Monday, December 26, 2011

A brush with an unfamous fame.

My parents missed their light rail ride to the train station tonight after a concert, so they called me to give them a ride.  Simple, easy enough.  I get there, they open the doors, and I hear "Sterling's coming, too."  Well sure.  I've met the guy before.  He's distantly related to an old friend, and he's an all around genuine nice guy.  And far be it from me to ever deny an NCO of any type a ride.

Honestly, the ride was far too short (only a couple mile or so to the train station), because as has been my experience, the conversation was easy, light, and very fun.

Would that they were all so.


Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

To my 3 loyal readers, and the rest of you who stumble by.

Now get the hell outta here. You've got someone far more important spend today with.


Thursday, December 22, 2011

The carry "rotation"

Such as it is.

Clockwise, from left: S&W 1006, Taurus 605, ATI Commander, CZ-82, Colt Series 80 Government.

That's everything I've carried in the past 12 months.  It looks like a lot, but two of the guns are of the exact same type, and the CZ isn't much different.  And the ATI and the Taurus account for better than 90% of my carry.

There's some new camera gear here at the house, so now, pictures!

The S&W 1006.  The origin of the joke "My backup gun is a 10mm."  It's a bit large to conceal on my hip, so it lives in a Maxpedition KISS bag.  It goes pretty much everywhere I do.

The 1911s.  The stainless Colt is my USPSA gun.  I love it and love shooting it, but it's also a bit too long to handily conceal.  The ATI handily solves that problem.  The holsters are both Ross Leather and work very well.

CZ-82.  I have to confess to a love of the 9x18 Makarov cartridge.  It's just a handy little round.  This little beast has pretty much been relegated to a suit or dress gun, IWB and tucked under a dress shirt.  The IWB holster is a Galco, and the SOB is a Gould and Goodrich (and is far more comfortable than I expected.)

Taurus 605.  Great little gun, it absolutely disappears in that IWB Gould and Goodrich holster.  When I can't carry more firepower, it makes a handy companion.  The pocket holster is a Desantis Nemesis, which also works wonderfully.

And yes, there were mags in 3 of the 5.  One was on my hip, one was in my manbag, and the third was in the safe.  The safeties were engaged, the four rules were followed, and doing that is far safer than administrative loading and unloading.  I was aware, and I was conscious, and I was safe.


Monday, December 19, 2011

Bad year to be a scumbag

Osama, Gaddafi, and now Crazy Kim.  It's been a damn bad year for asshole scrotebags, and we've still got two weeks to go.

President Tom, Pugsley, and the Brothers Castro, here's lookin at you!


Christmas wishes of children around the world


Friday, December 2, 2011

I have no words...

Seriously, my mind, it boggles.  This shit is seriously fucked up.

Third graders.  That's 8 year olds, sports fans.  And that's all that I'm going to say.  The shaking makes typing hard.


Giving to an excellent cause

If you know me, you know that the people who wear the uniforms of our nation's armed services are rather near and dear to my heart.  Along with that, the folks at Soldier's Angels should pretty much be canonized for sainthood.

Linoge has put together a phenomenal fundraiser for Soldier's Angels.  And seeing the support he's gotten says a lot about the good work he's doing.  So go.  Give what you can.  Even without the swag, it's worthy.  But if you need the swag, it's there.

And as an inside joke for one of those uniformed heroes:

Give.  To charity!  Give till it hurts!


For the gunchicks in our lives

Shelley Rae shows you how to be both fashionable, and armed.

It is possible, ladies.  And it makes all of us who care about you feel a bit better.


Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

All the best to you and yours. I hope you're spending time with the people that matter most to you.

Bex and I are at Mom and Dad Dude's place. The turkeys have been devoured, and as soon as room frees up in mah belly, a chocolate cream pie will follow suit.

Hope the day is good for everyone.


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Going Yard

I did something last night that I haven't done in about 15 years.

I put on pants with a 36 inch waist.

I was so excited, I bought two pairs.


Friday, October 14, 2011

Breakin the law, Breakin the law!

Those are the venturis I just picked up for my beloved VW. Read the little disclaimer underneath, and then ignore it. Just like I'm going to.


Friday, October 7, 2011

Things I never thought I'd say #3

I told my wife to watch her ass last night, since the hippies were in town.

As far as I'm concerned, Occupy This ..!..


Monday, September 19, 2011

Excuse me while I whip this out...

Since everybody else is playing, I'll play too.  These two knives were just pulled from my pocket.

The knife on the left is a Wenger Swiss Army Knife, which is unendingly useful. The right hand knife is my Gerber Descent, which I've carried since it replaced my Kershaw Vapor a year or so back. The blade shape is about ideal for general use, and it holds an edge far better than I'd expect. I'm abusive toward knives, and this one just keeps going.


Saturday, September 17, 2011

Seen on a bumper sticker

While driving home from work:

"All your base are neutralized by acid."

I lol'ed like a nerd.


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Kilted to kick cancer

First off, the info is here.

I'm not tossing in my hat, at least not for myself.  My traffic is far too low to be anywhere near competitive.  Instead, I'm asking that you donate to one of the other fine bloggers.  I really don't care who.  Back Kelly.  Or Old NFO.  Or Stingray.  Or Alan.  Or JayG.

Because seriously, it's about far more than some online contest.  This is, quite seriously, a matter of life and death.  1 in 6 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer.  That's TWO DUDES in your average fantasy football league.  That's one of your best drinking buddies.  That's a figure that is far too high to screw around with.

So donate, through whichever blogger you choose.  If you're a man of appropriate age, swallow your shame and get your ass checked out (no pun intended.)

Even though I'm not playing for the big prize, there happen to be pictures of me in a kilt out there somewhere.  Here's the deal.  I'll be donating $40 come payday.  If any of my readers is willing to match me, and email me their confirmation number (utredneck on the gmail service), I'll dig up the picture, and it will be my blogpic for the rest of the year.

Get on it.


Sunday, September 11, 2011

Men with guns

On September 11, 2011, two men walked into a grocery store in Ogden Utah, openly carrying firearms. And not a damn thing happened.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled programming.


10 years later

I have plenty of hazy, scattered memories of September 11, 2001.

I remember waking up to a call from Mom, telling me to turn on the TV, that there'd been a horrible accident. I remember watching the second plane hit, and knowing it was not than coincidence. I remember seeing the wreckage at the Pentagon, and being truly scared for the first time in the whole mess.

About that time, I hauled myself over to the university. I really don't know why, I guess I needed a sense of normalcy. Not that anybody did anything. We rigged up a portable radio and speakers and sat outside the band room all day, listening and feeling shell-shocked.

The memory that I hang, to, though, is something the world learned about weeks later. "Let's roll!" Two simple words, uttered by people who had to know they were going to die, but were determined to die on their feet, free and uncowed.

To me, that embodies the American way. To stand up to evil, to get pissed off, and kick it in the nuts, no matter the odds. And THAT is truly what we need to never forget.


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Loki's Barley Chili

(Barley?  Yes.  Trust me here.)

Remember, my recipes are a bit like the Pirate Code.  Tinker with em until you like the taste.

A pound or so of good bacon. (By good, I mean that at the very least, the butcher had to pull it from his cold case and package it for you.  It should be 1/4" thick or so.)
A pound or so of good sausage.  (I like andoulle.  Chorizo would probably work quite well.)
1-2 pounds of "other meat."  Fajita-cut beef, stew meat, cut up pork, doesn't really matter.  Doesn't even have to be particularly good meat, you won't notice when you're done.
Fresh cilantro
a bulb of garlic
bay leaves
smoked paprika
lime juice
chili powder
chicken stock (2 huge cans, somewhere north of 32oz. Beef is better, but I can't find it in bulk)
tomato juice (2 large cans)
tomato paste (2-3 cans)
stewed tomatoes, if you really want them
a bag of barley

You'll end up assembling all your ingredients in about a 3 gallon pot.  Put your stock in the pot and get it warming.  Dice your bacon and brown it in a frying pan.  When it's browned, put it in the stock pot, reserving the grease in the frying pan.  Brown a pound of your "other meat" in the grease, and then add that to the pot.  Slice and brown your sausage, again reserving the grease when you add it to the pan.  Brown any remaining meat, add it to the pot, and reserve whatever grease remains.  Finely chop your garlic, and brown it lightly in the grease.  Add the garlic (and the grease, if you're me and like the extra flavor).

Add the tomato juice and 2-3 bay leaves, and the stewed tomatoes if you're going to add them.  Chop the cilantro fine, and add it to the pot, along with spices and lime juice.  Stir well, cover, and let cook.

Check and stir every half hour to 45 minutes (total of 4-6 hours), spicing to taste.  In the last 30-60 minutes, add tomato paste if needed for thickness, and the barley, then cook until barley is done.

It's even better on day 2 or 3, and you can freeze it for later, too.


Monday, August 29, 2011


It seems there's a list, it's black (RACIST!), and I'm on it.

I consider myself in good company.


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Good suds

While it may not be the internet-famous Dogfish Head, I have to give some love to Squatters Roadhouse and Pub. They may be hippies, but they make some great food and brew a killer beer (with a nice side of some poke-the-local-establishment humor.) Their "Organic" Amber Ale is highly recommended.


Friday, August 19, 2011

Holy alpacas, Batman!

The drama llama is tuned the hell up this week.

Mike W and pdb dissect it far better and more intelligently than I'd be able to, which leaves me with only one pearl of wisdom for Mr Farago:

The First Amendment guarantees you a voice, Robert. It does NOT guarantee you an audience.


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Why you have more than one gun

I have two primary carry guns, and both of them are down. I got some parts in for the CZ, so it's in pieces waiting for me to fit them. No problem, I still have my trusty snub revolver, right? That is, until I discovered a nasty rust problem on it tonight, so it's torn down and half fixed. (Posts on both fixes tomorrow.) My 1911 is freshly repaired, but untested. I ended up having to go deep into the vaults for a nightstand gun for tonight, back to a trusted old friend, my beloved Smith & Wesson 19.

Because when you need a cannon for home defense, accept no substitutes.


Friday, August 12, 2011

Things I never thought I'd say...

#1. This morning, I rode on a plywood elevator.

#2. The plywood elevator had an operator.


Thursday, August 4, 2011

High Speed Dirt!

Continuing with "music that inspires Loki's right foot," this week is a ripping tune from Megadeth.  Not really about racing, but it's still about going damn fast, on the edge of control.


Friday, July 29, 2011

An observation

While I've been up at this jobsite, in a town populated by professional hipsters, I've noticed something. It's not the poor, lower class kids, who'd ostensibly benefit from socialist policies, who make a habit of wearing Che shirts and the like. It's the stupid hipsters with full bank accounts, who've never worried about making ends meet.

I found it telling and terrifying.



Okay, I gotta get this out or I'm gonna explode, and since screaming at stupid people will get me nowhere but into trouble, y'all get the honors.

You can obviously see the caution tape and orange pylons. You've apparently survived to adulthood, so it would seem the breathing lessons took and you can learn simple tricks. So try this one. DO NOT CROSS MY FUCKING BARRICADES!

I don't put up the tape because it looks pretty, or for my health. I don't do it for fun. (Profit, yes. Fun, no.)  I do it because there's a guy working 40' above me, and if he drops something, you might get hurt. Now, that wouldn't make me cry overmuch, but.the inevitable lawsuits involve a whole mess of paperwork, and wouldn't we all prefer to avoid that nonsense?

This has been your one friendly warning.


Thursday, July 28, 2011

Keepin on

This week, I'm reaching DEEP into the vault, and coming out with some very classic Aerosmith.

If that doesn't make you want to fly down the freeway, you might need your pulse checked.


Thursday, July 21, 2011

On Stage is BACK!

I finally fixed my bass, and started working on my old car, so I've had a bit of inspiration.  On Stage Thursday is scheduled for at least the next three weeks with what sometimes gets termed "right foot music."  They're all tunes that inspire my right foot to find the firewall, basically.

For starters, you get Storm Large covering Pinball Wizard.  I apologize for the extended intro, but it's the only video I could find with any kind of actual quality to it.


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

An open letter

To the self-important, overblown Park City bimbo.

No.  You cannot "just go under" my damn barricades.  I can tell from the look on your face that I ruined your day, by making you walk an extra 20 feet to get "over there."  ("Over there" being the suck-nuts, uber-trendy hair salon.)

I know you think you're special, and that Mommy and Daddy made sure you knew that.  But seriously, what part of "CAUTION: CONSTRUCTION AREA!  DO NOT ENTER!"  do you think doesn't apply to you?

I hate folks who are stuck on stupid.


Sunday, July 10, 2011

A much needed PSA

...and knowing is half the battle.


Saturday, July 9, 2011

Theme song for today

It's Saturday, it's 76 degrees and sunny as a body could want outside, and my life doesn't suck.  I have a beautiful wife, enough money in my pocket to keep the bills paid, and family and friends that love me.  I'll let Uncle Kracker sum it up for you.

The man tells it how it is.


Friday, July 1, 2011

A favor for Larry

Larry Correia's next book, Monster Hunter Alpha, drops on July 26th, and he (and the rest of us) would like to see it hit the NYT Bestseller list like the other Monster Hunter books have.

So he's asking a favor.

I don't know how much help and traffic I can possibly send his way, but he's a hell of a nice guy, so I'll do what I can.  If it means anything, I also give him the strongest recommendation a capitalist can.  I'm buying his book.  3 copies, in fact (one each for Bex and I to have signed, and an .epub copy for the Nooks).

So help out one of the nicest guys to ever lay ink to paper.


Tuesday, June 28, 2011


I saw this on a magazine today at work, and immediately thought of my buddy Weer'd Beard.

Weer'd, buddy, I joke because I care.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Making up for lost time...

I'm standing at the Poison show I was denied a few years ago, and its as awesome as expected.

And the company is far better than it would have been before.


Saturday, June 11, 2011


Larry Correia brilliantly fisks an article giving financial advice to the stupid.

And what he says is the complete truth.  My current job is completely outside the skill set of what I spent the last 7 years doing.  But it pays the damn bills, and leaves me with a bit afterwards to ferret away.

And that's what matters.


Thursday, June 9, 2011


There's no way I can keep up with Tam, but I have a few oddballs in stock.


9x18 Makarov
38 Spl (and it's +p variant)
357 Magnum (even though I never shoot it, I still have a box)
40 S&W
10mm Auto
32 ACP
45 ACP
22 LR (rifle and pistol)

Long Gun:
22 WMR
22 WRF
7.65 Argentine
12 gauge

With the exception of the 32 ACP and the 7.62x39, I have dies and components to reload for all of em, too.  I actually have components for the x39, I just need to pick up dies.  Because brass cased x39 is rare as hens teeth and twice as expensive.


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

My story

Friend and awesome gunchick Jennifer shares the story of how she became a gunnie and asks the rest of us to do the same, so here goes.

My story is actually a non-story.  I grew up around guns.  They were no big mystery to me.  My first memory of actually shooting was at Scout camp, when I was 8.  Dad had a rifle and a shotgun while I was growing up, and I was probably 5 or 6 when he went on his last elk hunt, and before he left, he taught me a couple basics about guns.  I got the gun I truly learned marksmanship on for my 15th birthday.  I started buying guns for myself when I was 21, and it's been all downhill from there.

That's basically the story, for what it's worth.


Shoot like a girl...

On our last camping trip/range outing (sorry, no pics, I was occupied), I learned something.  My wife is hell on wheels with an AR.  Be it my carbine, or our friend's built-up Varminter, the woman is just plain scary good with that platform.

Probably best to stay on her good side...


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The answer to everything.

My good buddy and fellow Boxer-block fan Kentrik directed me to something far better than any cat with a cheeseburger.  He actually found a site with the answer to all of the deep philosophical questions of life.

Why do you not have a girlfriend?
Why do your neighbors hate you?
Why do you still live at home with your mother?
Why don't I like the French?

Why?  Because racecar!

And my personal favorite...

It's almost as awesome as 42.



220.2, actually.  As of roughly 6 pm Mountain Time time tonight, I'm down right at 20 pounds from the start of Operation Fatass.  That's roughly a third of my goal.

Go team me!


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The CDC finally gets it

It seems the Centers for Disease Control has issued a warning to prepare for the Zombie Apocalypse.

As wacky as it sounds, this is actually a very good thing.  Because as Unc has said "If you're prepared for a Zombie Apocalypse, a hurricane is just a storm."

When you think about it, it's the truth.  While the odds of the dead rising and walking the Earth are pretty slim, the odds of something else occurring that would require the same preparations are far higher.

And the looks you get when you answer "What are you prepping for?" with "Zombies." are awesome.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Operation Fatass is back

Even though it only kinda left.  Sorry I've been quiet, I got myself a job a couple weeks back and have been working 60 hours/week.

Anyways, I weighed myself tonight, and I was at 228.8.  I figure I had no less than .8 pounds of assorted crap in my pockets, so call it an even 228.  That's 12 down from when this project started. Not quite on pace, but with the move, and some general attitudinal issues I had for a while, I'm more than happy to have it.  Now that I have a working scale, I promise I'll keep you updated far more frequently.


Overheard while unpacking

Bex and I were going through some boxes tonight when she found and decided to keep an inflatable fish, because

"You never know when an inflatable fish might come in handy..."

I laughed. A lot.


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Justice is served

The news tonight reports (in case you've been living under a rock) that Osama Bin Laden is dead.

I'm completely good with that.  Sadly, it took a decade to do it, but finally, the architect of so much death and destruction has met his end.


Utah Grand Prix

I'm sitting in the stands at the Utah Grand Prix, and it's an excellent day for a Collosimo brat and racing at North America's longest road course.  If the pictures I took turn out, maybe I'll share.  If not, the cars were hot and  the racing was excellent.


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The hell you say?

It's April 26.  There should not be global warming accumulating on the back porch.



Friday, April 22, 2011

In atonement

I'm sorry I haven't posted much recently, I know I've been a bad blogger, but between moving and trying to find a job, I've been a bit occupied.  But in an attempt to atone for my sins, I give you FOOD!

So, I have this recipe that has pretty much become a staple at family events involving food.  And now, I'm gonna share it with you.  Be advised, though, unless we're baking, around here, recipes are kinda like the Pirate Code (more of a guideline, so to speak.)

16-24 oz uncooked bowtie pasta
6 oz black olives, drained and sliced
3-4 roma tomatoes, seeded and cubed
4-6 cloves of garlic, chopped fine
4 T olive oil
4 T (and change) Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 t black pepper
2 t salt
1 T dried basil
1 c crumbled feta cheese

Boil your pasta according to the directions on the bag.  (Me, I add a bit of olive oil and some salt to any pasta I make, but that's up to your discretion.)

While that's boiling, prep your tomatoes and olives.  Whisk your vinegar, olive oil, basil, salt, pepper, and garlic in a medium bowl, then add your tomatoes.

When your pasta is done, remove it to a large bowl, preferably one suitable for serving (metal bowls are not advised).  Add your wet ingredients mixture and your olives, and fold in.  Then add the feta, and fold that in as well.  Add any balsamic, salt, pepper, or basil to taste. (Remember how recipes are more of a guideline?)

You can serve this immediately if you want, but we've achieved far better results by covering the bowl with plastic wrap and putting it in the fridge for 24-48 hours.  The flavors kinda mellow together, and it's happiness on a fork.



Thursday, April 14, 2011

This is why you don't screw with old people

They have a tendency to kick asses.

Jacksonville burglar gets hit 'upside the head’ by 81-year-old victim’s frying pan
The man told Smith to "gimme what you got" before shoving him to the ground and taking his wallet, according to the police report. That didn't stop Smith, who said he "went back after him." He grabbed the nearest weapon, while Sones grabbed for something else to give him.
"I grabbed the frying pan and hit him upside the head. I knocked his teeth out ... and he went to the floor," Smith said. "There was a pitchfork about six feet away. ... I stuck him."
And the burglar was actually lucky.

"I was angry; I was upset; and I was as mad as all outdoors," Smith said Wednesday. "If I'd had my gun, like I normally would have, I would have shot him because he was in my home. I don't like people hurting my family or my home."
 As the man has been known to say...  "Play stupid games, win stupid prizes."


Friday, March 25, 2011

Things that make a nerd go SQUEE!

I got another package in the mail yesterday (it's been a good week for nerdiness).  Whatever would make me so happy you ask?

That would be my brand-new copy of Klingon Academy, a game I remember loving right around 2000.  It's the height of nerd space combat games, and I've searched for years for its equal and been left wanting.

So, once again, squee.


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The only thing better than a new book...

Is a FREE book!

A week or so back, I won a giveaway for a free book from my friend Sarah's blog Bookworm Blues.

It got here today.

 Sorry for the sideways, it's late, I'm tired, and it's been a long day.

I'm stoked.  This will be the first dead-tree book I've read in months.

Thanks Sarah!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Not that I needed more motivation

But the good people at CCI are giving away a free spinner target with the purchase of 2 boxes of ammo.

The ammo is worth the cost anyways, the free target is just a bonus.

The FCC can take a flying leap, nobody paid me to post this, I just like quality products.

And anyways, free stuff good.


Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A voice from my youth silenced

According to the news this morning, G-funk legend  Nate Dogg has died.  There is no cause of death yet, but he had serious health issues in recent years.

Rest In Peace


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

What I Did With Guns This Week

One of my favorite podcasts has a feature "What I did with guns this week."  Seems like good blogfodder to me, and it will hopefully push me a bit, both in shooting and blogging.

That said, this week has been cold, snowy, and busy, so the gun stuff has been a bit slim.  However, I did acquire a pair of Safariland Comp-I speedloaders and a pair of Tuff Products speed strips.

(Clockwise from top left, Safariland Comp I, HKS #36, Tuff Products speed strip)

I'll post reviews after I've run them through their paces, but so far, I'm not unimpressed, particularly with the speed strips.


Thursday, March 3, 2011

My own Zombie Squad

(Shamelessly stolen from Breda.)

Here's how it's supposed to work:  Go to your Facebook profile, and the top five friends on the left-hand sidebar are your team in the upcoming Zombie Apocalypse.  Based on your team and their skills, estimate how long you'll survive.

I got lucky.  My team?  Bex, my buddy Kyle that I've known forever (picture the sunglass and cowboy hat wearing jailers in most any prison movie, and that's Kyle), GayCynic, the infamous Nightcrawler, and my friend Lacey (the only non-gunnie on the team, but she's wicked smart, and every good team needs a techie).

The zombies don't stand a chance.


Wednesday, March 2, 2011


Here is the link to the article in the Casper Star-Tribune about Governor Mead signing the Wyoming Constitutional Carry bill into law.

And I'm still grinning like the Cheshire Cat.



I just got an email from Wyoming Gun Owners, bearing excellent news:

Governor Mead signed the Wyoming Constitutional Carry bill into law!

Pardon me while I do the world's happiest Truffle Shuffle.


A moment of realization

Between a discussion over on The Gun Counter, and learning of the death of a friend of a friend, I inadvertently stumbled across what will someday become my epitaph:
Life is short.  Living is dangerous.  We are fragile.
 I'm not really worried about dying anytime soon, and I really don't want to sound morbid, but the above is the realization I've recently reached.  However, instead of making me depressed, I view it as inspiring.  Because, knowing that it is truth, I'm reminded that I need to do more than just metabolize oxygen and sugar.  I need to get out and LIVE.  I need to spend more time fishing with my brother and my dad, and worry less about my own mortality.

And that, I'm realizing, is a refreshing freedom.


Black Swan

Two words.  Just.  Don't.

It was like A Clockwork Orange had a drunken one-night stand with Swan Lake, and the child was born addicted to psychotropic substances.

Watch a couple Tim Burton flicks instead.


Tuesday, March 1, 2011

We need more of this

Congratulations go out to Marko, who's celebrating the seven year anniversary of his naturalization as an American this year.

What is it that we need more of, though?  This:
I still get this little rush every time I have an occasion to affirm my nationality–checking off “United States of America” for citizenship on a 4473, for example, or acknowledging verbally that I am an American citizen.
I did it for the first time the day I got back from the courthouse with my naturalization certificate in hand, and went straight to the town clerk’s office to register to vote and apply for a passport. So far, it hasn’t lost its thrill.
 We need to make it easy for folks like Marko to emigrate to America and become legal citizens.  A person who wants nothing more than to become an American, work hard, and strive for the American Dream is a person I want to see become an American.

Congrats, Marko.  Our nation is better for you and folks like you.


On moving

While I've made reference to it a couple times, I haven't come out and said anything about our upcoming move.

For family reasons, Bex and I are moving back to Salt Lake the first week of April.  We're both working on getting transfers, and we'll be living with her mother for the forseeable future.  It should be a good change for all involved.  We're both excited to be near family and friends.  I'm stoked to be able to go to concerts and races and work on my Volkswagen.  Something tells me Bex won't complain about variety in restaurant choices, and local craft stores.

We're definitely looking forward to home.


How to NOT be a good mother

Despite any argument the writer may make, leaving her children and family behind does not, in fact, make her a good mother.  In fact, it makes her a selfish, narcissistic, overgrown child whose children seem far better off post-divorce.

Now, I know I stand to get railed here, as I have no children yet.  I am, however, Uncle Loki to 4 wonderful little kids (soon to be 5!), as well as having firsthand knowledge of shit marriages.  And Bex and I are actively trying to have kids.  And part of making the decision to have kids is that both of you have to be 100% behind the decision.  And yes, that means sacrifice.  When we have a kid, the hatchling becomes the priority.  My car, beloved though it is, comes after the kids.  Same with the guns and the hunting and the fishing.  I hope to share all of my passions with my kids, but the kids take precedence over the hobbies and lifestyle.

The screaming reality that shows me how selfish the author of the article is?

If one partner doesn't want kids, no amount of begging, cajoling, or negotiating will make the decision to have kids a right one.

No ifs, ands, or buts.  If you're not ready to make the sacrifices for your family, then you don't need to be having a family.  And if your family happens unplanned, well, you learn to sacrifice, like my friend Sarah, or you give the child up for adoption.  Seriously, there are wonderful people out there who would love nothing more than to become parents, but can't.  And you, Ms Narcissistic Blowhard, get to celebrate how you were able to abandon your marriage (by your account, good for 20 years, right up until you walked away on the beginning of your journey of self-absorption), and your two children.

And it should have ripped your cavalier heart out to hear them say "When I called you last night I felt like I really missed you very much."

I'm just shy of 29, and I can tell you with a certainty that no matter how bad it got dealing with my mom, I missed her.  Not "felt like."  Not some rational, composed, English-major sentence.  I flat out missed my mom.  Because I have a good mom.  Mom gave up a lot of lifestyle and fun to raise Baby Brother and me.  But instead of treating us like a burden, she treated us like her kids.  Her legacy.  The lasting thing she leaves to this world.  And in doing so, she taught me how I want to raise my own.  And it's not by walking away from my family to pursue a selfish career opportunity.  Not without a plan in place.  Not with any kind of ambivalence.  Because that's what parents, good parents, do.

And that blowhard is not a good parent.


Monday, February 28, 2011

Rest in Peace, Mr Buckles

 America's last WWI veteran has died.   Not only did he survive WWI, he was a POW in the Philippines in WWII.

Rest in Peace and Godspeed, Mr Buckles.  You've earned it, sir.


Friday, February 25, 2011

One of the best things I've ever seen

Everybody knows Mike Rowe.  He's the Ford guy, the Dirty Jobs guy, the voice of Deadliest Catch.  He's also incredibly intelligent, well-educated, and has an uncanny grasp of the human condition.

It's 20 minutes long, but watch the whole thing.  Trust me, it's so very worth it.



Sunday, February 20, 2011


One year ago today (right about now, in fact) was the best day of my life, and the first day in the best year of my life.  For some reason, she let me fool her into thinking I was worth marrying, and she still seems to believe it.  If the next year is half this good, it'll be epic.

I love you, honey!


In less fun news

Somali pirates have hijacked a yacht and are holding 4 Americans.

However...  "US mulls responses?" I'm sorry, there is only one response to piracy where American citizens are involved.  That response has been around for well over 230 years:  The United States Marine Corps.  It's what they're for.  Point them at the general area and tell them "fix the problem."

The article also mentions that a court in New York has sentenced the one surviving pirate from the Maersk Alabama incident to 33 years in an American prison (quite an upgrade from his life in Somalia, I'm certain).  Why, for the love of all that's good and decent, did we bring one home?  By international law, which has never changed and is still valid, piracy is a capitol offense, violators are tried on site, and if convicted, summarily turned into chum.

I don't care about "fixing" Somalia, I know for a fact that it's an impossible notion.  I just want to make piracy so dangerous that it's no longer a viable business model.



As a side note, compare Martina McBride's handling of the Star Spangled Banner at Daytona to Christina Aguilera's rendition at the Super Bowl, if you will.  I'll give you a hint.  The country girl did it right.  The princess, well, she did it entirely wrong.


It's that time again...

Time to reach on back, pull those belts tight, and crank it up!

Boogity boogity boogity, let's go racin boys!


Monday, February 14, 2011

Wheaton's Law, as applied to gunnies

Breda linked to a news story of some Michigan OC activists who (according to the story, and that's my caveat) violated Wheaton's Law* in the course of their activism.

The commenters on that post MOST DEFINITELY violated Wheaton's Law.

Here's the deal.  You can either damn the torpedoes, and make your point at all costs, or you can be a bit pragmatic (I know, amongst some gunnies, that's an insult almost as bad as "fudd" or "democrat").  While taking a stand and making a point can feel damn good, it's not likely to get you much of anyplace.  We didn't get where we are in this rights battle overnight, and we won't get Constitutional liberties restored overnight, either.  At least, not in a way that any of us who has 2 brain cells to rub together wants.

Instead, let's take a lesson from the snowball.  Start small, pick up support as you go, and soon, you become unstoppable.
The concept of open carry is something I dearly love.  I don't OC as often as I might, in no small part because I don't want to deal with the stupid that comes from the tourists I've had to deal with in the past couple years.  During the winter, though, I'm far less concerned and far more apt to OC.  It is, quite simply, a convenience thing.  However, there is a major difference between a holstered pistol (which can be an excellent icebreaker for a rights discussion), and a slung longarm, which, while legal, is going to make anyone nervous.  It has nothing to do with rights or legalities.  It has everything to do with a deeply-ingrained image in our souls.  Men, ready-carrying long guns, brings to mind an image of so many police states and government oppressions.  We've seen in on the news the world over, for the entirety of my generation and the one before it.  And when people see those things, it causes a gut reaction of opposition, whether or not it is warranted.  It's the same imagery that causes a gut reaction of acceptance and home in me when I see a gun rack in a truck, because that's just redneck good times.  Conditioning like that will take a generation, maybe more, to weed out.  And that weeding has to be done deliberately, slowly, and calmly.

So open carry whenever it's legal and appropriate.  Be friendly and courteous.  When someone asks about your pistol, and why you're open carrying, give them a friendly, simple answer, and maybe some direction as to where they can find further information.  Don't become a shrieking harpy, screaming "SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED!"**  Don't get into arguments with screaming harpies, because they'll drag you to their level and beat you with experience.  We have to be ambassadors and diplomats, not conquerors.

So be good ones.


*In summary, "don't be a dick."
**A mighty hat tip to JayG and Vine, that.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Demotivator time

We packed up the cat and moved him to my mother-in-law's place today, in preparation for our big move (more about that when I have more time).  About 2/3 of the way through the drive, we stopped for fuel and I snapped a photo of him, to show the family how much he loves traveling.  It was such a representative shot that I had to make a demotivator of it.

As usual, click to embiggen.


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Top Shot Reloaded

It premiered tonight, but it's late, so you'll get your recap tomorrow.  Sorry.


Saturday, February 5, 2011

Overheard at the game table...

S: We got the naked lady car!

A: I can't believe you lost my naked lady car!

It's a good night.


Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Of all the names...

I just talked to a dude named Dragan on the phone.  Guarantee you'd only get one response if you yelled that name in the mall.


Friday, January 28, 2011

25 years ago today...

the space shuttle Challenger exploded on launch.  I was just shy of 4 at the time, and as such, have no firsthand recollection of the incident.  However, being from northern Utah, home of Thiokol, I've seen the video of the tragedy countless times.  To this day, it stands as a reminder that life is short, living is dangerous, and we are fragile.  We are also inventive and determined, because even knowing all the dangers of space flight, mankind still looks to the stars and dreams.

And that is what makes us ultimately strong.  Godspeed to the Challenger crew, who lived that dream.


Thursday, January 27, 2011

Wherein Loki saves the Big 3

My buddy Dr Evil (the Mad Mechanic) and I are unabashed car dudes.  Combine that with the fact that we're rather opinionated and mildly intelligent, and it should be no surprise that we have kicked around for quite a while a number of ideas to save the Big 3 American automakers.

That said, we think we have a plan that works.  We used GM for our example, because while we both come from full-on Ford families (my VW is the only non-Ford that either of us or our immediate families own anymore) we're both Chevy kids at heart.  Without further ado, here we go.

1.  Kiss GMC goodbye.  There is zero need for GM to have two truck manufacturers, and Chevrolet has more to offer than keeping GMC.

2.  Do the same to Hummer.  If you feel the need to keep any of their models, put a bowtie on the grille and call them a Chevy.

3.  Bring back Pontiac.  Run it as the "Excitement Division" as it properly should be.  Automatic transmissions are available, but only as a factory special order.  These are cars for drivers, not for people who drive.

4.  On that note, bring back special orders, for a la carte pricing.  We'll make you anything, but it'll cost you.

5.  Cut back both the number of models in each brand.

6. And the trim levels for each model.  If you haven't noticed by now, our whole plan hinges on simplifying and streamlining operations.  Keep each model to roughly 3 trim levels:  Base, either a Deluxe or Sport level (depending on model), and a Luxury level.

That basically leaves you with Chevrolet, Pontiac, Buick, and Cadillac.

You treat Chevy as your entry-level line.  It's your workingman's car.  They also handle all truck manufacturing.  Sorry, rappers, but your Escalade has to go.  Make an econobox, a midsize, and a fullsize car.  Have a crossover and a midsize and fullsize SUV, and a small and fullsize pickup, and you're set.  The one exception is the Corvette.  As the Chevrolet flagship, we can let it stay put, just for nostalgia's sake.  (Never let it be said that we're unreasonable or forget the past.)

Buick becomes your slightly more white-collar car.  It's what your middle-management types would be driving.  Midsize and fullsize sedans, mostly.  Maybe an AWD midsize SUV.

Cadillac once again becomes the cream of the crop.  Cadillac isn't an adjective for nothing.  The bank president should want to drive a Caddy.  CEOs of major corporations should consider Cadillac the ideal.  Yes, that means that Cadillacs will be far more expensive than they are now.  So be it, our target demographic can afford it, we just need to be building sedans that are taking market share from BMW and Mercedes.  Build a quality luxury car, and American businessmen will buy them.

Pontiac operates slightly outside of this continuum.  The "excitement division" would span all comers, because people who love performance cars come from all backgrounds.  Build something like a Fiero (but build it right, instead of the ball of fail that the Fiero was) as your entry-level car, a roadster akin to the Saturn Sky, move your Camaro to Pontiac as the return of the Firebird, and pull the Cadillac XLR over as your top of the line sports/muscle car.  All with manual transmissions as standard equipment, and as little traction and stability control as we can get away with.  Pontiacs are designed and built for drivers, people who want the car to push back, and tell them how it feels.

We have something for everybody, without excessive duplication.  Our plan doesn't address the UAW issue (face it, UAW costs are strangling domestic automakers) or .gov regulations that kill super-efficient small diesels (50+ mpg on a super-clean burning diesel?  With actual performance?  Beats a Prius in every way but the smug factor.) but it's a far sight better than how things are right now.

Of course, I'm always open to suggestions/additions/modifications.


It's the most wonderful time of the year!

That's right, there's only one handegg game left before they clear the airwaves for the racecars to go fast and turn left.  (As a Broncos fan, I don't have to pay much attention to January football. ;-P)

In preparation for the upcoming season, NASCAR announced rules changes for 2011.

In summary:

First, they simplified the points system.  The old system was far too complicated to describe here.  The new system awards the winning driver 43 points, and reduces by one point for each position behind the winner.  There will be one bonus point awarded to any driver who leads a lap, one to the driver who leads the most laps, and 3 to the winner.  When the points are realigned for the Chase, each win will be worth 3 additional bonus points.

Speaking of the Chase...  The top 10 drivers will now make it on points, and there will be 2 "wild card" spots, to be awarded to the drivers with the most wins who are scored in positions 11-20.

Those are the two big changes.  There are other minor ones at the link.  Now you're up to speed, in plenty of time for the Shootout.

Boogity boogity boogity!


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Get out the vote!

A while back, I mentioned that a good friend and all around nice guy Ambulance Driver was in need of nominations for best EMS blog of 2010-2011.  After all the nominations were tallied, he made the finals.  All of the finalists are very worthy bloggers and awesome reads, so whoever you vote for, vote early and vote often.

I know I will.


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Constitutional Carry update

It passed the Senate!  Now, on to the House, then to the Governor's desk!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


Borepatch has the whole story, but suffice it to say, I stand for individual liberty.  ALL individual liberty.

I am TJIC.


Sunday, January 16, 2011

Going Constitutional!

Wyoming's Constitutional Carry bill, SF-47, will be read in committee on Tuesday, January 18.  I'll be contacting my state representatives, and any readers who live in Wyoming, I'd urge you very strongly to do the same.

This should pass handily, but why take chances?


Thursday, January 13, 2011

I for one welcome our ambulance-driving overlord.

It seems there is a competition for best Fire and EMS blog on the net.  I know who I'm supporting.  He has all the details.

Get out the vote!  Vote Early, Vote Often.


Monday, January 10, 2011

A new consideration in carry guns.

I managed to split my thumb open, as a glorious conclusion to my...  interesting... weekend.  With it bandaged like it is, I can't flex my thumb at the knuckle more than a few degrees.  I went to strap on my snubbie Taurus a little while ago, and when I went to check load (a habit I'm glad I'm in), I found that I can't readily manipulate the cylinder release with my bandaged thumb.  Well, crap, let's try the 1911.  The slick tape makes releasing the safety a less than certain proposition.  I tried my 1006, and I can flip the safety on that just fine, plus it always gets carried in Condition 2 (round chambered, hammer down, safety off).

Just something to check anytime something changes on your gun hand, no matter how temporary.


An incredible scientific discovery!

Via Robb:

Using recent advances in imaging technology, researchers have claimed that new data indicates measurements of time may exist below the Planck Time. The Planck Length (ℓP) is the scale at which classical ideas about gravity and space-time break down and the distance a photon can travel 1ℓP in a complete vacuum is considered the smallest unit of time that has any meaning.

Ain't science cool?


Saturday, January 1, 2011

Optic bleg

While looking at optics for the new AR, my eyes wandered to things in the red-dot category.  They seem to be handy and fast-acquiring, which would be nice.

The problem is, I've never handled a rifle with a red-dot (I hope to rectify that shortly), so I have to lean on the experience of the intarwebmotron.  My list of wants and desires are as follows:

Must be able to accept a magnifier, or have magnification up to at least 4x, as I'll be shooting out to ~300 yards.

I only need precision enough to hit a deer or silhouette target at range, I don't intend on hooting anything smaller than that with this rifle.

Can't require batteries made of unobtainium.  CR123 or 2032 cells are acceptable, but nothing more obscure than that.

The more tool-free the better.

A price of <$500 for the optic itself.  The magnifier, if needed, will be a later purchase with a separate budget.

With that in mind, I've been doing a bit of research, and have 2 preliminary options.

The first is an EOTech 517.A65.  The big appeal of the EOTech is that it's an easy-acquisition reflex sight, and the 517 in particular because it takes readily available AA batteries.  They're cheap, and they're EVERYWHERE.

The second one I've been eyeballing is an Aimpoint 9000SC.  Battery life is far better, and it mounts using standard 30mm rings.  The expanded battery life should more than offset the fact that it uses a coin-cell type battery, which is more expensive and harder to find in a pinch.

I'm fully open to suggestions on other sights, though.

Thanks in advance.