What Stace had to say on Thursday, March 24th, 2011
Playing With Guns

We went shooting today!

There’s a Sharpshooters shooting range maybe fifteen minutes up the road from us; I’ve never actually even noticed the place before, but there it is. And I didn’t know we were going there today; the hubs set it all up as a surprise for me. It’s been years since I’ve shot a gun–and the last time was with rifles at cans in a field–so I was pretty excited about this.

It was just as much fun as I remembered it being.

The gun range is kind of a weird place to be. Not in a scary way, but in one of those “These people are all so friendly and nice but they could drop you in a heartbeat” kind of way. Like the lane attendants who were really friendly and helpful but who had loaded guns in holsters on their waists, I guess in case somebody decided the power was just too much for them and they were going to open fire on people. It’s kind of dimly lit in there, too, and since you have those super earmuffs on everything is very subdued. It took me a few minutes to stop jumping when people fired, just because I still hadn’t acclimated.

It was kind of like stepping into another world, a little. A world where the wording of the Second Amendment is printed on the walls around the room, and people take “personal defense” very, very seriously. I don’t say that to make fun or anything, at all. It’s just that like with any other specialist kind of place, the sudden focus on one particular item or issue or whatever can be a bit jarring. But seriously, a nicer bunch of people you’d never want to meet; everyone was friendly, everyone was excited to see us and help us and everyone sincerely hoped we had fun and that we’d come back, which I totally want to do. They even have a Ladies Night, which you can bet I’m going to attend as soon as I can.

First we rented a Glock; the Glock 19, to be exact. Which was fun, but…eh. I wasn’t crazy about the Glock, to be honest. The grip was texturized even up the back, which meant it irritated the skin between my thumb and forefinger, you know that web of skin there? Firing the Glock made it reddish and kind of itchy, and I didn’t like that.

Aside from that, though, the Glock was fun. We bought 50 rounds and went through them in about twenty minutes, taking turns (we’d load 5 rounds into the clip, fire them, then hand off). What’s cool about that place is that in addition to the “classic” targets, you can also choose a burly prowler or several zombies at which to shoot.

We chose Zombie Steve.

Zombie Steve after we were done with him

After we emptied the Glock we decided to try something else. That’s when it got really fun. Our next gun was the Walther PK380, which I loved.

It was a bit lighter than the Glock and just a bit smaller. MUCH easier to load; the Glock’s clip was really tough, which made it hard for me (especially with fingernails). But the Walther was easy-peasy. No roughness on the back, either. That one was so much fun to shoot.

We made pretty short work of Zombie Steve (we went back for another; we also had two of the regular black-outline targets). We’d been shooting at 5 yards with the Glock, but the Walther was so much smoother–and we were more loosened up–we moved to 7.

Me and Zombie Steve

So we gave that one another fifty rounds. I went mostly for the head; hubs mostly for the heart. You can see a few outliers, but overall we did pretty well, I think. I’m a better shot, but I’ve probably done it more than he has, too. (See? I got Steve right between the eyes, heh. Take that, zombie!) By the time we were done I had big gray smudgemarks on my hands from powder.

And then it was time to go, sadly. We handed over the Walther–I was sorry to let it go–and wandered around the shop for a bit looking at guns to buy. The Walther was like $360, which I think is quite a bargain, really. And there are all kinds of accessories and stuff; there’s even a line of pink guns (you know, for ladies) including a Sig Sauer with hot pink metallic trim, which is actually quite attractive. We didn’t buy a gun–we’re not really sure our future will ever include gun ownership–but they really are cool to look at and shoot.

So we left, feeling cleansed. All the aggression and tension of everyday life had been worked off on Zombie Steve and his black-silhouette counterpart. Quite relaxing. And it didn’t cost that much, really; we spent like $80, which is pricey–we certainly couldn’t afford to do it weekly or even monthly, really–but it was pretty worth it, I think. This is not a political post or statement or a specific endorsement of guns or encouragement to go buy one or anything, but I don’t think knowledge is ever a bad thing, and at least having rudimentary knowledge of how to work a gun should the necessity ever arise is a good thing, IMO. You may disagree, in which case you’re perfectly welcome to do so.

But we had fun, and I definitely want to go back when we can. Actually, I’d like to go alone, too; I think it would be a good place to do some contemplative plotting. Maybe even as good as the shower. We’ll see.

14 comments to “Playing With Guns”

  1. Amy Ashley
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    1
    · March 24th, 2011 at 12:53 pm · Link

    It IS fun! I think the first time I went was when I was 18, so almost 20 years ago. I’ve shot several times since but we don’t currently own a weapon other than a baseball bat! My BIL was a range instructor in the Marine corps for years and takes his kids. He’s big on gun safety, and I think when you have weapons in the home that’s pretty important. I know it can be a hot topic, but I think it is a very personal one. I’m glad we have the freedom to make our own decisions about it.

    The range is a neat place to try firing out and learn about different weapons before committing. I bet it would be good for plotting.



  2. K.S. Manning
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    · March 24th, 2011 at 1:09 pm · Link

    And just what did poor Zombie Steve ever do to you. :sad:

    Guess he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time, huh? LOL.

    That’s some pretty nice shooting. Don’t want to get on the wrong side of you in a dark alley but would love to have you on my side in a gun fight. LOL.

    Thanks so much for sharing. I hope you can use the experience for a future plot. :)

    Take care.
    Kay



  3. Carrie
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    3
    · March 24th, 2011 at 1:29 pm · Link

    I would attempt to go to a shooting range, but I have horrible aim. I’d probably accidentally shoot someone else… or myself. That would be, well, embarrassing. I tried to shoot a bow and arrow once at a Campfire Girls thing and it was disastrous. Lol

    I went bowling last week, for my best friend’s birthday. My horrible hand-eye-coordination was working against me really well. It did get better after I was three long island ice teas into it, ironically enough.

    I somehow don’t think drunk shooting would be allowed.

    I’m not usually a big fan of guns, not that I have anything against them, either, but my reaction to the Walther PK380? “Damn, that thing is pretty.”



  4. Kathryn Smith
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    4
    · March 24th, 2011 at 1:43 pm · Link

    I’ve always wanted to shoot a handgun. I shot with my dad’s rifle when I was kid. You know, you could probably write this off as research! lol.

    Love the pictures — you look like a happily-deadly-rockabilly pixie.



  5. Crystal
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    5
    · March 24th, 2011 at 3:37 pm · Link

    Cool! I myself have never so much as seen a real live gun never mind handled one, but the shooting range really does sound like fun… must look it up to see if there’s one near me… I wanna plug me some evil zombies! Lol… 😉



  6. Eridani
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    6
    · March 24th, 2011 at 4:02 pm · Link

    Wow, I’ve never fired a gun. It sounds pretty cool. I’ve got a friend who keeps offering to take me to the firing range. Maybe I’ll take him up on it after all.

    Also, my boyfriend caught a glimpse of Zombie Steve from the other side of the room and said, “Is that a Charlie Sheen poster you’re looking at?” I’m pretty sure Zombie Steve should sue for that.



    • Carrie
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      6.1
      · March 24th, 2011 at 6:31 pm · Link

      Seriously. Zombie Steve looks SO much better than Charlie Sheen.



  7. Calliope
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    · March 24th, 2011 at 9:52 pm · Link

    I agree with you about a rudimentary knowledge being beneficial. I don’t know how to shoot – I’ve never even seen a gun except for once or twice worn by cops and holstered – but I’ve seen one too many action movies when the hero says “Can you shoot?” to the heroine as he’s about to go off on his solo Save the Day mission and she replies “No, but how hard can it be?” only to later shoot the hero in the shin.

    *shudder* It’s worse than being a damsel in distress.



    • Carrie
      Comment
      7.1
      · March 25th, 2011 at 5:39 am · Link

      That always makes me so mad. My favorite part in Did You Hear About the Morgans? is when Sara Jessica Parker picks up the shot gun and starts shooting the bad guy, cause really? Hugh Grant with a gun? I don’t think so.



  8. BernardL
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    · March 25th, 2011 at 12:01 pm · Link

    That’s a very good price for the Walther. My wife loves to shoot too although it’s been a while. Florida has conceal/carry too. I wish we did out here.



  9. Tanya Jones
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    · March 25th, 2011 at 2:21 pm · Link

    You can incorporate gloves into your regime if is becomes a problem. Also ‘center mass’ is pretty ingrained into the shooters psyche. If your shots have a tendency to land high on your target your grip is too tight and your anticipating the recoil. I have this problem after repeated shooting. To alleviate adjust your sight line a tad lower and ‘viola’. 😉

    Thanks for sharing! Glad you enjoyed your day!



  10. T.Morgan
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    · March 25th, 2011 at 8:22 pm · Link

    Props, you had good hand position on the Walther pic! I would love to shoot some of those zombie targets, but my range didn’t have them last time I was there :-(



  11. siebendach
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    11
    · March 25th, 2011 at 11:31 pm · Link

    Stacia, I dunno if you should trust that Zombie Steve . . .

    I’m no expert, but there seems something a little strange about him. He could be dangerous!

    Are you sure “Zombie Steve” is his real name?



  12. Betsy Dornbusch
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    · March 30th, 2011 at 12:21 pm · Link

    Groan. Colorado is a bastion for guns, and we’re big gun owners and shooters (well, the husband and son are. I do sometimes.) But there are few decent ranges around, and they’re so exclusive. Not by law, but by some odd custom and maybe insurance, they require memberships and hardly offer any. So frustrating!

    My kid is dying to get into competition and we’re going to have to find a place; just hope we don’t have to drive 2 hours to practice.



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