Monday, July 16, 2018

Redmond, WA. Appleseed!

  Seems I haven't been writing much here, but I am back from an Appleseed last weekend and want to share. GTEngineer has to make his third SBiT (Shoot Boss in Training) to get his Green Cap. Two instructors came all the way from Florida, Ken to do the Progress Check and demonstrate how to tell the Heritage. He had all that history memorized, to include quotes from Patrick Henry and Thomas Paine. A fine story teller. He also used the other visiting instructor, Lori, to demonstrate having worked with her before. They didn't really teach our instructors anything new, but it is nice to know that the East Coast knows we have Appleseeds in the West.

  Did I mention that we turned up the heat in honor of their visit? Well, we were above ninety both days, and no matter how much I thought I drank I was getting dehydrated. Two young folks came to learn with their family's support. They learned a lot. Many of the other shooters had heard about us or had been at an Appleseed on this range with us. Hugh was claiming he felt responsible with I tripped and messed my ankle up during the last event. Not true, I didn't lift my foot high enough. There were lots of fine optics on the rifles, I hope I didn't make it too obvious that I thought iron sights were better to learn with. We got the scopes dialed down and tried to keep the shooters from chasing their bullet holes.

  They listened and learned, shooting improved, shot groups became smaller, they started to use NPOA and Rifleman's cadence. One AQT on Saturday and many more on Sunday. Roy was our only lefthander, and he improved constantly. Three bolt action rifles but still their shooters kept pace. With lots of dry practice of all they were presented they will soon be ready for another Appleseed and earn their Rifleman patch. I hope I see them all on the trail in the future.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

AAR Douglas Ridge Rifle Club Applesseed, 9-10 June 2018

 Ten years on the trail with the Revolutionary War Veterans Association, and I am ten years younger than Samuel Whittemore, in 1775.  So up early pack out and drive down I-5 to the bypass around Portland. Exit 12. Get to the gate just as Flipper drives up and opens it and follow her inside. New face, ScubaSteve, instructor from Florida - a shivering instructor. Must be airborne infantry, pack light freeze at night, is their mantra.  Nat, Flipper, Janer, Bandaid and I will make up the crew, twenty-seven shooters are on the way. Did I forget to mention Owen? A sharp young man to help with the administration both days.
   Looks like two shooters per position, but the cover from sun and rain will be welcome. A couple of popups are erected on the left for overflow. In processing leads to presentation to safety steps (6 of them) and bringing the cased rifles to the line, clearing the line, posting Red Coat and the day is ready to happen. Nice bunch of shooters, very social but not too many to disrupt the flow of information and learning.

Stopped after a Redcoat for a group photograph, we don't seem to get enough of them but one has to stop and pose and you can't do that Quickly, quickly, quickly... So the instructor crew kept giving the shooters something to think about as they tried to do six simple steps for each shot, ten breaths of air, and the only rest the pause.......

Hope the shooters were inspired to practice, come again, and mastering the shooting to step up and help teach others about what they know very well about... to paraphrase Lord Percy.

Monday, May 28, 2018

How could we ever forget?

  it is good to remember the lives lost, to remember their smiles, laughter, jokes and their curses for the troubles and trials. Brings them back for just a bit. Some of us don't want to bring them back, because it takes us where we didn't want to be but were.

   favorite song of my military career 'Lay down my burden, down by the river side...' Always will be.
One of the graveyards beside a very old church had mulberry trees and giant oaks and maples, and quiet place to rest, some of the old head stones mentioned the Revolutionary War, too many the civil war service, quiet place to rest.


Thursday, May 24, 2018

Dreaming, why not?

  So my early morning dreams are strange, they are about me in the military again... which ain't gonna happen. But I am in uniform arrived at a new post and position still undetermined. I find a very different army awaiting me.
  The commander is a woman, the CSM is a tall long black woman, with more rockers and stripes than I remember for a battalion position. Everyone is troubled by my qualifications in their unit which doesn't need my set.  The strange thing they are really stretching to understand is my double 'c' identifier. The only thing I thought it could mean was Christian Conservative.
  Like I said, it was only a strange dream.

Had a wonderful small but effective Appleseed in Custer, Andy was Shootboss, Ralph was ITT and range host.  Six shooters, two bolts, two optics, and all interested in gaining knowledge and practice. I couldn't find a motel room, seems there was a dog show in the area and I didn't want to drive far away, so I slept in the Pacifica, and slept very well thank you.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Update... nothing much here...

  No, really, I just finished my follow up colonoscopy, three pulps removed and everything looked great - for a very olde fat man. Tomorrow: banking, visit storage locker for Appleseed this weekend, YMCA and clean up my mess. The mess seems to run from one end of my life to the other, wish me luck. The grandfather clock won't maintain movement, one other clock on the wall had quit but looked like a government agent knocked it off the wall and then put it back up beyond my wife's reach (only two of us in the home, except when secret agents visit with blank warrants).
   My lovely war game has produced big spenders with no idea of how to win friends and influence people. I blame stupid youth with credit cards on that, but since they have destroyed all my forces except my attacking force of bows behind swords and a large Royal guard, and defense siege engines, all I need to do is finish my daily tasks, solo events and add to the alliance events. I have two Warchief chests of rss, and more of Ronin loot in levels five to seven, six is often double, and seven often triple. I continue to build Paragon, research, city and lots of champion items wi

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Another call from the NRA... looking for money and support...

  As I wander Face book feed, I see over and over the NRA membership and contributions are swelling because of the pressure of the children for disarmament. Fine, President Obama was one of the biggest gun sellers around during his eight years in office. I have to acknowledge that there is a feeling of helplessness in not being able to stop crazy people with guns, I look at the crazy people, not the sane ones, and then I still look at all the sinners and the LOST that need God in their life. How do they not see Him everywhere?
   So there are two grave problems in America that much of those that get to make headlines and causes aren't getting safety nor good behavior from... All of us are part of the solutions and the healing and the lack of change for the better. Not one of us can be an observer and not be touched by the events and the continuing cries and oppression. People are doing things to change, not likely to change the people that are causing the troubles and problems, but they are making noise and moves.

   One of my problems with the NRA is that it has become a large power broker in the Swamp, they do lots of stuff for politics. Very much not enough for education of the masses, and promoting safe shooting sports. Shooters get what the NRA does and know they don't go around killing humans, ever. The ignorant masses aren't sure or very much are sure that without the NRA the 2nd Amendment would be repealed and government would control all the firearms and protect all the folks. Which doesn't happen in countries that have strict gun control, look at the people fleeing Central America and Mexico - where they have strict gun control, and gangs and governments prey upon the unarmed populations. For the benefit of those with power and money enough to buy great protection against the masses. Those powerful elites; government, gangs or just goofballs, have all the weapons and warriors they need and ignorant fears of the unknown or badly portrayed in media, news and entertainment will continue to keep the masses unprotected and exploited.

   I guess in the end, I will continue to do the little I can - in discussing, training, helping and educating all those that don't believe as I do, see what I see and get off my chair and away from the mindless media stream. I mean, we do live in a world that the women aren't that beautiful, available and wanton. I do thank God for the really beautiful, nice and loving women that are never portrayed in the fantasy lands of our culture.  It is exactly the same with the news (about what to fear now) or the entertainment media as Costner kills hundreds in Paris (could never happen that way).

   Oh, I did submit my ten entries to the Sweepstakes for those rifles and NRA truck, one time. But I never seem to win those things, although I won one going between countries on assignments. It was an answering machine for the old telephone systems, but I did win something once upon a time.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Protesting everywhere for and against firearms, I answer the call of Appleseed...

 Lovely looking weekend, I rise early and drive to the ferry and head for Clinton and then Coupeville on Whidbey Island. The range gate is locked when I get there, but I am early and need to rearrange my load and garb.  I remember many fine Appleseeds right here in the previous years. The crew shows up with a call from the Shootboss that he is going around the highway and bridge maintenance improvements and will be a bit late. Andy, Franklin and I carry on. I do the prehistory, what happened before April 19, 1775.  I don't notice but all the younger folks look like they have seen me before, and they have! The Shootboss and his two sons show up about nine oh nine, not very late at all. So day one starts.
    I notice all weekend that Total Participation is lacking, no one wants to be part of a chorus, they think everyone else has a better answer? Disappointing that, I must work on my choir director skill set, which I don't remember ever having. As we shoot through the morning learning steady hold factors and the six steps in taking the shot, it seems slow. Cole is having trouble using a red dot to get his rounds on paper - never having used one, I look through his sight, left handed and see that to me the sight is way off high left, to me. So we give him a large blank paper to try and put rounds into for a group. Helps a bit.  Groups start coming together and adjustments are made as we introduce instruction on the next basic building block of marksmanship.
   Lunch and a working one where the First Strike of the match is told, then the second. We have so much history to present, but limit it to no more than forty minutes total. Our reference of Paul Revere's Ride by David Hackett Fisher is highly recommended, I had dragged my mobile library out for show and tell. One teacher wanted to get the title and author of the 23d Welsh Fusileers, the English unit that was in the Revolutionary war from Lexington to Yorktown. Interesting reading.
  After lunch we prepare to shoot the Honor Volley for the fallen of Lexington and Concord, noting that across the nation other Applesseeds are joining us in the Rememberance Volley, I think Andy recorded it, I was noticing as I read the family names where more than one died. Tough times to stand against the Crown and Parliament, and your loyalist neighbors.
   Afternoon and more positions, and instruction on marksmanship and target engagement. We are beginning to know the shooters and work on some of their challenges. Still not enough Total participation. The wind seems to wear us out a bit. But it is more that we aren't drinking enough water and are losing the concentration we should have. I notice a hawk flying above and suddenly his tail feathers blaze out in a brilliant red when hit by the Sun, ah, that is why they are called Redtailed Hawks. Franklin, who grew up on the island, mentions knowing this for a long time.  All the adjustments and the instructions are beginning to show improvement in the shooting and groups. The Third Strike of the Match is presented to get Lord Percy's rescue party and Col Smith back to safety and the siege of Boston by irate militiamen. One Appleseed Qualification Test and a Redcoat and we clean up the range to prepare for tomorrow.
    Good food, good instructors dinner, and great rest for the night.

Day two, begin it all over again, refresh and review, safety and get the cased rifles to the line. There are three AQTs shot in the morning before lunch with dangerous old men stories. Andy adds two stories about ladies of the Revolution, and I want to talk about the two sharpshooters in Boonesboro during the Shawnee Mingo attacks but that is a bit far from Boston but really in the same period of history.

  Afternoon shooting was mostly some drills to confirm zeroing and shrink group size. Trying to find the key, each shooter has different challenges and we do cover Known Distance as the Sun beats down. Lovely day, but winterized Washingtonians forget about sunscreen until it is too late. So final AQT and Redcoat and case rifles and clean up, pretty happy group of folks, shooting in the sunshine will do that. Sent everyone home hopefully looking forward to do it all again, after much dry practice. Since lots of people had come to the island for the weekend, the afternoon ferries were packed and long lines of waiting vehicles on the shoulder.
    Need to unpack the car, check the internet and have dinner and more sleep. Can't find my camera, but it did get home with my other stuff.