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Monday, April 23, 2012

Eat Your Vegetables

“I don't want any vegetables, thank you. I paid for the cow to eat them for me.” Doug Coupland

"Life expectancy would grow by leaps and bounds if green vegetables smelled as good as bacon." Doug Larson

I have noticed something very interesting. I post a photo on Facebook of a cat wielding a machine gun or a Mae West quote about being a bad girl and within hours - over 500 shares, even more likes and tons of great comments. I post a photo of an attractive woman brandishing a firearm and BINGO thousands of shares and likes and hundreds of comments. (Yes, there are tons of MALE Well Armed Women fans.)  I post a link to a phenomenal article loaded with potentially life saving tips and/or spot on marksmanship tips and..... Maybe 10 shares, 100 likes and only 5-10 comments. 
So what is that? 
That is human nature. We love something quick, fun and satisfying but don’t really like to take the time to take care of our “firearm health”. There are a few areas in our lives, where this probably really doesn’t matter much. Then there are the few that really do matter, like our health, our relationships, our careers and yes, our skills as an armed personal defense shooter. But of course as Booker T. Washington said “Nothing ever comes to one, that is worth having, except as a result of hard work.” 

This is where the Broccoli comes in. 
It really is like eating vegetables. We know they are good for us, very good for us.. We don’t even question it and yet some of us still avoid them like the plaque. So What can we do to get over the barrier of “if it is good for me, than no thank you”? What can we do to make these “vegetables” taste better besides wrap them in bacon? 
We know that regarding one’s physical health, if they have an illness or are diagnosed with a serious medical issue, they will make the dietary and lifestyle changes necessary. They WILL begin to eat their vegetables. The fear becomes the motivator. 
Now, none of us should have to, or needs to go through the trauma of a close call or an attempted attack to create the fear to get us to change our ways, should we? Of course not.  It takes the mental commitment and belief that we each could REALLY be in this type of horrifying situation to create the fear that will cause us to change our ways and do the reading, training and practicing necessary.
So the moral of the story is: enjoy the simple things and the things that make you laugh but also invest in your firearm health. Read, train, practice and grow in your knowledge of what just might keep you alive if the horrific and unexpected happens. 

Monday, April 9, 2012


You, my friend are an Ambassador. You may not realize it and you may not even wish to be, but you are. The dictionary lists the following definition of an ambassador:   

“A person who acts as a representative or promoter 
of a specified activity.” 

You have joined a very distinguished group of individuals who influence our society and our world. So, now that you know who you are, how well are you doing at your job? 
People are watching you and people are listening to you. They are making decisions and forming opinions based on what you do and say. 

To add even more pressure, do you realize that how well you do your job as Ambassador directly effects millions of gun owners and their ability to protect themselves and enjoy their firearms? This is a lot of pressure, and all you wanted to do was defend yourself and/or enjoy shooting targets or hunt, right?

The day you purchased your first firearm you took on a great responsibility. You knew owning a firearm was a serious decision and that there are laws you must abide by, but did you realize that how you handle and use your firearm, how you speak of it, and your attitude about firearms puts you in such an important position?

Society, the government, your family and your neighbors, who perhaps are not experienced or knowledgeable in firearms, will form their opinions and make voting decisions also based on what they learn from you. Those who currently want to remove our right to own firearms are foaming at the mouth for anything and anyone that can be used to accomplish that goal. We see gun owners who act inappropriately, carelessly and even violently used in this way almost nightly on the news.

So, how are you doing? Are you safe? Do people see you shooting with eye and ear protection and following firearm safety rules? Do they ever see you pointing your gun at anything other than a safe target? Do you tell “off color” jokes or make less-than-tolerant comments involving your gun? Do you store your gun properly? Do you know the laws in your State and know where you cannot legally use your gun? Do you leave your favorite shooting area in the desert or woods clean? Do you realize that anytime we breach any of the above we could, in a moment, become a tool used to further efforts to place all of our rights in jeopardy. 

As I become entrenched in social media with The Well Armed Woman and monitor many, many pages, I regularly see and read such poor representations of what responsible gun ownership is really about. I wonder to myself: “If this is what those outside the gun culture see, it’s no wonder they fight so hard to take this right away. What a bunch of angry lunatics”.  I see it at the range, sometimes, too. 

You know, I’m really not a fuddy duddy. I love shooting my guns and nothing means more to me than being able to defend myself, if necessary, and to help women do the same.  I love a cool photo or a funny pro-gun sign or saying,  but I also cherish my right to own and carry my firearm, and am frustrated by those that are reckless and careless and risk becoming ambassadors for those who desire to take my right away or to limit it.

Of course, there are many, many responsible owners and fine reflections of responsible gun ownership, and most of us are pretty good Ambassadors, doing our best to be good examples of safe, responsible gun ownership and handling. I think we can do better though. I know I can do a better job and take my “appointment” as Ambassador more seriously. I need to have the courage to remind my brothers and sisters in arms of their great responsibility and need to be good representatives as well. I need to be more careful and mindful when I don’t even think anyone is watching. 

Safe, respectful, responsible and a gun owner with integrity... That is the Ambassador I want to be.

“The true test of a man’s character is what he does when no one is watching.” 
― John Wooden

As the effort to limit our rights grows, our united work to represent our passion responsibly becomes that much more important.  What do you think we can do individually and collectively to be the best Ambassadors possible?

Monday, April 2, 2012


Ahh, a new relationship. The excitement, the long talks, spending as much time together as you possibly can. These things are all part of any new significant relationship. You explore each other, learn everything you can about the other and eventually know everything there is to know.  People begin to say the two of you look alike, act alike, talk alike and, as years pass, even dress alike! I know you know what I am talking about: you have seen couples wearing basically the same outfits, most of them don’t even know they have done it. It just happens. They have grown so much together that they seem to meld into one. 
Yes.... I know I am writing a gun blog and am sure you are wondering “what does this have to do with guns”
Many women and perhaps men, purchase a firearm for self-protection. They want to feel safe and have the means to protect themselves and those they love. So they make the purchase, perhaps even glance through the owner's manual, load it with ammunition and put it in a safe place. Only to be left there, until the day they need it. The honeymoon is over, and so is the relationship.
What’s missing here? Yes: the romance. Every relationship needs attention and some quality time spent together. For a relationship to work, this is required on a regular basis. Otherwise, you will grow apart and become like strangers. 
Romance with my gun? you ask. Well, sort of.  
Spending some quality time with your firearm is one of the most important things you can do, not only when you first purchase your gun, but on an ongoing basis. This firearm is extremely important to you: this piece of metal (or plastic, in some cases) will become a part of your body. Heaven forbid the time comes when you must rely on it to save your life, you need to know it, really know it. You need to know how to get it to do what you need it to do, under incredible stress I might add. The level with which you and your firearm are “one” in a life threatening situation will seriously contribute to the outcome. 
Hold it, wear it and work it. (UNLOADED OF COURSE). Regular safe dry-fire practice is a great way to get acquainted and stay acquainted. Take your firearm on a date - go to the range and spend some quality time together. Owning a gun is a long term and committed relationship, one you must actively spend time on and invest yourself in. The rewards? A long, healthy happily-ever-after life together.
I expect you will have some interesting comments on this one! In the meantime, I will leave you with some famous love sone lyrics. 

“And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.” - The Beatles, The End

“The greatest thing you'll ever learn, is to love and be loved in return.” - Nat King Cole, Nature Boy