Practical Rimfire shooting

I’ve gotten curious lately as to what number of people out there carry the king of sub-calibers in their defensive pistol. Specifically, the timeless .22 Long Rifle. As of right now, my personal armaments consist of a pocket knife and a Walther P22 loaded with CCI-Stingers.

I’ve received the perfunctory ribbing from the local gunstore commandos, as well as some good natured and friendly advice from some people whose opinions I genuinely respect. The question I’ve been asked the most frequently is “Why the .22, why not something bigger”, usually coupled with the statement that the Walther is about the same size as a few different models of .380 out there.

The answer to the question is simple and complicated at the same time. I’m sure that all of us know that the first rule of gunfighting is “have a gun”, which I am fulfilling by packing the P22 around. A quote that correlates to that is “A .22 in the eye beats a .45 in the forearm.” When you think about a gun that is carried literally whenever I have my pants on, the P22 has a lot going for it, which comes down to a combination of size, weight, accuracy, and “shootability”.

Size is a big issue for me, especially in regards to concealed carry. I’m a little guy, I’m only 5’6 tall and weight maybe a buck fifty-five. I cannot physically conceal a fullsize pistol without 23 layers of clothing. There are a lot of “compact” pistols on the market that create problems for me to conceal as well. The P22 is perfect, because it’s so slim, in an IWB holster it simply disappears, even under a relatively tight shirt. The second size issue is that although I’m small, I have huge hands. This makes most tiny mouseguns challenging to shoot accurately. I’m sure that with enough practice it wouldn’t be a problem; however the P22 fits nicely into my hand. It fits well and points quite naturally, which makes the accurate shot placement required by carrying a .22 that much easier.

Weight goes hand in hand with size. The P22 (and most “carry” .22’s) are very light. I’m much more likely to pack a pistol around where the weight doesn’t grow tiresome after 20 minutes. I had to carry a heavy handgun for a good four years, and now I don’t.

As far as accuracy goes, the P22 is great. It has excellent sights and a throughly easy to manage trigger. According to my scale, the double action pull breaks at about 11 pounds, and the single action at 4 pounds. The P22 holds inside of 2 inches at 50 feet if I do my part, and in rapid fire practical shooting easily keeps an entire magazine inside a fist sized area.

The final pro for me about carrying a .22 is shootability. It’s a combination of all the previous factors, combined with one more. That last factor is familiarity. When I was in college, I shot NRA Collegiate Pistol, and I still shoot Bullseye matches to this very day. I know .22s, and I’ve shot a ton of .22s. Massad Ayoob had a great article on the benefits of shooting under competitive stress, including bullseye competitions. I’ve fired a lot of .22s under the timer, and it just feels right for me.

Of course, everything above is completely personal. Just because a .22 works for me doesn’t mean that you should carry one. I certainly don’t think that our military should turn in their M16s for Ruger 10/22s, or that my local Sheriff’s office should trade their Glocks for Sig Mosquitos. I don’t even think that you should trade your CQB Tactical Destroyer for a .22.

What I do think is that you should carry the gun that fits your needs the best. If that’s a .22 or a .500 S&W Magnum, you should carry what works for you.

I’m a bad shooter

Mostly because I’ve been shooting since I was eight, and I’ve just now purchased my first Ruger 10/22. I know, I know, and I’m sorry. I promise I’ll make it up by turning my Ruger 10/22 from an innocent looking plinking rifle into a terrifying “assualt weapon”, guarenteed to make Gun Fearing Wussies soil themselves. Of course, everyone else will know that it’s just a dressed up Ruger .22lr, but who cares?

Speaking of .22’s, I’ve decided that I hate the .17 HMR. Not because it’s a bad round or anything, but because I love the .22 WMR. I was in Gander Mountain, and I found maybe two or three rifles chambered for .22 WMR; however there were at least a dozen rifles chambered for .17 HMR. Oh well, I guess as long as people are shooting, I should be happy. I’ll just have to be content with my Marlin 25M and my EAA Bounty Hunter for now.

For everyone who has and who will put on the uniform

Twas the night before Christmas, he lived all alone,
In a one bedroom house made of plaster & stone.
I had come down the chimney with presents to give
And to see just who in this home did live.
I looked all about a strange sight I did see,
No tinsel, no presents, not even a tree.
No stocking by the fire, just boots filled with sand,
On the wall hung pictures of far distant lands.

With medals and badges, awards of all kind
A sober thought came through my mind.
For this house was different, so dark and dreary,
I knew I had found the home of a soldier, once I could see clearly.

I heard stories about them, I had to see more
So I walked down the hall and pushed open the door.
And there he lay sleeping silent alone,
Curled up on the floor in his one bedroom home.

His face so gentle, his room in such disorder,
Not how I pictured a United States soldier.
Was this the hero of whom I’d just read?
Curled up in his poncho, a floor for his bed?

His head was clean shaven, his weathered face tan,
I soon understood this was more than a man.
For I realized the families that I saw that night
Owed their lives to these men who were willing to fight.

Soon `round the world, the children would play,
And grownups would celebrate on a bright Christmas day.
They all enjoyed freedom each month of the year,
Because of soldiers like this one lying here.

I couldn´t help wonder how many lay alone
On a cold Christmas Eve in a land far from home.
Just the very thought brought a tear to my eye,
I dropped to my knees and started to cry.

The soldier awakened and I heard a rough voice,
“Santa don´t cry, this life is my choice;
I fight for freedom, I don´t ask for more,
my life is my God, my country, my Corps.”

With that he rolled over and drifted off into sleep,
I couldn´t control it, I continued to weep.
I watched him for hours, so silent and still,
I noticed he shivered from the cold night´s chill.

So I took off my jacket, the one made of red,
And I covered this Soldier from his toes to his head.
And I put on his T-shirt of gray and black,
With an eagle and and Marine patch embroidered on back.

And although it barely fit me, I began to swell with pride,
And for a shining moment, I was USMC deep inside.
I didn´t want to leave him on that cold dark night,
This guardian of honor so willing to fight.

Then the jarhead rolled over, whispered with a voice so clean and pure,
“Carry on Santa, it’s Christmas Day, all is secure.”
One look at my watch, and I knew he was right,
Merry Christmas my friend, and to all a good night!

Merry Christmas everyone.

A certain amount of silliness

A little background is necessary before I get to the meat of this particular entry. When I graduated college, my wife and I moved to the DC Metro area, specifically the Northern Virginia area. We lived in a nice, low crime, middle class area; but it was also still the DC Metro area. I had a VA concealed weapons permit, and Virginia also allows unlimited open carry; of which I availed myself to from time to time. Thankfully, I didn’t work in DC, but rather the Arlington area, so for the most part I was able to avoid the District’s draconian gun laws.

While living in that area, I never once felt like it was a bad idea to exercise my right to carry. Even though the specific area I lived was low crime, I worked in a high crime area of Arlington. Carrying there made good sense to me.

Fast forward to now. A year and a half ago, my wife and I moved to the Indianapolis area to be closer to family, afford a house, etc. We now live in a nice suburb, with a very low rate of crime, and I work in a very low crime area. I still carry, every day. But now I feel almost silly doing it. I’ve spent the last 6 years preaching the mantra of “Better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it”; and yet I cannot but help feel slightly silly when I strap on my pistol and tuck a spare magazine into my pocket.

Of course, I’m not about to stop packing, because no matter how silly I feel it is still better to have it and not need it.

Tiger mauls trainer

Tiger mauls trainer from the Communist News Network.

I honestly don’t have much comment on that. Obviously, when taking care of wild animals, one should take measures to ensure that you do not become food.

One of my friends did mention that it was sad that the tiger went crazy like that, to which I would respond by quoting Chris Rock: “That tiger didn’t go crazy, that tiger went tiger.” Which of course rolls quite nicely into cautioning people to be careful when dealing with carnivores.

Let the bastards kill each other

In this fascinating article from the Communist News Network, it seems that the militants in Palestine have grown tired of just murdering Israeli citizens, and have now decided to turn their ire on one another. The short version is that Fatah and Hamas are two rival parties in the Palestinian “government” (note: I use that term loosely here), and have decided to settle the political power struggle in the Traditional Mideast Fashion. Which means shoot it out.

Excellent.

I’m sure that several people in the Israeli military are kicking themselves for not letting the asshole terrorists Palestinians elect Hamas into official power before now. If this is the sort of “democracy” we can count on from the assholes, then they can have all the democracy they want.

This makes The Duke smile.

Welcome to the Church of the Duke!

That’s right, ask yourself the question “What Would John Wayne Do?” One simple question can change your life.

Mostly, I’ll be blogging on gun stuff, the occasionally political issue that I pick up, and what may catch my fancy.

I’ll explain the Church of the Duke, first. A while back, I was getting tired of seeing all the WWJD (What Would Jesus Do) stuff everywhere, so I took it upon myself to ask a different question.

“What would John Wayne Do?” Over the last year, it’s sort of evolved into a running gag amongst the internet community that I frequent; along with jokes about me worshipping The Duke, which of course lead to the Church of the Duke. It’s not intended to be blasphemous, but if you do get offended I’m not going to care, so don’t waste your time.

So forgive me if I ever say something like “The Duke would not approve”, and remember that John Wayne is still the overarching theme of this gun-nut’s blog.

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