Sunday, September 30, 2012

Quote for the Week

The media's the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. Because they control the minds of the masses.

-Malcom X

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Quote for the Week

Some see private enterprise as a predatory target to be shot, others as a cow to be milked, but few are those who see it as a sturdy horse pulling the wagon.

-Winston Churchill

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Foreign Language

Wife (to my oldest): Go to the room, to the bottom thing of the thing that we have and bring me a brush.

My daughter leaves and comes back with not just a brush, but the exact (of several million we seem to have) hair brush my wife had in mind.

Me? I'm still trying to figure out which room she's talking about.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Quote for the Week

One of the consequences of such notions as "entitlements" is that people who have contributed nothing to society feel that society owes them something, apparently just for being nice enough to grace us with their presence.

-Thomas Sowell

Friday, September 14, 2012

Ready to Go

For some time now, I have wanted to go hunting.  Finally, this year, I have the opportunity to go deer hunting with a friend.  I was able to score a great deal on a hunting shotgun/scope combo, so I was ready to go.  My friend had been researching his options and, unknown to me, had come to the same conclusion regarding a new shotgun/scope combo for him.  So, we both ended up with the same style shotguns.  This fact becomes important in a minute.

Purchases made, it was time to sight in the scope.  We made plans and headed out to the range, which was about 40+ minutes away.  We get there, and he goes first.  He sets up and begins the process.  I use the binoculars and call out the shots.

Once he's done, it's my turn.  I take out my shotgun and, ... just stare at it.


Um.... Jonathan?


Can I borrow your bolt?

My bolt?!?

Ermm...yes.  I seem to have left my bolt at home.

Why did you take out the bolt?

Note to self:  Don't forget the important parts of the shotgun when it's time to go hunting.  It'll be a lot harder to use someone else's there.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Quote for the Week

The media works in sound bites. They can make you look like a genius or stupid.

- Kato Kaelin

Friday, September 7, 2012

Just in Case

I walk into the conference room and sit down across from the client.

He is huge.  His muscles have muscles.  He is sitting down, hunched over, as if trying to make himself as small as he can.

I start the conversation and have to strain to hear him because he is soft-spoken.

“I need a divorce because I don’t want to hurt her.”

?! “What do you mean?”

There is a battle going on in his mind.  His face shows no emotion, but his eyes are brimming with tears he won’t release, and his shoulders sag, no longer held up by the determination that left him long ago.

Over the next few minutes, he tells me his story.  He returned home from the war several months ago, a new person.  He is not the person his wife married and they both know it.  Now suffering from PTSD, he has destroyed his marriage and his wife is afraid of him.  He understands.  After all, he is afraid of himself.

He tells me, “I have seen things I hope you never see.  During the day, I try hard to forget them, and during the night, I close my eyes only for those thoughts to fill the darkness.”

Over the next several minutes, I lay out a map for him, giving him several options, as well as directing him to some places to get help.  I can tell by the way he speaks that he loves his wife, and yet...

We finish, and he walks away.  I know I won’t see him again.  He’s not coming back. He knows what he has to do, but he still has some hope.  He wants to wait.  Just in case this monster gripping his mind will tire of him and finally let go.

Just in case.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Good Samaritan

The wind was cold, strong, and stiff, so I pulled my coat tighter as I walked.  It was dark, and I was tired after a long day of work.  I stuffed my hands deep in my pockets and made my way toward a solitary car in the middle of the road.

I had been on my way home when I saw the car, stopped in the middle of the road on the opposite lane, with the hazard lights flashing.  As I drove by, I could barely see the driver slumped over the wheel.  Since it was late at night and very cold, I decided to stop and see if the driver was ok.

Up until this point, I hadn’t really put much stock into my surroundings.  I was content to come and go, keeping to myself, mostly staring at the ground as I walked.  I had never heard of situational awareness, and even if had, I would have dismissed it as some sort of paranoia.

I made a u-turn, pulled into a nearby parking lot, and walked toward the car.  I would just ask the driver if he or she was alright, offer the use of my phone if needed, and then be back on the road.

I was about 10 feet away from the car when the driver's door opened.  A young man got out and stared at me.

I asked, “Are you ok, do you need any help?”

He did not respond.  He just kept staring.

At that point, I stopped getting closer.  After a series of stupid decisions, it was the first smart decision.  The other three car doors slowly opened and several young men started stepping out of the vehicle.  It was almost like the overloaded clown car routine, except that I wasn’t amused.  Suddenly, I was scared.  I was now outnumbered about five or six to one and none of those guys looked friendly.

I quickly looked behind me to make sure no one was approaching from the rear.  My hands came out of my pockets and I started backing away.  Once I felt that I had enough space, I turned around and quickly made it to my car.

I learned several lessons that day:

  1. Being nice can sometimes get you in trouble.  Being nice has to be a measured risk.  This time, there was too much going against me.  I couldn’t see inside the vehicle, it was dark, I was tired, etc…  Now, I’m more cautious whenever I see someone needing help.
  2. Situational awareness suddenly became important to me.
  3. Rather than being ready to offer someone my phone to use, I should have just made the call myself.  I could have been stranded, without a phone.
  4. Don’t take anything at face value.  What looked like someone needing help could have been a set-up instead.  What you see is usually not everything.  Look around.  Be aware.
  5. Always be prepared to defend yourself and even the odds.  Here, I wasn't.  But not for long.  Shortly after that, I got my concealed weapon permit.  In this situation, I put myself in trouble.  Now, I try to stay out of trouble.  If, however, trouble should find me anyway, I want to be ready.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Quote for the Week

A wise and frugal Government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government, and this is necessary to close the circle of our felicities.

-Thomas Jefferson

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Gun Safety Tuneup

As more and more of my friends start buying and carrying guns, I thought I would post a reminder article I found interesting and helpful

Tune Up Your Gun Handling