and mailing it, and the Army was keeping me pretty busy then; even when I moved back to within a hundred miles of where they were, I met the future Mrs. Drang and was otherwise occupied.

Speaking of upgrading George's disability, this is the other sing I usually play on Memorial and Veteran's Days:

Hey don't ya remember...?

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Upcoming Law of Self Defense Seminars

Andrew Branca sent an email today in which he posted the following scheduled Law of Self Defense Seminars:

Upcoming Law of Self Defense Seminars

As I've mentioned, I am preparing a major re-location from Massachusetts to Colorado within the next couple of months, and have blocked out most of the summer to allow for our move.  The pace really picks up again late summer and into the fall. As usual, all seminars are state-specific, with some covering just the state in which they are being held while others also cover adjoining states.

August 7:  Raleigh NC
August 13: OR & WA:  Portland OR
August 20: TN & KY: Nashville TN
September 10: Talladega AL
October 1: PA & NJ:  Philadelphia PA
October 15: Arizona NM
October 16: TX & NM: El Paso TX

We'll have plenty more seminars scheduled all over the country. Just click here to learn about seminars coming in YOUR state!
 As I said back in February of this year,
...I will wrap it up by saying that the experience was well worth the money, and it is highly recommended; if you cannot attend the appropriate session for your state, and are at all concerned about the legal aspects of self-defense, then you should at least read Andrew's book, and see about bringing him to your neck of the woods.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Earworm, 05/16/2016, Terminal Ballistics Edition

A comment elsewhere in a discussion of effective ammunition planted today's earworm in my head.

 I bet you can figure out what the comment said.

This extended cut video includes the original video, which was edited on MTV, with live concert shots.

That original video may be NSFW, so be warned.

One thing I didn't know until I was doing the usually-inadvisable reading of the comments is that the song "Twilight Zone" was inspired by the original Jason Bourne novel.

Also, I can confirm that the extended cut is an excellent driving song in the middle of the night when there are no others vehicles out there...

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Quintana Roo, April 2016

Another Mexican Photo Post, most of the pics are after the break. (All photos copyright D.W. Drang and the Cluemeter.)

So, all-inclusive resorts are pretty cool,the food was pretty good, just wander up to the beach bar and grab a mojito.  Or, you know, the staff comes by and brings you one in your cabana.

We were staying at a place just south of Puerto Morelos, which is between Cancun and Playa del Carmen. The Mesoamerican Barrier Reef (AKA the Great Mayan Reef) is just offshore; we were told repeatedly that Jacques Cousteau had called it the second best SCUBA Diving and snorkeling spot in the world.

We made plans to visit Chichen Itza, but the morning we were supposed to go we had some medical problems and so did not. Guess we'll have to go back. There are other Mayan sites as well. Didn't do any of those, either. Maybe if/when we go back...

"Look, honey, there's a cabana right outside our room!"
Turns out you can get sunburned while lying in your cabana drinking your mojito.

Oh, of course!

Of course the Cartoon Network runs an Archer marathon for Mother's Day!

Don't worry, I didn't turn it on until after I called Mom.

Also, Amazon says the flowers I ordered her are still in transit, but she says she received a bouquet that sounds like what I ordered, the same day.

Life just keeps getting better and better! 

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Newsflash! Treasury replaces founder of Democratic Party w/Black Female Republican Gun Owner!

So, Andy Jackson is out, or rather, off of the twenty dollar bill, to be replaced by Harriet Tubman.

Actually, Andy By God Jackson is moving to the reverse of the double sawbuck.

Apparently, the original plan was to replace Alexander Hamilton, but his place on the sawbuck was saved by a popular, successful musical I never heard of.

Doubt they'll use this picture...

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

New York Values!

Or: Some animals are more equal than others!

NYPD probe ensnares man offering to expedite gun permits - NY Daily News
A Brooklyn volunteer safety patrol member was charged Monday with bribing cops with $6,000 in cash and other goodies to expedite gun permit requests, and three officers were transferred out of the licensing unit as part of the far-reaching NYPD corruption probe.

Shaya (Alex) Lichtenstein, 44, was so cozy with cops in the License Division that he’d spent nearly every day inside the office in police headquarters since 2014, federal court papers say.
Mrs. Drang and I enjoy the TV show Castle, because Malcolm Reynolds is in it, after all, but I have to laugh every time Castle laments the fact that he can't get a gun permit...
The undercover then said he was nervous about getting involved in the scheme.

In response, Lichtenstein pulled out a calculator and estimated the officer could earn $900,000 if he helped with an estimated 150 permits.
He claimed all of his customers were eligible applicants and that he was merely asking the officers to speed up the process, the complaint shows.

But a review of his cases showed one applicant who was approved for gun permit in 2013 had a long criminal history, prosecutors said.
I know that a man named Jim March was bringing suit, or suits, in California because in the majority of the state, the way you got a carry permit was by making a large (four or five large, as it were...) donation to the county sheriff's reelection campaign.

Mr March's website does not seem to have been updated in over a decade, so I have no idea what his status is, although at least some counties are better about going shall-issue...)

This could get real festive: Sources: NYPD Corruption Probe Expands To Mayor’s Fundraising « CBS New York

See, the strongest argument against "may issue" (AKA "Local Option", AKA "Discretionary Licensing") is that whomever makes the decision gets to pick and choose, and even if that doesn't result in palms being greased to "expedite a friends request", it is inherently discriminatory. Which was part of Jim March's argument.