Oct 31, 2012

The resurrection and the knife

A nice thing about good little loopholes is that they feature all sorts of easy and mindless blog food at trifling cost, in this case a five-dollar bill.

There is no official relic-condition category called "hideous to the max," but there should be. What else do you call a (probable) M1 bayonet variation -- greatly shrunken -- like this?

The first incorrect impulse is to ID it as some sort of M1 carbine blade. Among other things, the muzzle hole is too big.  So, Garand? Maybe. Also maybe a foreign adaptation of the M1 bayonet for something else. (The key to M1ish identification is the complicated birds-head pommel.) It's 11 inches overall with a 6 1/2 -inch blade.

The other faulty impulse is to curse the Bubba who maimed it beyond any wild dream of restoration: all markings obliterated, lug catch ground off, hilt metal and pommel deeply pitted, and a fuller showing the endeavors of a guy who had a Dreml but shouldn't have. The finishing touch is a set of grips crafted from salvaged orange crate lumber and Elmer's glue.

I'll take a short-odds bet that this one is a dugup and spent a long time under damp earth before someone kicked it up and decided to see if he could turn it into a knife.  So it's a well-motivated resurrection, sort of like Stephen King's risen cat; it didn't walk too well, but it was still  reconizable as a cat-like object.

Oct 30, 2012

Actually, it is kind of a porn gun.

But please keep it under your hat. This is being written in the wee hours when my compatriots are sleeping and won't find out somebody snuck back to the loophole for:

Provenance? You demand provenance? I got your provenance right here:

Corporal Styng of the 101st Airborne took it from a particularly thuggish SS Oberstleutnant on the Cotentin Peninsula about sunrise, June 6, 1944. For 11 months it was a comforting presence in his pocket, loaded with 7.65 rounds also liberated from the German supply chain.

Then, in early May on the Elbe, victory won, his artistic side appeared. The battalion armorer made up the grips from the wind screen of a downed Stuka, and S/Sgt. Styng lovingly fitted the photo of the Girl Back Home.  (A more sedate picture of the future Mrs. Styng is under the right grip panel.)

Geeking it out: FN Browning Model 1922, .32ACP, Nazi proofed, made in the captured FN factory in Liege, Belgium, probably in 1941 or '42, although it bears a batch serial number (with a letter suffix), making dating somewhat tricky. The slide is well polished and blued. The number-matched frame shows more hasty manufacturing. Insofar as the Luftwaffe had an official pistol, this was it, but the 1922 was widely carried by Master Race officers of all services.

The 1922 is a stretched version of John M. Browning's , PBUH, Model 1910 which Colt didn't want. So he had it built by the Walloons who showed it to the picky damned Yugoslavs who wanted a longer barrel and greater capacity.

Most guys would probably grade this one at very good, maybe a little better. 85 per cent? I expect it to shoot well enough -- minute-of-Nazi thorax  across a small courtyard. But that's secondary. What it is is foxhole art and the one of the most intimate possible pieces of history.  What is war if it isn't the story of a lonesome warrior, too far from Her?

Oct 29, 2012

Just maybe some piddly little Sandy deaths

I know a lot of Virginians,  and they don't talk this way. Just the politicians.

"...  no injuries so far and no fatalities of any significance," Governor Bob McDonnell told the electric teevee this morning.

Try it like this, Governor Bob. "No one hurt or killed yet."  You're just not ready for words of two or more syllables.

Oct 28, 2012

Other gun show spawn

That's it, the entire result of a couple of aisle-wandering hours up in Windom. Materially it doesn't  justify the fuel cost, So you have to look at it spiritually. Then the laughs and general bs-ing yield a rich profit.

But back to things. The items represent an expenditure of eleven Federal Reserve Cartoons, each humorously labeled one "dollar."

The booklets came at one FRC each, no negotiation involved. The taper crimp die traded for $7.50, a 25 per cent reduction in the ask. That's especially sweet because I've been wanting one against the likelihood that I may need to start rolling  9 mm.

The mink oil is even better, half off the tag price, or $1.50 and NIB.  Did you know that mink oil really comes from minks, usually Chinese ones in today's market? I didn't until I wikied it. Like you, I love it the stuff to soften certain leather  -- slings, dress belts, gloves that got wet, and so forth. (Never holsters.)  But it took the internet to teach me it will make my skin soft, smooth, and radiant.  I think I'll pass. My hide is none of those sexy things, but there are occidental mink all around Camp J, and that makes me fearful. Certainly among the locals there may be a bull mink who fantasizes Asian, and I'll bet a randy mink jumping my face would sting.

Lessee. What else? Oh yeah, the Fort William book was sort of a mistake. I stupidly assumed it was a history of Fort Laramie which began life as Fort William -- named Fort William by Mr. Sublette whose first name was William.  S'okay. After years of studying Rocky Mountain trappers, I need to know more about the Frenchies and their eastern fur trade.

One more thing. I'm diddling with the idea of going back today. If Wehrmacht Browning 1922 and the Remington 760 (another one of those damned things?) are still on the tables, I could re-open negotiations. If that happens, and if my pals find out about it, they will  snicker and smirk and point rude fingers at me and make  stupid cracks about a guy who can't make up his mind. Scroom. I mean, were they clever enough to get half-off on a cask of mink oil?

A social history of the United States

In microcosm. Really micro, as deduced from the literary spawn of a fine loophole up in Windom yesterday.

Some time in the last one-fifth of the 20th Century an American patriot went on vacation; "patriot" because he chose to see America first by sightseeing in Duluth before skirting the Lake Superior coast and crossing into exotic Ontario, destination Fort William on the storied Kaministiquia River.

There he purchased a chapbook -- a guide to the post and superficial history of the Great Lakes fur trade. The booklet was interesting enough, though written in the see how cute I write style. But more intriguing is the single sheet of scratch paper our traveler stuck in it, his to-do-before-leaving list and his itinerary. It's easy to quote in full. He would be ready to roll after:

--Move state park sticker. This pegs him as a probable Minnesotan. Even then that SSR required a permit for damned near everything.

--Lay out route.  We have here a prudent middle American; leave nothing to chance on wilderness roads or sinister urban concentrations. We can safely suggest that he remembered his Boy Scout motto and was prepared.

--PVC.  PCV  He knew his engine sported such a thing and, probably, what it did and how to replace it, representing a significant difference between than and now.

--Bug Spray. This was not  this ol' boy's first time in the woods.

--Clean garage. No respectable man wants to come home to a mess. Besides, he might come upon a forgotten can of bug spray, saving a bit of money as well as a special trip to town.

--Write Instructions For Shooting & ; lodge I.D. This is the most enigmatic entry. So he was an Elk, a Moose, or an Odd Fellow and wanted to make sure he would be welcomed as a brother in the towns he visited? But shooting instructions for what? This actually is wonderful. Without mystery, history would  be a bore.

And finally on this side of the paper:

--Money Box.  See? I told you this was a competent American who knew the ultimate requirement of travel, foreign and domestic.

The other side was even briefer, five penciled blocks representing the calendar of his vacation.

Tues Duluth late

Wed Sight see Duluth etc. That "etc." raises questions. Duluth was even then a seaport, and things can get racy down on the waterfront. But what the Hell. It's your vacation and these days it's no worse than a bad cold.

Thurs Ft. Williams & Grand Pro(???) -- Look, I didn't  claim he was a careful speller or skilled penman. He meant Grand Portage.

Fri Finish Dulht (Duluth?) Head to L.F. 

Sat Head Home.


I wish you had had  more vacation time,  Friend.  Having to punch the clock on Monday morning was a bitch, wasn't it? Still is.

And I hope you are still alive, in good health, living among people who love you, and entertaining  grandchildren with tales of your expedition to the great northern forests.

Oct 24, 2012

The gun market

Mid-October , 2012, guns-only auction in northwest Iowa; all from one owner; all in excellent to NIB condition.

Porn update

A guy is lucky to have a friend like John, a liberrian in the GMA. He was understandably upset at the blurry Venus/Susan cheesecake I posted. (Honest, it was the best one I could find.) so he sought out a much better reproduction, and it now appears in the original post. Lechers of the world, rejoice! Go look and pant.

Junk on my bunk

Six pieces of it, sent my way through a friend for a value opinion and an offer. The friend will buy the scabby but working Remington 11-48  as a spare gun.

Leaving a neglected and butchered Remington 31, dinged, rusty, and with a receiver gouge that could only have been done with a grinder. It sports one of those old Lyman screw-on choke tubes, likely frozen in place. Too bad. It was a graceful gun from John Pederson who undoubtedly tipped his hat to Mr. Browning (PBUH) for some of the basic design.

Leaving also a J.C. Higgins bolt-action 12 gauge, a Stevens 16-gauge single, an Ithaca 72 (by Erma of West Germany)  lever .22,

And the heartbreaker, a Winchester 37 in .410,  bad enough to require butchering -- like this -- nearly unthinkable for an old Winchester.  Stock cracks and chips. Battered butt plate. Hints of blue highlight a motif of rust. It just spent too much time rattling around in the leaky rumble seat of a Model A.

My offer for all five is on the table, probably so low as to insult the owner, but high enough I really hope he declines. It isn't as though there are too few projects cluttering up evey damned horizontal surface I own.

(The cheap Ithaca is somewhat presentable and probably works. Having a little experience with Ermaverksjerks, I'd just shoot it until something breaks -- more likely sooner than later --  then screw it to a barn board and sell it to some older party who needs to decorate his rumpus room.)

A reporter discovers irony

In the village of Haverhill in the commune of Massachusetts,  police arrested a drug dealer. The local newspaper covered the bust in exhaustive detail -- really more than most folks would want to know about a hulking ex-con who discovered prosperity in peddling Oxycodone.

Hmmm.  Why the journalistic opus? It couldn't have been his $15,247 in cash the cops found. That's a pittance in his business. it must have been his EBT card (translation: food stamps) which he had used at a convenience store an hour before the bust.

Actually, I understand his viewpoint in not going home to pick up a little green to pay for his beer and Frito-Lays. Things just aren't safe in Massachusetts these days, and a  guy doesn't want to be carrying cash out on the mean streets. Too many druggies and ex-cons lurking the alleyways.

Oct 22, 2012

Ammunition shortage, politics, and other Mad Monday mIscellenia

1. I cleaned out the local WalMart supply of bulk-pack .22 long rifle hollow points yesterday. Which is to say I bought one pack, Federals, at $19.97 plus tax, and consider myself lucky to get that. My WalMart has hired a rarity, a personable sporting goods clerk.  I asked about the dearth of .22s. She said there's a run on the stuff, that when she re-orders it can take three weeks to get any at all, and it disappears in a day or two.

(This large, pretty woman is especially treasurable compared to the usual Wally munchkins  whose default response to any question is a shrug and a grunt. I came perilously close to proposing marriage.)

The mania to buy ammunition is, of course, a vox pop phenomena, better than any other poll.The people say His Ineptness will be swept into power again, carrying a valise full of greater flexibility.

2. Joe Scarborough and his supporting cast are having quite a party down in a Florida cafe this morning, setting the scene for the debate-like teevee program tonight.  A lot of parents were in the place,  getting their existence validated by waving their hands and babies at the teevee cameras. Joe and Mika each held some racially balanced kids. It was cute for a couple-three minutes, then not. I  knelt before the porcelain throne, brushed my teeth, and switched to a C-Span channel where...

3. C-Span was interviewing college kids about the great issues to be decided this evening. Back to the throne. Look, dammit, kids are in college to learn something about grown-up life. By definition they're a few years shy of knowing what the Hell they're talking about . Giving them teevee time to advise adults on adult topics is presumptuous at best, but "stupid" is a more accurate term.  (There are a few exceptions, of course, but I've already talked too much about my grandsons.)

4.  The Sunday gun auction was astounding. Fine classic handguns at prices phenomenally greater than I and my comrades are willing to pay, even in Bernanke's Federal Reserve Cartoons. (More anon, assuming  any ambition remains after my light-heavyweight bout with leaves. Damn, I love trees,  but my adoration fades every October when I rediscover the annoyance of living downwind from 400 acres of them.

Oct 21, 2012


if there's no good gun auction or loophole handy to your digs, I offer a pair of  time-passers, one armed, one otherwise.

Guns galore

...and some nice ones. They go to auction this afternoon, so if you need me for emergency political or philosophical consultation I'm afraid I won't be here.

The queen of the hop is an apparently original Rem-Rand 1911A1.  The joker of sadness is a Colt GI issue .45. Chromed.  Add some Pythons to the mix and you at least have plenty of eye candy.

I seriously doubt I'll bring anything home. Auction prices around here have been astounding recently -- not just over the market, but off into the realm of stratobucks (thanks in part, of course, to Ben Bernanke's starship Kwee* Three Et Seq.)

I'll be leaving in about 90 minutes, so if you want to place a proxy bid...

*Q.E., quantitative easing, i.e. the Charminization of the Greenback.

Oct 19, 2012

Gun porn from the tin-bra set

Some Denver folks are wetting their stepins because Madonna used a gun in one of her acts. Her defense:

In a statement before beginning the tour, Madonna said she does not condone the use of guns. She said she is using the guns as symbols of intolerance and "the pain I have felt from having my heart broken." 

I was about to label that as pure celeb blather. On second thought she has a point.

Now, my heart has been broken here and there, although never in a way that would justify the use of guns. On the other hand, I usually have one handy as -- just as the Material Girl says -- a symbol of intolerance. It symbolizes my intolerance for some subhuman critter who wants to relieve me of my possessions or my life.

'course she stops a stroke shy of fulfillment. If it doesn't work to symbolize, a person can always actualize.

Oct 18, 2012

England reacts!

I often tease Brits, so it's only fair to thank one of them for as good a line as I've seen about the recent debate-like teevee show. Able of England says:

As a 'damn furiner' I had the impression that dear Cindys new job was as a replacement for the O's teleprompter (since last time its absence was all too obvious in effect).

Well said, Sir. And an extra nod for intimating that your politicians are as moronic as ours, or nearly so.

H/T Roberta, comments section.

Oct 17, 2012

Ick. Never shake hands with a Brit

Over across the pond live the dirty-handed, and this isn't the claim of a Jingo Yank. Their own Royal Radio Station says so.

In a recent UK-wide study, 99% of people interviewed at motorway service stations toilets claimed they had washed their hands after going to the toilet. Electronic recording devices revealed only 32% of men and 64% of women actually did.

Huh? The Sceptred Isle rulers find time and money and motivation to digitally track their subjects' personal sanitary habits? What's next? An electronic usage recorder on English condoms? (A tickling concept, eh wot?)

Oh well. I suppose it's easier than tracking down the thugs who manipulate the LIBOR.

Still, all in all, the next time The Queen extends her hand to me in a reception line, I think I'll just curtsy.


H/T Tam


Puts me in mind of the last time I visited my healer, two or three years back. Some kind of test was taken and the results said the guy's OK and has just  "normal bodily flora" in his juices.  I think that is quite an elegant way to report that I'm no germier than average.

The harem masters square off

Everybody loved the debate. The electric teevee jabberwockies loved it more than most because it had drama and conflict. Well, I agree. I  haven't seen anything so exciting since I watched a couple of older parties get riled over a call in patty-cake badminton.

It was a cage fight between eunuchs.

If Eunuch A had cleared his throat and declaimed to Eunuch B , "Sir, you are a lying, pandering sack of yak droppings with an intellect substantially inferior to that of Yogi Bear,"  I might have become more interested.  Either could have said  it without straying far from strict truth.


The debate was accurately summarized by Dr. Ron Paul some 12 hours before it occurred.  He was on CNBC and asked if he expected more substance in Debate 2  than he found in Debate 1. He said "no." Both Romney and Obama would simply promise fatter pick-a-nick baskets in the great Jellystone Park once known as the United States. Good call, Doctor.

Painfully to me, His Ineptness slithered slightly closer to the point at hand when he said something about long-term planning -- where the nation would be in 30 years or so. Unfortunately he uttered it only in a context of green energy -- solar and wind and ethanol mandates, all of those schemes touted by Mother Earth News  types 50 years ago. They would flood America with free pixie dust fuel by 1999 . Our troubles would end in a national group hug as Peter, Paul, and Mary grunted 69 choruses of Kumbayah.

So no real points for His Ineptness, just a nod to his mild suggestion that we might  want to give a thought to the fate of the nation in the decades after his personal interest in it ends, on January 20, 2013 or the same date in 2017. I mean, Hell, he knows he can fulfill his zillion-dollar book contract in Switzerland or Kenya or someplace.

Fairness requires me to say something equally nice about Governor Romney.  His hair stayed in place.


It's the debt, Stupid. And the deficits. And Ben's printing press.

Oct 16, 2012

Why we're broke

Can't pay our bills, says battery maker A123, so lets all go to bankruptcy court.

You won't be invited, however,  because of the distinction between a big creditor with a hot lawyer and a taxpaying chump who probably didn't even know about this particular rat hole.

A123 has been around for about 12 years as the brain child of a professor -cum-business tycoon with ties to China. It has always been a snacker at the public trough, so it isn't wholly a partisan issue,

But, Solyndra-like, it discovered joy of big-time slurping under the Obama administration. The president's DOE handed the company $249 million in 2009. Many more millions were sucked from from local and state tax spenders. (Routing note: The money passes from you to a bureaucrat to a company that doesn't quite know what the Hell it's doing besides scarfing up your personal wealth and having a ball with it.)

A123 promised to create smarter batteries, and possibly it did. But some of them didn't work and had to be recalled. More important, too few private investors believed the proposition was viable enough to risk their own money. Not a problem, mate. We'll just tell a nice green story to Uncle Barack and he'll tell Tim to tell Ben to print a few million more C-notes and give them to us.

We've seen so goddam much of this that it seems almost futile to restate the honest man's premise: If a proposed enterprise holds out a reasonable degree of success, the money to finance it will be available in the free market.  If it's a sky-pie ploy to capitalize on politically fashionable adventures, only elected and appointed government officials can be gulled.

I'll bet you're not a bit surprised that the batteries that broke the company are for everyone's favorite cause, ta-da, electric cars.

Oct 11, 2012

Maybe it's the long, dark nights

Sometimes when Sitemeter shows an unusual number of hits from an exotic locale, such as Norway, I look a little deeper. This time I found a half-dozen guys (I presume) hitting on May recently.

Of course it could be that some Norwegian social studies teacher assigned a class to look into racial relations in the United States.

Naah, probably  not. Most likely some randy little devil caught the old post by mistake and spread the word. Can't say I blame him. :)

Score one for The Associated Press

A friend and I were debating the flap over the AP photo showing the girl seeming to ogle Romney's butt. That led to a little research on AP caption corrections in general. I stumbled across this one. It is a dated (2010) but neat story of a cut line change on a captured enemy photo once thought to be of the Bataan Death March.

It shows GIs carrying bodies of their comrades, and for years everyone just accepted it was the march.  Decades later, a Bataan survivor said the Japs allowed nothing to slow the gory parade. The bodies were left where they lay. He believed the image was of a burial detail at POW Camp O'Donnell where the brutalized victims were taken.

AP did some checking, decided the veteran had a point, and,  some 65 years after the fact, rewrote the caption.

Oct 10, 2012

Hey, let's fleece Tourist!

News flash: Iowa bureaucrat says tourists spent more than $7 billion in Iowa last year.

About  two-thirds of it was the cost of driving around, trying to find a way out. Wait. I made that up, although it is not a totally implausible thought.

But I find the news item important as an illustration of the genius displayed by our official shreikspersons. For instance:

Economic Development Authority Director Debi Durham says travelers are perfect taxpayers because "they come to our communities for a short time and leave billions of dollars behind."

Well said, Debi. Now if we only had a law preventing our own wild and crazy guys from traveling around and spending money in other hip scenes...  (I'm thinking of places like Nebraska.)

Oct 9, 2012

Something else I didn't build

The Wood Faerie not only brought it one day, that night he cut it, split it, and stacked it.  For that I certainly want to thank the Wood Faerie and his advisor, His Ineptness, the president.

The president deserves yet another paean in this regard. By reminding me I don't actually own this little project he saves me from the notion that I have some right to resist any looter who swings buy with a pickup to transfer any or all of the sustainable, renewable biomass from my residence to his.

(Unfortunately, "paean" is always a noun, never a verb, which prevents a  fellow from writing that we should have a great national meeting and paean the president. Proper grammar imposes regrettable limits on expression.)

For energy geeks, you're looking at a little more tha two cords, mostly oak, containing roughly 40 million btus of energy, comparable to the heat available from more than six  barrels of crude from the Arabs who, oddly, seem to own their oil. At least His Ineptness, has never lectured them on the universal nature of collectivism.

Oct 8, 2012

Reloading dope

Namely me.

My buddy P is getting more interested in shooting. His son bought a .30-06 bolt gun a while back, and P decided he'd like one himself. Prosperous enough, he still gags the idea of spending a buck every time the hammer falls. (Me too.)  So he decided to sit at the feet of a guy who started assembling cartridges back in the Nixon years. An expert.

Namely me.

Yeah. Right.

Now, I can generally get through a reloading session without too much fuss. The components are on hand and decently organized. The gear is robust and  trustworthy. My usual loads -- especially for the only really noble calibers, .30-06, .45ACP, and .45 Colt -- are well-tested, as are the procedures which begin with an attitude: At the bench, the only proper mindset is that of a paranoid old-maid aunt. The fact of the matter is that a high-pressure accident does hide under your bed, just waiting to snatch out your eyeballs. Fear is good.

I go into my didactic mode and lecture my friend about all of this, including that line I stole from P.O. Ackley, "You see a man with a rabbit's foot hanging over his loading bench, run like Hell."


We got started on two boxes of bright, once-fired Remington brass.

The competent old pro cleverly noticed that the primers weren't coming out. Dang, I thought I replaced the broken decap pin. Double-dang, I was sure there were still some spares is the drawer. Time out while I found the proper sized panel nail to sub for the real thing. We proceeded through the lubing and sizing steps for a few rounds, me doing and explaining before turning it over to P. HIs first couple of strokes went well. About the third there was a snap. You don't want to hear a snap in my press.  Rub noises are okay. Not snaps. Stop everything. Take a look. Curse.

My first -ever stuck case. I thought it was something you smugly read about,a mishap afflicting only lesser mortals.  Another timeout. P is getting dubious about this whole thing. It takes a few minutes to cut a dowel and hammer out the case. And that process drives the expanding ball into it. Hacksaw the brass apart and pry out the ball while discussing causes.

Fortunately,  P is an engineer and has no trouble understanding the possibility of a shell holder at the loose end of manufacturing tolerance and a rim at the tight end. But still...

I fool around a little longer, finding another holder  which, though  identically numbered by the RCBS folks, seems tighter than original. And just to be safe we swab out the die body, roll the cases across the pad again,  and swipe a smidgen more goop inside the mouths.

The rest of the operation goes better, and we end with 39 cases prepped and primed, ready for Lesson Two, scheduled for this evening, wherein your expert will explain and demonstrate the fine art of not blowing up a rifle. Load selection, powder measuring, checking with a flashlight, bullet seating. Etc. What could possibly go wrong?

Probably nothing because, on reflection, I concluded all the gods were bored last week, held a meeting, and, just for shits and grins, decided it would be amusing to humiliate that guy who keeps boasting about his really cool reloading shack and the nice rounds he produces.

Unless, of course, they're really feeling vindictive and decide that if one torture  session is good, two would be even more fun.

We'll see. And I think I do have a rabbit's foot around here somewhere.

EDIT to update: Taku-Wakan give good medicine tonight. Smooth like papoose behind.

Oct 5, 2012

False prophecy there, AP

Somebody on the AP General Desk may wish he had held off a few minutes. He filed a lede predicting:

With a month to go until the presidential election, the government on Friday issues its September jobs report, expected to show an uptick in the U.S. unemployment rate after employers added only a modest number of jobs.

You've seen that the opposite occurred. The official unemployment rate -- which may or may not be a number related to any earthly reality --  fell to 7.8 per cent, and we were blessed with a few more new jobs than predicted.

It isn't a horrible journalistic mistake. Technically, it is not an error at all because it was true when released and based on quotations from "experts." But it is a useful reminder to keep your salt shaker handy when reading the day's news.

The campaign to re-coronate His Ineptness has to love the new  numbers. If nothing else they kill the GOP sloganeering that the current ruler has presided over an 8 per cent or higher unemployment rate since Day One of the Unicorn Administration.

But with Kwee* Three in full assault on the accumulated wealth of American citizens, a fractional rise or fall in number of Americans hired by MacDonald's or the Staten Island Topless Car Wash is damned thin gruel for any claim that happy days are her again.


*TMR speak for QE -- Quantitative Easing -- which is a term altogether too pretentious for creating money out of thin air.

Oct 4, 2012

No business like show business

In full fairness, honoring my duty to be an informed citizen, I watched the damned thing,  all the way through from Obama's open to Michelle. Honey Pie, it's our anniversary and I wish our clothes and the cameras were off.

All the way from the Romney rejoinder that he sympathized with his opponent's romantic frustration.  Very gentlemanly.

All the way to the end when Mitt pinned the poor president for the fifth and final time. (WWF debates have special rules.)   He had sort of expected someone to cinch the big championship belt around his middle.That didn't happen until later when all the world -- meaning Fox News, CNN, and MSNBC --  declared Obama the loser.

The story line carried through to the morning hours when a talker on Joe Scarborough's show  praised Romney for winning and both of them for engaging in such a meaningful exchange of views, for shunning the cheap shots. For being "two highly intelligent men ... presenting entirely different world views."

Okay. Obama presented a world view of free candy. Romney offered free ice cream. Obama promised to be a more compassionate Romney. Romney promised to  be a more efficient Obama.

If there were any "world-view" differences, science has a serious challenge: develop an instrument sensitive enough to detect them.


This analysis may be slightly flawed. About 25 minutes in,  I walked away from my electric teevee long enough to pop a bowl of corn and pour a sugary drink. Perhaps I missed crucial information.

Maybe Mitt explained the advantage of a revenue-neutral tax scheme for the "rich." Close loopholes and end deductions, but lower rates so the feds would extort precisely the same amount of money.

Maybe His Ineptness had a good retort to Mitt's notation that he had squandered 20 years worth of "tax breaks for big oil" on greenish jobs, i.e., Solyndra and its belly-up  brethren.

Maybe one or the other even hinted that we might want to give a thought to Charmin Basic, known to some as the American Dollar.

Oct 2, 2012

Further vicarous air adventures

The Evil Empire flight on which my two loved ones were booked has arrived safely in New York City.  In just a few hours they will embark on a Sphincter Air flight westward. I figure that at an average over-the-ground speed of 400 knots, they are about an hour away from those protections of the United States Constitution I mentioned.

They of course don't carry phar ahrms, although recent news suggests the Tee Ess Aye might not notice, one way or the other.  On the other hand, If you're reading this, Kids, I would caution against being spotted in Bloombergia with sugary drinks in hand. "Step away from the Mountain Dew Ma'am. You have the right to remain...".


Oct 1, 2012

Still A Long Way Home, eh, Supertramp?

I exhale part of the long-held breath because the author of The World's Greatest Travel Blog is supposed to be on dry land again today. Still in the heart of the Evil Empire, she and her man are at least out of the clutches of the Volga River pirates. According to the schedule, they're  just a few hours away from their Aeroflot ride from Red Squaresville to New York .

I always like it when they return to the the remaining, residual protections of the United States Constitution. Too, I suppose any father is somewhat happier when his offspring leave a nation where there is brisk free-market commerce in leftover nuclear devices.

Aye! Carrumba! Es no Colt

The guy outbid me and others and was smug at winning the Colt 1901,one of the earliest double-action revolvers in general U.S. military service. Except it wasn't.

Barrel inscription: ".38 Spc or U.S. Service Ctg." No other markings visible.

Those danged Latinos again.

This particular gun seemed tight enough. It probably would discharge a cartridge. Otherwise it scored about 9,5 on the one-to-ten ugly scale.  Still, it would have been fun to have on the wall for a price less extravagant than  $155. If nothing else I could make up a nice yarn about having had it analyzed by a crack metallurgist who confirmed it was made of melted Arbuckle's cans.

I can't explain the  ".38 Spc" except by speculating that the Mexican (or possibly Spanish) gun maker knocked it off after about 1909, by which time everyone still  devoted the the . c. .357 diameter bullet gave up on the .38 Long Colt and started  chambering these revolver types for .38 Special.


A middlin' High Standard HD,  4-inch heavy-barrel version, brought $$320, and I  am middlin' regretful I didn't make the other guy pay quite a little more.

For the tenth month...

She's a little out of character for this label. Too young, for one thing, and neither glamorous nor alluring in the Garbo/Bacall sense. But since WWCO has recently been trying to feature a womanage named for each new month, it's the best your author can do. She's not even named right. Few girls are called "October," and Ms. Bush earns her place here because she once played an October in a movie.

On the other hand, she's pretty enough in the Hefner usage of the word, and she  seems ply her trade with her intimacies left to the imagination.  This is about as skinny as she gets.

Next month will be even harder, so if any of youse guys can think of a candidate named November, I'll appreciate a leg up.