Sunday, November 10, 2013

New Shooter Among Our Ranks

Headed out this morning to meet up with my sister and nephew at the Long Island Shooting Center in Islip, NY. Met them there about 1020, went inside and we signed up for a point. I asked how much and handed the gentleman behind the counter my VISA card to pay and was told cash only. That was a surprise and not a good one since I thought I didn't have that much cash on me. (I had meant to go to the bank yesterday but my left knee has been in a lot of pain so stayed home.) I don't know if the folks who own the range realize it but this is the 21st century and credit cards have been around for a long time now. It was a surprise they did not take anything but cash for the range because, when I thought about it, I recalled they don't mention that on their website. Yet, they do advertise that they accept credit cards for gun sales in the store section of the same building. I dug out what I had and luckily I had about $42 so it covered the $33 for the range and a few targets.

 I gave him a crash course in range safety. I had also sent him an email, last night, via his mom, with firearms safety rules and tested him on them. He did well. So, I gave him his birthday presents (his birthday was in October and the shooting lessons and range gear were the gifts I gave him) consisting of shooting glasses, asset of shooting muffs, some targets and a zombie range box that fits the glasses and muffs with room for more. Then we headed into the range. My sister waited in the outer at the luncheonette style center.

I gave him a few more pointers and demonstrated to him how to take a shot with the Armscor 14Y, a bolt action, magazine fed, youth model rifle in .22LR, that I had brought along. He must think I am on heck of a good shot because luckily it hit dead center of the bull’s-eye, granted though the target was only at about 10 yards out. I them loaded up a mag for him, to show him how to do, and he got to shooting. His first shot was center target horizontally and a bit high vertically but right in the 6 inch bull’s-eye. It was all pretty good after that, first shooting at the large bull’s-eye target, then pasting a similarly sized Shoot N' See target over the center of that, then sticking a woodchuck color reactive target over that one. I am guessing he shot up about 10 magazines full of ammo, so about 60 rounds over the course of an hour and fifteen or thirty minutes when I asked if he wanted to shoot a full sized 22 rifle (meaning my Marlin 25MN in .22WMR).

That was the second time today that I was surprised, this time because he told me that he had had enough. I tried to persuade him to shoot the Marlin, telling him it was a bigger bullet and the rifle was scoped and whatever but I did not push it. We wound up cleaning up our point and getting out of there because he said it was enough for the day. While he told me he had enjoyed it, he did not seem all that enthused, even though he had shot well. I praised him for his good shooting and for having done it all safely. I was happiest that he had done it safely and let him know it. I was wondering what was up, with his kind of blah attitude, until my sister told me he said he wanted to do it again. I guess he was just getting tired but really had enjoyed himself. That sure made me feel good because it meant that another shooter had joined our ranks.

All the best,
Glenn B