RIFLEMAN'S JOURNAL - OCTOBER 2008


September 2008 | OCTOBER 2008 | November 2008
1970 - Wednesday, 1 October 2008: Freaky freaks. Everywhere. On the road, at the library, through the headset. And the infectious spread of Obamania is really creeping me out. Still don't want to vote for McCain, 'cause the difference is much like that between socialism and communism; can't quite bring myself to vote Palin either, since she's reportedly in favor of the Wall St. bailout at our expense, as is her running mate. Do you want your social-economic collapse next month or sometime during (not after) the next four years? There doesn't appear to be a third option.

I am making Significant Use of my birthday gift Loadmaster - I'm actually caught up (except for some reader-donated smaller lots) with the '06 sizing! Next I'll have a lot of priming to do. And Science to test the latest loads; then sit down and make hunnerds & hunnerds of rounds of battle rifle fodder, GodsBlessAmericaWhat'sLeftOfHer. I think I have enough components for about 1,200 rounds, and depending on gumption I might blow it out.

NASA turns fifty and we still ain't walked on Mars and we still ain't even gone back to Luna. My sister has it figured: Give the job to a Vegas developer, we'll have hotels on Luna in two years and heavy industry in the Belt in another decade. If government would just get out of the way!

1971 - Thursday, 2 October 2008: I swear the customers' brains are getting even more scattered. Besides this there's NO CURSED BANDWIDTH and I sit staring unproductively at my screen waiting for the tools to respond. Besides that there's constant ball-dropping from other agents, not least but not exclusively India, which I'm always cleaning up. I should go back to widgets....

1972 - Friday, 3 October 2008: This morning it sounded like something fell out from beneath the Corolla. Everything seems operational and, except for a few seconds of rubbing sounds at the time, all seems well now. Might have just been road debris, cardboard or something - I turned around and couldn't find anything - but with my luck there'll be a pool of some vital fluid over half the parking lot by end of shift, and me with a daily commute for income, and a trip to Yakima planned.... (Back at the hovel after a frustrating day of work, put the car on ramps and peer beneath - can't find anything out of order but I'm not the kind to really know what I'm looking for there.)

[ramble]

Chapter. Some say militia like ourselves, with our deer rifles and duck shotguns, can't hope to engage a first-line government force with heavy weapons. Colonel Madden, fictional though he may have been (and not very, actually - you see in the notes there they had to keep updating the script as the real battle unfolded), gave us the solution to that - "Kill more Japs". But in the worst case there's another lesson from history, learned and forgotten so many times I can't figure who first said it (I thought it was this man): "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." Anyway I know how to shoot and I have a good rifle, even if I'm not up to Minuteman standards, or the USMC's, may-the-gods-pity-me-I'd-die-the-second-day-of-boot-camp. But that's why I'm going to Yakima - to learn and prepare.

Buuuut, Vanderboegh here, like Kratman in ASoD, is postulating active support from a state government against Federal atrocity. I am skeptical that any state, however red, would take such a stand without severe provocation, and more skeptical that I, and others like us, would be inclined to sign on with any level or flavor of government... buuuut, I'm trapped in a blue state and things might be genuinely different in Alabama (or Wyoming), and both Vanderboegh and Kratman postulate just such provocation, and we've seen just such atrocities at Waco and too many other places, and a thousand smaller incidents from the Only Ones every day which don't make national headlines. Hmm. Anyway more rifle practice. "There Ain't No Justice, I know, but just one!"

[/ramble]

Meanwhile the bandwidth is getting worse and more tools are failing outright, while some ignorant bureaucrat who probably never took a front-line call in its life sends out an email complaining about long handle time. Sabers!

Crappy weather tomorrow and still public sight-in days - I think I'll wimp again on Science, sigh. Eh, so much less to load in the car and clean after.

1973 - Saturday, 4 October 2008: On this day in 1957 the first man-made object was placed in Earth orbit. Done by an evil regime as a communist propaganda stunt, but still done.

Yeah crappy weather, rain & wind & sunbreaks causing temperature variations - didn't pack anything to shoot today, just went to the show on principle. And I controlled my spending! I almost walked out with a stainless (I've seen them in books) 1851 Colt .36 repro, marked $110 with nylon holster, but on closer examination it was rather chewed, the wedge retaining screw was broken, and two of the six chambers wouldn't accept the ram during dry-testing. But I wanted it. Bought nothing of consequence in fact; did score a Lee chamfer/deburr tool, much smaller and simpler than the RCBS which my new case-prep station uses two of (and yes it works just as well - most Lee stuff does work as advertised if you understand how, and I get the Lee Factory Crimp Die for most cartridges I load) - I asked the vendor how much and he told me to take it, so I did; now I have a loose one again, as the other two are tied up. I dropped money in the can at the Minutemen booth but as an Oregon resident I could not sign the petition for I-409, to enforce immigration laws - go there. (Got a "NOBAMA" bumper sticker.) Hung out some with Yuri, who didn't buy much either - but damn it sucks to be poor, I woulda walked outta there with loads. (One vendor even had a large USGI truck marked $4k.) He has kids and I have finicky Science, neither of which would have been compatible with either the weather or the public-sight-in-days Sportsmen, so no shooting this weekend. ACSWW, and another show in Canby (which is in driving range of the hovel), next weekend, hm.

1974 - Sunday, 5 October 2008: On this day in 1882 Robert Goddard, father of modern rocektry, was born. Ridiculed during his time, his dreams have been vindicated by history.

Zzzz....

Reader sends: There was a program on 'spootnik' on one of the History Channels that makes the claim that we coulda gotten something similar up in orbit before the Russkies did, but President Eisenhower quashed it because it took away any protest the Kremlin could make about overflights over their territory. So, we let them 'beat' us into orbit, and we responded with the Corona program, which let us know down to approximately the last nut and bolt what they did and did not have, and took them to the cleaners during all the SALT talks. Heh. And eventually we won the Cold War. (The First one anyway....)

Still processing heaps of '06 brass. I could really use one of these, for the sub-heap I laboriously trimmed earlier but did not chamfer and deburr, but of course they're backordered.

1975 - Monday, 6 October 2008: Another depressing day at work, not least due to uncivilized coworkers. This is absurd. How can anyone get anything done in such an immature environment? Are there any grownups in the workforce? Plus I'm getting sick of RatsNestOS and just burning out generally. A partial week of vacation, and an Appleseed I'll have to spend a couple hundred bucks on and labor at the reloading table for days to prepare for, will probably not improve my mood because the same snots will still be in the call center, and the same scatterbrains over the headset, when I get back. Probably it's just time for me to change jobs again. (The opportunities for "advancement" here are incompatible with my psyche and besides the contract might be yanked out from under at any moment anyway, so what's the point?)

RatsNestOS - have you ever seen the original Predator with SchwarzenRINO? "Did you find Walker?" "...I can't tell." I can't tell what's wrong with the product I'm supposed to be supporting if I keep getting umptysteen different, inconsistent and often contradictory error messages on the customer's computer - or if the thing simply chokes for no evident reason. Effing Gates. (4˝ hours (new record) but it eventually obeyed me again.)

Via OFF, nonsensical NRA ratings - but we've grown to expect that. Sigh.

Finished The Van Rijn Method, resuming The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors. We don't deserve the world and the nation that generation bequeathed to us.

As the election (and the next civil war) approaches, webcomics begin taking sides. Some will perhaps take our side; so far I'm seeing more take the other. At least I'm not paying for the books anymore.

1976 - Tuesday, 7 October 2008: Using work bandwidth to plot the Appleseed - looks like I can't get below $50/night. Last time I hit the road at oh-dark-forty-five and spent only Saturday night in Yakima - at these prices I think I'll do the same again, especially since I should be caught up some on sleep during the week.

Show this Saturday and Desperately Needed Rifle Science after (also have to redevelop a 125gr .357 load(s)). Also I think I want to re-JB-Weld the gas cylinder, using More Goop, before said Science.

Mumblers. Unfocused. For this I get out of bed? I'd say something about herding cats but I like cats. Cats would be an improvement!

Britain still sucks. And cops on both sides of the Pond still don't know which end the hot stuff comes out of. Keep on thugging, you thugs - one day you'll push one of us too far and we'll show you what a real shootout looks like. Not that you'll have long to appreciate the lesson.

Continuing Last Stand. After bloody hours of suicidal defense, the tiny ships of Taffy 3 cost Admiral Kurita his nerve and cause him to withdraw his mighty capital ships, the last real threat to the American liberation of the Philippines. Magnificent.

We really should get off this planet. Eggs. Basket. Too small.

1977 - Wednesday, 8 October 2008: Bleh.

In the news, finally an attempt - if I'm reading it right - to incorporate the 2nd Amendment under the 14th. This - if I'm reading it right - would wreck most states' violations of RKBA. -An anti-federalist, states' rights argument might be made, but if you click through to the Reason magazine article you'll see the reasoning behind the 14th Amendment. That equal protection clause is what the Founders' idea of Federalism is all about - no feifdoms! (The Founders had that with the full faith and credit clause (Article IV Section 1) before any Amendments - restrictions against restrictions on citizens.) Like Codrea says, go get 'em.

More scatterbrains who will not listen and cannot follow instructions no matter how far I downshift. Then one pack of useless gibberish after another in the service ticket "notes". Like Charlie Brown said, "I can't stand it."

Uh huh.

Mm-hm.

Reader demands I link this.

Quote o' the day.

Comes now word that this contract also will be shot out from under, by the 25th, consolidated to another call center - and I'll likely be transferred from peripherals (first single-function, presently multifunction) to direct computer support - more training to follow. (I guess I'll be learning more about Vista whether I want to or not.) No pay cut (wasn't I supposed to get a pro forma raise after one year?), probably the same or similar hours.

But the same coworkers and customers.... I really could go back to widgets. Widgets obey.

At the supermarket, this leapt right off the rack at me. Straight transcriptions, nothing but. Large print too. -And the preamble to the BofR, a lot of sources leave that out. It's important.

GOA candidate ratings by state.

Want. Several. On the web gear, in the car, in the bugout bag besides that.... Over $200!? I reckon not then. There are other options.

1978 - Thursday, 9 October 2008: Finishing The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors. The story of Taffy 3 speaks for itself - glorious. But Hornfischer delivers it well too. Read this book. Also, the History Channel did a whole Dogfights episode on this and someone's put it on YouTube. I laboriously used SaveTube to secure my own copies.

Next is back to Schmitz' The Witches of Karres.

Finished sorting .30-06 brass by length, starting much trimming with the new case prep station - developing the Therblig-saving technique. Trying to take video but at 320 pixels for 1m11s I get 45Mb, eek. (I know some of my readers are still on dialup too.) The Canon does 120 as well, experimenting... here is a 30s 320p clip I managed to compress to 3.2Mb with the Abcc shareware converter. Hoo-aah, four per minute. Maybe five later. Changing cartridges is as easy as changing Lee case length gauges - and I've discovered they make them for Mosin and Mauser too, though Sportsman's Warehouse may not stock those. The universal three-jaw is just that; a twist will accomodate even a big fat beveled Mosin rim (or .45-70 I expect). Yes, this is an Improvement, and my reloading capacity has increased yet again. -Then, for the smaller pile that doesn't need trimming but could use just chamfering, the Lee chamfer/deburr tool has a lovely hollow base 1/2" wide - a common hardware-store half-inch drill bit stepped to fit the 3/8" chuck of the $30 Ryobi, and some hot glue (which is easy to remove when done while also protecting both tools), and the bench vice to hold the drill and a C-clamp to hold the trigger (this model doesn't have a lock), and I now have a power chamfer rig, and the cases-per-minute is limited only by the speed of my fingers and the life of the battery! I probably don't need a separate power deburr rig because deburring is usually only needed right after trimming. POWER! I HAZ IT!! And remember, the only thing that needs to be changed for a different cartridge in either setup is the length gauge, which threads right into the cutter. RCBS wants like a hundred bucks for a similar setup - and most of the parts you probably already have around the house.

1979 - Friday, 10 October 2008: Rough day toward the end. If all goes well, Monday may be the last time I take calls for these products - then I have the rest of the week off, then I come back on the 20th and start the transfer training for PC support. Which will be two more weeks of not taking calls.

But they've blocked the webcomics! They've blocked Dilbert! It's a tech support job! Blocking Dilbert is like... like religious persecution!

In the news, VCDL honcho van Cleave will be on Gun Talk this Sunday - and I'll be in chat, though he won't. Speaking of Virginia, campus considers concealed carry - note the poll. Also note the name of the place, and my understanding is it's a private outfit (as opposed to extortionist-tax-funded). Yay SCCC.

Britain Sucks. Britain Sucks. BRITAIN SUCKS! To think that we once had something in common with those bleating sheep.... All the blood and treasure we spent to rescue them from two World Wars and a Cold one, wasted.

Huh, looks like Niven ain't done yet.

1980 - Saturday, 11 October 2008: Zzzz. -I don't get many opportunities for that anymore.

Off to the show about 10. Bought nothing - saw another Red 9 C96, with what appeared to be the stock/holster, with both standard floorplate and a detachable extended magazine with a latch that would fit the floorplate recess, marked $950, sigh. Also saw a "Sears Model 54" 1894 Winchester clone, looked like it just came out of the box, but no price, and the vendor wasn't there, and it disappeared later. Two or three Marlin 39As, $500-ish, and another, beat up especially in the stock, $275 - still bummed about that 39M for $189 years ago, what a subversion piece that would have made! Lovely S&W M57 w/box, new-ish, $600+ IIRC - the box code said made in 1992. No one there was willing to tackle the 1911 .22 conversion firing pins, but after discussion it may make more sense to have the channel enlarged in the aluminum slide (but they wouldn't tackle that either) - or I may pester EAA for the old-spec pins.

Up to the range about noon - not as crowded as I feared. I've procrastinated on this and need the rifle science done so I skipped the handgun science I also have planned. The day started cold and foggy but much of this was burned off by sunshine by the time I left the show; temperature at the range was probably 60something F. Forty rounds at 25 yards from the bench:

.30-06 test loads
M1 Garand
150gr Hornady FMJBT #3037
Hodgdon BL-C(2) powder, WLR primer, military brass, Lee crimp die

Load 1: 50.0gr, HXP66, crimped at cannelure
Load 2: 50.0gr, LC Match, OAL matches M2 Ball
Load 3: 49.0gr, LC Match, OAL matches M2 Ball
Load 4: USGI LC72 M2 Ball

\/ Round# Load->1234
12695262925442666
22818263425302647
32729266825852670
42681265826202648
52658261325692684
62703260426182682
72722259726082655
82664262425552643
92676256126032667
102694259325712663
Averages:27042618.12580.32662.5
Std. Dev.:46.1431.7131.6314.21

The setup:

The cartridges - L-R, 50gr at cannelure, 50 or 49gr seated higher to match GI length, and genuine GI M2:

The groups, in the same order as the table above - accuracy might be alarming but I think that's my fault, getting sloppy (note the first group - I observed the first three rounds of the day cloverleafing - throughout, I used whatever sight setting I ended up with from the last 200yd CMP match - another reason I used 25yds today is most of the Appleseed will be at that distance, with a few rounds at 300yd if it's like last time):

Now take another look at the table, especially the standard deviation (and forget figuring it myself, I told Open Office to do it for me). Smaller SD = more consistent product, yes? Interesting, very interesting, and at least part of what I was expecting by increasing the overall length of the cartridge. -No ignition problems, BTW, seems ordinary WLR primers work fine with BL-C(2), though as I've learned and 'blogged, CCI200 does not. So there, some Science to contemplate! Now which load should I make a zillion of?

Having trouble with dialup - probably phone line conditions as the weather worsens. Giving up and ordering the Cantenna (including laptop adapter). For the Belkin card in the HP box I figure I can get an extension cable from Fry's or somewhere for less, and maybe longer than the same store offers - I'm thinking, if it works, I'll hang it outside like a satellite dish and run the cable inside. The show honcho was using his a few months ago and was getting a signal from a church at least 300m away - there should be comparable signals within a comparable distance of the hovel.

1981 - Sunday, 12 October 2008: Zzzz. And I have to work tomorrow. And the day after the Appleseed....

Dialup trouble continues, dropped connections, multiple attempts needed to connect at top speed. OTOH if the Cantenna works I'll be able to discontinue both Qwest and Localnet, saving over $40/month.

I reckon I'll be making the 50gr high-seated load. I think the horizontal stringing was my fault, canting the rifle on the sandbags and just being generally sloppy. Trimming... then priming... then adjusting dies....

Canby show also this weekend... nah, control spending, save fuel.

Chat & show every Sunday 1100PT. As stated, interview with VCDL honcho, discussing jack-booted thuggery in his state. Speaking of which, dig the comments on the local MSM PSH. Then representative Steve Scalise (R-LA) discussing the NOLA thuggery. Then caller discussion of open carry - and a point raised I think I have to agree with, that for open carry one should use a holster with a retention feature. For racing on pins (and I might be trying IPSC at the end of the month, if I'm not pooped as usual) I use Kydex, but I still have a Bianchi Accumold paddle with a thumb-break strap for the GP100. For the Witness it's hard to find a good retention holster that allows thumb-break while the hammer is cocked - I've seen such for 1911s, but I've seen more that have the strap going over the back of the hammer, and others with the old-fashioned strap which does not have a rapid thumb-break, hm. -But if I tried to exercise my legal right to open carry in Oregon I'd probably have to execute several fascist cops in self-defense, before being murdered by the rest of them. Which is why I want to move to Wyoming.... Then an interview with Bruce Piatt, who is also supposedly a full-time badge - and after the first two hours ranting against badgethugs, nothing but softball questions of course. Sigh. Toward the end host Tom Gresham did ask a little about open carry but didn't dwell. Gresham doesn't visit the Elves in the chat room anymore....

Examining the Queen post-science - still movement in the gas cylinder but it's mainly fore-and-aft, closer to 1/32 than 1/16 I think, with lateral movement more felt than seen - and the cause appears to be the gas plug working loose, which I've seen and attempted to address before, hm. There's also some angular movement as the barrel threads for the locking ring are worn, and the rear ring for the gas cylinder is not a snug fit over its corresponding barrel step. But she still shoots 2MOA when I'm not sloppy.

Speaking of rifle science, a chat room Elf (and one of my most generous donors) points out this vendor offering CCI #34 military primers for what works out to below retail including hazmat, hmm.

Free .PDF manuals! Most of them are of little interest to us but there is the M1, M1903, and M1911, as well as a 1941 Soldier's Handbook.

1982 - Monday, 13 October 2008: On this day in 1775, what would become the United States Navy was born when Congress authorized the arming of two ships (half a year after Lexington/Concord, nine months before the Declaration). Considering what I just read about Taffy 3, it looks like the Founders got that one right.

Webcomics still blocked, not likely to come back. Effing thought police.

Speaking of police, via WoG, One in three recent Atlanta Police Academy graduates have criminal records. And those are just the ones they caught. You think it's any different in your city? I don't.

Thus begins "vacation". No word on the transfer training schedule or anything else yet. Tomorrow (after sleeping in), errands and brass prep; Wednesday is the Big Loading Session; Thursday I use my RSO access for practice (I think there's a smallbore match that day, which I can get newsletter photos for - ack, cops on the handgun range according to the calendar, that ain't safe! Maybe I'll practice Friday morning, even the Sportsmen might be preferable); Friday I pre-load the car and try to get to bed early.

Dialup seems better today.

Continuing Witches of Karres, 1966 - tasty 'nuf, 2004 sequel in the stack.

Quote o' the Day: "Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves." - Ronald Reagan -Not that they're much good at the other thing anyway - and then, who protects us from them?

And some email is three weeks behind.

Cantenna has shipped, estimated delivery Thursday! Prompt service from Wireless Garden. Another reason to get practice on Friday instead.

My case-prep station is working. My fingers get a bit sore from working the universal chuck, but I'm getting vastly more trimmed-cases-per-owie (and per minute) than I would have on the Forster. And I still have the old wooden powder measure stand I cobbled together for the Pro 1000 before I figured out how the Auto Disk works - and that stand will work with the Loadmaster, with the RCBS Uniflow for .30-06, which means it will also work for any other cartridge the Auto Disk won't throw a big enough charge for.

1983 - Tuesday, 14 October 2008: Precious zzzz.

Since I was on that end of town on another errand I stopped at Fry's and got a 7' extension cable for the Cantenna. Not as long as I wanted, but only $9, and examining the connectors, it looks like I can buy another and daisy-chain them if necessary. They stock the Cantenna there too, but all the ones they had may have been refurbs, you know Fry's. Testing with the little Belkin desktop antenna, the cable works fine, but the stubby one can't pick up any new signals.

While there I also sniffed over the laptops, and saw one of these for $350, sale ending today. Small. I think it might fit in a BDU pocket even. Interesting. Yuri knows of one or two places in his area that sometimes have refurb or liquidation laptops though, and besides I'm in no po$ition to buy yet. I intend to take the NEC along to Appleseed and maybe even roadblog.

Comes word that I will be in the first batch of transfer trainees, 0700 Monday - which means I've taken my last call on that other product. But now I'll be supporting the computers themselves and my imagination is already providing plenty of preemptive horror stories.

...Well over 600 pieces fully processed and primed, yay. Three major headstamps, HXP, LC and LC MATCH, mostly one vintage each. Tomorrow (after sleep and laundry) I fiddle with the seating & FCD dies, and the powder measure stand, for the Loadmaster, then dig in with the actual loading.

Yes, the email's still backed up. I'm workin' here! (Some "vacation"....)

1984 - Wednesday, 15 October 2008: More precious zzzz.

Mm hm.

Aaand the loading is underway - previous experiences with the Pro 1000s cut the setup time with the Loadmaster. The COAL is a couple hundredths longer than I wanted but I don't think the Queen will mind. Never did build the cartridge-catcher but a bucket atop a derelict computer, with the media separator in the bucket to reduce the drop distance, and a piece of pizza box as a guide/chute, is serving. This is a huge improvement over single stage, but it's still a lot of work - five separate hand operations: raise the ram, work the powder measure, lower the ram, place bullet in case mouth, place new case in slider block. It looks like there is enough clearance for a case feeder to work - that would eliminate one hand operation, though the feeder tubes wouldn't have much capacity with these long cases - but I'd need a longer bolt for the feeder mount (that's easy, hardware store), and the friction from the next case in the tube would likely cause the case being fed to flip before it reached the shellplate (but I could whittle something from scrap wood and glue it to the slider to give more support for the initial push, hm). I think there is a die I can get to adapt an RCBS powder measure to a progressive press, much like a Lee setup (the Lee die apparently works only with the Lee measure and I don't much like the Lee measure) - but that's expensive, Dillon I think, or RCBS of course. But together, that would mean I could keep one hand on the Loadmaster handle and leave the other hand free for bullet placement. Will investigate, later. -Also, not getting the best crimp - pressure from the seating die robs pressure from the crimp die and vice-versa, hm.

Taking a break every fifty rounds or so, finishing The Witches of Karres, good. Next is Gingrich & Forstchen's Days of Infamy, second in their alternate Pearl Harbor (third wave to knock out our port facilities, the lack of which may have been Japan's biggest blunder in OTL - aside from the attack itself of course).

Huh, I wonder if two double disk kits for the Lee Auto Disk could be made to work? Stack three disks, then I should have capacity for .30-06 charges - one wonders if it would be accurate then.

...364 rounds in HXP brass, about another 300 cases left. Whew! Thanks sis - without the Loadmaster I wouldn't even have started.

1985 - Thursday, 16 October 2008: Yet more precious zzzz.

Four reasons to not go to the range today: I need to deprocrastinate and finish the big loading batch; cops on the range, which can get peaceable citizens arrested and/or killed, negligently or otherwise; crappy weather; and the Cantenna is supposed to arrive today.

Cruffler sends:

Uh huh.

"Vacation" - loading today, practice tomorrow, two-day clinic this weekend, then training for the new job, then plates on the 25th and maybe even IPSC at Wolverton on the 26th. Never enough time. -And I'm about to run out of BL-C(2) again (eight pounds!), though I should have enough for the current batch. Now I know how to use that last Sportsman's Warehouse discount coupon I got in some competition or club picnic a while back....

Contemplating field gear. My cartridge belt is again full of ten 8-round Garand clips and I've hung the M5A1 bayonet from it, fine - but this older cartridge belt won't feasibly take ALICE clips for the canteens I have, nor do I have a holster that will fit (and then there's the question of which sidearm I choose - I'm inclined toward the GP100 actually). I have an ALICE rig, hm - must contemplate. "The only thing clean on him is his weapon and he made his own web gear...." -The BDUs I have likely won't fit anymore either, hm.

Done with loading - 364 rounds in HXP, 174 in LC MATCH, and 94 in LC, 632 total - I shouldn't run out this time. Of course there's always doubt about whether I made good rounds - hence practice tomorrow. Thanks to all the readers and others who donated brass, clips, advice, and of course to Tucson Tom for the Queen herself! Behold my eee-vill stockpile:

Oh fer cryin' out loud! UPS can't find the hovel, again. Dammit! No Cantenna 'til tomorrow, and then I might miss the shipment while at practice. That's just laziness on the driver's part - other drivers find the place just fine.

1986 - Friday, 17 October 2008: Zzzz.

Late start to the range, arrived about 11 - which was just as well as that's when the fog was burning off. (Weather turned out rather nice later.) Got to work....

...And it was not good. All over the paper. Even I am not that sloppy. To my great good fortune however, Mr. E., a regular match shooter, was present and right there at the bench helped me re-peen the spline grooves and, something I hadn't encountered before, stippling the barrel beneath the lower band (the sort of nosecap thing between the two handguards) - and now the gas cylinder isn't moving at all, and there's much less play in the forward handguard besides. The plug still works loose a bit but the cylinder still does not move. Another tip I learned was about the stacking swivel - if it flops around "it's like a little guy with a hammer going tink, tink, tink" - but I already had that tightened anyway. So I put the Queen back together and got back to work....

...And results are inconclusive. At one point I was ready to Not Go to Yakima, but by the end of the session I was at least making MOJBT all the way out to 300. Yeah, I'll go. -In fact I'm not even cleaning her until I get back - don't want to upset anything at this point, and I'm using non-corrosive handloads.

Vancouver ARCO Regular $2.99! I even saw one Chevron (some blocks away on the same street) with the same price. OTOH #2 diesel $3.61 - and to think I almost bought a VW Rabbit diesel once.

And when I get back, of course UPS has left a sticker on the door, so I won't get my Cantenna 'til Monday. Hmph. Now watch, Monday they won't be able to find the place again.

So now I'm checking fluids, pre-loading the car, printing my motel reservation and maps (yay internet), etc. Yes, email is still behind. Getting some gear tips from readers.

Mm hm. I've been listening to some of those on talk radio. Incoherent. They don't know why they want to vote for him, they can't say what he has accomplished or what makes him qualified. No rational thought at all, and little of any other kind. Like so. Sigh - I guess I'll vote Palin....

OTOH, uh huh.

1987 - Saturday, 18 October 2008: Znrk. "Vacation."

Taking the NEC - I have the correct FTP login this time. Dunno if there's internet at this particular motel but I'm sure there's a wifi spot somewhere in Yakima. Also have a complete backup of my entire site on USB drive. Departing 0445-ish and posting this on my way out the door. If all goes well expect an update sometime Saturday evening - if you don't see anything by Sunday night (when I expect to be back at the hovel) send the Sipsey Street Irregulars to bust me out.

1988 - Sunday, 19 October 2008: Ow.

The Irregulars can stand down, the trip was without incident. No internet at the Yakima Motel 6, too pooped to wardrive - didn't even take the NEC out of the bag.

Didn't make Rifleman, again - but set a new personal best on the AQT, 203. Rifleman (US Army Expert) is 210. -I'm pooped, I have a sling tattoo around my left bicep and a bruise on my lower left ribcage. A more detailed report and some photos will come later. Comes word there will be more Appleseeds, or at least one-day minis, closer to the hovel, i.e. day-trip distance - these I will attend, pending other scheduling conflicts.

Ow.

1989 - Monday, 20 October 2008: Bleh.

Shifted an hour, traffic and parking stink. Training begins, with a pointless (and ineffective) team-building exercise. Also the network, as usual, isn't working. For this I get out of bed. I'll go back to widgets, really I will. Maybe courier driving, I dunno.

Coworker reminds me of this reason for not going back to production work, sigh. Driving - never done that kind of work before but travelling for matches and such I'm aware of Problems With Other Drivers, sigh. OTOH I know how to read maps and use a GPS receiver, hm. Books on CD... but how much does that kind of work pay? And I need weekends off. -Speaking of, comes also word that the previous promise of keeping our previous schedules has been "de-committed". If I lose weekends I quit this job, period. Right back to the temp services.

Bleh, more lottery tickets.

Continuing Gingrich & Forstchen's Days of Infamy - and I have a complaint to compare to those I have toward Turtledove. With In the Presence of Mine Enemies Turtledove postulated a reich that didn't lose, with a few scattered hidden Jews still lurking about, forgetting their own heritage over generations of enforced secrecy - and his conclusion was just a retelling of the collapse of the Soviet Union. In his alternate Confederacy (TL191) Turtledove recreated both World Wars, right down to the camps and the Ukranian (Mexican) auxiliaries guarding them. In the second volume of this alternate Pearl Harbor, G & F are replaying Midway, except on 8 December, just off Oahu. I'm halfway through the book so there's still plenty of room to impress me, but can't alternate history authors come up with something original?

Britain Sucks Even More. Just when you thought they couldn't sink any lower.

And, as expected, the violence has resumed - and there are likely hundreds, or thousands, of similar incidents being institutionally ignored by MSM. My riflery has improved again, a little - and these are skills I fear I'll need.

So, more details on this my second Appleseed in 18 months. Oh wait - first, this image of stippling the barrel beneath the lower band - I used the Pronounced Knurling on one of my pin punches, whacked with the nylon face of my Lyman gunsmithing hammer:

And that appears to be Working.

Oh hey - working through the camera's card - what's this thing? Obviously it's an amphibian firebomber (well, it might be a straight flying boat, can't tell from this pic if it has wheels) - I was on a fire crew once and those are distinctive markings - likely rigged for scooping water from a lake surface with a touch-and-go, but what model aircraft is this? It was flying over the range Friday. I'm not aware of any such with four engines outside museums.

(Yes, I've seen the film Always, and A Guy Named Joe.)

Arrived as before, checked in, got grossly overpriced convenience-store sandwich for lunch and a couple warmish corn dogs for breakfast. First thing was a bigger turnout, around 40 shooters, and more of a liberty theme with the Sun Valley Shooting Center's clubhouse sporting WoI-era flags:

Turns out the event boss was a member of Clark Rifles and a sometime plate shooter, and his young son, who actually whupped Breen his first time in Rimfires, is the youngest orange-hat Appleseed instructor known.

The weather was perfect with a capital P, not a drop of rain all weekend (it was raining at the hovel when I departed), not too hot either (though the Queen got quite toasty after some strings). This photo was taken at 9:26am.

Crowded again - three 25m bays and the one I ended up in had 14 shooters. This crowding problem is being addressed, such that there will probably be no more Appleseeds at this range (also range fees, lighting conditions, dust, and Very Prickly Sagebrush Everywhere).

As for rifles, there was one other M1; a few M1As including at least one of the new carbines; several ARs, no two alike of course; a few (relative) oddities like a Romanian M1969 such as I used to have, a Savage 99 (!), and a Stevens Favorite falling block (!!); and what I really noticed was lots of 10/22s. In fact we never got beyond the 25m reduced targets all weekend - last time we did some 300y live fire, this time it wasn't even brought up. But that's all right, for me at least - I have access to 300y anytime, and since at least half the shooters seem to have brought rimfires, and none of those will reach that far to any useful effect, it's just as well.

A bit of delay setting up the targets, the arrangement of which gave some trouble throughout the event, not least from wind. Here's the Queen's-eye view:

First was a Redcoat target, 13 rounds, one for each original colony, three at each of four distances (1-400 yards simulated) and a bonus 250yd head shot. Didn't do too awful but not as warmfuzzy as the first time I tried - I had equipment-related psychological issues throughout, not least the ammunition, which really did turn out too long, about which more later.

The pace was slower this time and I did not run out of ammunition. The instruction, at least in my bay, was friendlier and less confrontational than I might have described it last time - one shooter recognized me from April 2007 but I think all the event crew was different. Still hands-on including, and I think more than before, individual attention. Here are the father-and-son mentioned earlier, demonstrating a prone position:

During or after lunch on both days were history lessons, focusing on 19 April 1775 and Why We Are Here, instructors taking turns relating their personal favorite anecdotes from that day, describing their favorite historical figures:

Someone had made pilgrimage to Lexington and brought back a vial of soil from there, which was sprinkled between firing line and targets (shown here next to a .75-ish Brown Bess-type ball):

I won't post every single photo I took or every target I shot - besides, some were embarrassing. Over two days we did a total of eight AQTs, the first for practice and the rest for real chances to make Rifleman - there were at least two who made it at this event. In summary, my performance was both worse and better than before - one problem I had was feathering the trigger, which cost me a lot of points and shook my confidence, costing me more. (More work on positions, to better manage recoil, should help with that - and more room to swing my body aside during prone will help with that.) Of the AQTs fired, my average score of 164 was lower than last time's 177, but my best score of 196 last year has been bested by a 203 on Sunday.

Not. There. Yet. But at least I got off my butt and went. Have you?

Really Bad Traffic, especially since I stopped to pick up the plate match trophies for year's end (Breen has already clinched two of the four).

Got the Cantenna! ...And it's functioning but more tedious experimentation will be needed to find a good signal. Caught a glimpse of one, couldn't find it again. Still on dialup....

Okay, that evaluation of Days of Infamy was unfair, and also unfair to the authors, who actually came up with something significantly original with 1945 from Baen (and they never did do that sequel, dammit).

1990 - Tuesday, 21 October 2008: Training bleh. Much of it is from third-party sites like HowStuffWorks. Much I already know; some I haven't seen (or cared about) in over a decade; most will never come up in a call. I'm typing most of this while waiting for the rest of the class to catch up to something I haven't heard yet, or to hash out for half an hour something I had figured out in a few seconds. Sigh.

You know about Absolved. Be also aware of Neither Predator Nor Prey. There is coming a time.... They don't talk about this sort of thing at Appleseeds. They focus on the history and heritage of marksmanship, and the technical aspects of it, carefully not going into how or why such skills might be utilized today. For the moment however, we bloggers still have that First Amendment thingie. (No thanks to McCain, grump.)

Probably going to beg off Wolverton IPSC Sunday, just too pooped. I'm sure Reuel will have more. OTOH I might be getting out of pin shooting if more Appleseeds become available (some on very short notice, in a particular guy's back yard (which will encourage me to keep rounds on hand, after load redevelopment (and maybe an actual field kit besides, so I can pretend I'm being called up))). "A handgun is for fighting your way to a rifle." But plates is this Saturday and I think I have to whip up more rounds for that, for both Witness and GP100. Money and time! And gumption.

Free JPFO activism video, worth the bandwidth.

Yes, I was unfair calling Gingrich & Forstchen's alternate histories unoriginal. This is good stuff. -The actual writing of 1945 was a bit clunky but the plot was quite good. Turtledove's alternate Pearl Harbor seemed to me to be hacking chunks out of the Philippine occupation, the Doolittle raid, and Midway, and slapping them rather crudely together. But I might simply be prejudiced against Turtledove after his message-piece Crosstime Traffic series.

More Appleseed analysis tomorrow-like, and someday I'll hit the email, some of which is a month old now.

1991 - Wednesday, 22 October 2008: Effing network. Effing bandwidth. Effing subcoherent course material. Effing bureaucratic redundant pointless hoop-jumping and logging requirements. "TPS reports", near enough. Widgets.

More racist threats. It's not our side that will start the race war, but we might get stuck with the job of finishing it. From out in the sticks while dodging Sheik Hussein's & General Farrakhan's troops. And I am getting to old and fat for that Back to Bataan/Red Dawn stuff. (Had real trouble with the sitting position at Appleseed. Prone is still easy enough. -Hey, has anyone tried that Evercleanse stuff I hear advertised during talk radio?)

Campaign snailspam... the more a candidate appears to spend the more suspicious I become. Why does someone send out so many flyers for a city council job? What do they really want? -Well, power of course. And our money in their paychecks.

Yeah, still pooped.

1992 - Thursday, 23 October 2008: Still no word on schedules - all this training may be a waste of the company's money and my time if I have to quit.

Finished Days of Infamy, plenty of room to continue the timeline. Starting The Wizard of Karres.

Via WoG of course, more violence. As previously noted, the overwhelming majority of political violence in this nation comes from the left, toward the right. -No, I haven't updated that page for years, I have a day job, and it would be a job to keep up with it all. Meanwhile, "Democratic strategists and advocates for black voters say they understand officers wanting to keep the peace, but caution that excessive police presence could intimidate voters." You get that? If Hussein doesn't win they'll riot, and if the blueshirts actually try to do their stated job (as opposed to their usual highway robbery and institutional bullying) and stop the rioting, they'll... riot more? Spanish Civil War - no one to root for, the only difference is the cut of the uniforms or lack thereof.

Vista training.... SP1 removed a lot of the Suck, actually. But, Death By PowerPoint. Written in self-contradictory Chinglish (Hindglish?). Blech. Also template this and flow chart that and the people who come up with this stuff never have to use it. Then the online test is written by some-ESL-body with predictable results. Temp services.... Maybe Crimson Trace is hiring, almost had a production job there years ago before I was motorized - the bus didn't run that early.

Yep.

Getting colder - and WinCo is out of Alpine brand spiced cider packets. Boyd's packets, over in the bulk-bin area, are twice the price and about half the quality, IMO.

Cartoons.

Again, most of this is typed from work while the herd wanders off topic during training. When I get back to the hovel I remain gumptionless.

1993 - Friday, 24 October 2008: Yuri notes more violence from Hussein supporters against our kind. (One also notes that the particular Hussein supporter in question is an armed robber, without a badge. But as we've seen, there are places he could get one.)

Coworker points out article on WSP troopers using fake degrees to boost their salaries - which are, and it cannot be repeated enough, our money. Consider this, and that Atlanta thing the other day, if there's a measure on your ballot asking for increased police funding. Not only do they steal from us on a regular basis in hundreds of ways, they want us to pay them more to steal from us! "Base is the slave that pays!"

Uh huh.

Really Bad Traffic on Friday. And handgun rounds to make for tomorrow morning. And I need to get the hovel's temperature up after an October day before I can even start.

1994 - Saturday, 25 October 2008:

VICTORY.
I HAZ IT.

1st Revolver - that's normal. 1st Overall - ain't had wunna those in thirteen months! -Which, historically, seems also to be normal. (Got whupped in Autoloaders, not the Witness' fault of course.) One more monthly Revolver win and there will be a shootoff with Breen in December for the division trophy - he's very graciously staying out of the division until then to increase the drama. Now I just have to beat the Mateba and those scoped S&Ws... and folks, that Mateba is something. Nice single-action trigger, self-cocking, very little muzzle flip, excellent shot-to-shot recovery. You beat something like that with a conventional double-action - and the loads I'm using at the moment aren't exactly mild - yeah, that's bragging rights.

Salesmanship.

Pooped....

1995 - Sunday, 26 October 2008: Zzz.

In the news, an Illinois anti-2nd-Amendment candidate uses state law enforcement officers to harrass and intimidate constituents who exercise their 1st Amendment rights. Which is worse: the treasonous scum showing absolute comtempt for the founding principles of this nation, or the filthy thugs with badges who are just following orders (without the excuse that they couldn't have said "No")? All you alleged gunfolk who "support law enforcement" - who do you think will be going door-to-door stealing your property, roughing you up, or murdering you outright after the next wave of legislation? Police are on the wrong side. And if you "support" them, so are you. (Yes, that means NRA is too. I'm aware of that.)

Chat & show every Sunday 1100PT. Sis dropped in! Interview with ISRA honcho, talking not least about Hussein; interview with Massad Ayoob.

Um. Oops.

1996 - Monday, 27 October 2008: Training yech. The herd seems comprised mostly of strays. And they stray. The instructor answered that very question two minutes ago you incoherent dimbulb! And then demonstrated it on the projection screen! -And more PowerPoints. Headache all day. Then bureaucratic hoop-jumping processes, again written by people who never have to use them. Wanna change....

"Bureaucrat" in this context is not a simple throwaway pejorative. It's a scientific description for a distinct subspecies of not-fully-human, incapable of original or adaptive thought or deductive logic and instinctively inimical toward any higher life form. I rank them among the forms of tyranny over the mind of man toward which my namesake swore eternal hostility. In a perfect world there would be bounties, starboard ears perhaps. Like nutria! Of course there's room for misidentification in such schemes - maybe there's a DNA test for hereditary bureaucratism....

Codrea asks a good question.

The Wizard of Karres is also quite good. But it's from the Baen stable of course.

So the other day I was scrambling to use the Load-Master to whip up some .45ACP (which it turned out I didn't quite need, with leftover rounds from earlier, but if I'd been more skilled with the Witness I'd've lasted long enough to get into the new rounds) - 'cause I had procrastinated, and had already dismounted the #2 shellplate from the #2 Pro 1000 to give to Yuri for his Pro 1000 (about which he still hasn't 'blogged) so he can feed his Witness (which should be back from the shop by now...) - and the case feeder ain't quite right, though it's supposed to be the same parts. Probably just some adjustment and after procrastinating I had no time to spare on fiddling. Naturally the die adjustments are different from one press to the next but that didn't take long at all, and now they're all set for the Load-Master's turret, while the second Pro 1000 is now open for some third cartridge (the first Pro 1000 remains set for .357).

As the election nears, toxic partisanism begins to contaminate the workplace - and as a white gun-owning patriot in communist-occupied territory, I find myself in an increasingly hostile work environment. Some of the bigoted cretins simply don't understand that we haven't been this close to civil war since the last time we had one. But I suspect some are looking forward to some ancient-style, "bottom rail on top" plunder and rapine. This far behind enemy lines my survivability, past the first few skirmishes, is highly doubtful. :(

Poking listlessly at the email. New Orleans reader sends:


I saw your comment [a month ago...] about water purification as a survival tool. It is right up there with food and ammo!

I used to backpack a lot in southern Mississippi (Black Creek Trail is great when its not buried under fallen trees!). Unfortunately there are spots where the only water available is in the swamp. We stopped for the night on a section of bog that was as black and scummy as you can imagine. We scooped out a few cups of the sludge and ran it through a General Ecology filter, dropped in a Potable Aqua tablet, then 20 minutes later the neutralizer. All I can say is that it works with no ill effects. I can’t imagine anything worse to filter and it works. I have a MSR filter now, as its field maintainable, BTW.


There, first-hand product review for stuff we might actually have to use. And here's another, from a Michigan reader:
I went to an indoor range near work yesterday on a whim, as I hadn't fired a centerfire handgun in about a decade, and stared thoughtfully at their rental rack for a while before deciding on a Springfield XD .40 caliber, 4". It balances well with a full mag, points well, and runs well despite an obvious lack of regular cleaning or lubrication. Admittedly 50 rounds of Winchester White Box .40 hardball is not much of an endurance test; then again the guy in the adjacent lane had an equally filthy and neglected Glock 23 from the same rental rack and got a double-feed stoppage before finishing his first mag of the same ammo--I thought Glocks were perfect and never malfunctioned no matter what? The XD's trigger, however, was distractingly horrible, heavy, gritty, lumpy, and crunchy, with three distinct stages:

1, Takeup

2, "It's going to fire now, right?"

3, "Is this thing broken? And is it lubed with a proprietary mixture of pancake syrup, sand, Permatex Instant Gasket, and crushed glass cullet? BANG! Finally. Jeez."

I'd heard people say the XD has a very high bore axis and is difficult to control, especially in .40. This turned out to be false, even with the relatively short 4" barrel. Recoil was not bad at all, even using stoutly loaded .40 ammo with heavy 180-grain bullets spec'd to do just shy of 1000 f.p.s. out of a service pistol barrel. It was great fun to shoot, and I imagine the 5" 9mm version would kick far less. If only the trigger had not been so horrid, I could have enjoyed it much more.

Also, the mag feed lips are a bit sharp and the mag spring monstrously powerful; the mag holds twelve and getting the last two in was a challenge.

Despite all this when I slowed down, I could make neat sub-2" groups on a B27 police silhouette at seven yards, using the Weaver stance. And maybe I should have tried to pull the trigger with the first joint of my index finger, like a revolver, rather than the tip of the finger, like a 1911, given that it was so heavy (ten pounds? twelve? more than that by the time it broke?).


Later same reader sends:
I got a Springfield XD45 5" with thumb safety. The trigger is not great but somewhat less horrid than the rental gun's, and when I got it home I fieldstripped it (detail stripping appears to require roll pin punches to remove multiple roll pins, ick), put a drop of CLP on the striker spring and a tiny dab of lithium-moly grease on the engagement surfaces of the sear and striker, then put a tiny bit on the slide rails just for general principles. It now cycles much more smoothly--it was shipped basically dry of any trace of lubricant of any type--and the trigger is a bit better. I cycled it and dryfired it a hundred times or so and I want to say the trigger is improving faintly.

Fit and finish are overall pretty good. It will never have a trigger like a 1911, nor cycle quite so smoothly, but lubricating it properly made a big difference and I intend to go to a range in the morning to run some ammo through it. The angle at which the magazine presents the top round points pretty much directly into the chamber, but even though it seems unnecessary, the feedramp is very highly polished--that's a nice touch. I expect it to feed any reasonable bullet shape and most unreasonable ones as well. But its diet will, I think, mostly be Winchester White Box 100 packs from Wal-Mart, which are still, for the moment, a hair under $30 for 100 rounds of .45 ACP hardball. I do have a few boxes of Speer Gold Dot 230-grain hollowpoint ammo, because I care enough to send the very best, but those are far too spendy for plinking.

I paid $505 plus tax, with two mags and a cheap plastic mag carrier and beltslide type holster and a mag loader (this last is the only one of the three that is practical, as the mag springs are stout and the mag feed lips are sharp). I think I will go for one of the "XD gear" kits, which will contain a slightly less cheap paddle type holster, which I probably won't use, and three more mags, which I will.


One wonders (pending political developments) if the market will provide aftermarket trigger bits for the XD, as it has for ARs, '98 Mausers, 10/22s, etc. Later, New Orleans sends:
I spend a lot of time on Bayoushooter.com. Open vs concealed carry is a subject that has gotten people downright hostile. Open carry is legal in LA but cops don’t seem to know it. One infrequent poster was arrested in Gonzales, LA. The sheriff was quoted as saying something to the effect of ‘I don’t care if its legal or not, no one is open carrying in my town!’ The lawsuit was settled for an undisclosed amount of money with the agreement that he drop the subject.
Of course trying open carry in the Portland area, whatever the law says, would be a self-destructive act - the badgethugs around here like to murder first and give each other medals later.

Speaking tangentially of badges, after returning unmolested from Appleseed, reader sends, I'm only "slightly irregular". Heh.

1997 - Tuesday, 28 October 2008: Training. No grown-ups in the workforce. Nor sentients neither - seventh bloody day and there are transfers from the previous contract, which did support network-capable devices (as did the contract before that), who still don't know how to launch a command prompt and use the PING command for network diagnosis; and who get lost in instructions, like for removing registry entries, which are sometimes documented almost well enough for me to approve of (though many are nigh-gibberish of course). Oblivious subliterate muttergrumble. The horror. And the computer in my training cube is a slug and the training copies of the software tools are not accessible. Well, even if I walk off the job next Monday for schedule conflicts (about which there is of course still no word), at least I'm learning more about Vista and modern hardware - my knowledge has been somewhat out of date. But the redundant bureaunonsense is making me sick and I Don't Want to Work Here Anymore.

Toxic partisanism in the workplace and society more generally. In a perfect world I'd be spending every dawn on the field of honor, chlorinating the gene pool, but these creatures wouldn't know how to get there; in this world I wouldn't be surprised to be pulled over and ticketed roughed up for my NOBAMA sticker (lots of Affirmative Action hiring in the Portland Police Bureau, ya know). My current state of mind is somewhere between cat-at-dog-show and Jew-in-1936-Munich. Yer damn right ah'm bitterly clingin' ta mah guns!

Some time ago I said something about Border Patrol not being as thuggish as other badgethugs. I hereby retract that non-enmity. Never trust a cop of any kind. Thuggishness comes with the badge, any badge.

An Eastern-time-zone reader in a large urban area reports that he will be evacuating to a red state (or at least county) come the election, with an eye toward the already-promised-by-Hussein-supporters race riots. This causes me to contemplate survival issues, not least my too-long-vaporware bugout bag. I already know that amoxicillin fish antibiotic from the feed-and-seed stores can be used for human infections; is there an equivalent of sulfa powder for treating wounds as in WWII? Like so?

But speaking of partisanism, and I think I've mentioned this before, I still can't decide which is worse: the unquestioning hardcore Believer in methods proven over generations to be murderous and tyrannical, or the intellectual cripples who take no side. Each gives me a different flavor of ewww.

Next week is OJT with the same current M-F schedule, and I've emailed the team manager to explicitly refuse working weekends. Cube move too, grump - besides packing everything I'll likely be packed in with some facially-pierced freak. I want out of this job.

1998 - Wednesday, 29 October 2008: Bleah.

Finished The Wizard of Karres, starting Pournelle's Exile - and Glory, a two-book omnibus of our Glorious Future in Space escaping from Evil Totalitarian Terra. Speaking of which....

Yesterday we listened to live calls with headset splitters and the agents I split with were... lazy apathetic unprofessional blundering doofi. Another trainee in my class reports the same. (Had a better one today, exception-not-rule.) Then back to class with more nonsensical contradictory logging requirements. I don't want to work here anymore. You know what - don't call tech support anymore. No one here knows what they're doing, or if they do they don't care. Call your 12-year-old niece instead, you'll get better service and faster too.

A couple tech alerts: XP SP3 does have some problems, though it's hard to verify them. One I've personally seen twice is that with certain models of printers, after SP3 is installed, the printer goes into mirror-image mode (like for a t-shirt iron-on transfer) and you have to go into the printer properties and switch it back (do it from the Printers & Faxes page and it'll stick, so you won't have to change it for every print job). Also, Vista 64-bit is not guaranteed to work with... anything. As opposed to 32-bit. Remember that when the salescritter pushes it.

Laptops... you recall I mentioned that Acer subcompact I saw at Fry's. Turns out HP offers something similar. With XP even! Almost impossible now to get a new-made PC with anything but Vista. But, money. And six days to the next civil war. Helluva time to change jobs....

Cube move - at least one new cubemate seems to be lobamatomized. -Now a lecture about making sales. I'm not fake enough to be a good salesman. Yeah, I'll be calling the temp services at lunch tomorrow. Hopefully, and unusually, I'll have a new job lined up before I walk off the current one in disgust. I have managed that once or twice, over the years....

1999 - Thursday, 30 October 2008: Hm, I appear to have forgotten last night's upload. At least I got the HTML done.

Yep, gonna start calling the temp services again. Can't take this. The bureacracy, the fakeness, the freaks. It has been over a year and that's longer than I usually keep the same job - there are many flavors of wanderlust. This has been better pay than usual though, that might be a problem. -Got the same rep from over a year ago, updating resumé, emailing... not sure what kind of work I'm looking for now but I don't want tech support anymore. Or at least not the call-center environment.

Pournelle is gripping as usual, up late getting sucked in. -It's not just messages I agree with, he writes good, with plot and characters and you want to find out what happens next.

Filling out Oregon vote-by-mail ballot, which will probably be left at a curb somewhere unlocked and unguarded and maybe rained on. Sigh. Candidates - eyeing endorsements, generally hostile toward incumbents (and RINOs of course - sometimes voting third party in protest, not that the RINOs will care or even notice). Ballot measures - voting for Less Government as I see it, not that my speck of red will count in this sea of coercive collectivist blue. Sigh.

Wisdom.

Turns out the guy who helped me tweak the Queen just before Appleseed is ranked the #68 CMP vintage-rifle (i.e. M1, M1903) shooter in the nation. And in the last Garand match, before the tweaks, I shot seven points better than him and four points better than #11. My problem is to do it consistently. Much of this, I think, is psychological. During Appleseed, that aforementioned youngest-orange-hat instructor gave me some ball-and-dummy drill (and I was way ahead of most, having brought a full clip of A-Zooms and of course a SLED) - and during this drill, for the first time ever, with any of my rifles, I got five consecutive live-fire hits on the 4MOA square from a field position (prone) (as opposed to previous groups from the bench). Remember, geometrically that's five wounded or killed JBTs (and those wounds would be from a true battle rifle, not a mousegun) at a quarter-mile. Which I was not able to reproduce all weekend, but I know I can. If you're serious about hitting stuff with your rifle, whatever your reason, go to an Appleseed and pay attention.

Mm hm. But the ranks of the lobamatomized continue to grow. -McCain's no Paragon of Conservative Virtue, to be sure, and I've pointed out as much here repeatedly - but we know, 'cause he told us, the kind of socialist cesspit Hussein plans to make of our nation. Palin... at the very least has not yet passed her sell-by date (and when speaking of politicians that can be taken very literally); and hey, the last time we had a VP with her kind of record, we built the Panama Canal and became a superpower, eh?

Cube move. Not quite as bad as feared, but it will only last a week during OJT then we'll be moved again (just when I have all my hotkeys reprogrammed). And, rumors of this contract going the way of the previous two, uh huh. Time to leave. Maybe some kind of office job - even knowing what Excel is should put me far ahead of the herd....

A little peek inside the global warming cult.

2000 - Friday, 31 October 2008: Two thousand entries. (If I've counted right.) Shrug?

Still no grownups in the workforce....

According to the intranet schedule, they expect me to work on the 8th. Which is the date of the Allies vs. Axis match which I haven't missed for, what, five years? The only reason I get out of bed in the morning to work is to earn money to spend on the Culture, and all of that happens on weekends. I have been Explicit in describing my scheduling requirements - fired off Even More Explicit internal email to schedulecrat. Looks like I might be walking off before having a new job after all. Well hey, at least I had the foresight to fire up the temp service first. -Then comes word that the schedules are simply wrong because the bureaucrats are by definition subliterate and incompetent, and next week is supposed to be the same schedule as this, as we were told earlier. Left and right hands unaware of each others' existence.

Speaking of AvA - gah, the Culture also is so much work. For the Queen, I'll use up the rounds I made for Appleseed, nothing extra required there - for the second relay, if I have the gumption (and the components) I'll dust off the MojoVZ and scramble to get the rounds ready for testing this Saturday (crappy weather forecast of course - we had quite the Indian Summer but that appears to have ended this morning). Additionally I have some handgun work to do before the 2x4 part of the club's annual Turkey Shoot so I have to whip up some test batches, sigh.

Senator Stevens, R-AK, in corruption scandal - and as I've noted before, any Republican who is even suspected of corruption is thrown to the wolves by the GOP, while Democrats can run male-prostitution rings from their own homes or keep thousands of questionable bucks in their 'fridge and get reelected with full party support. Last election cycle, John Kerry sat down and chatted with confessed statutory rapist Oregon governor Neil Goldschmidt. People can't see this? Was Hamilton right about the "great beast"?

Filling out the ballot now actually, particularly eyeing the Arguments - if they're fer it, I'm agin' it, and vice versa.

-Aw, the schedulecrat is offended by my Explicitness. (Also presuming to lecture a front-line tech support agent and six-year-plus 'blogger on email etiquette. Visual aid. I type what I mean, and how I mean it. 'Crats just don't get out much.) Not used to being talked to by vertebrates I guess. (I am a hawk among pigeons, a man among worms....) [sarcasm=dripping] Tragic. [/drip] I hope to be gone from here soon anyway.

Dig the comments, especially the second, comparing the fake cop's behavior to the actual badgethugs'. You cops lurking here - do you ever look in a mirror?

Speaking of Codrea, he'll be on Gun Talk Sunday. See you in chat!

Yep.


September 2008 | OCTOBER 2008 | November 2008

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