Monday, June 25, 2007

Don't Scratch Your Ear with It!

Whenever I go to the gun range, I try to bring along others. Ideally, I will bring along others who are already shooters but have fallen out of practice as well as those new to shooting.

Last Thursday, I found myself at the range with a very experienced, well practiced shooter and someone else who saw a gun in a movie once.

The man new to shooting required a lot of instruction. When I say "a lot," I mean it in the same way that the Hoover Dam took a lot of cement to make.

I swear I have never been that nervous around firearms.

The other shooter and I explained our pistols. We had both brought Glocks that night. We taught him how to operate the pistols. We explained the internal safeties. We explained safe operation. We stressed muzzle awareness. We repeated the safety rules repeatedly and again.

Right after explaining hand placement and how to work the slide, he cuts his hand on the slide (gives himself a nice blood blister anyway).

He dry fired a few times and we loaded a single round into the first pistol.

We told him to keep the weapon pointed down range and to keep his finger straight until he was on target.

The first thing he does is pick it up with his finger in the trigger well and turns around with it. We yelled at him to turn around and face the target. So he does it again. When he was not doing the hokey pokey with it, he was looking down the barrel.

Among the questions he asked that night:

"Why is it so loud? The movies aren't that loud."

(referring to a bullet) "This little thing can kill someone?"

"Why does it kick so much?"

"So if I..."
With a few exceptions, I think that everyone should own a firearm. Of those, most people should carry them.

I think he may be one of the few.


Weetabix said...

Maybe if he had an unloaded gun, and you had a BB gun there and shot him in the foot each time he did something stupid?

Aversive conditioning has worked for years...

Shawn McManus said...

I think you're on to something.

He is Polish and in his late-30's and doesn't take instruction for anything well. To his credit, he's an engineer who likes to figure out things on his own.

Unlike many Poles, he has never been in the military and has only seen firearms in the movies.

Weetabix said...

I recently acquired a Polish Mosin M-44. I could lend it to you, and you could poke him with the pointy end. It would be like a taste of home.

Shawn McManus said...

Next time I'll take him sword fighting. At least if he can't figure out which is the dangerous end, I won't be the one to get hurt.