Kilroy was here.

Kilroy was here

     That’s spiking the ball!

(military, c. 1940s) Inserted in the manner of graffiti in many remote and difficult-to-access locations to mark the presence of American workers or military personnel.

My every day pleasure the last decade, knowing that during your every waking moment your demise was a certainty – is gone. You thought about it many times and in many ways; Would it come in the stealth of night maybe even while making love to one of your Davidian-like concubines. Is this your last meal because it contains trace poisons? Was that a shadow you saw? Would an explosion or well placed sniper’s bullet suddenly take you from the world and into the void that is to become your being? Will I see into the eyes of my assassin and will he be a silent warrior and a man a generation younger from Kansas City?

I relished thinking of you. The hell and uncertainty. The most wanted and hunted man in the world. And you died unarmed. Just like those on September 11th. Beyond that, the difference is stark, absolute and certain.

Kilroy was here motherfucker! Just like we all knew he would be.

William Russian Jr.

“The Only Easy Day Was Yesterday” ~ SEAL Team motto

http://www.horizontalgophers.com/

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Walk Like an Egyptian – 2011 Revolution

Sung to the tune of “Walk Like an Egyptian”, by The Bangles.

All the old paintings on the tombsEgyptian revolution Walk like an Egyptian
They do the sand dance don’t you know
If they move too quick
(Oh whey oh)
They’re shot right down like a domino

See the Google man by the Nile
On Twitter he tweets on a bet
Overthrow Mubarak
(Oh whey oh)
We’ll snap our teeth on your bayonet

Foreign types with the hookah pipes say
(Ay oh whey oh, ay oh whey oh)
Walk like an Egyptian
 Walk like an Egyptian
CNN reporters want to stay
Punched around and they hit the floor
They’ve got the moves
(Oh whey oh)
Drop your iPhone then they bring you more

All the people so sick of crooks
They take a stand against the iron hand
When the masses sings
(Oh whey oh)
They’re walking like an Egyptian

All the kids in the Tahrir Square say
(Ay oh whey oh, ay oh whey oh)
Walk like an Egyptian

Slide your feet up the street watch your back
They shift their guns then pull them back
Life’s hard you know
(Oh whey oh)
Champagne corks starting heart attacks

If you want to find all the cops
They’re fleeing the streets and do not stopTahrir square picture
You sing and dance
(Oh whey oh)
They spin their heels run down the block

They all watch closely in Yemen
The democrats call the Kremlin
And the Chinese know
(Oh whey oh)
They walk the line like an Egyptian

All the world stops to say
(Ay oh whey oh, ay oh whey oh)
Walk like an Egyptian
Walk like an Egyptian

Peace brother.

William Russian Jr.

“We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately.” ~ Benjamin Franklin at the signing of the Declaration of Independence

www.HorizontalGophers.com

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Let go of the anchor!

Peace brotherI have to admit, for having just met someone only a few days before you absorbed the kidding with all the aplomb of a seasoned friend. You know; the type immune to even the harshest of good natured criticism simply because the awareness of your weaknesses in addition to your strengths is what defines you to them. Your wry smile told me that the self inflicted verbal torture you had wrought was understood. Even appreciated.

It never would have occurred to me that someone just met would have an impact on my life. I’m too old for new relationships to develop over any lengths of time. A person gets to the point that your friend’s friends become yours because they’ve invested the time. ‘If you’re good enough to watch my friend’s kids then you’re good enough to watch mine’ sort of thing. That would explain why today is such a painful day for me.

The next time we meet up you’re going to have to tell me all about the big one that got away and the bait you were using. I never did figure out why you chose to cast spinners instead of using the artificial bait we were catching them on. Knowing you were fairly new to the trout fishing I just assumed you didn’t want to bother our fishing to tie the special White River trout rig for you. I know its one of those things best learned on the shore and not from the middle of a flowing river in a tipsy Jon boat, but the call of the trout precluded any bank-side lessons. And catch trout we did, sometimes three at a time and never without the inevitable “It sure feels like a good fish” comments only to arrive boat side where we’d collectively feign disappointment before releasing them. We certainly weren’t bemoaning our fate.  As a matter of fact catching fish was more a of side show than a mission. Who can honestly complain about non-stop rainbow action on light tackle in the middle of God’s country?

It was a gorgeous day, picture perfect by even the standards of Ansel Adams: Crisp temperatures, the start of the fall colors and a bald eagle pair circling overhead. The calming sounds of the river were only interrupted once all day and that was by a screaming F-16 on a training run navigating the valleys at tree top level. Near the end of our adventure I saw you entranced by the scenery and I knew what you were thinking. We all were thinking it. “It just doesn’t get any better than this”.

Chuckles came easily that day; the 28 year old running for town council who’s most notable elected position was ‘Running the church bake sale’. Rob’s instructions to toss in the drag chain only to question after the splash if we’d ensured the rope was tied on. Remind me – is panic the first or worst thing to do? I get confused. You sat bemused through the day and silently tolerated our mindless babbling at nothing in particular.  And of course the recollection of your first river trip with Rob and your sole responsibility of manning the anchor. You took that very seriously on your inaugural float and when instructed to toss the anchor you more than complied. You’re supposed to let go of the anchor not follow it into the frigid waters. That dry smile and grin of yours told me it was a lesson learned. And it only reinforced the fact my friends are impeccable judges of character.

I hurt for them today; they’ve lost someone as did your family and anyone like me that had the pleasure of your presence, however brief. I sincerely wanted to follow up on our mutual agreement to fish again. Just three like-minded guys out for a day, away from the women and their honey-dos, the politics and the realities of life. Just fishing.

It was a pleasure making your acquaintance Jeff.  Godspeed.
WR2

Every man dies. Not every man really lives. ~
William Wallace



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Gun Shop to open next to NY Mosque

The New York TimesGun Shop to open next to NY MosqueLunch crowd at Wild Bill's

Special Contributor:

William Russian Jr.

August 18th 2010

At a raucous press conference today it was announced that Wild Bill’s Anti-Terrorist Weapons Emporium and Range will open shortly after the first of the year following a lengthy and eventful application process. The business is drawing fire from the Muslim community who portray the business as a blatant attempt to disrupt their plans of educating the general public that the worship of Islam is a peaceful endeavor. Their primary complaint is that the location of the gun shop and range next to the proposed Mosque only inflames the already strained relationships between the two communities. 

“That’s an absolute falsehood,” stated William ‘Wild Bill’ Wesson the store’s colorful proprietor. “The 2nd amendment affords all Americans the right to purchase, keep, practice and bear arms. We’re simply exercising that right and it’s unfortunate that the Cordoba Institute chose that particular location for their center. They could have picked any spot in the borough but they chose that one. Had they checked the public records first they would have recognized that we submitted our application eleven months prior to theirs.” When a reporter asked Wesson if the approval of the Mosque’s location might prompt him to relocate his business Wesson responded with a terse, “Absolutely not. What better place to educate Americans on the evils of radical Islamists than downtown New York?”

The reaction from New Yorkers is divided with those favoring the gun shop the most vocal of the groups. Comments ranged from incendiary indignation to curious caution. “I don’t see the problem,” stated one Manhattan model that goes by the name Misty. “So what if some boys with their big toys want to play with them? I’ve handled a lot of nine’s in my day and the sales guys at Bill’s showed me the proper way to grip them so they don’t accidentally or prematurely discharge.” Then there are those such as former Texan Milton Munnchack who relocated to the Big Apple to escape the illegal immigrant invasion in his home state. Play Misty for me Mohammed“My friends all call me Pork Chop,” Munnchack proudly offered. “Ya’ all just don’t get it up here just yet. Back home we learned the hard way that if you don’t stop the weeds before they take root you’ll never get rid of them. Wild Bill’s allows me some time at lunch hour to practice my close quarter’s combat skills so I can be an effective citizen fighting off the evils of terrorism.”

Munnchack’s perspective is the one that concerns the Cordoba Initiatives leaders the most. “We don’t understand how an operating gun store and practice facility can be built next to a Mosque. This is America and they could well have elected to build this anyplace other than here,” said founder Iman Feisal Abdul Rauf. “We realize that they are protected by the 2nd amendment but common sense tells us that this is purposely inflammatory and an insult to practicing Muslims. They’re twisting the Constitution to suit their agenda and not showing any respect to the Muslims that were killed in the 9/11 attacks!” 

Rauf may be on to something. One of Rauf’s trusted colleagues (this person wished to have his identity remain anonymous and asked that we refer to him as ‘Tom’) suggested that there is more to Wild Bill’s than meets the eye. “Don’t you find it ironic that the hand grenade classes take place during our afternoon prayers?” questioned ‘Tom’. “Moreover, the training room and our prayer room will be no more than a few inches away from one another.”

“He’s absolutely dead on. Our hand grenade training with live rounds will coincide with their afternoon prayer time,” retorted Wesson. “It’s unfortunate but the reality is, that is the time most urban New Yorkers get off work and have a window between their profession and Happy Hour to practice eradicating terrorism. The fact the prayer and training rooms share an adjacent wall is a quirk of the facilities design. That wall is fire retardant and a foot thick and will have no issue with absorbing the blasts. Most likely there will be muffled explosions on the prayer side of the wall but what’s the big deal? Should make them feel right at home. Besides, we’re restricting our training devices to Flash/Bangs and not concussion grenades so that should cut down on the noise”.       

Wesson elaborated on many concerns posed to him at the press conference including some oft asked questions concerning the overall safety of the facility for its patrons. Yes, there will be multiple Nike-Hercules anti-aircraft missiles mounted in customI don't know who won the '09 World Series designed cement bunkers on Wild Bill’s roof. “What? Are you nuts? Of course, this is New York. Name another U.S. city besides DC that has been attacked by air? Pearl Harbor doesn’t count because Hawaii wasn’t even a state at the time”. Wesson also confirmed Heather LaCroix would be teaching some classes once a month at Wild Bill’s. “Heather is an All-American gal and her body of work is unparalleled in our industry. Her classes book well in advance and she’s highly sought after. Just like women’s golf Heather has proven beyond a doubt that she doesn’t let her breasts interfere with her ability to take aim. I for one am always at full attention when I watch her videos. She’s so popular even her Turkey Necks and Gator Balls cooking class is standing room only”. Wesson did stop short of guaranteeing the Unabomber IUD making classes will be held as originally planned. “We teach anti-terrorism techniques and we’re not convinced this is appropriate to our overall curriculum. We’re leaning towards additional Jihadist or Juggler? terrorist identification classes as they might be more topical and relevant”.

William Wesson was a little less intellectual and more politically correct when we cornered him near the future location of the Flamethrower Bar and Grill. The full service restaurant is being constructed on the third floor of Wild Bill’s and is facing the street with sweeping views of the activity outside. “This is going to be perfect. What an ideal spot to hang out after vaporizing some Bin Laden targets with a Sypder Pro III Arctic laser. Good ole Ham and American Cheese sandwiches, greasy fries and our signature Atom Bomb hot wings”.  Wesson paused, took a long sip from his third Molotov Cocktail and then followed with, “Not only that but where else can you sit quaffing a Budweiser while working on your racial profiling skills? I mean come on, look who our neighbors are. I’ll never understand why they have their hijabs all in a wad but I think it has to do with Sherry’s Law.”    

We wandered down to the local corner store after meeting with Wesson to relay his remarks to our new friend ‘Tom’ to gauge his reaction. We were seeking an opinion that reflected exactly how the Muslim community felt about the perception of Americans toward their culture. In between selling Shisha tobacco products and “I Know Where Bin Laden is Hiding” t-shirts Tom refudiated Wesson’s statements, “My hijab isn’t in a wad!” he exclaimed.

Meanwhile, after months of silence on the subject, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs issued the following statement:

“President Obama wants the citizens of the world to know that heObama supports gun shop next to mosque fully endorses Wild Bill’s Anti-Terrorist Weapons Emporium and Range and is a begrudging supporter of the  2nd amendment. Furthermore he wishes to see what political backlash this position causes so he can sleep on it and adjust his perspective in this critical election year.”

It seems like just yesterday little Malia was asking, “Did you plug that hole yet daddy?” and now her next question might well be “Daddy, can I sight my AR-15 if I’m wearing a Burqa?”

In spite of all the distasteful dialogue we came away from our visit duly impressed with the foresight and thoughtfulness William Wesson has invested in his vision of a world without terrorism. I signed up for the February Valentine’s Day Massacre Weekend Retreat and will report back on the experience next spring. The weekend includes hands on pistol skills, water-boarding for fun and profit, reloading with nitro and my personal favorite; a two hour breakout session titled Getting Horizontal with Heather: Shooting Your Load from the Sniper Position.

William Russian Jr.
                 aka WR2 

When I was crossing the border into Canada, they asked if I had any firearms with me. I said, “Well, what do you need?” ~ Steven Wright

www.HorizontalGophers.com

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Time to White Flag the War on Drugs.

Shows over folks, and we lost. Spectacularly. At least the ganja part. And frankly this is one war that we now deserve to lose. In the long run we’ll be better off for it. So much has been written on the subject this is all redundant to the point of extremeFrench word for surrender? All of them ridiculousness. Just like the ‘war’ itself.

For the sake of argument let’s break down all the hyperbole to manageable components. The driving factor in this is Sir James Denham-Steuart’s posturing on economic equilibrium or what’s more commonly referred to as the Law of Supply and Demand. The concept is beautiful in its simplicity; supply, demand and price are inextricably interwoven. 1+1=2  If supply goes up, and demand goes down – price goes down. If supply goes down, and demand goes up – price goes up.

We’ve attempted to decrease demand through education, Kicking Drugs out of America, strengthening punishment, paraquat, a point of light within a thousand, portraying users as evil-doers, Just Say No and Reefer Madness. What intrinsic value have we received in exchange for these strategic investments besides a cult movie? Granted, some skirmishes have been won and a tremendous amount of thanks are deserved for the foot soldiers in this war. However, Hitler lost WWII because he chose to fight battles on too many frontiers. He spread his resources too thin and lost focus.

American expenditures are far too vast in this war of many fronts. Here’s a disturbing story that exemplifies why this is an economic dead-end venture. Let’s take a far right-wing radical perspective on this: We’ll assume for a minute that all the man and machine power to search, find, harvest and destroy these marijuana fields were endeavored by a 100% volunteer army. What did we accomplish and what economic damage did we do to the illegal farmers? We didn’t lessen demand; we merely increased it by choking supply. Prices go up. We didn’t even dent the pocket books of the cartel cultivators. All they are absent are some seeds, fertilizer, irrigation and harvest provisions. No taxes were collected, no worker’s compensation, insurance premiums, 401k’s or Christmas party celebrations. No creative CPA’s needed to cook the books like a well run Ponzi Scheme. Their workers were illegal immigrants who now get to return home so they can creep back across our border or go to jail where they can burden our incarceration system. $1.7 billion sounds like a lot but bear in mind Reefer Madness or Hormones?this isn’t a definitive fine like ones imposed on BP but an intangible street-price figure spread across numerous entities and layers.   

Now, let’s reexamine with the fact this was not a volunteer effort. Here’s what we do know about our government’s investment: We had 450 agents working for three weeks. Let’s look at some highly conservative numbers. We’ll assume that the agents each labored 8 hour days and none were approved for vacation time (except maybe those monitoring the burn pile, chuckle-chuckle). That’s four-hundred and fifty agents multiplied by fifteen business days at eight hours a day (450 x 15 x 8) totaling 54,000 man hours. The average Federal Employee makes about seventy-five grand annually or roughly $37.00 an hour. That’s 2 million tax payer dollars not including hard costs and pay benefits. This money is being spent in a state that is bankrupt, pays civil servants $800,000 a year, has a 25% illegal immigrant population and contained on their own upcoming election ballot is a plebiscite to legalize pot. Mental disturbation. And lest I need to remind you this is but a singular example.

The more resources we throw at eradicating pot possession the more cost is added to the supply. Looking at it another way, factor the available supply divided by the cumulative monies invested.Don't worry, be happy! 1+1=2. There is one, and only one, entity that benefits from this equation and its not me and you. We need to concede the cannabis conflict. Now.

Like it or not, we have to recognize more children are born everyday than those we can convince to abstain from a plant. It’s called the Law of Diminishing Returns.

WR2

“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek” ~ Barack Obama

This article sponsored by the purveyors at Horizontal Gophers

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Flight of the Conduit Condor

Van Del Drive In Movie TheatreWe grew up in the farmlands of the midwest due south of Lake Erie’s western edge. Soy and corn fields as far as the eye or your imagination would take you. Your gaze might be interrupted occasionally by a drive-in-movie screen or maybe a dust devil. It was the land of farmers where small businesses and doctors would close every Wednesday at noon and the other-side-of the-tracks meant a definable direction.

As kids we were bored to death when summer rolled around. There were six of us that bonded together. We were inseparable and functioned as a single entity. The only things on our collective agenda were baseball and the Elk’s Lodge swimming pool. At that time of the year we couldn’t trap or hunt so we needed to manufacture adventure for ourselves. Girls were just on our mental horizon and were wily and diversionary. And you can’t hunt ‘em. No, we had to be creative or what folks now call “thinking outside the box”.

One day Donny came into our headquarters (The Basement) spastically waiving around a Popular Science containing a story about heroic guys taking flight with a hang glider assembled with electrical conduit. It was dubbed the Conduit Condor. An adventure was born. Now the closest thing we had to an altitude disparity were the 15 foot banks on the outside of the county reservoir or the cliffs lining an abandoned stone quarry. The reservoir was out because it was fenced at the base and none of us had the confidence our contraption would fly let alone clear the barb wire. We all agreed except Carl – Carl had a screw or two loose – that Dead Mans Quarry was out as well. The persistent rumors were it was guarded by a disturbed old man that didn’t ‘shoot first and ask questions later’, he just shot. If that wasn’t enough, the same people that passed on the old man tale, our parents, additionally informed us the water in the quarry was like a 1,000 feet deep and if we went in we might never be found. We debated the issue on an appropriate launch point for hours before Carl had one of his eureka moments.   

The only logical thing to do was launch our Conduit Condor behind a speeding car.

And we needed a test pilot.Not what I planned

I was volunteered.

None of us were strangers to speed or fast cars. We lived it. The biggest stud in the county was always the athlete whose parents sprung big bucks for the latest and greatest sports car. But the ‘real’ bad-ass was the kid that re-worked his Chevelle SS or Olds 442 turning it into a road consuming beast. Steering was an after-thought, our roads were straight and long. We needed a fast launch vehicle and Carl’s tricked out Candy Apple Red Mustang 390 convertible was chosen.

My first award winning experience riding in Carl’s ‘Stang was one I’ll never forget. I had been up in Michigan visiting family and on my return my clan told me Carl had concocted the ultimate back roads cruising technique. It was an edge of your seat experience. The top edge. Where your shoulders go. I was game so once we were out of town I was told to assume the front passenger position in honor of my return. As I sat on the top of the seat, head above the windshield and gritting my teeth in anticipation of 50 mile-per-hour insects, I began to relax and consume the experience. It wasn’t until sometime later that I realized that Carl’s highly technical method of controlling accelerator and brakes by use of a stick was flawed. Pliant branches were favorable for their slight ‘give’ but on my ride Carl selected what must have been petrified oak. When he hit the brakes – I hit the hood. But not before somersaulting over the windshield and knocking myself out.

Carl's 1967 Mustang launch vehicleCarl was my buddy and I forgave him. We shared an unbreakable brotherhood and besides I still needed a ride to our weekend jobs at the local drag strip. Donny was our other “Finish Line Technician”, our jobs were to hand a crew member a scrap of paper that had his driver’s time and speed scrawled in pencil. It was the greatest job a kid could want at the time and we enjoyed some classic racing, epic battles between the Mongoose and the Snake or runs by Big Daddy Don Garlits. We were stationed behind a concrete wall at the end of the quarter mile strip and over several weekends it was the place we put together the final pieces to taking flight in our home brewed Conduit Condor.

We had the launch vehicle, test pilot and winged concept so all we needed to do was build one. Our non-existent cash reserves precluded sending money off for the bird’s plans. We reckoned we could fashion one by just re-reading the single paragraph Popular Science article a hundred times and taking a magnifying glass to the grainy picture. Our staging area was a forlorn barn outside of town that no one ever bothered with. We wrote down our shopping list; conduit, tarp, rope, tape and tools. I also insisted on some form of pilot protection.

It didn’t take us long to gather all our materials and begin ourWhat's it worth now? Wings Over Ohio project. The conduit was located at a junk yard and the proprietor told us we could have about 10 pieces for free. Gotta love the small town mentality. That and we told him we were building some tomato trellises down at the old folk’s home. We borrowed a dual handled ski rope from Mr. Miller’s garage to use as a tow rope. The tape, tools and Visqueen were found readily scattered amongst our various homes. I took this pilot safety issue very seriously and went all out. I stole my younger sister’s roller skates so I could taxi down the runway. For noggin protection we re-purposed a Cleveland Browns autographed helmet Donny’s dad kept in their basement. We figured if he knew why we borrowed it he’d be pleased we were concerned about safety.

On the chosen day we gathered at the old barn where we’d hidden our aeronautical components. Nice sunny day with a slight breeze and no hint of inclement weather. Gorgeous conditions perfect for flight. I dreamed of slowly rising above the ears of corn and majestically guiding my wings of destiny. I’d be front page news; Local Boy Makes Aviation History. The Van Wert Chamber of Commerce would erect a statue in my honor down in front of the Brumback Library. Neil Armstrong grew up just a few towns over and he was a living legend. He had teams of NASA rocket scientists and the world cheering him on.

I had Carl.

Carl was a prodigious thinker but he wasn’t much in the way of a doer. He was our de facto leader simply because he was infamously This is MY damn quarry!!!!outspoken. When it came time to build the condor he was scattered like marbles in a warehouse forcing us to think on the fly. We put the bird together in less than an hour or roughly a hundred times less than we spent designing it. We probably underestimated our need for duct tape but she appeared air worthy.

I ceremoniously donned the helmet and began the process of cramming my feet into my sister’s pink roller skates. Once secured, I wobbled into the middle of the county road and waited for Carl to stage his car. As he was backing up one of our other buddies hustled over and tied the ski rope to the Mustang’s bumper. The rest grabbed the four corners of the delta wing and gingerly walked it towards me. Anticipation was killing me but I was going to be the pride of the people and I reveled in the moment. After taping me to the condor they all climbed into the car to act as spotters and witness history from 50 feet away.

The first attempt was aborted the moment Carl stood on the gas and ripped the ski rope handles from my death grip. It was good to get the shakedown cruise over with, time to recalibrate and concentrate on the maiden flight. On the second try Carl was more judicious on the gleaming foot-shaped gas pedal and I began to slowly roll forward. As we picked up speed the contraption began to become……..‘unstable’. There was a whole bunch more resistance than I anticipated. It got really noisy and the wind was whistling a fire drill in my ears. Glasses would have been nice. Loose gravel was shooting from beneath my skate wheels like random skeet. The endless rows of mature corn became a corridor of concentration.

In our haste to build the condor we overlooked theEarly harvest steering/altitude bar, which turned out to be pretty important. We had wrongly assumed that with a two handled rope it’d navigate just like water skiing – only 30 feet in the air. As we approached the 20 miles an hour mark I started to question my venture into defying the laws of nature. I had absolutely no control and was being dragged like a pink footed, orange headed, black butterfly on a leash. I was yelling “Whoa, whoa, whoa!” and they told me later they heard “Go, go go!” An instant before I was going to release the rope and scuttle my mission with history I felt an upward tug and the world became eerily silent. I was airborne. Call it design luck, or in hindsight more likely a ground thermal, but I was a pilot. You can’t describe to someone that whole body and mind sensation you experience when the laws of gravity are broken and you become one with Icarus. I can however describe what’s it’s like to crash and burn like Icarus.

There was no time to think when the Norse winds grabbed my wing and flung me from one foot off the ground violently sideways, cart-wheeling like a detached Tilt-a-Whirl into the first dozen rows of corn. The produce aisles shredded my clothes like dragon claws. The cacophony of metal, Visqueen, cracking corn stalks and my own screams melded together in a rock orchestra playing a lively version of I Wanna be Sedated. I remember hearing the moving peanut gallery with a tone that resembled Bob Uecker’s “Just a little outside” pitch call. Have you ever been clobbered with masses of 20 MPH ears of corn? They hurt but not nearly as painful as good old Mother Earth. On the spot I became a lifelong fan of the Cleveland Browns that lasted until they morphed into the Ravens. The helmet saved my egg and I’m forever grateful to Donny’s dad for having the foresight to invest in sports memorabilia.

Van Wert Ohio tickets .......There is no proverbial happy ending to the flight of the Conduit Condor unless the fact I walked away from a crash with only deep cuts and bruises counts. We tried ‘repairing” the helmet by screwing the face guard back on and scrubbing the outside. We were a little over zealous with the Brillo pad and managed to destroy most of the signature. I can further assure you that Donny’s dad didn’t share our enthusiasm on the successful deployment of safety devices. Mom and dad asked me what happened, or more specifically “what the hell happened to you?” I really wasn’t sure how to respond even though I’d been mentally rehearsing my ‘a deer jumped in front of my bike and I had a horrific crash’ story.

Instead I told them the truth. I was summarily dismissed with a casual waive of the hand and a “you sure have an active imagination” remark.

Whoduh thunk?

WR2

Post flight pilot/maintenance crew log book:

Pilot to maintenance crew: Number 3 engine missing.
Maintenance crew response: Engine found on right wing after brief search.

Pilot: Aircraft handles funny.
Crew: Aircraft warned to straighten up, fly right, and be serious.

www.HorizontalGophers.com

Posted in Life Lessons, Uncategorized and unleashed | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Can you come back? I’ve got to put my Glock together

Chicago NRA Chapter annual meetingI’ve recently had the pleasure of conversing on-line with a gentleman from outside Chicago and talk turned to gun legislation. He was kind enough to share a perspective and some insight that I found stunning. More fascinating than that were his carefully chosen words. They conveyed a sense of “Big Brother” is monitoring our emails. Words are subject to interpretation, and I’m as guilty as anyone of missing the mark, but I couldn’t shake that feeling. This is a fellow countryman I’m speaking with.

The online edition of the Chicago Tribune was a great start to explore this subject to form my own opinion. I read all the topical articles and buried myself deep into the archives. At times I had to remind myself this is a great American city. Gun shops, if they are allowed to even exist, can’t display guns? Chicago confiscated from their citizens what were previously legally purchased guns after passing a prohibition? No wonder my new found friend hedged his words. Mayor Daley says we should emulate Europe and ban guns but he surrounds himself with armed bobbies. They had an alderman state that the U.S. Supreme Court was “far right wing” Jeesh.  

Chicago BearsNow if you were to read the Houston Chronicle a far different scenario unfolds. Houston recently had a 15 year old kid, the son of a sheriff protecting his younger sister, open up on 2 hapless burglars with a fully automatic rifle. Obviously well trained and maintaining his wits he shot one of the would-be thieves 4 times. The wounded moron then drove 20 miles away to a hospital and tried to pass off his wounds as an accident. “I was cleaning my rifle and shot myself, like four times, in my back” Houston is well known for their outstanding medical community and they didn’t have to call one of their NASA scientists to put the truth of this story together.

Now had this same scenario played out in Chicago the kid would have had to scurry from room to room grabbing parts of a dismantled firearm. Then he’d have to pick the trigger lock off and load it. In Chicago minors can’t access weapons. It’d be a life and death game of Shop ‘till You Drop with no inconsequential prize being the well being of his younger sibling. What’s his other immediate option? He might scream “Could you come back in 10 minutes? I’ve got to put my Glock together” What would 2 burglars do when caught inside a home red-handed by 2 younger kids?  

Read both papers and its quite evident that Texans fight back. And win. A lot. Chicago is home of ‘da Bears’ a damn tough hardy bunch that backs down from no man. But they literally are bringing a golf club to a gun fight. In their own damn homes!  I'm Mayor Daley and I approve this ad!

Mayor Daley: In a fight for life with guns, knives and good intentions; good intentions lose.

Every time.

WR2
Update July 19th, 2010: C’mon Chicago – wake up and take your city back. We’re all behind you. Do not let the killing of one of your finest go quietly into the night. Michael Bailey and his family deserve more respect. There is a very sad irony in the fact that this man’s duty called for him to guard the mayor’s home. Godspeed Officer Bailey.  
“Our society is run by insane people for insane objectives. I think we’re being run by maniacs for maniacal ends and I think I’m liable to be put away as insane for expressing that. That’s what’s insane about it” ~ John Lennon

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