Author Topic: Third Time's a Charm!  (Read 3336 times)

Offline Weezer

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Third Time's a Charm!
« on: February 17, 2015, 11:15:24 AM »
If you're looking for stories, I'll give you one that'll put you right to sleep.   ;D

My husband and I got into pistol shooting very soon after escaping from, er, I mean moving away from New Jersey.  Once we got to Texas, we started doing training everywhere we could - some local, some far away.   We got fairly good at it, got our CHLs, then started doing IDPA matches.   Then one day, a box came in the mail containing a Marlin 795 rifle.   Dear husband told me he'd signed us up for an Appleseed event and proceeded to explain, with great excitement, all about the organization.   Being avid history buffs and enjoying shooting like we do, I thought it was a neat idea.   Except that our first event was scheduled during the peak of cold and flu season.  None of our 3 kids could stay well at the same time, so I had to cancel and the hubs went solo.   He came back, glowing, and with a shiny new Rifleman patch.   

My turn came a few months later, when I drove down to an event in Waco.  Even though it's 2 hours from our house, it's close to relatives and was a good excuse to visit them.   I'd not really had much experience with .22 rifles, but I came armed with my trusty Appleseed rifle and a cooler full of ham sandwiches.  No day is complete without a ham sandwich, but I digress...   Scuzzy was the shoot boss and I liked him from the start - he explained NPOA, sight picture, minutes and clicks in a way that didn't put me to sleep.  I was ready to shoot. 

Day 1 was hot.  Really hot.  The heat index was about 350 - perfect for baking potatoes - and the fire ants were out in full force.  I began to question my sanity in bringing a carpet remnant instead of a yoga mat (critters seemed to really be drawn to the deep, cushy fibers).   But I soldiered on, fueled by ham sandwiches and Gatorade.   Then a scorpion crawled up my pantleg and did his thing (FYI, even through a sting, I kept my rifle pointed in a safe direction!)   It was turning out to be one heck of a good day.   :-\    I came close to Rifleman, but not quite.  Well, if you call a 195 "close", that is.  ;D   I went back to the relatives' place, made some more ham sandwiches, and got plenty of shut-eye so that I could bring home a patch to match my husband's.  I also sewed elastic into the ankles of my shooting pants to keep out the critters. 

Day 2 was even more interesting than day 1.  The sky opened up and it abso-freaking-lutely rained cats, dogs, elephants and rhinos.   It made me miss the relative bliss of preheating oven temperatures we'd had the day before.  It rained so hard that I lost time each round blowing water out of my rear sight and came close, but still didn't get that patch I wanted so much.   I wanted so badly to come home with a patch to match my husband’s; however, instead of being upset that I didn’t get it, I decided to use this as an excuse to get to another event.

I got my chance.  While visiting my folks in Indiana, I sweet talked my dad into coming with me to one of ATM’s events in Crawfordsville.    We spent a lovely father-daughter weekend on the range, chatting over ham sandwiches (I learned my love of these from him) and bonding over good-natured razzing when we shot each other’s targets.  Hey, it happens on a crowded range!   The weather was just awful.  Much like Waco, the sky dumped buckets full of rain on us nonstop.  It let up during lunchtime, but then came back with a vengeance once we were back on the line.   Again, I came close but didn’t make Rifleman.  Instead, I got a super cool "Shoot Like a Girl" hat from ATM, who felt sorry for me when I juuust cracked 200.   However, there were a few things I cherished even more than the Rifleman patch that day.  First, was ATM’s infectious good mood.  He sings the steps to a safe rifle.  And he takes requests.   We all were all excited after each AQT to see which tune he was going to belt out.   Second, watching my dad was a pleasure that no Rifleman patch could ever replace.  He is a Viet Nam veteran who very rarely ever talks about his service.  We’ve heard a couple of the funny stories now and then, but when we ask anything more than that, he clams up.   I did not realize, until I overheard his conversation with another vet, the extent of his experience over there.  (I also didn't understand the extent of his marksmanship skills until he blasted my pushpin off my target when I teased him about being an old man. o.O)  Listening to him talk with some of the other vets during the breaks and hearing him speak so passionately about freedoms and the importance of the colonists’ sacrifice to preserve them really shook me.   I’ve heard others say similar things – Appleseed has a way of drawing this out of people.  I came away from that weekend with a new perspective on and a deepened respect for the man my dad is and the unimaginable sacrifices he made for a country that didn’t entirely value his service.   I resolved that I was going to get that Rifleman patch not only to match my husbands, but to honor my dad.   He would be so proud!

I signed up for another Appleseed.  By the third one, I was hopelessly addicted.   I went back to Waco to pester Kirby and his crew again.  I’d practiced endlessly in my bedroom  after putting the kids to bed.  Sight alignment, sight picture, respiratory pause, focus, squeeze the trigger, follow through…  I had permanent red rings around my arms from the sling.  My husband, instead of making fun of me, grabbed his rifle and got next to me for his own practice.  This was far more romantic to me than flowers or chocolate!   By the time I got to Waco for that third event, I was ready. 

As is routine when I show up at an event, it rained.  And rained.  And RAINED.  We even had to pause for lightning because the storm got so bad.  But we persisted.  By now, I’d gotten good at blowing rain out of the rear sight without missing a beat (I don’t use a scope, but I’m beginning to re-think that position).  I pulled my hat down low to keep the rain off my glasses and put a towel over the right side of my head to keep the stinging drops from pelting my neck.   I’d gotten used to shooting in a puddle, so I got my shooting mat nice and squishy down in the mud.  I was comfortable.  I was in the zone.  And guess what?   

I got that patch. 

As soon as I’d finished posing for pictures with Scuzzy handing me that coveted Rifleman patch, I told him I wanted to do more than just shoot.  So I became a Blue Hat that day.  Right away, he put me to work helping out (okay, really just pestering everyone with stupid questions) with the emails that come in.   And this weekend, I’ll go back to Waco to pester Scuzzy and the crew again, only this time, I’ll be volunteering.   

Of course, you know there’s rain in the forecast.   :slap:
« Last Edit: February 18, 2015, 01:32:52 PM by Weezer »
"I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy." -- John Adams

"Texas Forever, Six!" --Tim Riggins

Offline brianheeter

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2015, 11:28:36 AM »
Huzzah!!!!  I LIKE that story, Weezer.  Thanks for sharing it with us.  I especially like the bit about you and your husband dry-firing together.  I wish my wife would get the bug but I'm content that she just let's me do my thing and she does her thing.  The patch is great but what is greater is that you learned a new appreciation for you father, your forefathers and your country.  Thank you for stepping up and doing your part to make this nation a better place.

C ya,

brian
(refuse to) Kiss the Ring!

Offline Scope-Eye

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2015, 12:46:14 PM »
Thank you for becoming part of the AS team.  Enjoyed the testimonial. :pop:

HUZZAH  :---
« Last Edit: February 17, 2015, 12:50:44 PM by Jason S »
There...!  His Majesty can now read my name without glasses.  And he can double the reward on my head!  - John Hancock
To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of people always possess arms, and to be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them. - Richard Henry Lee

Offline Weezer

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2015, 01:03:22 PM »
Aw, thanks.  Of course, the homeschooling mother in me saw a missed apostrophe in one spot, which mortified me.   My husband was more upset by the fact that I was eating a ham sandwich when I typed that and got crumbs on the keyboard.   ;D

My dad was just here last week and he asked about Appleseed.  I think I may be able to drag him to one of the Texas events this year.   O0
"I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy." -- John Adams

"Texas Forever, Six!" --Tim Riggins

Offline ATM

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2015, 01:09:33 PM »
I love ham sammiches in the rain.  ;)

Way to go, Weezer! Thanks for sharing your story and for stepping up to help.  O0

Say no to drugs. $$-0 Say yes to bacon. O0

Offline TJ Kackowski

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2015, 01:22:11 PM »

Offline Mutti

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #6 on: February 17, 2015, 01:49:00 PM »
Thanks for the enjoyable read. Ham Sandwiches - hmmm.

Congrats BTW!
"A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort."
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Offline eaglescouter

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2015, 02:23:11 PM »
Your story is inspiring and worthy of being shared on social media.  Hopefully it will get linked thru the Appleseed Facebook and Twitter feeds.
Make yourselves good scouts and good rifle shots in order to protect the women and children of your country if it should ever become necessary.
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Scouting for Boys (1908)

Offline scuzzy

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #8 on: February 17, 2015, 06:36:58 PM »
« Last Edit: February 17, 2015, 06:48:35 PM by scuzzy »
An armed society is a polite society - Robert Heinlein.

They've got us surrounded, the poor bastards. - Chesty Puller.

"If a man's from Texas, he'll tell you.  If he's not, why embarrass him by asking?" - John Gunther

Si vis pacem, para bellum.

Offline Weezer

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #9 on: February 17, 2015, 11:13:28 PM »
"I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy." -- John Adams

"Texas Forever, Six!" --Tim Riggins

Offline floydf

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #10 on: February 17, 2015, 11:29:39 PM »

Offline scuzzy

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #11 on: February 17, 2015, 11:56:29 PM »
An armed society is a polite society - Robert Heinlein.

They've got us surrounded, the poor bastards. - Chesty Puller.

"If a man's from Texas, he'll tell you.  If he's not, why embarrass him by asking?" - John Gunther

Si vis pacem, para bellum.

Offline Weezer

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #12 on: February 18, 2015, 12:05:57 AM »
Freebird would be kinda tough for a rifle safety song.   **)     However, I think I could put something together to the tune of "On the Road Again".    ;)
"I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy." -- John Adams

"Texas Forever, Six!" --Tim Riggins

Offline Lonestar6

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #13 on: February 18, 2015, 12:21:18 AM »
GO WEEEEZER!!!!

Proud of you!
Lonestar6

Offline TJ Kackowski

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #14 on: February 18, 2015, 02:08:57 PM »
Here's my contribution to the Texas repertoire ... to the tune of Camptown Ladies ... and, yes, high stepping around while flailing the air with your hat and arm hooked with another instructor is the proper way to sing this song

Oh, the mags are out, the bolts are back

Doo-da, doo-da

Flags are in and safety on

All the doo-da day

Rifles on the ground, and no one's touching them

Make your rifle safe this way, all the doo-da day


That's better
« Last Edit: February 18, 2015, 08:26:26 PM by TJ Kackowski »

Offline Weezer

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Re: Third Time's a Charm!
« Reply #15 on: February 18, 2015, 02:56:50 PM »
Here's my contribution to the Texas repertoire ... to the tune of Camptown Ladies ... and, yes, high stepping around while flailing the air with your hat and arm hooked with another instructor is the proper way to sing this song

Oh, the mags are out, the bolts back

Doo-da, doo-da

Flags are in and safety on

All the doo-da day

Rifles on the ground, and no one's touching them

Make your rifle safe this way, all the doo-da day

I LOVE THIS!!!    ^:)^      Now I've got to teach Scuzzy and the rest of the crew how to do the Virginia Reel.   
"I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy." -- John Adams

"Texas Forever, Six!" --Tim Riggins