Author Topic: I was an American Doofus.  (Read 9886 times)

Offline fprintf

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Re: I was an American Doofus.
« Reply #30 on: March 16, 2011, 08:12:02 PM »
This was a great read, to see the experiences of some of our senior instructors and mentors. I've stumbled across some posts from old times of some questions folks had earlier in their Appleseed experience elsewhere and it is completely instructive to know that just about everyone struggled with one aspect or another of learning to teach. Teaching history seems to be a common stress point!

Perhaps some time in the future others will like to read about my experience!  :-)

In the fall of 2009 I stumbled across Appleseed mentioned on CTShooters.com during a search on handgun laws. What I read intrigued me and I mentioned it to my friend Larry. I really liked what I had read, and in my typical online-addict experience I went on to read about LTRs on Northeastshooters.com in a thread started by Dwarven1. Fast forward to January, through a holiday season of dreaming how I would sneak a rifle into the house and I was accepted to a local private range. During the safety meeting I happened to sit next to CortJestir, State Coordinator for Connecticut, who asked me if I had ever heard of Appleseed. I mentioned that I had but did not have a rifle. CJ encouraged me to look into it and gave me a cool business card with a black square and instructions for shooting a copy of it a the range. That was the hook, for sure.

Still not knowing how I would get a rifle in the house under the CFO's nose, I went out and bought a pair of Marlin 795s, one for myself and one for my son. I set up "my" 795 with a scope and "his" 795 with Tech-Sights. "His" 795 would sit in its box until much later in the early summer when it was given as 8th grade graduation gift for my then-14 year old son. Sometime during dinner that Spring with Larry, his family and mine, I casually mentioned my new rifle (note the singular tense) and was rewarded with a "that is so cool!" that I knew would defuse my wife's questions. It worked!  And in the next few weeks Larry would bring home a pair of rifles for himself and his son also.

I knew there were events coming later in the summer in CT but I couldn't wait. So I booked one day event at the first Leyden, MA event way out in the woods on the VT border in May. I told Larry about it and he agreed to come up also. I bought some dummy rounds for my 795 and started practicing dry-firing using everything I could read about Appleseed on this forum and elsewhere. I definitely wanted to shoot Rifleman so that I could become an Orange Hat, even though I hadn't been to an event yet!

On the day of my first event I couldn't sleep, so I got up early and I must have checked myself and my shooting box 10 times to be sure there was no ammo or handguns lurking anywhere, even though I knew the guns and ammo were in the safe. MA is that strict, they would just love to bust some guys from CT sneaking into their protectorate. We drove about 2 1/2 hours to the boonies of Western MA, getting lost due to following the GPS instead of the correct Google Maps directions.

So that is the start of my Appleseed journey. Dwarven1 ran an excellent event, though to be honest there were no tears in my eyes during the history (sorry Ross). I did shoot Rifleman and really liked what I had learned. As soon as I got home I looked up where the next events were, signed up with my son and Larry and his son. We all had a blast and I confirmed my desire to be part of the program. The only hurdle was my ability to commit the necessary time to the program. After messaging back and forth with CortJestir, I committed what I could - about 6-8 events per year and have been on the trail ever since.

I received my Red Hat recently after a Summer and Fall of learning how to be an instructor. Next up, learning how to be a Shoot Boss!
I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and dog-gone it people like me!  ~Stuart Smalley

Offline dragonfly

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Re: I was an American Doofus.
« Reply #31 on: March 17, 2011, 11:14:37 AM »

Me being in Appleseed? It's ALL Fred's fault. And, I don't regret a momnent of it.



Thanks for posting this Nickle. If you really think about it, it's Fred's fault any of us are in Appleseed. It seems lately, some have forgotten that, and that is to bad. He doesn't get the credit he deserves, not that he seeks it, but a little more respect for the man would go along way.

D-fly   Keeping the Faith
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Offline dwarven1

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Re: I was an American Doofus.
« Reply #32 on: March 17, 2011, 11:31:24 AM »
Dwarven1 ran an excellent event, though to be honest there were no tears in my eyes during the history (sorry Ross).

I received my Red Hat recently after a Summer and Fall of learning how to be an instructor. Next up, learning how to be a Shoot Boss!

Thanks for the kind words. As for no tears... well, I just gotta work harder, that's all.

And congrats on the Red Hat! Wanna come back and work a Leyden shoot or two - instructing where you started has a kind of nice karmic feel to it, doesn't it?
Unhappy it is ... to reflect that a brother's sword has been sheathed in a brother's breast, and that the once happy and peaceful plains of America are either to be drenched with blood or inhabited by slaves. Sad alternative! But can a virtuous man hesitate in his choice?

GEORGE WASHINGTON

Offline Nickle

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Re: I was an American Doofus.
« Reply #33 on: March 17, 2011, 11:44:35 AM »

Me being in Appleseed? It's ALL Fred's fault. And, I don't regret a momnent of it.



Thanks for posting this Nickle. If you really think about it, it's Fred's fault any of us are in Appleseed. It seems lately, some have forgotten that, and that is to bad. He doesn't get the credit he deserves, not that he seeks it, but a little more respect for the man would go along way.

D-fly   Keeping the Faith

Well, generically speaking, everybody can say that. My situation ended up less generic, as Fred and I, though never having met, knew each other well before Appleseed existed.

Back then, it was his Rifleman program, shoot a 200 or higher and you could by a Rifleman t-shirt that also had QUALIFIED on it(yup, on a different target set, more bulls and NPOA shifts, 210 came with the QD/AQT target, after it wsa found to be easier to shoot 200). Without the score, you could still buy the shirt, without QUALIFIED on it. All this from Fred's M14 stocks.
They have men amongst them who know very well what they are about, having been employed as Rangers against the Indians and Canadians and this country being much covered with wood, and hilly, is very advantageous for their method of fighting. . . . ".  Lord Percy

Sounds like New Englanders to me.

Offline BugginOut

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Re: I was an American Doofus.
« Reply #34 on: November 02, 2011, 11:00:12 PM »
Wow, I guess I am a late comer.  I went to my first shoot in May of '11.  I would have considered myself self-taught.  I had done a lot of bench shooting, some standing, and some sitting in a tree stand.  But, no one ever really taught me how to shoot.  So, I showed up, full size AR in hand open sites and all.  I cleared the redcoat, other than the bucket.  One ragged hole on most of the squares.  Ok, I got this.  I shot pretty well through most of the positions.  Sitting was a little rough.  Well, it's lunch time. 

Of course it's a working lunch.  The history was old news to me.  I studied American military tactics and post-Civil War racism in school.  What was new and very amazing were the personalities and what individuals gave up on April 19th.  The personal stories that I learned about and had never heard before were great.   Then back to the shooting part. 
By midday, there was this mean instructor that kept correcting me.  I knew what I was doing!  There was another guy he was nicer and gave me some suggestions.  But it didn't matter I knew what I was doing!   We finished up positions and started talking AQTs. 

My first full run AQT.  Holly crap this is timed, I can't shoot this fast.  OH CRAP WHERE DID I SET MY MAGS! CRAP WHICH ONE HAS TWO SHELLS IN IT!  CRAP I JUST RAN OUT OF BULLETS!  WHERE IS MY FRONT SITE! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!  The huge mess going through my head opened my mind to suggestion.  The mean guy kept telling me to pull my leg up.  The nicer one saved me from death gripping several times.  Being timed sucks!  Well, after a couple AQTs and a score of 198,  we shot the final redcoats and went home. 
As I was leaving I realized the problem, I wasn't using a scope!  I went home, grabbed my wife's upper, slapped the scope off my deer rife on it and had dinner.  I got this!

We got through the morning review and shoot the first redcoat of the day.  That first redcoat, oh boy, did I goof.  I shot my new and scope improved AR using the 30 round magazine as a monopod.  The mean guy with, disappointment in his voice, "A rifleman doesn't use his magazine as a rest."  Ha, I had an excuse, "I'm just trying to get it sighted in." Just for the record I did clear it too.

On to the morning AQTs, I've got my scope, I've got this.  I think I shot in the 170s and 160s through several AQTs.  I was throwing a shot and then I would blow through the rest of the stage and my scores suffered.  The scope didn't help at all.  It just hurt my scores.  Or maybe I was hurting my scores. I was starting to think about lunch and looking forward to the stories.

Of course we had another working lunch this time with stories of dangerous old people.  I loved the stories.  I always looked at history in a very dry manner, what happened, what did it lead to, and why is it important.  This was different it was a collection individuals that made history through their actions.  You could almost reach out and touch them. 
Back to the grind! After lunch I switched back to open sites.  I started to listen a little more.  I couldn't see the holes, so I gave every shot best.  But alas, my scores got stuck at 20x. AQT after AQT, boy that light, plastic, Mattel made gun was getting heavy.  Ugh we have to do it again!

Wait, what, this is the last one, but I haven't shot rifleman yet.  Well, here we go.  Forty shots later, "$%#@! I think I got it!"  I needed to get it checked and scored, some of the longest five minutes of my life.  YUP I DID IT! @#$%&!,@#$%&!, @#$%&!  214!  I followed all the suggestion as best I could and I did it! 

Wait just a second, maybe I did learn something.  Maybe, Martin wasn't all that mean.  He just knew that he knew what he was talking about. He told me what I needed to do, so that I could know it too. 

Maybe, Taylor wasn't all that much nicer but he knew that he knew what he was talking about.  He suggested what I needed to do, so that I could know it too.

Rusty Red did a great job too!  But, I don't remember her down on my end much. 
« Last Edit: November 02, 2011, 11:36:16 PM by BugginOut »
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Offline Texas Rifleman

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Re: I was an American Doofus.
« Reply #35 on: November 02, 2011, 11:13:49 PM »
BugginOut that is one of the best stories from an Appleseed I have ever read. I think you hit the nail right on the head for 90 % of the folks for their first Appleseed. Great job !!
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Offline zamboni_driver

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Re: I was an American Doofus.
« Reply #36 on: November 04, 2011, 11:13:22 AM »
Rusty Red did a great job too!  But, I don't remember her down on my end much.

That is because Rusty Red was on the other end of the line reminding me about my death grip.  This was the same shoot that I scored rifleman on the second to the last AQT of the day.This was my first two day seed, I had been to two one day events and never experienced the AQT grind.  I seem to remember shooting a lot of AQTs that day, went through at least 700 rounds that weekend.  And we had a hail storm.  This is where Rusty Red starting whispering about the "orange hat" to me.

How about you Rob, maybe an Orange Hat for you also?

Paul

Offline CIVLAKFLT

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Re: I was an American Doofus.
« Reply #37 on: November 04, 2011, 09:59:14 PM »
Great story, Buggin'! Congrats on your Rifleman status!

Offline Mr.Natural

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Re: I was an American Doofus.
« Reply #38 on: November 10, 2011, 04:21:35 PM »
Greetings Buggin,  Wonderful story, always good to hear about the struggles shooters have to achive riflemen status.  Just a small reminder of the greatness of the struggles our forefathers had to had to bring us the liberty we all enjoy today.  Congratulations.   Y.M.H.O.S.  Natch

Offline Taylor

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Re: I was an American Doofus.
« Reply #39 on: November 10, 2011, 08:50:20 PM »
Quote
Me being in Appleseed? It's ALL Fred's fault. And, I don't regret a momnent of it.

 **) **) **)

On a completely separate note, D-Fly;

The longer I'm with the program, the more I realize I'm STILL an American Doofus.....  But I'm tryin'.
So, perhaps the thread lacks the proper title...  Just sayin'!


Keep it going!


Aftermath

I myself still consider me to be a Doofus but I'm tryinng to reform my Doofus-like ways and drag as many of my fellow Americans as possible off the couch in the process.

Keep up your fine work everyone.

Taylor aka Mike
Honoring the memory of Adonijah Taylor (1730-1810) my Grandfather seven generations back, Deerfield MA Militiaman and Patriot, who answered the alarm on April 19, 1775 and along with his six sons served in the War of the Revolution.

"What good fortune for governments that the people do not think." - Adolf Hitler

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