Saturday, December 8, 2012

Father Reporedtly Shoots Son - I Cannot Imagine The Grief I Would Feel...

...had that father been me and had that child been my son or my daughter. The father will have to live with the outcome of his seeming negligence for the rest of his life, without his son, because the boy died. It appalls me to think that people are that careless with firearms. He seemingly broke so many firearms safety rules, in order to have done so, that to me, it is almost unimaginable he had any idea of how to safely handle a gun.

The dad reportedly went to a firearms store in Pennsylvania to try to sell a handgun and a rifle there. The store did not buy the guns and the dad put the rifle back into his truck and was reportedly trying to put the handgun into the center console of the vehicle when it discharged, the bullet striking his 7 year old son, killing him.

So what went wrong? First of all, he brought a loaded gun to a store to sell it or loaded it while in the store. You do, or should, not bring loaded guns anywhere to sell them. If you know anything about firearms and firearms safety you would realize that would not be a good idea from a safety standpoint because it is sure that if someone is going to buy it, or just show an interest in it, they are going to want to handle it and there would be a chance they might handle it unsafely and discharge it (which is apparently exactly what happened, not caused by a potential buyer but the seller himself). Then there is the thing they teach about in hunter safety courses about not climbing over fences or up into tree stands with loaded guns while hunting. You know, the one in which they tell you to unload the gun first, lay it next to the fence so you can reach for it later, climb over the fence, then pull the gun over or under it and only then reload it to continue your hunt. What does that have to do with a dad accidentally shooting his son while the son is in their vehicle. Well, the dad was reportedly climbing into the vehicle and trying to put the gun into the center console at the same time from how it sounds.

"Loughrey put the boy in the passenger seat and loaded the rifle into the truck, state police said. He was attempting to get inside and reached to put the handgun in the center storage console when it fired, they said."

Why he did not place the gun into his belt or into a holster or have it secured in a gun case is beyond me. Why he decided to try to do those two things at once, climb into the truck while also trying to put the gun into the console is also beyond me. Doing more than one thing at one time, especially ones that probably each require use of both of your hands, while holding a firearm, can be disastrous. Trying to jockey your arse into position in your truck while also trying to place your handgun into the truck's console is just asking for trouble and that was the result in this case and sadly that result was fatal.

Of course, there are the more basic rules of firearms safety that were violated. The gun evidently was not treated as if it were loaded. I say that because the father reportedly made a statement to police saying he thought it had been unloaded. "Investigators said Loughrey told them he didn't realize there was a bullet still in the chamber.". The gun evidently also was pointed at something that was not an intended target - that ultimately wound up being his own son (either shot directly or by way of ricochet) and it only had to be pointed that way for a moment. It would also seem that either the father's finger or something else activated the trigger. Let's face it folks, you should never allow anything to press on the trigger unless you are about to shoot the gun or about to activate the trigger for other things such as disassembly of the gun when such is required with certain types of guns or for dry firing and in those instances it had best be pointed in a very safe direction.

I will also point out, that if you are transporting a firearm for sale or show or to simply move it from one place to another (while not actually using it as in carrying in a holster, or while shooting at a range, or walking afield with a gun to hunt or things like that) then the gun should be secured in a gun case and maybe even have a trigger lock on it (especially in the presence of young children if you might be otherwise distracted from the gun and maybe the child can get at it). Putting it into the center console of a vehicle, with your child sitting next to you, is a pretty poor place to put it in my opinion. While the vehicle is moving, the gun could wind up bouncing around in there, pointing this way and that, and almost anything else in the console would have the potential to become a trigger finger that could wind up setting the gun off if loaded. Bear in mind too that a center console is probably within reach of a child sitting next to you. It takes only that very brief moment for a child to open a console and grab the contents. If you think it would not happen with you and your kid then think about how distracting traffic can be. While a parent is distracted by driving, a child can do almost anything for at least a moment or two. When you are armed or otherwise dealing with firearms, you have to be paying attention at virtually every moment.

I am not telling you all of this to bad mouth the dad. I am sure he has already suffered more than imaginable and still has the rest of his life of suffering to go through without me hammering him. So then, why am I writing about it so soon after it happened. Because the precise moment in which it could happen again, to someone else's kid, to your kid or to another loved one, could come at any moment. I am telling you this to make sure you avoid these types of mistakes and avoid unsafe handling and transportation of firearms that could have similar results for you for others in this moment or the next. Sure, we can all make mistakes and have accidents but if just one or two things had gone right at that all decisive moment, when the boy was shot, instead of so many ostensibly getting done wrong, maybe that young boy would still be alive. So, let's try to prevent another one like this happening any time soon.

My heart felt condolences go out to the family, they are in my thoughts and prayers as is their child.

All the best,
Glenn B


SPAM - 75 Years Old, 1937-2012

I went to the city (NYC's Manhattan) with a friend of mine yesterday. We decided to get lunch (late breakfast for me) in Chinatown, visit Obscura Oddities (they were closed due to filming, now making it 2 out of 3 times this happened when we stopped by there), check out some thrift shops and to stop by the Hungarian Pastry Shop (uptown and across the street from the largest cathedral in the world) to over indulge the taste buds.

While in Chinatown, my buddy, Pete said he needed some white pepper and wanted to buy some in a market there. I brought him to a place with which I was familiar, kind of a Chinese mini supermarket. While there he picked up a few things and so did I. As we left, I said, that while we had been walking to that store, we had passed another market I wanted to check on. We stopped in that other one, which had most of the same stuff as the first with a notable exception. They had an area of the shelves, about 3 feet wide and two or three shelves high, dedicated to SPAM. They had regular Spam and, much to the amazement of my uninformed self, they also had Spam Bacon, Spam with Cheese, Spam Black Pepper, Spam Hickory Smoked, Spam Jalapeno and most importantly they had cans marked for Spam's 75th Anniversary! I had no clue about those other available varieties of Spam, except  for low sodium Spam. I had even less of a clue that this year marked the 75th anniversary of this iconic this all American delicacy, this wondermeat in a can.

Me being me, that being in part a Spam lover, I was tempted to buy at least one of each variety that they had in stock, especially since I have never tasted any but the regular Spam and the lower sodium Spam. Yet, the only one I bought was the one marking the 75th anniversary; it just seemed too good to pass up. and I figured I could get the others any time. In all, it turns out they offer 14 different Spam products. See the complete lineup here. I am going to have to try all of the different flavors. That could make for an excellent bit of outdoor grilling over the winter and maybe a blog or three about the different ones I will have tried by the time I have tried them. Oh joy, yet another excuse not only to eat Spam but also an excuse to try a different beer or two, with each variety of Spam. And now, for your viewing pleasure, the: Monty Python's Flying Circus Spam skit.

Now, I just have to wonder one thing - how in Hades did I miss this from the beginning of 2012 all the way until yesterday, December 7th, when I finally saw my first can of 75th Anniversary Spam - and how in Hell did I miss all those different varieties for who knows how long! So much for buying a case of Spam every couple of or few months at Costco (they only have the regular and/or lower sodium types). Perhaps I should get out more often and wider afield than just Costco to do my Spam shopping.

All the best,
Glenn B

Carrying One Of The Beretta 92FS Pistols Again...

...since I just recently sent my Glock 26 slide into Glock to change the sights. Some months ago, I had the Trijicon night sights changed because the front sight had dimmed considerably. I asked for replacement with standard Glock sights, thinking that meant the steel sights that were standard Glock when I bought that pistol a few years back. They replaced the night sights, under warranty, with polymer (plastic) crap. I only got around to sending it back in for steel sights. It was not my fault that the night sights went bad so a warranty repair was to be expected but not with crappy polymer (plastic sights since they were replacing high end Trijicon night sights; that they did not replace them with steel sighs was ludicrous. Nor was it my fault that Glock downgraded from having standard steel sights to, what are in my opinion, polymer pieces of crap - yet they are charging me for the latest change to steel. I think that is not very good customer service but I suppose it is a sign of the times.

So, for now, while the Glock 26 slide is away, I have changed over to carrying one of my three Beretta 92 series pistols, which is also one of two Beretta 92FS pistols, I own. What a change from the smaller Glock 26 pistol to the larger Beretta 92FS. Not only is it bigger and weighs more, it is also a double-single action pistol as opposed to double action only as is the Glock. In addition, it has the exposed hammer, a manual hammer drop/safety, much larger grips, and a longer sight radius. Besides that, nothing is made from polymer (although the grips are plastic). I like the change.

All the best,
Glenn B

Dear Santa - The Best Gift of All

From Last year but still excellent.

All the best,

Christmas Humor - Pardon Me Lord, No Disrespect Meant

First Christmas Joke
An Englishman, Scotsman and an Irishman died on Christmas Eve and were met by Saint Peter at the Pearly Gates.
"In honor of this holy season" Saint Peter said, "You must each possess something that symbolizes Christmas to get into heaven".

The Englishman fumbled through his pockets and pulled out a lighter. He flicked it on. "It's like a candle", he said.

"You may pass through the pearly gates" Saint Peter said.

The Scotsman reached into his pockets, searched around and after some long moments finally pulled out a set of keys. He shook them and said, "They're like bells".

Saint Peter said "You may pass through the pearly gates".

The Irishman started searching desperately through his pockets. He was at it for minutes going through each of his several pockets at least two or three times. He began to sweat and looked worried. Then he suddenly pulled out his hands and threw them up to the air, clasped them together as if to say a prayer and fell to his knees about to plead for admission into heaven. At that same moment, a pair of woman's panties fell from his pocket to Heaven's floor.

St. Peter looked down, bent over and picked them up, unruffled them and holding them out in front of the Irishman, with a raised eyebrow, he asked: 'And just what are these supposed to symbolize?'

The paddy replied, "Oh those, those are Carol's".

Of course, the Pearly Gates opened once again.

And So The Christmas Season Begins......

Hat tip and a very Merry Christmas to Perry K for that one.

All the best,
Glenn B