The Story Problem

Jim Wilson had a nice little post about the importance of stories in the gun world. The problem is, it’s hard to tell good stories about Gun Culture 2.0. The stories that come out of Gun Culture 2.0 tend to revolve around preventative incidents, such as the times where a life was saved because of a defensive gun use.

Those are good stories and they definitely need to be told, but the defensive/competition world has no equivalent (yet) to the good ol’ hunting story, where it’s you and your friends and family going out into nature and something Hemingway-esque* ensues, and the story winds up being told thru a sepia filter and read aloud in Sam Elliot’s voice.

Those are good stories of happy times, and they reinforce what I’ve been saying for awhile now, that the very best day possible in Gun Culture 1.0 is a day spent outdoors that culminates in harvesting one of God’s creatures.

The very best day possible in Gun Culture 2.0? Nothing happens. You live your life as you normally would, because Gun Culture 2.0 is mostly about avoiding injury and death and there is just not a lot of good stories to be told about going to WalMart and nothing happening. Yes, there is still the competition element to the new gun culture that has a slightly different “best day,” but we’ll pick that up at a later date.


* Just not in a “Short, Happy Life of Francis Macomber” sort of way.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. I think the (very rare) reality of “avoiding injury and death” scares people. The first question that needs to be settled by someone contemplating carrying a gun for self defense is “Are you willing to take a life to save your own or that of a love one?” And they have to honestly consider that; it’s not just bravado. (The second is “Are you prepared to spend years in court and go broke?”)

    I personally think competition is the way to spread Gun Culture 2.0. It’s highly social. It’s often outdoors. You get to shoot in interesting ways. You get to see, and talk about, lots of different guns. The hard part is getting past the fear of looking bad in front of others. But once that hurdle is over, and the first shot fired, people tend to forget that and realize no one cares. 🙂

    I recall one match years ago, after the first stage, I overheard a first timer call his wife and state, “I know where I am going to be the 1st Saturday of every month.” That’s what it’s about.

    1. Michael Bane and I have been going around and around on this… The problem is, the best you can do a stage is NOT go too fast and not screw up, because as Steve Anderson says, the sport is speed biased and negatively based.

      Setting up a narrative about “Ok, here’s the tough parts of this stage, now let’s watch how our competitors handle it” is the key, because without a challenge to overcome, there is no story to be told.

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