Monday, November 25, 2013

Precision, or the perfect shot...

I think I know what precision is... that is when you do everything in your power to make the bullet hit exactly where you told it to... Or you are building a home and the door fits and closes tightly - no cold wind, rain nor burglars may enter.

There is a life time of making one fit, to be part of a group, part of the culture, part of the norm and finding that one mate to spend one's life with - fitting perfectly, with precision...

To have order, to meet the schedule, to design a product for success, things must be exactly as... you do get the idea. The idea of government at some point is to make the world perfect, which is silly because until the human beings arrived it was perfect. God just didn't have anyone to admire it with Him. For those of you not comfortable acknowledging God I will move back to perfection by humans.

I went through the government public education system and earned or didn't earn but was awarded grades for my perfection or attempts at perfection or for my non-compliance with the teacher's idea of perfection. Then I went into the military and had to meet more time goals, standards and measurements and it really became a problem making all the pieces of my world work. Add the burden of leadership, a wonderful wife, a dog and a cat or two and suddenly it isn't all dress right dress.... which is military for being in perfect order, cause we said so. Life is never going to be precise, and love is a bit more irregular in life. You do understand that there will always be comfort in everything going according to the plan, the rules and the wants and desires of all those I love and myself. But... it will never be comfortable. Goldilocks found some too hot, some too cold and some just right. Luckily the best military planning has always been blocked by the efforts of the enemy, and first contact restarts the plan - react, adapt and overcome. That adaptation and knowing the commander's intent is how one wins.

So many times on my journey on the Appleseed Trail I have found less than perfection. Little irregularities add texture to the event, and every shooter has a life outside of the weekend rifle clinic. The shoot boss and the instructors even have lives outside the weekend. They all come together to promote safe marksmanship, reviewing the heritage of Lexington and Concord on April 19th, 1775. There is a Course of Instruction, there are objectives and standards, and then there are the shooters and the instructors, the weather, the warmth or lack of any,  Adapt and overcome, because making that precise shot, to hit the target perfectly is a constant struggle, to honor the heritage is to know that being awakened at one in the dark of almost morning does not mean by end of day you will still be hale and hearty, you might have gone to your maker.

Doctor Warren sent Revere and Dawes out to warn the sons of Liberty, Revere and Dawes didn't make it to Concord, young doctor Prescott did. He wasn't part of the plan. So when I am doing a shoot, and it isn't going exactly the way it should, we aren't grinding out AQTs, I have to know that answering a question, keeping everyone engaged and giving a tip to improve another's technique or use of the rifle they brought might be the start of something in posterity's future that will have made the difference.

It reminds me of the way, slowly, I changed what I took to the field in the military - this I find useful, this must go with me. So I will allow others to make determinations, what things they will take forward and use. I will just add some of my Shoot Boss stuff to my instructor needs, in case it will help a shoot and I have already ordered two timers for me - so if the watch doesn't work I will still be able to time events. Some stop watches have so many features and functions I will never have time to learn them - like a fully loaded AR, too much stuff, too complicating, and not that cost effective to making my shot.

So, instead of constant complaints and repairing of potholes, and other surface irregularities in my Appleseed trails and trials, I will consider it all texture to keep me awake and participating. Always hoping to catch the fire in another human for sharing the skills and our heritage to our posterity. Maybe my perfect shots will be made by those I met along the trials of Appleseed.


  1. Thank you for the time and effort you are putting in with Appleseed Earl!

  2. On my way to get my eyes checked, and probably a prescription for bifocals. You all know the reward of passing on the good stuff of our own lives to those just testing the waters, always worth the time and one's energy.