Practice, practice, practice…

Went out to the range to shoot the National Match M-1 this weekend at the range, and lack of practice reared it’s ugly head yet again… I didn’t shoot worth a dang only 1 x and only 2 10 rings. Sigh… And the @#&* extractor decided to start acting up, so after 10 rounds I gave up on the day and wandered over to the pistol range. Low and behold, there was a bowling pin shoot in progress.

Well, stupid me, they said I could jump in, so I paid my money and got on the line…

Yep, didn’t do worth a dang there either… I could NOT break 12 seconds any one of the three rounds. I could get 4 of the 5, but that fifth one just ate me up. Now granted I was shooting my carry pistol, but still, that was embarrassing; especially when some of the folks were down in the 6 second range (granted they were shooting race guns, but still…). In the ‘production’ group, a lady from one of the local gun clubs won with a time of 8 seconds and change! She said she shoots EVERY weekend, and dry fires at least 50 times a night. OBTW, she beat her hubby by almost a full second 🙂

Needless to say, HE was not happy, but everybody else got a laugh out of it…

So, after two embarrassments in a row, I tucked my tail and went to yet another range, and practiced for an hour, at least I ‘finally’ got more or less back on target.

Bottom line, a month off from shooting DEFINITELY impacted my ability, and I sure as hell was NOT smooth in anything I was doing.

Italy is…well… Italy…


Okay, I’m back (physically anyway)… woke up at 0430 and that was it… sigh…


It was HOT over there the entire trip. How hot was it? Well at one point I was walking back to the barracks and I saw a dog, two cats and three lizards ALL sharing the same little piece of shade and they were all just sitting there panting…

On a bit of a historical note-

ADM C. R. Brown received a VIP airplane when he was assigned as CIC Allied Forces Southern Europe in 1958. His nickname was ‘Cat’ and he was well known and respected by all of his subordinates. When the original aircraft was assigned, there was a contest to name the aircraft, and the name CATBIRD was the ‘winner’. This is a picture of the original drawing done by Walt Disney Studios for an emblem to be used as the insignia for the “Catbird” callsign that was painted on the side of the airplane (and Disney only charged the Navy $1 for the exclusive use and rights).

And here it is today… On a C-20 (better known as a Gulfstream G-3); the Catbird is alive and well…
Somebody asked me what kind of rentawreck I had; so here is a picture…

It’s a Smartcar on steroids… It’s a four door Mercedes A 140, and trust me, it has NO room for luggage… I had one regular size suitcase and it was too big to go in the ‘trunk’. To/from the airport I actually had to put it in the back seat!!!

We put four people in it one night to run grab a bite to eat, and it was bottoming the shocks… The only ‘good’ thing? It got about 70 mpg!!!
The other ‘fun’ thing about Italy is driving through a roundabout, now I know you Yankees know what that is, and how to drive through one, but trust me, you would NOT like the Italian version…

In Italy there is no such thing as actually obeying those pesky little traffic rules/laws, like the person IN the roundabout has the right of way… Nope, you just drive on in, and as long as you don’t LOOK at the cars bearing down on you, YOU have the right of way…

Now it’s even MORE fun when you have four or five streets off each one, and multiple lanes on a couple of them, AND throw in a bus and truck or two, and the normal traffic and I’ll guarantee you would age about a year per roundabout…

And you know how the US Airports are paranoid about cars parking in front of the terminal for ANY length of time? Well, below is the drop off area in front of the airport I flew out of…

This is about 0630, there are supposed to be three lanes, and I’m standing in front of the handicapped “drop off” spots… People just pulled in parked and got out of their cars and went into the airport, doing who knows what…

And the horns… the horns… EVERYBODY was honking… and a bus was trying to get through and couldn’t fit, so the ramp was at a dead stop, and he started laying on the bus horn, and got ignored…
That’s a quick and dirty, not much chance to actually go see stuff since this was a working trip, but I am glad this one is over. Now it’s back to the daily grind… sigh…

Rednecks…


You might be a redneck if: It never occurred to you to be offended by the phrase, ‘One nation, under God..’

You might be a redneck if:
You’ve never protested about seeing the 10 Commandments posted in public places.

You might be a redneck if
: You still say ‘ Christmas’ instead of ‘Winter Festival.’

You might be a redneck if: You bow your head when someone prays.

You might be a redneck if: You stand and place your hand over your heart when they play the National Anthem

You might be a redneck if: You treat our armed forces veterans with great respect, and always have.

You might be a redneck if:
You’ve never burned an American flag, nor intend to.

You might be a redneck if:
You know what you believe and you aren’t afraid to say so, no matter who is listening.

You might be a redneck if
: You respect your elders and raised your kids to do the same.

You might be a redneck if:
You’d give your last dollar to a friend.


Well, I made it back in one piece, off to ‘try’ to overcome the 6 hour time difference…

First, I want to apologize to those whom I normally read and comment on, I just flat didn’t have good connectivity nor, quite honestly, the time to futz around with fighting the firewalls to actually post on a lot of folks blogs.

I’ll try to get a post up tomorrow about the trip and some pictures…ZZzzzz

I sense a trend…

What is it they say? Once is an anomoly, twice is a trend, three times is a pattern…

Girlfriends…

A group of 15 year old girlfriends discussed where they should meet for dinner. Finally, it was agreed upon that they should meet at at the Dairy Queen next to the Ocean View restaurant because they only had $6.00 between them and Jimmy Johnson, that cute boy in Social Studies, lives on that street and they might see him and they can ride their bikes there.

10 years later, the group of 25 year old girlfriends discussed where they should meet for dinner. Finally, it was agreed upon that they should meet at the Ocean View restaurant because the beer was cheap, they had free snacks, the band was good, there was no cover and there were lots of cute guys.

10 years later, at 35 years of age, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. Finally, it was agreed upon that they should meet at the Ocean View restaurant because the cosmos were good, it was right near the gym and if they go late enough, there wouldn’t be too many whiny little kids.

10 years later, at 45 years of age, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. Finally, it was agreed upon that they should meet at the Ocean View restaurant because the martinis were big, and the waiters there had tight pants and nice buns.

10 years later, at 55 years of age, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. Finally it was agreed they should meet at the Ocean View restaurant because the food there was reasonable, the wine list was good, they had windows that open in case of a hot flash, and fish is good for your cholesterol.

10 years later, at 65 years of age, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. Finally it was agreed that they should meet at the Ocean View restaurant because lighting was good and they have an early bird special.

10 years later, at 75 years of age, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. Finally it was agreed that they should meet at the Ocean View restaurant because food was not too spicy, the restaurant was handicapped accessible and they even had an elevator!

10 years later, at 85 years of age, the group once again discussed where they should meet for dinner. Finally it was agreed that they should meet at the Ocean View restaurant because they had never been there before.

And based on some of the folks I know that are mumble age, this is pretty much dead on… Now whereinthehelldidwegolastnight???

Just sayin… 🙂

Ye Gods and little green apples…

Well, yesterday “officially” classifies as ONE of those days…

Had to go back up to Riposto, IT on a pickup run for some stuff, so got to ‘play’ in rush hour traffic Italian style. I’m STILL tryin to get the seat cushion out of my ass… Let’s just say it was exciting and leave it at that… And that was just the trip over!!!

So, I finally get up there, pick up the stuff I need to get, and have to come back the other way in MORE rush hour traffic, except that I now have a passenger. Now the speed limit is 60 kph (bout 35 mph), I was running 110 and getting passed by grannies driving 30 year old Fiats, so I picked up the pace to about 130 to stay with the flow…

The old man in front of me is driving about 120, half in his lane, half on the shoulder, so I decide to pass- Now I’m driving a 1.4L turbo diesel (0-60 in hours), so I down shift, rev the hell out of it and get a running start at him, turn on the blinker, move over a half a lane (like a good Italian) and start passing him… kinda, sorta…

So I get about even with his front door, and I see a pair of headlights and a turn signal in my mirror, and they AREN’T slowing down… At this point I floor that little TDI (lot of good THAT did) and ease over a little closer to the old man and a Mercedes comes blowing by at probably 200 kph, close enough that I hear a ‘ting’ as his mirror hits mine!!!

At the SAME time, the Merc is being passed by a biker (no helmet, and I ‘think’ shorts on) and HE’s running probably 250 kph (and, OBTW, there is a BUS in the oncoming lane now)…

And that SOB is hogging the center line… I’m figuring we’re ALL gonna die momentarily, and I sure as hell will NOT have clean shorts on…

And we all manage to miss each other… How I have NO @#&( clue!

So I finally get back to the ‘freeway’, get back over to roughly where I’m going, and back on the side roads that I “know” from years of experience, and I come up over the railroad tracks, only to meet an Italian version of an 18 wheeler on MY side of the road and half in the ditch (this IS a side road), passing another 18 wheeler… I just turned right onto the train tracks, at that point I figured what the hell… train, 18 wheeler, it doesn’t matter, I won’t survive either one…

I finally get back to the base, and I realize the guy riding with me hasn’t said a word in, oh probably an hour… I look over and he literally has his eyes closed and is gripping the side of the seat and the door handle with a death grip. I poke him and tell him we made it, and he looks over at me and says, “YOU are @#&* CRAZY!” and he gets out of the car an walks away.

Not even a thank you for the ride… sigh… some people…

I’m thinking wine with breakfast is not necessarily a bad idea… (maybe a gallon or two to start the day)

Suthern Wimmen…

Those of you in the south will understand, and those of you who are not… too bad.
Southern women know their summer weather report: Humidity,Humidity,Humidity and HOT!
Southern women know their vacation spots: The beach, The rivuh, The crick
Southern women know everybody’s first name:Honey,D arlin,’Shugah

Southern women know the movies that speak to their hearts:Fried Green Tomatoes, Driving Miss Daisy, Steel Magnolias, Gone With The Wind
Southern women know their religions: Baptist, Methodist, Football
Southern women know their cities dripping with Southern charm:Chawl’stn, S’vanah, Foat Wuth, N’awlins, Addlanna
Southern women know their elegant gentlemen: Men in uniform, Men in tuxedos, Rhett Butler
Southern girls know their prime real estate:The Mall, The Spa, The Beauty Salon

Southern girls know the 3 deadly sins: Having bad hair and nails, Having bad manners, Cooking bad food

More Suthen-ism’s: Only a Southerner knows the difference between a hissie fit and a conniption fit, and that you don’t “HAVE” them, you “PITCH” them.
Only a Southerner knows how many fish, collard greens, turnip greens, peas, beans, etc., make up “a mess.”

Only a Southerner can show or point out to you the general direction of “yonder.”
Only a Southerner knows exactly how long “directly” is, as in:
“Going to town, be back drekly (directly).”

Even Southern babies know that “Gimme some sugar” is not a request for the white, granular, sweet substance that sits in a pretty little bowl in the middle of the table.
All Southerners know exactly when “by and by” is. They might not use the term, but they know the concept well.
Only a Southerner knows instinctively that the best gesture of solace for a neighbor who’s got trouble is a plate of hot fried chicken and a big bowl of cold potato salad.
If the neighbor’s trouble is a real crisis, they also know to add a large banana puddin’!

Only Southerners grow up knowing the difference between “right near” and
“a right far piece.” They also know that “just down the road” can be 1 mile or 20.

Only a Southerner both knows and understands the difference between a redneck, a good ol’ boy, and po’ white trash.
No true Southerner would ever assume that the car with the flashing turn signal is actually going to make a turn.
A Southerner knows that “fixin” can be used as a noun, a verb, or an adverb.
Only Southerners make friends while standing in lines… and when we’re “in line,”… we talk to everybody!
Put 100 Southerners in a room and half of them will discover they’re related, even if only by marriage.
In the South, y’all is singular, all y’all is plural.
Southerners know grits come from corn and how to eat them.
Every Southerner knows tomatoes with eggs, bacon, grits, and coffee are perfectly wonderful; that red eye gravy is also a breakfast food; and that fried green tomatoes are not a breakfast food.
When you hear someone say, “Well, I caught myself lookin’,” you know you are in the presence of a genuine Southerner!
Only true Southerners say “sweet tea” and “sweet milk.” Sweet tea indicates the need for sugar and lots of it — we do not like our tea unsweetened. “Sweet milk” means you don’t want buttermilk.
And a true Southerner knows you don’t scream obscenities at little old ladies who drive 30 MPH on the freeway. You just say,”Bless her heart”… and go your own way.
To those of you who are still a little embarrassed by your Southerness: Take two tent revivals and a dose of sausage gravy and call me in the morning. Bless your heart!

Now y’all have a good weekend, ya hear!!!

Two Things…

Go HERE to Peedee’s blog and follow the link for a petition to name a bridge after one of the fallen heroes from the first Gulf War, A-10 Pilot, Capt. Patrick Brian Olson who gave his life during Operation Desert Storm in Feb 1991.

The second is a post up at Lawdog’s blog HERE about some Gurkas doing ‘exactly’ what they were supposed to and getting a negative reaction from thier Brit bosses… Be advised, Lawdog is in FINE form on this one 🙂 And you will be as pissed as he is…

Nothing new on this end, still on ‘location’, still herding cats…
sigh…

Impressive…


Creeping closer inch by inch, 900 feet above the mighty Colorado River, the two sides of a $160 million bridge at the Hoover Dam slowly take shape. The bridge will carry a new

section of US Route 93 past the bottleneck of the old road which can be seen twisting and


winding around and across the dam itself.




When complete, it will provide a new link between the states of Nevada and Arizona


In an incredible feat of engineering, the road will be supported on the two massive

concrete arches which jut out of the rock face.


The arches are made up of 53 individual sections each 24 feet long which have been cast on-site and are being lifted into place using an improvised high-wire crane strungbetween temporary steel pylons.



The arches will eventually measure more than 1,000 feet across. At the moment, the structure looks like a traditional suspension bridge.But once the arches are complete, the suspending cables on each side will be removed. Extra vertical columns will then be installed on the arches to carry the road.


The bridge has become known as the Hoover Dam bypass, although it is officially called the Mike O’Callaghan-Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge, after a former governor of Nevadaand an American Football player from Arizona who joined the US Army and was killedïin Afghanistan.


Work on the bridge started in 2005 and should finish next year.An estimated 17,000 cars and trucks will cross it every day. The dam was started in 1931 and used enough concrete to build a road from New York to San Francisco. The stretch of water it created, Lake Mead is 110 miles long and took six years to fill.The original road was opened at the same time as the famous dam in 1936.



An extra note:

The top of the white band of rock in Lake Mead is the old waterline prior to the drought and development in the Las Vegas area and is over 100 feet above the current water level.

Impressive… to put it mildly…

Oldies but goodies…

I know most people won’t remember these, but I do…

These used to be on the rural highways throughout America, I remember seeing them when I was growing up in the South. There would be five signs, each with one line on it, the last was always the Burma Shave logo and name.

Old ‘Burma Shave’ Roadway Signs!

DON’T STICK YOUR ELBOW
OUT SO FAR
IT MAY GO HOME
IN ANOTHER CAR.
Burma Shave

TRAINS DON’T WANDER
ALL OVER THE MAP
‘CAUSE NOBODY SITS
IN THE ENGINEER’S LAP
Burma Shave

SHE KISSED THE HAIRBRUSH
BY MISTAKE
SHE THOUGHT IT WAS
HER HUSBAND JAKE
Burma Shave

DON’T LOSE YOUR HEAD
TO GAIN A MINUTE
YOU NEED YOUR HEAD
YOUR BRAINS ARE IN IT
Burma Shave

DROVE TOO LONG
DRIVER SNOOZING
WHAT HAPPENED NEXT
IS NOT AMUSING
Burma Shave

BROTHER SPEEDER
LET’S REHEARSE
ALL TOGETHER
GOOD MORNING, NURSE
Burma Shave

CAUTIOUS RIDER
TO HER RECKLESS DEAR
LET’S HAVE LESS BULL
AND A LITTLE MORE STEER
Burma Shave

SPEED WAS HIGH
WEATHER WAS NOT
TIRES WERE THIN
X MARKS THE SPOT
Burma Shave

THE MIDNIGHT RIDE
OF PAUL FOR BEER
LED TO A WARMER
HEMISPHERE
Burma Shave

AROUND THE CURVE
LICKETY-SPLIT
BEAUTIFUL CAR
WASN’T IT?
Burma Shave

NO MATTER THE PRICE
NO MATTER HOW NEW
THE BEST SAFETY DEVICE
IN THE CAR IS YOU
Burma Shave

A GUY WHO DRIVES
A CAR WIDE OPEN
IS NOT THINKIN’
HE’S JUST HOPIN’
Burma Shave

AT INTERSECTIONS
LOOK EACH WAY
A HARP SOUNDS NICE
BUT IT’S HARD TO PLAY
Burma Shave

BOTH HANDS ON THE WHEEL
EYES ON THE ROAD
THAT’S THE SKILLFUL
DRIVER’S CODE
Burma Shave

THE ONE WHO DRIVES
WHEN HE’S BEEN DRINKING
DEPENDS ON YOU
TO DO HIS THINKING
Burma Shave

CAR IN DITCH
DRIVER IN TREE
THE MOON WAS FULL
AND SO WAS HE.
Burma Shave

PASSING SCHOOL ZONE
TAKE IT SLOW
LET OUR LITTLE
SHAVERS GROW
Burma Shave

Gah,,,

It’s officially HOT!!!
Went down to Acitrezza to check on a boat, it was a ‘balmy’ 99 down on the coast with a light cooling breeze, so it only felt like 103…

Back up to where we are staying, the temps were a ‘warm’ 102 with a heat index of 110, and 20 kt breeze… I now know what a convection oven feels like… sigh…

Went back to get in the car and run to lunch, the interior temp was 53C, which equated to 127F! And it’s not even ‘really’ hot yet!!!

Just for S&Gs ran a density altitude profile for the location at 284ft above sea level, turns out the DA is over 3500 feet!

Sorry for the lack of posting and commenting, connectivity is lousy even when it’s up; which is about half the time. I’m doing this on my lunchbreak, since there is actually an open terminal.

Back to the oriface… y’all have a good weekend!