Catching Up.

I wrote a bunch of articles for Shooting Illustrated at the end of the year last year (something about writing articles that get clicks and not missing deadlines makes you popular with your editors. Go figure.).

Anyways, here’s some stuff for you to read in your free time.

A review of a thermal sight that clips onto your smartphone.

A review of the Streamlight Pro Tac 2 Rail Mount light (I *really* like this light. It’s probably the best value out there).

Choosing an angled foregrip (I was surprised by how much I liked the Mako grip).

Might be quiet here for a few weeks

Thanks to some hard work, a little luck and more than a little nepotism, a fantastic opportunity to bring a really, really cool product to market has opened up to me.
No, I am not quitting my day job, but yes, I will be very, very busy these next 120 days as I work with some very smart and talented people to help bring this idea to fruition.
To all my fellow gun owners and firearms trainers, all I can say is, prepare to have your mind blown.
Stay tuned.

I Got Rhythm, I Got Music.

But new content? Nope, don’t got that.

I accidentally published today’s post on Thursday night, so now you have to suffer.

To ease your pain, though, here’s Gene Kelly from “An American In Paris.”

I’ve said it before and I’ll say again: Women want their men to dance smoothly and elegantly like Fred Astaire, but men want to dance like Gene Kelly.

Pocket Change.

I’ve got a new article on the advantages and disadvantages of pocket pistols over at Lucky Gunner.

Go check it out. And I even managed to sneak in a musical reference in the title…

2016 In Review

Or, the year that everything changed, and nothing changed. I did really, really poorly on my shootey goals, but I did really, really well with other things.

I shot the fewest matches I’ve ever shot in one year, but I’m quite satisfied with almost every part of my pistol skill except my draw, and I’m working on that part every day.

Speaking of which, I’m on a regular dry-fire routine of ten to fifteen minutes of practice draws and trigger presses before I leave for work each day, and I’m doing at least a half-hour’s fast walking every night to get myself in some sort of shape other than “pear”.

While I haven’t been shooting much, my writing opportunities have really taken off. I’ve written a LOT for Shooting Illustrated and Ricochet, and I’ve added in the occasional article on Lucky Gunner as well.

Training-wise, the two-day class with Bob Vogel was well worth the money. If you’re looking for a class that will teach you pistol marksmanship, pure and simple, you’d be well served to take one of his classes.

SHOT Show was not in the cards this year, but NRA was, and it was wonderful to meet people like Andrew Branca, David Yamane and Tam for the first time and find out that they’re almost as nice in-person as they are online.

While I’m not working in the gun biz full time, my current job is one of the best I’ve ever had in my life, so I’m actually much, much happier than if I was slinging steel for a living. It was also nice to see some of my posts gain some traction inside the business, and I’m also working with a new startup developing a rather cool gadget for firearms training, but I can’t talk much about it right now.

Thank you, everyone, for coming by. I sincerely appreciate it, and have a happy and blessed New Year’s.

Ammo Buyer’s Club.

  1. Ammo at guns stores costs more, on average, than ammo at discount stores or shopping for ammo online. This is why gun stores rarely stock ammo, because unless they have a range associated with the store, the ammo just sits there, taking up space and (more importantly) capital that can be flipped to something else.
  2. People who go into gun stores to buy things rarely walk out with just that thing. TRUST me on this one.
  3. Gamification works.
  4. Dear Local Gun Store: 500 business cards cost you $20 on Vistaprint. Design something with your logo and address on one side (You DO have a logo, don’t you?) and 10 small boxes on the other side. Every time the customer buys ammo at a certain price point or more, they get a stamp. Get 10 stamps? Free ammo.

It’s called marketing. It’s not hard.

Breaking The NFA

I kinda like what my friend Dean is suggesting here, and it just might work, assuming that whoever Trump picks as Secretary of the Treasury has the cojones to put it into play.

When the Gun Control Act of 1968 was passed, the Congress concurrently passed a bill to allow an amnesty for people who had unregistered NFA items. No fingerprints or tax was required.  Fill out a paper form and send it in, and your NFA item was registered.  The initial amnesty was for 30 days in 1968, from October 2nd to November 1st. The law contained a provision for further amnesties at the discretion of the Secretary of the Treasury.

If the Democrats want to filibuster the Hearing Protection act, offer a 90 day amnesty on the registration of silencers for the NFA.  No tax, no fingerprints, just fill out a form and send it in.

Step 1: Make full-auto parts for AR-15s and other guns with a desktop CNC machine, turn you AR-15 “pistol” into a true short-barrelled rifle or build your own 80% suppressor
Step 2: Register those parts under amnesty
Step 3: Lather, rinse, repeat

I like it!

Take The Down Escalator.

My high school was not on the good side of town. We were not an athletic powerhouse, nor did I see a lot of luxury cars in the school parking lot. What I did see was a lot of low-level drug use and a bunch of losers who thought they’d lift themselves higher by putting other people down.

This was an… interesting environment for short skinny kid with glasses* to grow up in, and I soon learned that something other than fisticuffs was my key to survival in that environment. I learned to avoid the people who wanted to push others around, and when avoidance was impossible, I found that a little bit of humor and some quick thinking** prevented a beat down.

I figured out early on how to avoid the monkey dance, but in case you didn’t have the same (painful) experience growing up, Greg Ellifritz has a great article on why de-escalation is so important and he gives some excellent examples of soft words that turn away anger.


* Yes, I was a wimp growing up, and now I’m into guns. Figured that one out all by yourself, did ya, Sigmund?
** Never tell the starting left tackle on the football team that he should call himself a necrophiliac because that meant he loved to kill things. TRUST me on this.

This One Time, At Band Camp…

This was posted in a gun group that I belong to on Facebook.

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What’s interesting is that when people commented about him escalating the situation by “yelling out the car window” his response was “I normally do that, but this time, it happened in a school zone.”

Think about that for a second. You can follow the rules 99% of the time, but that one time you don’t, you almost have to shoot someone.

“I do it all the time, but this time, I didn’t” means, well, you DON’T do it ALL the time, you make exceptions.

Was there any reason not to de-escalate here? Was he in fear for his life?

The prosecution doesn’t care about the 99 times you did it right. They will convict you on the one time you did it wrong.

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