Saturday, July 30, 2011

Appleseed Shoot Day One...

Let me just say, it was a lot of fun, but there was some pain too. It was hot, about 93 degrees. There was no shade unless you brought your own as some folks did in the form of patio canopies or beach umbrellas. Live and learn, we brought neither. I sort of had hoped for an overhang at the range but should have known better having been to this one years ago and seeing it was little more than its nickname - the sandpits - implies. So, both Brendan and I got some sunburn. Him worse than me despite him using more sunscreen than me.

As if sunburn was not enough in the burn department, I took about 5 of Brendan's very hot shell casings against my skin. Those 5 were the ones that left blisters. The other 5 or 6, I was able to get off of me before they burned me. One of really hot ones that went down my shirt at the shoulder left a blister, then left a nice colorful red trail where it rolled down the front of my shoulder area once I managed to get it off of the area around my collarbone/lower neck. I also suffered additional pain in my back, hips, knees and shoulders and neck. I have arthritis and bursitis and it is to be expected.

Brendan is young but yet tonight he is now complaining of being stiff and achy too. He just told me, he is not going back for day 2 of this Appleseed Shoot. He says it is not because of his aches but because of his sunburn. That is understandable but is also a big downer for my psyche. I will miss him there tomorrow as I still intend to attend. The youth of today, I cannot explain it. Actually, I do not blame him what with his sunburn; another day like today would probably roast him but it is a disappointment to me that he will not be there with me.

I will talk more about the actual shoot in a later post. That’s it for now, I am going to enjoy a St. Pauli Girl bier, then hit the hay. I still have not cleaned my rifle and have to get up early to make sure I get it done in the morning before the shoot.

All the best,
Glenn B

Friday, July 29, 2011

Hatching Hermann's Tortoise

I only have two eggs left, out of 8 laid by my female Hermann's Tortoise in two clutches of 4 eggs each. The clutches were laid about 2 weeks apart and I expected the egg from the first clutch to hatch next week or the week after. Surprisingly, the only one that was actually fertile from the first clutch hatched this evening. I am pretty happy to see it made it all the way to hatching since that particular egg had a crack running around it for about 3/4 of its widest circumference. Luckily the inner membrane was apparently never torn and the baby seems to have developed okay.


Hermann's Tortoise,
hatching on July 29, 2011.
Click image to enlarge it.
The new tortoise hatchling is still partly in the shell and probably will not be all the way out for a day or two since it still has a good sized egg yolk attached. The big piece of egg shell, near the upper left of the photo, was already completely separated from the rest of the shell, so I put it to the side to be able to get the shot. I will leave it be for at least a couple of days before checking again, although I suppose I'll have to show my wife and kids sooner than later. With that written Brendan just came home and I showed it to him for a few moments. As for Linda & Celina, they may have to wait until Sunday.

With the tortoise back in the incubator, it is time to make sure we have everything ready for the Appleseed Shoot tomorrow.

All the best,
Glenn B

Visited My Mom Today...

...and have to say it was one heck of a visit if only just over an hour long. She is in a rehab center, after a fall, trying to get to the point where she can walk well enough to get her back to her assisted living apartment. When I got there, she was in the physical therapy room, sound asleep, sitting in a wheel chair. I woke her and she immediately put her head back down and was again out like a light. So, I woke her again and the second time she woke I got a big happy smile. She knew me by name, only forgot that once - she has pretty bad dementia. We got to talking a bit and the therapist came over, got her up, and had her walk to her room with her walker - unassisted. I guess that was a walk of about 40 yards. She made it all the way, though I think she was hoping to go back to sleep or just relax after the first few feet. Then she got to showing off for me and that gave her the impetus to carry on.


Once we got to her room, she was sat back into the wheelchair and I gave her a ride to the beach, about 1/4 to 1/3 of a mile from her place, maybe even 1/2 mile. Not far and an easy walk for me, easy for her too since she was riding in the chair. We chatted about this that and everything along the way. Once we got there, we sat and talked a bit more. She asked me, several times, who was I, not by name, but meaning who was I in relation to her. She was surprised each time to hear I was her son. She called me her brother when the therapist had her walk down the hall, called me her husband when I was walking her along, and as I said kept asking me what I was to her. A couple of times she asked me how was Linda (my wife) and did so by name, then said, "That is your wife, right". Then she asked if I had children and if they were well behaved. My kids are 26 and 21. She asked if my daughter was going to get married soon - pretty good she remembered she was not married and also asked how my son was doing and if he had a girlfriend yet. As far as I know he is between girlfriends so she got that right too. Then she said too bad she had never married meaning herself. When I told her she had been married twice she was really surprised. She asked me to whom and I told her.


After a few minutes at the beach, I called my sister on my cell phone and put my mom on, reminding her to say happy birthday to my sister. She then sang the whole Happy Birthday To You song to her. She did not miss a word. After that she went into some things in my sister's and brother-in-law's personal lives that I will not go into here. Pretty sharp. We headed back to the rehab center after only about 20 minutes at the beach, a small town beach with a bath house, and we were under the overhang of that, on a concrete walkway only a few feet from the sand and maybe 50 feet from the water's edge. As we walked back she started to talk about her second husband, saying it was too bad he did not listen to her and that he went off to war. I asked what that was about and she said he was killed in combat. When I told her he passed away about 29 years ago or so, she was again surprised. She was also surprised o find out again, that they had been married. Then she remembered how nice he had been to her. They were sweethearts. Her memory is strong on some points and no there on others, then sharp as a razor's edge, then just about blank.


Once inside, we went to the cafe and each enjoyed a candy bar. We talked some more and she asked who had been my father and if he had been nice. I did not go it o it much except to tell her he had been her first husband and that he was...well I don't need to say much more than I did to her, that he had been useless and he had died about a year and a half ago. I surely did not need to stir up any memories of him for her because none of them would be good for her, I am sure of that. So I changed the subject. Not long after that I had to say goodbye. I told her I would try to see her again tomorrow evening or Sunday. I am figuring that if Brendan and I get out of the Appleseed Shoot early enough, we can both stop by for awhile to visit with her.

Sometimes I have a hard time and mixed emotions about visiting her. That too is based on personal issues but I go anyway whenever I can get the time. Sometimes I have to make the time. Lately she has been pretty easy going, she is in a less angry state than she had been for the first stages of the dementia when she was paranoid about this, that and everything so it has been easier for me.  When she does get into a tizzy of misbehaving (for want of a better way to describe it) on her part, I just try to put up with it. If it is really bad, I may have to leave and come back another day. As I said though, she has been on her best behavior lately and it has made for some very nice visits. It is hard to see her like this at all, so any little thing that helps is good. I can tell you she certainly appreciates my visits, in the here and now mode, even if she does not remember them almost as soon as I leave. It is nice to see her happy and smiling.

Not much point in me writing about all of this except to talk about my mom and our time together. Oh, maybe there is one other thing: to say to those of you, with relatives in like circumstances, that they sure could use a visit as often as you can get to them. No matter how they act, they probably appreciate it in some corner of their minds. Even when my mom was in angry stages of her dementia, I know she was happy to have visitors and it saddened her when it was time to part.

All the best,
GB

Thursday, July 28, 2011

His Wit - Just One Thing To Miss About Ronald Reagan


He truly was a great man and it was my honor to serve our nation under him. Nowadays, I almost cannot wait to retire. While it is still an honor to serve my country, I sometimes find it difficult because of the direction in which we have been steered. Thus, even though I am going to go out this December, there have been quite a few times, especially this year but also over the whole period since January 2009, that I have been so embarrassed to be a federal employee that I have almost gone out earlier than I had planned.

All the best,
Glenn B

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

John McCain RINO and Leftist Extraordinaire

How it is that the people of Arizona, one of my favorite states, keep voting John McCain into office, as a Republican, is beyond me. At best he is a RINO. At worst a shill for the left. At almost every turn, he shows again and again his truly leftist colors. His statements today about the Tea Party, the national debt, and the debt ceiling all go to show such. It appears he has become little more than an arsekisser of President Obama.


All the best,
Glenn B

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Yikes - Its Midway Through The Summer - Check Your Guns For Rust...

...and check your gun and ammo lockers to make sure your desiccant is up to snuff or that your electric drying rods are working properly. It has been a hit summer up my way with the recent heat wave and has been hotter out in the Midwest for longer than up here. The difference is that while in my area it has not rained much and humidity has not been too bad. Still though, it is summer and the humidity is higher than in winter around here but out in the Midwest the humidity has been at killer levels. That is at least at metal finish killer levels, what with all the flooding they had in the spring. he left over water combined with the recent heat wave must have been like a sauna. I imagine it is normally like that in many places down south too and out in the NW (maybe not as hot but the humidity is up in the warmer weather there too - isn't it). What I am getting at is that now is a good time to make sure the desiccant has been doing its job and that none of your firearms have been rusting, not even a little bit. It is also a good time to take out all of your guns and wipe them down and give them a protective coating of oil, a very fine and light coating.

All the best,
Glenn B

Monday, July 25, 2011

I Am Considering Picking Up The Gun Digest Book Of Concealed Carry

I have been considering picking up and reading a copy of The Gun Digest Book of Concealed Carry by Massad Ayoob. I have never been a major fan or major detractor of Massad Ayoob and have never read one of his books in is entirety, though I have read magazine articles and excerpts from books by him. I have thought of him mostly as a part time time book writer, a part time firearms instructor, part time expert witness, and part time police officer. I am not saying there is anything wrong with what he does or his methods, then again I am not saying they are all right. As to the methods he teaches some probably are excellent some probably run of the mill and others probably controversial. I just never fell in as one of his many acolytes much the same as I am not a disciple of Col. Jeff Cooper.

I have gotten most of my training from instructors on my job or through other LE agencies and the NRA, from other civilian instructors, from hunter safety instructors, from trainers of unarmed defensive tactics, from other shooters, from hunters, or even at summer camp may, many, many moons ago. Much of what I have learned were the products of shootists, the names some of whom you may know and some others probably not, like Corbett, Sykes, Fairbairn, Applegate, Jordan, Weaver, Capstick, Cirillo, Hampton and Milla -  some of it taught to me in person, some second hand, some from books. I also have learned a lot about shooting out of the innovation of street officers and even some good part of it from summer-camp counselors (and rifle instructors) such as Brother Louis Richard (RIP). Sure, some of the things I have learned were thought up by Ayoob or Cooper, others were thought up long before either was born and others after they were born but independent of them. Regardless of who thinks it up or who distributes it to us, I can always utilize useful information about safe sport and safe tactical shooting. I have a lot of room in the data base among my little gray cells and yes that could include information supplied by Ayoob. So, yes, I may get this book since it has been recommended by someone I trust.

That said though, I feel almost obliged to make comment on book’s cover photograph. In doing so, I am not judging the book by its cover as much as I am judging the author, or at least the person responsible for using that picture. I am guessing Mr. Ayoob may have had some say in the cover photo. If he actually did have some say then, allow me to comment, I am not really as amazed as most folks probably should be - that if only because I am the penultimate cynic and skeptic. Think about this: How is it, except to sell books with a cool looking front cover, that anyone who knew about firearms and firearms safety, would depict a photo of what appears to be a cross draw from a shoulder holster or jacket holster and the person drawing the weapon is seemingly covering his off hand or arm with the muzzle? I think that is maybe not the best picture to have on the front cover but that is just my opinion. That pic is just one example of a reason I do not usually just buy into everything these guys say. It is also an example of why I do not drop down on my knees and bow to praise them and all their methods. I am just way too skeptical to buy into their methods as being the best, or the ultimate, or as infallible, or as the next best set of rules since the 10 Commandments, when I see them presenting their stuff accompanied by things like that photo when I think it is being used for cool factor to sell a book. There is a reason that cross draw holsters are forbidden at most ranges and during most LEO qualifications and training and it is not just that during the draw you often cover yourself. Whomever wanted to put out a book on concealed carry should also have known it and then should have used, in my opinion, another picture.

As I said above though, regardless of the front cover pic, I may have to pick up that book, at least if I can find it at a considerable discount at Borders (and I had best wait until they get down around 40% off since B&N has it at 36% off right now). I have heard it is supposed to be a decent book with good content and that it is an enjoyable read. Who knows, I may just read something that may save my life. As long as I do not shoot myself on the draw in a gunfight - when I quite possibly may not remember to keep my finger off the trigger while drawing due to nerves, or anxiety caused by overwhelmed things like bullets whizzing by my head, a bad guy shouting he is gunna kill me, the shit coming my way out of the fan, and the pucker factor failing me - I may turn out the winner.

All the best,
Glenn B

Sunday, July 24, 2011

RANGE DAY :) in Anticipation of Appleseed Shoot

Went to the indoor range today to try to pick my rifle for the Appleseed shoot next weekend. I brought along my Romania WASR AK-47, the Yugoslavian M24/47 Mauser and a Mosin Nagant 91/30. I have to say that I shot best, by far, with the AK-47. I think I may have to go with it and use my supply of Silver Bear 7.62x39 SP ammo with it. I would like to have taken along my Yugoslavian M24/47 Mauser but I am shot on ammo for it and don't have the cash right now to buy the required 400 rounds. So it looks like it will be the AK. I may bring along a Mosin Nagant 91/30 as an alternate. Now to find a sling for the AK before next weekend.

All the best,
Glenn B

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Norway - Christian Extremist Arrested & Confesses

Does not surprise me that it evidently was another extremist kook who went on a killing spree yesterday in Norway. It does not matter if it was a Christian or Muslim or Hindu or Jewish religious extremist or an extremist atheist maybe such as some of those assholes from Greenpeace or those scumbags from Alf or Elf. Extremists are friggin crazy no matter how you look at it. They, by far, cause more trouble in the world than moderates and I believe they will continue to be the troublemakers as long as we endure them.

I have to wonder though how he was able to kill 85 people at the camp, that is without anyone realizing that they needed to try to stop him instead of just trying to flee him, but then it was in Norway where they thought they were living in Paradise. Welcome to the real world; such is the world in which we live. You need to realize you are not immune to violence and you should be ready to defend against it. I am sorry it happened and I offer my condolences to those who lost loved ones. Hopefully Norway is going to take steps to prevent it happening again, steps to assure the guilty, in these horrific killings, are executed.

All the best,
GB

Today's BBQ - It Was Hot and I Was One Hot & Svetee BBQ Chef

The family just gone done eating about 30 minutes ago. As I expected, we had a barbecue. My wife made a cucumber salad, out of cukes I picked this morning, and she also made curry spiced cooscoos (I know that is not how it is spelled) and asparagus and some really good baked appetizer out of sliced Japanese Eggplant  with cheese, tomato and basil atop it (the eggplant, tomato and basil from our garden - picked today). I grilled the lamb chops on the BBQ. Now, despite it being about 97 or more degrees when I fired up the grill, I did not mind the heat much. I did not even much mind the hair on my knuckles burning off regardless of the fact I was using a very long BBQ fork to turn the chops. Nor did I mind my face broiling. I was happy to anticipate such a good meal and was more than willing to cook it. I was even looking forward to the single Habanero and 3 Jalapeno peppers I placed on the upper grill shelf. No, it was not at all cool and I was ever mindful of the heat but not bothered by any of it as I blissfully grilled away. Even the fact that a large bottle of Ommegang Abbey Style Ale (Dubel Ale) was not keeping me all that cool did not matter. Even though it was icy cold, and I do mean icy, when I popped the cork on it and still was not doing the job - I did not care. The fact that it is 9 or 9.5% alcohol yet had almost no effect on the rate at which I was perspiring was okay; in fact maybe it had an effect on my attitude and made me not mind the sweltering furnace in which I was standing while BBQing. As it was, I figured that quickly enough, I soon would be in the dining room, with my wife, daughter and son, right in the swoosh of the flow of the air conditioner - chilling and enjoying a fine meal.

Then my son came outside with paper towels and Windex and said he was going to clean the table top, on the patio set, so we could eat outside. I asked why we were not going to eat inside and he said 'mom wants to eat outside'. She who must be obeyed adored had spoken! I grumbled, cursed under my breath and said someone was crazy but I cleaned off the table and had him bring some things into the house that I wound up not needing. About 5 minutes after the table was clean, most of the chops were done, and for once everything and everyone was already set up at the table ready to go. The 3 others were seated minutes before me. They were already staring on the chops, the ones that were done by the time as I sweltered at the grill. After a few more minutes of getting seared, I sat down. I said to my wife that I would not have believed, in a million years, that we would eat outside today. She said something like, 'oh it's pretty cold inside from the AC'!

Well, darn it, isn't that why I pay the summertime electric bills - for some chillin' inside when it is hot as hell outside. I said okay, we can eat out here; I had pretty much figured that was what I had to say before saying it but still I had to say something about not eating inside in the coolness of the AC.

A little while later my daughter said something about how hot it was. I think that was right after I bit into about 1/3 of a Habanero Pepper and started to verbally howl because it was a might bit hotter than the first one I had gotten out of the garden 2 weeks ago. Wow was it hot! My son ragged me for eating it after I had just finished complaining about the heat. Right about then, my wife just said she figured it was about 85 degrees or so.  I was hot and it wasn't just from the pepper. So, I said I figured it had to be about 95 to 99 degrees at that moment and also mentioned I was pretty svetee. I showed her the front of my shirt, it was pretty damp. She agreed that the next time we had a BBQ on such a hot day, maybe we would eat inside. I just gave each of the dogs a lamb bone. That was over an hour or more ago.

When dinner was over, and we were cleaning up, about 30 minutes ago, I happened to notice the seat back of the chair in which I had been sitting. It was soaked where my back had leaned on it. Not one of the 3 other chairs even showed a hit of moisture on them. I showed it too my wife and kids who had ribbed me for saying it was so hot. They always think I exaggerate, but saw it was not so this time. The wife agreed, no maybes, next time it is this hot, we eat inside, where it is cold!

Now, when I just sat down and went online, I checked the weather. The temperature, here where we live, was shown as 95.9 degree Fahrenheit at 1815 (6:15PM). It was probably a degree or two hotter than that when I had complained about being hot and when my wife figured it was 85! We really do have a good AC. I guess she still had not thawed out when she thought that the temp was 85, no wonder she thought it was fairly cool out. Next time I decide to BBQ in heat like that, I will need to have at least a very tall and icy cold Vodka and lemonade (on the medium to weak side) inside of me before I even start and another at hand for while I cook. The beer just did not cut it today, maybe because an Ommegang Ale is almost a meal onto itself and is a beer  much prefer in the fall or wintertime than on a really hot day in the summer. Still though, it had to have helped, I probably would have quit half way through grilling the chops if I had not had an icy cold alcoholic beverage (not really by I like acting a bit like Dean Martin in that respect although I really do drink when I say I do, he just acted.

Well, anyway, we had a nice meal and a really nice time together. We don't do family things often, maybe we eat together once or twice per week, and when it is nice all I can say it is hard to beat. Another thing that is hard to beat is this recent heatwave here in the greater NYC area. Yeah, I know, plenty of places get hotter and it lasts longer, heck I lived in Calexico, CA for 4 years believe me I know, but it is just radical up here for it to be as hot as it has been the last few days, especially as hot as it was yesterday at 106 degrees, only 2 degrees off of the area's all time high, and Newark, NJ had its all time high of 108. Hotter than Hades and it is not a dry heat at that. The heat index had it at 115 yesterday! That is all okay, I am in the man-cave now, with the AC set at an almost sultry 72 degrees and I am almost chilly. All in all, it has been a good day, it does not get much better than this and now I am going to have that lemonade with just a wee bit of vodka in it; I need to chill.

All the best,
GB

Friday, July 22, 2011

Appleseed Shoot + Which Rifle To Bring = Decisions, Decisions Decisions..................

I am stumped. I do not know which rifle to bring to the Appleseed shoot next weekend. I am really stumped.I could bring either of my Russian Mosin Nagant 91/30's, or my Hungarian Mosin Nagant M44, or my Yugoslavian M24/47 8mm Mauser, or my Yugoslavian SKS, or, I suppose, even my Romanian WASR AK-47. I have ammo for the Nagants, and for the SKS or the AK but not for the M24/47 (not enough since I need 400 rounds). I need to adjust the sights on all of them but think my best shooter is either one of the Nagant 91/30s or the Yugo M24/47 Mauser. Having to make up my mind is becoming a real pain in the ass headache. Maybe I should order some 8mm ammo and if it gets here on time, I can just do a coin toss to select which weapon I will bring along. Of course, on the first day, I may bring my Remington 513T-Matchmaster in 22LR (they say that is a good way to save on more expensive larger caliber ammo, then bring the larger caliber rifle on day two). Decisions, decisions, decisions.......

All the best,
Glenn B

Two Disparate Cases of Police Stopping Folks Legally Carrying A Firearm

Watch the videos below. The first is a long one but well worth watching all of it so you see most of what went on during the stop of a person who was apparently legally carrying a concealed firearm. Whether or not the suspect actually was or was not soliciting a prostitute does not give the officers, in my opinion, any reason, right or excuse to act as they acted. It would have given them the right to arrest him and to seize the weapon in a professional manner but that is probably a mute point as the person they believed was a prostitute was run off by the officers and not arrested or charged.

That I believe the officers did not have a right to act as they did especially applies to the officer who rages on and on and on but it definitely applies to both. In my almost 32 years as an LEO, that has to rank, in my opinion, among the top 10  3 worst stops I have ever witnessed as far as suspect control or lack of it went, as far as officer mindset went, as far as the officers placing themselves in jeopardy went, and as far as an officer being unprofessional went. All that, let alone, possible crimes, torts and right violations committed by the officers and it was one big mess.

After you have watched the first video, click on the second and watch it. It is much shorter in length. The officer in it is of a very different mindset that the officers in the first video. The disparity is significant and the officer in the first video would have done himself well had he learned to be a bit more like the one in the second video, or so is my opinion, and that goes regardless of the either officers' personal feelings about civilians carrying firearms.







So, what do you think? I think that the officer(s) in the first video will soon be fired (at least one may even wind up being charged criminally), the suspect will be exonerated of any and all charges, and that he will wind up fairly rich after a successful lawsuit against Canton, OH or at least against its police department. That, of course, is just my guess. I also think the officer in the second video will have a long and great career in his police department and that he will be a credit to that department. Since it is a crazy world in which we live, I will not be betting my house on any of my predictions for either the first two officers or the one in the second video. I will wish that officer, the one in the second video, a long, safe, and prosperous career; he seems a true professional.

In closing let me ask you to do one more thing: Just imagine how the cop in the first video would have reacted had he found out his armed citizen had been making a video tape of the stop! I shudder to think of the consequences.

All the best,
Glenn B

Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Corn Snake Eggs Are Hatching

When was it, May 27th I think, that my newly acquired Okeetee Female Corn (bred to a reverse Okeetee male corn snake) Snake decided to lay a clutch of eggs rather unexpectedly. I knew she was gravid but figured her for at least another week or two before laying. Luckily, my son, Brendan saw she had laid eggs and we set up an incubator and got the eggs in there quickly. More on all that here.

Tonight, when I got home from work, I checked the incubator, and there were a couple of baby corn snakes atop the medium in the incubation chamber. A little bit of looking inside the container revealed another 4 of them in there. Two are one phase or another of albino and the other 4 are more normal looking. Only time will tell (well a corn snake expert might also be able to tell) how they will turn out as adults. The colors of baby corn snakes can change markedly from when they hatch until they grow into older juvenile snakes by which point they usually have acquired their adult coloration. For now, and until they have their first sloughing (shed), I will keep the baby corn snakes in the incubator where it remains warm and slightly damp. That dampness will help them with the shed. After the shed, I will offer them their first meal of pinkie mice. Hopefully each one will feed right away, again, time will tell. Pics of the baby snakes will be put up in a later post.

You may remember I also had 2 clutches of Hermann's Tortoise eggs in the incubator. I had been doubtful that any would be fertile and I was partially correct. Out of two clutches of 4 eggs each,  only 1 egg from each clutch was fertile. I now have 2 eggs that are fertile. One has a hairline crack about 3/4 the way around the longer part of the oblong egg shape. It is still alive and hopefully doing well. I took a thing strip pf duct tape and put it over the crack, hopefully that will prevent it from cracking any further and will keep out any nasty germs or other things like mould or fungus that would destroy the embryo. The other egg looks good all around. Come mid or late August I should know if the 1 from the first clutch will hatch and the other is due to hatch about 2 weeks after the first one. If I am really lucky, then the female tort will have also laid another clutch somewhere in my backyard and I ill find babies crawling around before they escape the yard. I kind of doubt though that she laid a third clutch.

All the best,
GB

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Top 5 Most Popular Guns - and Why (an opinionated review)

Here is a link to an interesting online article that attempts to definitively say which are the 5 most popular guns and why they are such. The thing is, while interesting reading, with lots of references, the article fails to definitively say why the ones mentioned are the most popular. It even failed to convince me that the ones mentioned are the most popular although I will admit that I know at least 5 of them to be quite popular among buyers in the commercial retail market. I think that the author(s) of the article has confused things a bit by saying - yes this specific firearm is one of the most popular and here are the facts and figures on this one to prove it - then goes onto say - well this other one is among the most popular because a lot of them have been sold. There is a difference between those two methods of saying one is such and the other is such. Look at the Remington and then the Thompson for examples respective to how I just said it above, with the Remington they give hard cold facts as to how many were produced and sold but with the Thompson they say: "Many hunters and sportsmen consider its Encore 209x.50 Magnum to be the most versatile muzzleloader available today" but they never quote any manufacturing or sales bottom line figures. Heck they do not even say most, they use the word "many" to vaguely describe how many people find them, not popular, but versatile!  Even with the Remington, they do not definitively say it has sold more than any other models just that 10 million of them have wound up in the hands of firearms owners (Wow, 10,000,000!). Seems they forgot right off they were supposed to be telling us why the firearms listed were shown as the most popular!

I think that maybe they just should have given the article another name like '5 Very Popular Firearms and Why'. Yet, I will admit, it would be one heck of a difficult assignment to write up the 5 most popular firearms of all time especially when trying to definitively explain such to a skeptic and cynic like me. As I said though, it is an interesting and good read and well worth the brief amount of time it takes to read it.

All the best,
GB
Reference: http://science.howstuffworks.com/5-most-popular-guns.htm

Monday, July 18, 2011

Project Veritas Strikes Again - Possible Conspiracy To Defraud Medicaid Uncovered

Hat tip to Target Rich Environment, where I was treated to seeing the following ProjectVeritas.com video by James O'Keefe. Target Rich Environment found it at the Daily Caller here. You may remember a previous video by him about ACORN; the video that brought them down.

This one below reportedly deals with Medicaid and seemingly with state workers(?) or Medicaid workers(?) in Ohio who apparently help people get benefits or should I say who seemingly (my opinion) help people defraud the U.S. Government and the state of Ohio, and waste tax payers' money, in a most despicable way. You decide which it is, I just strongly recommend that you watch the entire video.



All the best,
Glenn B

Quote Of The Day...

...or maybe of the year decade. I don't know who said it, got it in an email tonight, but it is great:

“Fathom the hypocrisy of a Government that requires every citizen to prove they are insured……but not everyone must prove they are a citizen”

Think about it when you vote in the next few sets of elections, especially in the presidential election in 2012 and in any Congressional elections.

All the best,
Glenn B

Project Appleseed Here We Come

Both Brendan and I are signed up for the Project Appleseed rifle marksmanship program at Calverton, NY at the end of this month. It is run by the Revolutionary War Veterans' Association.

I imagine Brendan will be shooting one of his AR-15s. Me, I will probably go with either a Mosin Nagant 91/30 or my Yugoslavian M24/47 Mauser. We both need to pick up slings for each of our rifles for this event. If I understand right, a lot of shooting at this event is done from the prone position using a sling. I have not fired from the prone position, with a rifle, for a couple of years or more. I don't think Brendan has ever fired prone. Most ranges around here do not allow it. The range at Calverton maybe normally does allow prone shooting, I don't know for sure because we always go to other ranges than that one. Regardless of their normal policy, they will apparently be allowing it for this shoot. I will have to relearn shooting from prone and Brendan will learn it fresh. It will be a learning experience for both of us. We are both looking forward to it very much.

More on this in later posts.

All the best,
Glenn B

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Today In History - Hail Wrong Way Corrigan: A Man With Brass Balls, Flying Know How and Maybe A Great Sense of Direction!

It was pea soup thick foggy day at Brooklyn, New York's Floyd Bennett Field, on July 17, 1938, when an accomplished airplane pilot and aircraft engineer/mechanic took to the air in what was officially to be a flight from NYC to Los Angeles. The pilot, Douglas Corrigan, was told by airport authorities to take off in any direction except west because of buildings adjacent to the airstrip in that direction, the building in which the airport manage was located. That man wished Corrigan "Bon Voyage" before he took off. Many believed he knew of Corrigan's secret plan to fly to Europe as possibly indicated by those two words he spoke to Corrigan just before his departure.

Thus, Corrigan took off to the east with everyone, except maybe for himself and the airport manager (although the manager denied any such knowledge), expecting him to turn around and head west. Just over 28 hours later, Corrigan landed his Curtiss Robin OX-5 at Baldonnel Airport, in Dublin, Ireland. It had been his dream to fly non-stop to Ireland but federal officials in the USA had not certified his plane as ready for such a flight even though he had repeatedly modified it for such a trip. Upon arrival in Ireland he was questioned by authorities over and over again about how it was he had flown to Ireland instead of to California as had been his flight plan. He repeatedly stated that he had taken off in thick fog, rose to an altitude where he was surrounded by thick fog or cloud cover, had to fly using his compass alone as a directional aid, and that when he finally broke cloud cover and got more light, about 26 hours into his flight, the additional available light allowed him to see he had been reading his compass incorrectly and flying east instead of west. Despite the disbelief of Irish officials, he stuck to that story finally telling them: "That's My Story"! In fact, he stuck with it for the rest of his life and even wrote a book, his autobiography, by that name. All that regardless of the suspected fact that he supposedly had plans to disregard U.S. aviation officials and fly to Ireland without their permission. (He reportedly had discussed his plans, earlier on, with friends.)


His pilot's license was suspended for a short time but was reinstated by the time he had returned to America. He and his plane returned by ship. He came back to an America still ravaged by the Great Depression and yet he was given a hero's welcome. A parade was held in his honor, in a blizzard of ticker-tape despite the 93.1 degree temperature in NYC on August 4, 1938. It was reported that 1 million people attended his parade, more people than attended the parade for Charles Lindbergh. (Disappointingly for Corrigan, Lindbergh never recognized Corrigan's accomplishment.) I do not know who coined his nickname, but from then on he was referred to as 'Wrong Way Corrigan' and the NY Post ran the headline "Hail Wrong Way Corrigan" printed backwards.


Printed here under fair use.
Above jpg found at Wikipedia.
Lest you think that maybe he was just a fool who actually took off and flew in fog and cloud cover so thick he could not see, then due to low light read his compass wrongly, let me tell you again - he was an accomplished pilot having flown for almost 9 full years prior to his infamous flight. In addition, he was also a somewhat renowned mechanic/engineer in that he worked at the factory that assembled Lindbergh's plane and he was responsible for fitting the wings onto that plane and for installing its gas tanks. He had always wanted to repeat Lindbergh's accomplishment and planned to do so for years. He was not an inexperienced rube. While it is possible he made such a set of mistakes for a 26 hour period (the point at which he said he realized his mistake), it truly is very doubtful that he did not fly to Ireland purposefully having been disgusted by the U.S. Government's repeated failure to certify his plane as worthy of a trans-Atlantic flight. In fact, just before he flew off, his plane had been deemed not to be flight worthy for any flight but I guess the government could get it wrong back then just as they do today (still though it was reported to have been in terrible condition - see below).

He certainly was a different sort of man than most we see today; he had brass balls so to speak for having tried that feat in his plane considering the condition it was in at the time. Pay attention to the Wikipedia article when they quote a reporter who gave the plane a once over after it had arrived in Ireland. It was in scary condition from the sound of it - quite possibly truly not airworthy after all, making this flight all the more amazing. Maybe they should have added another word to his moniker and had it come out like: Crazy Wrong Way Corrigan or Ballsy Wrong Way Corrigan. Whatever the real reason for him having flown the wrong way though, he assured himself a sort of immortality by his having done so. Today, 73 years later, we still often refer to folks with a bumbling poor sense of direction with the term Wrong Way placed before their names (and now you know why if you did not know before).

Ironically, his son was killed in an air crash in the 1970s. In 1988 he celebrated the golden jubilee of his flight and rolled the Robin out of her hangar. Police reportedly considered tethering the plane to the ground so he would not fly off in it! He passed away in 1995. There is a lot more to Douglas 'Wrong Way' Corrigan's story but without a doubt, his wrong way flight made him famous and ultimately made him rich. If you want to read more about him go to the references below. The one at Wikipedia is longer and has much more of his story, it is pretty fascinating but either one is a good read.

All the best,
Glenn B
Reference:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Douglas_Corrigan

http://www.centennialofflight.gov/essay/Explorers_Record_Setters_and_Daredevils/corrigan/EX16.htm.

Wife Shoots & Kills Husband While Trying To Shoot Dog?

There must be more to this story. A Pit Bull puppy tries to attack some children. The adults get the kids out of the danger zone. The husband goes over to the dog and picks it up (why on earth would he pick up an apparently vicious dog puppy or otherwise). Reportedly, right after he picks up the dog, the wife seemingly decided this would be a great time to shoot the dog and she fires twice, hitting not only the dog but her husband too - one shot to each of them. The husband was shot in the chest and killed, no word on the condition of the pooch.

There really just has got to be more to the story other than the fact that local authorities are saying it looks like an accident! I think that either this was a case of a woman seeing an opportunity to murder her husband while making it look like an accident or it was one of the dumbest accidents of which I have ever heard, or drugs and or alcohol were in the mix. Then again, maybe the dog started to bite the husband when he picked it up and the wife was actually trying to protect him from the beast. Still not a smart move pulling the trigger with her husband in the line of fire.

I wonder, can you win a Darwin award for getting someone else killed? Nope I just checked the rules and killing someone else rules you out. Of course, if the husband knew the wife was going to shoot the dog, then held the dog up for her to get a good shot, then maybe he could win a Darwin award. I am not saying that is the way it happened just wondering a sort of what if.

All the best,
Glenn B

Reference:
http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/07/16/police-mississippi-woman-shooting-at-dog-kills-husband/?test=latestnews

Same Sex Marriages Will Soon Be Legal In New York - So What Will Prevent...

...fathers from marrying sons or mothers from marrying daughters? Bear in mind, the new law does not require those of the same sex who marry to be gay or lesbian. Also remember, marriage does not require you to have children, and there is no way they could have children naturally so no need to worry about inbreeding. Additionally, marriage  does not even require you to have sex, so if they contract their marriage to never have sex with one another, no need to worry about incest. So, what would be the reason, other than morality, that a parent could not marry one of its children (of legal marrying age) of the same sex, say if the other parent died? 

Mark my words, it is coming or at least someone will try to do it because normality and morality have lost the battle and maybe even the war. It seems to me (as in it is my personal opinion) that certain people seek out ways to pervert society simply for the sake of the twisted pleasure that they receive from bringing their perversions to a new apex. They do not stop once they have perverted something but strive to pervert even more of the bedrock of human society. They seem to try to always go one step beyond anything you or I or maybe even they would have dared dream of yesterday and they somehow have convinced too many of us that we should be tolerant of their never ending perversity. Sadly though, throughout history when such has happened before, the result has all too often been a radical swing toward enforced morality. You know it - something like the Spanish Inquisition or the Salem Witch Trials or McCarthyism or the Taliban in Afghanistan. Either way, I think, the normal people, the moderate people, lose.

All the best,
Glenn B

Saturday, July 16, 2011

It Truly Is The End Of The World As We Knew It

God, the Gods, Mother Nature, the Universe, aliens from beyond our galaxy, or The Force all have my consent to obliterate the earth and all life upon it. I surrender mankind to forces greater than I, greater than all of us, for the good of the rest of all creation. Maybe, after viewing this video, you will feel likewise. Anyway, it will be, or should be, obvious why I think we no longer deserve to carry on as the race of mankind and why maybe the whole planet should go with us to oblivion for having allowed us to survive as long as it took for it all to come to this:



What a friggin crying shame that we have become that confused as to the very nature and essence of our being!

Of course, I don't really want mankind to be wiped out or the world to be disintegrated but I have to tell you that if God showed up on a chariot of fire, throwing lightning bolts of destruction and was accompanied by the horsemen of the Apocalypse looking to annihilate us all, I would understand why they showed up at this point in time and would, as well, understand exactly why they were so pissed off at us.

Adieu,
Glenn B

From Compost Heap, To Worm, To Frog (or whatever else I feed with them) and Back to Fred

Not too long ago, I posted about my compost heap - Fred the Compost Pile. I described some of his aspects and let you know how I knew he was healthy. You may recall that one of the best signs of health about a compost pile are that it is full of life. My compost pile is loaded with all sorts of insects, bugs and worms and I suppose with a lot of helpful bacteria. During the warmer months, I make it a habit to collect earthworms of one sort or another from within the depths of Fred and from a few other areas around my small garden where leaf liter builds up and eventually decomposes.

I put those worms to good use. For instance, today I collected about 50 worms within 10 minutes. I probably passed up at least another 50. After collecting them, I brought them inside and fed them to my various critters. well, actually, before going inside, I gave a couple to my tortoises that were outside enjoying the sunny not too warm day. One of my Redfoot Torts gobbled up a few by himself. Even my male Hermann's Tortoise, which usually shies away from worms, took half of a big one today. Then it was onto inside to feed my turtle, frogs, salamanders, newts and fish. They all got a good share of them.

Female African Clawed Frog,
click it to big it.
The male and female African Clawed Frogs got 2 apiece. They can really gobble them down although today the male swam around for several minutes with part of his second worm protruding from his mouth. Eventually though he shoved it down into his belly. Those frogs can be ravenous. That they eat well shows in how much they have grown. The male was probably small as one of my thumbnails around when my son brought it home. Now it is about 3 inches long, snout to vent length, and much bigger around than he was when we first got him. The female was probably 3 to 3.5 inches long, svl , when I got her. She is now at least 4 inches long and a lot bigger around too. They love to eat, and it shows. They especially seem to like earthworms although they have eaten guppies, mosquito fish, different bugs, dry pellet tropical fish food, and the male has eaten a few of my tropical fish (at least when I had him in the fish tank, the frogs now have their own tank). They also have eaten lots of those earthworms.

Male African Clawed Frog,
click it to big it.
I try to not overfeed them and usually give them food only about 4 to 5 times per week. One worm could probably last them a good couple to a few days without them growing much. At the rate I feed them they eat well, the water does not foul (yes the water is also filtered) and they grow but do not grow too fast or become overweight. When fish, like guppies or mosquito fish, are in their tank, they have a ready food source that they must catch but that is usually not to easy to catch.fords the frogs some exercise. They do not overly excite or scare the fish in their setup, I guess because they are sort of ambush hunters, and creep up ever so slowly then pounce, or just wait for a fish to swim close enough and then pounce. If the fish make it past a week, they are given a reprieve and I remove them to the tropical tank when I do a partial water change on the frog tank.


I am hopeful that by mid winter or early next spring, the frogs may be large enough and ready to breed. There eggs will serve a couple of purposes. First off, I will incubate at least half of them. The other half may just be thrown into other tanks as food for my fish and other amphibians. From the eggs that hatch, I will likely raise at least 1/2 of the tadpoles to maturity. The others may also be used as food for my tropical fish and other amphibians and my turtle. Nothing will be wasted.


When I say nothing will be wasted, I pretty much mean it. I take old water from my tanks and sometimes use it to water my garden and to water the compost pile. There are a lot of built up bacteria and nitrates (almost no nitrites) in that water from the decomposing bits of plant material and fish food. I siphon as much of that stuff withthe water each week and throw it on the pile now and then when I remember to do it. In addition, I take any excess plants that have grown in 2 of my tanks and throw them onto Fred as well. I don't know if Fred appreciates it or not, he is not the talkative type of trash heap as you may see on TV, but the bacteria, bugs, insects and worms in him sure do seem to like it as they are all thriving. While the compost pile is not sustained solely by stuff from the fish and amphibian tanks, what does come from them and goes onto the heap helps it to decompose. In the long run, that waste fouled aquarium water helps produce the worms that the frogs, amphibians and turtles will again eventually turn into more matter to decompose on the heap. Such is the circle of life for Fred and my frogs and other critters.


All the best,
Glenn B

On Homeowners Being Armed: It Was Oh-Dark-Thirty, the Dogs Were Barking...

...and I told them to shut up; I wanted back to sleep. Then they started barking and mixed in the deeper than usual sounding barks with deep down growling and there was no shutting them up. I got up and grabbed the nearest available firearm and headed upstairs from my man-cave resting spot to see what was amiss if anything. The two big dogs were at the front window, growling as if a Zombie, or a pack of wolves, was milling around the front of our house. The little dogs upstairs were barking too. I have not seen them that intense in a long, long time, in fact maybe never before. So I cautiously approached the side doorway on my way upstairs and gave a quick peak or two, then gave a good long scan, then I did the windows in the kitchen and dining room, then in the living room where the dogs were still at it. I wanted to make sure I missed nothing or no one on my way to the scene of the mayhem.

Once in the living room, just let them keep barking and I cautiously peeled back on of the curtains just a bit and took a look. Nothing. Then I looked out the other window, the one facing front, expecting to see an opossum. I got a surprise, there was a young man standing there on the sidewalk, next to the small strip of grass at curbside, and next to one of our cars, facing the car, looking pretty intent of some evil deed - like maybe stealing one of the cars. Suddenly he stumbled a bit. Just then, I saw a quick flash of something glistening in the moonlight and streetlight, it was long and thin and down around - well just a bit below his waist. Relief for both of us! I guess he was pretty drunk; he was taking a pit stop, right there on the sidewalk but apparently onto the grass and I was not happy about it but put at ease.

I have got to hand it to the dogs though, they got me up with a possible intruder in the area - they sure had a different bark than usual as when it is just an opossum or a cat or a drunk stumbling by. I imagine that was because the guy was not just passing by but standing there while he did his thing. As it was, once he was done, he stumbled onward to wherever he was headed in his less than coherent state of mind. Hopefully he made it there before letting it all hang out again in public. I could have opened the door, stuck my head out and admonished him but figured what the heck, why wake up the neighbors for a drunk and why maybe start a fight over something so pissant (oh the pun of it all). I guess that was because I remembered being there pretty much in that same situation when that young and that drunk. Piss drunk was what we used to call it, because you would pee anywhere although it was most appropriately called that though when you peed in your pants. At least he got it out of his pants and into the grass. A quick look this morning revealed one other 'at least', at least he did not get it on our car.

All is well and the gun stayed silent, out of sight, with finger off the trigger, muzzle pointed in a safe direction at all times, not retrieved until I was awake enough to do so and - imagine this - not one soul was injured by the gun toting homeowner whom the ultra leftists fear so much as being some sort of maniacal vigilante. Had it been someone who was in the act of breaking and entering and intent on doing us harm, well then it may well have been a very different story. In either case - I was prepared, ready, willing and capable of doing whatever might need to be done and I did what I chose to do both safely and sensibly. I would do it much the same in the event our dogs ever again become that agitated at something outside our home.

By the way, had he been trying to steal one of our cars, I might have given a shout to cease and desist out the window but I probably would also have called the cops instead of going outside alone. Who knows, maybe I would also have decided to let the dogs out just then too. That could have proven quite interesting but as I said, he turned out to be pretty harmless and pissant at worst!

All the best,
Glenn B

Thursday, July 14, 2011

NJ Police May Be Very Wrong As To Who Is In Danger...

...but then again they are talking about a flag burning crime spree (can you fathom why the news service called it a trend and not a crime spree - how leftist) in very anti-gun New Jersey. Regardless of the states anti-gun stance, there certainly are a good number of armed patriots living in NJ. So, I imagine it is quite possible that, the next time some anti-American asswipe decides to ignite an American Flag on someone's private property, it could well be the flag burner and not the resident of the home who is most in jeopardy of losing his life. That is, if as the police reportedly have surmised, the flag burner(s) may try to ignite a flag attached to a home or other occupied building and that such would possibly pose the threat of burning the building and thus harming any occupants. I think it possible then, that a homeowner, using that same logic, may decide to fight back with deadly force and shoot the unpatriotic and life threatening son of a bitch. I am not saying it should be done, I am not saying it would be legal to do so in NJ, I am only saying it conceivably could happen because someone might believe that such a threat was a threat to their life or limb. If it happens and it was justified and if the bad guy gets hit, I will applaud.

All the best,
Glenn B

Monsters Among Us...Parents Beware

I almost hate myself for having just written the title of this post. I may hate myself by the time I am done with this whole piece, just my opinion about a terrible event that just took place pretty locally to me.  You see, the title (and the rest of this post) could be taken in the wrong way by a couple, a couple whom I do not want to offend and onto whom I do not want to heap even a feather's weight of blame. To them, right now, even a mere feather of blame would weigh tons. The couple of whom I speak are parents, and I do not want them to mistakenly think that what I am about to write, meant by me to be a warning to parents of young children, is instead a heartless reprimand of them. I doubt though that the couple in question will ever see my blog and I have decided to go with the title and the rest of it.

The couple in question,  probably are the only two people in the world who might see this as a heartless reprimand. They were the parents of Leiby Kletzky. Yes I said "they were" but I suppose even though Leiby is now gone, they are still and forever will remain his loving and grieving parents. On Monday evening, Leiby Kletzky was abducted by a man a monster, he was killed by that monster a short time later, then was dismembered and most of his body was left in the trash. Leiby was abducted on his way home from summer day camp. Is it ironic that his killer's birthday was on the same day a his arrest for the abduction and murderm and that the victim's birthday, his ninth, was to be later this month. Leiby Kletzky was only 8 years old. He was on his way home from day camp when he came across a monster disguised as a helpful man. You see, Leiby had just been given permission, from the couple (his loving parents) to walk half way to his home, only 7 blocks from day camp, alone. he was to meet his mom. (This hits home all to hard for me. I was around 8 when I was first allowed to cross the street, thus allowing me to go anywhere.) He was at the age, the right age, for parents to give their children such permission. An age at which children begin to become responsible for themselves even if only at something so simple as walking 7 blocks alone to meet a parent.

As I heard reported on 1010 WINS yesterday, Leiby's parents even had taken the precaution of showing him the way to get home. My guess would be that somewhere in his upbringing they also told him about strangers as virtually all parents tell their children. They apparently did it all the right way. They just never expected that a monster would meet their child in a moment of weakness, that everything would just lead their child the wrong way into a mosnter's hands. That moment, the one when things started to go wrong for Leiby, came shortly after Leiby missed a turn in the route to his home. He continued straight and soon was lost. It is believed that he then saw the monster the man. I imagine the man appeared to be nice, kind, helpful a knowledgeable adult, just another member of the fairly tight knit Hasidic Jewish community in which Leiby lived. He asked the man for directions; he had no idea that the man was a monster, the man hid that well. Somehow, the man got Leiby to go along with him. Then, apparently many hours later, seemingly the next day, little 8 year old Leiby Kletzky saw for himself, in his last moments on earth, that yes monsters really do exist.

The man who is the monster has been captured. He was arrested in the early morning hours on Wednesday. Police, acted quickly and had overwhelming help from the community. All of us should be so good at getting together to assist one another as were these people in their search for Leiby. Yet, they were all too late no matter how much they tried to help. Now they will feel guilt, they will feel helpless just as will Leiby's parents but nowhere nearly as much.

Leiby is gone but thankfully they have caught the man monster. He told the police where the boy, his remains, could be found. He has confessed. He sounds crazy. It should not matter if he is crazy or not. I can only describe him as a monster if it is found that he is actually the person who killed this 8 year old innocent child. If so, I think he should be executed post legal haste. Maybe his being crazy (or insane) should help speed up the process that leads to his execution; it certainly should not delay it. I have no pity for a guy like this, I think he is a monster and that all monsters should be destroyed.

You cannot leash your children, you cannot keep them imprisoned in your homes safe and sound and innocent forever. Sooner or later you need to start to give them some freedom, some autonomy, some responsibility to do things for themselves. You cannot know they will begin to do it right, you cannot overly worry they will do it wrong. You cannot be there, holding their hands to guide them if they start to go wrong or it would not be autonomous. You need to give them some freedom and as a parent I can tell you that you can never know with certainty if they are ready for it; you always take a chance when your child is given that responsibility. So teach them, and teach them as well as you can, o never approach a single stranger or go with a stranger , or get near a stranger's car. Teach them even more so about which strangers are safer. Teach them whom to approach if ever in trouble. Teach them who would be the safer bet, as it were, from whom to seek help if they need an adult. Tell them to virtually never to stop or approach a single stranger in a car unless it is a marked police car or firetruck. Teach them that if they ever get lost, as did poor little Leiby Kletzky, they need to walk into a store or other business, one in which they see plenty of workers and customers, and then announce in a loud voice - "Can you help me please, I am lost", or "I am hurt", or "my mom is outside and is sick", or whatever is the emergency that is making them seek the help of strangers. Tell them to look for a police officer and to yell for help as loud as he or she can to get the officer's attention, to get everyones attenion. Then, pray and hope that they have learned well if ever put to the task. You can even test them, have someone, a very trusted someone, follow and observe your child the first time or two that he or she does something like this alone - or do it yourself but don't let your child see you. This was the very first time that Leiby had been given permission to walk home by himself - fate can be a terrible thing - monsters come when least expected and without regard for innocence.

Perhaps Leiby's parents did all of those things, except apparently for following him to observe him his first time. Maybe they could not, maybe they did not think of it, maybe they just figured - since they had shown him the route - that he would get it right. They, or at least one of them, took him over the route last week on Friday. My guess is that they did everything else and that they knew their son was ready. They seemingly did it right. They probably did more than enough. There is no way they can be blamed for the actions of a monster. I do not fault them, not one bit, but you can bet they will fault themselves, they will do that for the rest of their lives.

They did not do their child a wrong. They did what parents do everywhere. They let their child start to grow up. They could not have known that something as innocent as a child not making a turn would have led their son directly to a monster, especially not in a pretty safe and closely knit neighborhood as is theirs. It was and is not their fault - a monster was among us. A monster pretending to be a helpful and friendly man is seemingly the one who did the evil deed. He was at the same exact spot, at the same exact same moment, as was a lost little boy who needed and then sought help. He needed help and was probably scared and he saw what he thought was a friendly, safe, caring trusful adult. He never expected to meet a monster pretending to be just that type of a man, the type that could fool even adults into believing he was there to help. Leiby's parents  never could have actually expected it either; they never would have let him go it alone had they thought it, even for a moment. Pray for Leiby and for his parents, no matter what your faith. If you are not religious, keep them in your thoughts and well wishes.

Teach your children but don't try to keep them sheltered as children forever. Sooner or later they have to start to do things on their own, teach them well not only how to seek help but how to fight back if need be and how to get away (since I originally wrote this, the police have surmised, becasue of scratches on the suspected killer's arms, that little Leiby fought back). Do one other thing too, demand that your politicians and legal authorities implement the death penalty for monsters - the world will be a better place with even one fewer of them and our children would be so much safer too.

Sincerely,
Glenn B

Reference:
http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/07/14/ny-man-charged-with-murder-after-missing-boys-remains-found-in-refrigerator/

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/ny_crime/2011/07/14/2011-07-14_a_missed_turn_that_led_into_the_abyss.html

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/ny_crime/2011/07/14/2011-07-14_butcher_of_brooklyn_levi_aron_admits_how_he_killed_leiby_kletzky_in_chilling_con.html

http://abcnews.go.com/US/leiby-kletzky-murder-suspect-levy-aron-confesses-death-brooklyn/story?id=14067849

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

If Only He Had A Shotgun...

Photo by Michael Haferkamp who in
way has anything to do with my blog.
...and a bit of the hunter/conservationist instinct, I figure had he been in the real know about wild animals, he would have known better than to do what he did. Read about it here at FoxNews.

Wild animals, like the gannet in the story, do not realize you are trying to do them a good deed. So, if you do not know what you are doing, or are not prepared to do it right, unless some one's life is at risk (as in a person's life not a gannet's) it is best to leave them to someone who does know how or to put the critter out of it's misery if they are that bad off. Of course, only put them out of their misery if you know how, if you can do it safely, if legal and if done ethically, maybe like with a single shotgun blast of number 7 shot when conditions allow.

Photo by Alan D. Wilson who in no way
has anything to do with my blog.

Don't get me wrong, I think the guy is likely a nice guy, I think he got screwed under the axiom - No Good Deed Goes Unpunished - and I truly hope that somehow he will be able to recover his eyesight in the damaged eye. But, I also want to try to help assure, in what little way that I can, that such does not happen to any of you. Don't screw with wild animals, especially ones equipped to do real harm to you. Gannets are the LARGEST seabirds in the North Atlantic with a wingspan of up to 2 meters (JUST OVER 6.5 FEET ACROSS - now think of how big it would be when looking at those pics again) and with extremely pointy beaks (think of how big they would be too if the bird in the pic had a 6 1/2 foot wingspan). What was the poor man thinking when he picked one up - that it would appreciate his help!!!!!!!!!!! Be careful out there; wild animals are not the friends that someone like Walt Disney might have made them seem to be in his cartoons like Bambi.

All the best,
Glenn B
Reference:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gannet
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northern_Gannet
http://www.foxnews.com/world/2011/07/12/british-mans-eyeball-pecked-out-by-seabird/?test=latestnews

Marco Rubio - Well Spoken

The video speaks for itself and Senator Mark Rubio seemingly speaks for sensible Americans!




All the best,
Glenn B

On Sarah Palin's Ability To Win Big

Sarah Palin win what - the run for the presidency? I like her politics very much but I also doubt her ability to win the election for president. She has shot herself in both feet, once by running as McCain's vice presidential candidate and then by stepping down as governor of Alaska. She stands little chance to none of winning the presidency for one other reason too; no other person, of whom I can think, in our history has ever raised the ire of the leftists as does she. If she runs she will bring every roach and rat of the left out of hiding to vote against her. Sadly, she does not have a similar effect on those on the right or independents as far as getting their votes goes.

I believe that she is taking the heat off of another candidate, on the right, Michelle Bachman. I think she stands more of a chance than Sarah Palin of rising to the top spot. I still think that Palin is better qualified but I am going to vote with both the issues AND realism as my guide when the primaries roll around. I am not saying I will not vote for Palin, just that it would have to look like there was a real chance of her winning and right now I think Bachman is the better bet and her politics are not to shabby. Of course, that could change if Palin actually entered the race. She can't win it if she isn't in it.

All the best,
Glenn B

Monday, July 11, 2011

Leaping Lizards Leaping Right Into My House

My Son Brought Home A New Friend Tonight. The new friend is not a new girlfriend, not a new pal with whom to drink beers, not someone he met at work, really a friend of a friend. I was a bit surprised when he walked in the door with her, even more surprised when he said she was going to stay for a week. I was also a bit concerned, not so much that a stranger would be staying in the house for a week but at how the dogs would react to her and as to whether or not she had mites or ticks. A quick look leads me to believe she is on the healthy side except for what looks to be a fairly fresh injury or sore on the right side of her head just below her mouth. Hopefully it is not due to illness but is just a scrape that will heal quickly. Also, a quick sniff led to my nostrils being filled with a crappy sour smell that was not good at all. A look in her traveling case/cage showed the reason, the bottom of it was pretty much smeared with lizard shit. I also noted that the cage could be how she got scraped, there are lots of sharp edges on the screening that was added to the cage to make it Iguana escape proof. The cage was probably originally meant for a rabbit or as a travel kennel cage for a cat. So, someone lined it with heavy screening or hardware cloth. The ends are not bent over and could easily stick the lizard if it rubbed against them trying to escape or if frightened by something. and making a quick move. Oh, did I neglect to mention, she is a Green Iguana!

Well, both Brendan and I cleaned out the cage, I gave it a good hosing down with the garden hose and he cleaned the accessories while the lady lizard chilled in a small Coleman cooler with the lid on tight. I knew as soon as she got in there and it was closed and thus dark inside she would calm right down. As soon as the cage was clean, Brendan put a towel on the desk in the basement then put the cage atop the towel. Then he got an extension cord for me and I plugged in the lizard's light. Within minutes it was warming itself under the heat of the very bright bulb and looking content with the improvement we added to the cage by way of a nice sized piece of cork bark for a basking platform.

I can tell you that although not the very last thing I expected to see in my house tonight, a Green Iguana has to be pretty darned close to the last thing I expected to see here. Brendan brought it home to take care of it for a friend who will be away for a week. Well, that is what he told me. It had better not be here for more than a week or I may just surprise Brendan at our next BBQ and tell him he is doing what the song, Mexican Radio, says:  "...eating barbecued iguana"! I am not too worried though, I figure he knows better than to try to sneak a new pet in the house by underhanded skulduggery and subterfuge. My biggest concern, besides it maybe having mites or an illness that could spread to my other animal, is that our dogs may go bonkers over it and somehow get it out of its cage. So, I am going to go work on making sure that even if they knock the cage off of the desk, when no one is home, the cage will remain locked and she will remain inside of it. By the way, I am only assuming it is a she, could be a he for all I know, too small to tell for sure at only about 2 to 2.5 feet long. Oh the joys of being a parent!

Later 4 U,
Glenn B