All in the Family featured the curmudgeonly Archie Bunker. Archie was television’s most famous grouch, blunt, blustering, straightforward and untouched by the PC crowd. He was the archetype of the conservative male. Michael desprately tried to reeducate him, but he persisted in his breviloquence.

Looking back at the last 40 years, we realize: ARCHIE WAS RIGHT!



I've been gone the last couple of days.  It was time for my yearly dose of MANLY, MANLINESS.  I  think it worked.  For the last couple years I've been donating my time for the WTRC, formerly the ITRC.

I love working this contest.  Its one of the very few true distance shooting contests were anyone who wants to play is allowed.  That means everyone from SEALS, SOG, RECON, RANGERS, the FED alphabet agencies, LEO snipers, and John Q Public is allowed to get on the course for 2 days of "sniper golf" followed by a day of team on team events involving handgun shooting, and head to head full auto fun.  In years past this has included other little excursions, like getting in a helio and engaging a seris of targets full speed just off the deck with full auto equipment.  Its not your normal bench rest match.

Because there is such a group of diverse and some still actively employed snipers in the bunch, some times guys don't like to give their names.  This is respected and those shooters never get their picture/name/ or other identifying info published.  It's considered good manners not to pry into such things.  The team gets to pick its moniker for the score board, so everybody knows who's who, even if some details are not readily available to the public. 

As in years past I was able to RO for some of the words best shooters.  Including some fairly well published names in the gun industry.  Like this guy.  He's a great shooter and his school has been turning out great shooters for years.  I'll get back to Darrell later.  I also had another guy who had the most unusual ability to pick out 10in x 10in blue targets at extreme ranges.  He ID'd one such target at over 900 yards while walking at a brisk rate, incredibly the target was in deep shade.

This year we had a surprise team enter our little world.  It seems that two home schooled kids read about this long distance game on the Internet and wanted to give it a try.  Mom and dad said OK based on few conditions.  Number 1 they had to pay for all the gear, ammo etc themselves.  Number 2 they had to pay for the trip themselves.  Number 3 they had to get the contest organizers to sign off and say it was OK.  Approval was granted to join the shoot provided they met the same conditions as the other shooters.  This included having combat serviceable handguns.  At 16 your not allowed to own a hand gun in most states and your not allowed to transport them across state lines either.  This made condition #4 a part of the deal, they had to pay for mom and dad to come as well.

The boys built their own rigs, learned about ballistics, loading, ranging etc (talk about an education).  They showed up and did amazingly well.  On the second course of fire I was asked to step in and RO for them, which I did.  At the end of the course I was amazed at how relatively well they were doing.  However, they sorely lacked skills in the handgun department and had missed several easy shots.  Not surprising considering they just got the guns.  At the end of their shooting I asked them if they wanted some coaching, which I gave them.  Most of the pointers were along the lines of how to improve spotter/shooter communication, reading range conditions and how to shoot a hand gun.  They seemed eager to learn and thanked me.  I didn't see them again for the next two days.

Last night I was getting a briefing on scores and I learned that the home school boys turned in a great score.  It was good enough to get them a 5th place finish.  Apparently they picked it up a bit and finished well with the handguns, or at least well enough not to hurt their rifle scores too badly.  In other news, one of those teams, who didn't give us their real names, finished slightly not as good as the 16 year old boys who never did this sort of thing before.  If I recall correctly, both of the super secret, "can't tell you our names because we'd have to kill you" teams finished behind the 16 year old home schooled boys that never did this sort of thing before, and who had to scrape up and save all their own money for this last year to make home made rifles, and payed their own way.  One of those teams, finished dead last.  Just saying.



The guy I mentioned earlier, Darrell, did a classy thing.  At the last minute he donated a very expensive scholarship to attend his shooting school to which ever place the 16 year old finished.  I hope they take him up on it.  Next year they may very well have a better ranking if they do.  BTW team Holland finished 2nd over all.

I really enjoy this contest.  All the money above the pay out for prizes and contest expenses is given to America's Wounded Warriors Project.  While this shoot is by no means a charity event, they don't make a dime off it.  There were even two wounded warriors in attendance, one shot the course on his new prosthetic leg.  The other helped run the event.  If your even slighlty inclinded to like shooting, get a buddy and a bag full of ammo and start getting ready for next year.

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