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Topics - Higher Caliber

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Other Weapons / ZT 0223
« on: January 11, 2020, 10:53:21 PM »

I have been really jonesing for this piece since it was released and my people at the local blade shop came through for me. It is just flat beautiful, fits nice, transitions nice, so smooth it feels mechanically assisted! It is a work of art!

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Build Threads / Tundra TRD Pro
« on: January 10, 2020, 11:41:01 PM »
Well I have been silently drooling over these Tundras for a few years now so I sold the black Silverado and popped on one after my last contract. I’m really enjoying it actually!

Not really going to “build” this per se. just did some upgrades like LED bulbs and what not. This truck has about as many bells and whistles as a 90’s model Chevy truck with a fancy head unit radio. Doesn’t even have auto headlights. It just drives NICE though.

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Firearms / Glock 45
« on: February 01, 2019, 05:57:34 PM »
Finally saved enough of my allowance to get the new 9mm Glock 45. I haven’t shot it yet, but I’m super excited about it. I wanted to be able to retain the short draw stroke and went away from my normal surefire obsession and picked up the in-force light. Nothing wrong with my surefire xc3, just liked the feel of this guy. The paddles are rough textured and easily manipulated for momentary or constant.

The g45 is basically a g19 slide on a shorter g17 frame. It’s NOT a “black g19x”. Along with the front serrations it accepts the gen 5 full size 17rd magazines.

I have these same sights on my g43 and I really liked them so I got a set for this girl. I’ll get a range report ASAP.

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Firearms / .35rem “brush gun”
« on: January 17, 2019, 04:08:28 PM »
I received this lever action .35 on a trade for next to nothing. .35rem is an excellent round, it’s just getting harder to come by, so I decided to build a hard knocking multi purpose defensive rifle out of her...

I wanted her short and fast to run with zero technology. That was my only criteria. I also wanted a defense/stand off device on it and a ghost ring sight system with a rail to put a scope on if I wanted...

I just got her back from the machinest. The butt plate was CNC’d for the project by the same guy who drilled and tapped all of the holes, cut and threaded the barrel, pinned and welded the muzzle device, etc...

Here she is-

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CIEMR / Mornin' Gents
« on: November 08, 2018, 12:50:36 AM »
I guess it's about time I check in with you folks to let you know what's happening. I know I'm terrible with keeping up over here. Anywhere really. It has been a super busy several months since I was on here last. I took a leave of absence and spent a good chunk of the summer in Costa Rica. It was probably the only CA country I hadn't visited yet. It was gloriously uneventful and was a much needed respite from the daily. Not to mention I got to fly my daughter down with her girl scout troop for 10 days! Upon arrival home, I went back to work immediately. I am still in my position with the local PD. I took on a job at the college as an adjunct instructor for the LE academy. I mostly teach defensive tactics and physical training, but I help in other fields as well. The DT/PT portion is about 8-12 hours extra a week of work, so that is about enough as it is. The family is all doing well. My oldest boy is about an hour away at welding school. He is due to graduate in December and will hopefully go off and do great big things and be happy doing them! Weston is still cancer free, but not without effects from the treatment, which are all live withable... The rest of the crew is fantastic, all the way down to the little's and mama bear is great too! I'll try to update some of the threads I started in the Spring. We had a fantastic garden, the chicken project has kept us in protein like you wouldn't believe! There hasn't been much time for working on the trucks and what not, but things will slow down some day maybe!
Ya'll take care,

CIEMR / Standing the line vs holding it
« on: April 21, 2018, 03:01:51 PM »
In a private room void of consequence would you admit to your inabilities? On a field of battle, drowning in combat would everyone find out anyway? The fortitude to *stand* the line comes from within. The ability to *hold* the line is more complex.

I would never minimize the sacrifice of a fallen brother or sister in arms. Those who have paid the pinnacle consequence should be revered for their service, no doubt. However, to confuse heroism and tragedy is counterproductive to those warriors who develop in their wake.

When a warrior is created, a fire burns within them. The fire is a light of the guiding sort only. Warriors are not inherently super, nor heroic. Without cultivating, the warrior is simply a dog chasing a car with no damned idea what to do once it’s been captured.

A warrior must hone their craft, not just their sword. The sharpest of swords in the hands of a novice *might* kill, while the empty hands of the master *will* kill before the sword clears the sheath.

A warrior must remain physically, mentally, and spiritually fit for combat. There is no objective test comprehensive enough to examine the fitness of a warrior. The warrior’s fitness may never be tested in their lifetime. When it is tested the results are often futile, one way or the other.

A warrior for good must remain good.  Operating unsullied by the toxicity in which they operate is a task. Whether spiritual, personal, familial or organizational a warrior will remain true to their guiding creed in the face of adversity.

It is a sobering contradiction how all at once warriors are incredibly resilient yet fragile as any other human. Choose this day which principle you will serve. Is it enough for you to stand the line... or will you prepare to hold it?

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D.O.T. / Are you tracking?
« on: April 07, 2018, 12:50:32 AM »
Modern diesel electric locomotives can generate somewhere between six and seven-thousand horsepower. They have transported millions of tons of commodities from coast to coast and they are largely responsible for the occupation and industrialization of our nation, but you can’t steer one.

Trains embark on a predetermined destination, largely automated nowadays, but fundamentally they are confined to their tracks. The proprietors of the railroad industry laid out courses of travel from coast to coast. Thusly, trains traverse the deepest of canyons and gorges, to the highest of mountain ranges. The Cascade Tunnel in the Great Northwest penetrates solid rock for nearly 8 miles in order to get trains where they need to go.

Have you laid your tracks so you can get to where you need to go?? I didn’t. I failed to lay my tracks as expeditiously as I should have. I rushed to build my train and set myself up for failure. It took me a while to realize, but I manage my failures one cross tie and eight spikes at a time. I’m not the only one. We have all been failures at some point.

Some people drive cars and can’t help but spin their wheels. Some captains struggle to keep their boats afloat, and some pilots never even leave the ground. Even in the best of circumstances each of these can easily stray because of the erroneous human element which steers them.

Trains however, don’t get lost. In absence of catastrophe, a train will remain on its tracks until it reaches its goal. Even if a train derails, the tracks continue.

Set goals and lay the tracks to your own predetermined destiny. Build your train and invite good people aboard. Embark on the great journey of life with peace of mind knowing you have laid a solid transit through trial and tribulation. If you derail, and you might, know that the track goes on and all you need to do is work on getting back on it.

In a world of Kia’s and Hyundai’s, be a damn train! It’s hard to stop a train.

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Humor, Good Stuff, and Red Neck Practices! / Seems legit
« on: March 19, 2018, 07:32:49 PM »

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Share Your Recipe / Buzzard Scat
« on: March 10, 2018, 09:57:22 PM »
I don’t know specific amounts, I always just kind of wing it depending on how much I’m making but here ya go-

Set your smoker to 200*

Quarter jalapeños long ways and lay them on a broiler grate with a bunch of green onions.

Throw some bacon on top of the greens, tent with parchment paper or tin foil to hold smoke.

Smoke 3 hours or until peppers and bacon reach desired permeation.

While it’s smoking brown some JD breakfast sausage, toss in some cream cheese and pre-smoked shredded white cheddar. Mix until evenly distributed add sugar, chili powder, garlic powder, and your favorite rub seasoning “to taste”. Let it sit and season.

Once your peppers and bacon are done cut the bacon to bits and mix 2/3 with your cream cheese/sausage mixture.

Purée your greens to relish and add to the dip. Might need to add more sugar at this point to taste.

Once you get it where you want it, scoop into serving platter and garnish/top with fresh green onion and the rest of your bacon.

Serve with your favorite crackers or corn chips

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CIEMR / Too much common sense
« on: February 15, 2018, 10:27:25 PM »

Since Sandy Hook in 2012 there have been 239 school shootings nationwide. 438 of our children and school employees have been shot with 138 killed. In the same period there have been over 5,000 fires at educational properties averaging only one death a year. As many as 7,000 children are struck down by cardiac arrest each year, yet with AED intervention within 5-7 minutes some statistics show up to an 83% survival rate is realized.

We have fire extinguishers on every corner of our school’s hallways. We have automated integrated fire suppression systems as a matter of law in most educational facilities. We have AED machines in almost every gymnasium. Yet we have 17 kids dead as of yesterday. What is the difference? What is the blindingly, obvious difference about our responses to each of these tragedies?

If yesterday there had been a gas leak which led to an explosion killing 17 children, we would have put every measure possible in place in every school in the nation to make sure if it happened again, we could save more lives. If the homecoming king collapsed on the 50-yard line yesterday, 100 brand new AED’s would be donated to school districts who couldn’t afford them in his name in an effort to save lives.

Yet today we argue. Half of our nation argues about the atrocities of “gun violence” and the need to ban guns, while the other half argues for the right to keep and bear arms and the use of them in defense of our children. Nothing changes. We will argue until things calm down and the issue will be put to bed until the next active killing incident.

A spattering of politicians and law enforcement personnel will grace our television sets for the next two weeks telling us how this must stop and how they will insure us for the safety of our children every effort to eradicate these tragedies will be employed. This line of thinking is ignorant and sheepish. You can’t stop a tsunami, you must put up a wall. Even so, there will be deaths if the tsunami is of greater force than the integrity of your defense against it.

You cannot eradicate fire. Fire will always be fire. You cannot eradicate the potentiality of sudden cardiac arrest. There aren’t always warning signs such an event will metabolize. You cannot eradicate the active killer. Until the end of time, there will be individuals with the propensity to commit violence against other human beings.

Fire suppression systems don’t prevent fires, they prevent deaths in fires. Automated external defibrillation doesn’t prevent cardiac arrest, it prevents death due to cardiac arrest. “Gun control” doesn’t prevent active killers and it sure doesn’t prevent death due to active killers. The second amendment doesn’t prevent active killers, nor does it prevent death due to active killers, yet that is all we argue. All our efforts and energy are being focused on mitigations which would have no effect on the active killer *or* the preservation of life.

You can put millions of dollars into mental health research and social media surveillance. You can put millions of dollars into gun buy back programs and efforts to eliminate firearms falling into the wrong hands. I applaud you for your efforts and you might just save a life or two which is priceless. But if each of you put half a million of those same dollars into mitigating the risks posed by an active killer, how many more lives could we save?

If in the future next to every glass encased fire extinguisher was a ballistic shield, heroes like Coach Feis could have used to engage an active killer how many lives could potentially be saved? If instead of $500 iPads, students were issued clear vinyl backpacks with a layer of 4A ballistic Kevlar sewn into them, how many lives could be saved? If instead of imprinting upon our children and staff the potentiality of them becoming victims, we imprinted upon them the fact they are all potential weapons, how many lives could be saved? If the same amount of money spent on the football stadium was put into the security and surveillance systems of our schools how many lives could be saved? What if just like integrated automatic fire protection we had the ability to confine an active killer to a certain area of our school with the touch of a button? How many lives could we save by simply recognizing, active killers exist and the only thing we can do about it, is to prepare to mitigate their effectiveness.

The future of mitigating the risks associated with active killers is not in the failed mistakes of our past, including gun control and mental health legislation. It is not in the hands of the talking heads who sensationalize these incidents for profit with their every breath.

The future is not in waiting for legislators or criminal justice practitioners to tell us how we should handle business to save lives. To save lives, we must recognize the threat exists, identify our vulnerabilities, assess our resources to mitigate our vulnerabilities and employ those resources to their fullest extent in order to handicap the effectiveness of active killers. The rest is just political agenda and noise.

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D.O.T. / Winter driving
« on: February 13, 2018, 10:40:01 PM »
I wrote this after a day of working back to back traffic accidents after a little ice storm this weekend-

Before embarking on a wintry wonderland journey, keep these tips in mind. When it comes to winter driving, preparation and planning are key. Make sure you literally have the baldest tires available to you. The more rubber surface area in contact with the ice and snow, the better traction you will have. Think “racing slicks”.

It is important to wait until the very last minute available before you step outside to get in your vehicle. This way you will not get distracted clearing your windows and lose track of time, potentially causing yourself to be tardy. An area roughly the size of your hand scraped off with a quarter, coat hanger, card board Dairy Queen box, or potentially your finger nails is all you need. (Pro tip-In a pinch you can use a few tablespoons of your coffee to melt a small area.)  A less common option we should mention is to hang your head out your driver’s side window. (Use caution when approaching other drivers exercising the same technique.)

Do not pre-warm your vehicles! It wastes gas and it’s horrible for the environment. While we are talking about gas, make sure you have *just* enough to get to where you need to go. The lighter load of the empty tank will make your vehicle easier to recover from the ditch or a death spin on an exit ramp.

Furthermore, When your vehicle is warm and toasty it encourages a relaxed driving experience. In the winter you need to be on top of your game. Shivering  encourages you to be more alert. Your bodies natural effort to ward off hypothermia will also literally assist in reactivity and mental clarity!

When driving in winter weather conditions, keep your side windows down to increase your peripheral visibility. Instruct your toddlers on how to monitor your blind spots for encroaching vehicles. Winter driving is a team effort.

Aggressively accelerating away from stop signs and stop lights is encouraged. You don’t want to still be in the intersection when the other dumbass in cross traffic slides through the intersection because they tried to use their brakes (more on that later). It is also important to accelerate around blind curves, braking in a curve could put you in the ditch. Curves are not your friend in the winter. Use straight roads when possible. When approaching a curve, quickly GPS a straighter route.

GPS units are required by NASA to only display safe routes during winter. Trust your GPS!! Especially if you are a truck driver... with 80,000 pounds of dynamite! If your GPS offers a route up or down a steep grade in an ice storm, it’s because the other way had a curve and the DOT has cleared the hill! NASA and the DOT are in constant communication during winter. 

On brakes- don’t use them, they don’t work in icy conditions anyway. The only time braking is advised is to check road conditions. If you are unsure whether or not you are traveling on black ice, a quick assertive stomp and release of the brake pedal is your litmus test.

It is important to not be trapped behind slower moving vehicles. You never want to be the middle pancake. Tailgate the forward vehicle while passive aggressively flashing your lights and honking your horn to warn them of the danger you are in. The decreased distance between your vehicle and their vehicle will limit the inertia of impact if you are rear ended. It is of the utmost importance that you pass these slower moving vehicles. Oncoming vehicles are required by winter driving doctrine to yield to drivers in your distressed and compromised position.

If you are ever involved in an accident, no matter the damage, do not move your vehicle. Instruct the other involved drivers you will have them arrested for tampering with evidence if they try to move their car. Take as many photos from as many different angles as possible regardless of other traffic.

Other drivers are required by Good Samaritan laws to stop and render you aid. If they drive around you, document their license plate numbers and provide them to the Traffic CSI unit upon their arrival. If a dispatcher tries to pull the “emergency road conditions” BS on you, immediately remind them who pays their salary and what you plan to bring up the next time you are at coffee with the chief.

In the event of an accident it is always the fault of the other car that came in “flying out of nowhere”! (This, along with testimony incriminating others who may or may not be present, should be your only statement to law enforcement, period.. oh, and reminding them who pays their salary.)

Safe winter driving is everyone’s responsibility, including Jesus Christ. If all else fails in a catastrophic pinch just close your eyes, hug yourself let Jesus take the wheel and hope for the freaking best!

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D.O.T. / Our flag
« on: February 13, 2018, 10:38:19 PM »
The Flag of the United States of America is simultaneously the most reverent of symbols and the most disrespected of symbols. If you want to poke the bear, burn the flag, turn it upside down, or have a picture taken of you wiping your ass with it. Even FedEx guys won’t have any of that!

This being said there are many other ways to unintentionally disrespect the flag of our great nation which are often misunderstood, overlooked, or down right ignored. I would encourage any individual who intends to handle the flag of our nation to study its history and to consider the following.

Our flag is a living breathing entity of Americanism. As our nation grew, the field of stars grew with it. In 1777 our first flag was resolved, “That the flag of the United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field representing a new constellation.” Arguably however, it wasn’t until roughly five years later in 1782, Charles Thomson, secretary of the Continental Congress first epitomized the meaning of the colors in the construction of our nation’s seal. Thomson said, “White signifies purity and innocence. Red, hardiness & valour, and Blue… signifies vigilance, perseverance & justice.” Our flag lives and breathes with our nation.

The flag code was adopted in 1923 but was not made public law until 1942. Although it is considered “law”, it is not enforceable by punishment. The flag code is merely the guidelines by which our flag should be treated. By its very definition within the code our flag lives as we live and we are instructed as a matter of respect to handle it as such, guided by the code, in our endeavor to revere it for what it symbolizes.

There is, within the code, room for differing interpretations on the use of the flag as a symbol or depiction in print, however the definition of a proper flag is pretty consistent within the code-

- “That a flag must be capable of being displayed either horizontally or vertically against a wall.” The flag is always displayed with the union in the upper left corner (per code) whether horizontally or vertically. This defines the flag must be a two sided object because in order for the flag to be displayed correctly in both positions, it would have to be flipped over when changing from horizontal to vertical.

- “That a flag must be capable of being hoisted upon flagstaff” A billboard or the back glass of a pickup truck is not capable of being hoisted upon a flagstaff, therefore these items are merely representations, or depictions of the flag. You could hoist a t-shirt or a pair of boxers up a flag, but chances are they are not printed on both sides and therefore are not a flag.

Yesterday and again this morning I found myself in debate with another individual on the United States Olympic team’s use of the flag as a drape or shawl around their shoulders after a victory. The jest of the argument was the individual would rather see it proudly draped around the shoulders than printed on a pair of underwear. I realize there is no intent to disrespect our flag in this manner (draped upon the shoulders). It is still my feeling we should not detract from the flag code as it is written and individuals representing the United States should be trained in proper flag etiquette, if they intend to display it. There are many arguments to be made for using the flag as a garment in the spirit of Americanism and Patriotism. I realize the pride in country people bearing witness to this may feel and how that feeling could be in a sense, contagious. At which point do we hold transgressions against the flag code, in the name of patriotism as going too far. Is every trespass of the flag code ok, so long as it is in the name of patriotism? Do we allow drunks to drive the last block home? Is it ok to hit your wife, just a little bit? I argue the only time our flag should be displayed as a cover, is when it drapes the casket of an individual who swore upon his life to defend it.

Is an individual less patriotic for adhering to the flag code, or more patriotic for adorning the flag? There is a story attributed to George Bernard Shaw, in which a man and woman are discussing what people would do for money. Paraphrasing here; the man asks the woman if she would sleep with him for a million dollars. The woman agrees she would. Then the man asks if she would sleep with him for five dollars. The woman becomes irate and inquires if the man thinks she is a prostitute. The man responds by saying, “That has already been established and at this point they are simply haggling a price.”

The point here is all of our actions have a price. The flag should remain priceless and its display to standard. I would hazard a hypothesis if the athletes waved the flag on a pole after a win, the same contagious effect of American badassery could be realized and the code of our flag would remain unsullied.

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D.O.T. / THIS!
« on: February 09, 2018, 08:11:14 PM »

Soldier Up / Posture Correction
« on: February 07, 2018, 11:23:15 AM »

I ordered one of these. I feel like I’m slouching all the time. Too many years of pulling my shoulders forward against body armor and packs etc. my wife is always telling me to put my shoulders back and after seeing some recent pictures I decided I needed a crutch to help correct this problem... not to mention my cricks and locks in my neck probably due to my poor posture... I’ll post some updates along the way gents. First impressions, two hours in today are good. I catch myself fighting to pull it forward and get uncomfortable. When I let my shoulders fall back correctly it’s much more comfortable... I guess that’s the point!

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Farming, Gardening, and Raising Your Own Food / Raised veggie garden.
« on: February 02, 2018, 09:56:24 PM »
Setting up something like this-

Worked on it about 2 hours tonight.

Total of about 256 ft2 of garden area.

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Firearms / Appendix carry (my experience)
« on: January 26, 2018, 10:33:06 PM »
I am roughly 18 months in to appendix carry. I felt it was necessary as I am training more civilian ccw carriers these days and the prevailing trend is toward AIWB carry.

Initially I hated it. After roughly 1000 presentations over a two week period I decided it was time to venture out in the public with my gun jabbed in to my pelvis. You really gotta find your pants that ride a little high, because the low slung Levi’s are less than desirable.

I fought with it and cussed it on 6 hour car rides and we finally decided about a month of EDC that it was going to work out.

Honestly I hate that I like it. It’s nice having it right there in your work space and not printing off your hip when you bend over. It conceals just as good really and honestly speaking if you are disarming to use the facilities, you can just unsnap and leave it in the holster. I added a step to my reluctant re-holster, where I take a half step back with my strong side leg and it effectively removes my femoral out of the line of fire.

To clear cover and present from appendix is stupid fast. From day 1 I could put rounds on paper just as fast as clearing and drawing from 3:30’sh. At the end of my transition period I was nearly a half second faster. My traditional duty draw has not suffered either like I was concerned about.

I’ve evolved... give it an honest effort. You might like it!

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Firearms / G17 gen 5
« on: January 26, 2018, 10:11:48 PM »
I am roughly 1500 rds down range on my new gen 5 g17. I really like this gun. I’ll tell you the added features like the enhanced trigger and the flared mag well really make the weapon, over previous generations. I don’t consider myself a firearms aficionado or anything, but I like them to run.

If you will believe this, my biggest concern is that it hasn’t malfunctioned yet. I generally like them to malfunction a few times in the first 2-300 rounds and then clear up to none or one every 500 rounds or so... 1500 round count today... no malfunctions... is it broke in?? Are they about to start??

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Parenting / Teach a kid to shoot
« on: January 13, 2018, 03:31:45 PM »

Another one behind the sights!

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Ammo & Reloading / Science project requests?
« on: December 31, 2017, 04:32:03 PM »
For this years science fair we are testing bullet penetration and cavitation. As you can see I have already made a significant investment in to this.

If any of you gents would like to mail me a couple rounds you would like tested, send me a PM. Gelatin will be melted down and reformed between each round. Only doing 9mm. I will need the specs on whatever rounds you send obviously.

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Farming, Gardening, and Raising Your Own Food / EGGS finally...
« on: December 29, 2017, 05:16:13 PM »
Raised our girls up from chicks. Got them in the spring and they should have started producing weeks ago! We would occasionally find one or two. Then all of the sudden on one of the coldest nights of the year so far we got 19 eggs overnight!

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CIEMR / A Christmas poem
« on: December 24, 2017, 03:43:34 PM »
Not sure where credit is due for this. It was a forward in my email today-

The embers glowed softly, and in their dim light,
 I gazed round the room and I cherished the sight.
 My wife was asleep, her head on my chest,
 My daughter beside me, angelic in rest.
 Outside the snow fell, a blanket of white,
 Transforming the yard to a winter delight.
 The sparkling lights in the tree I believe,
 Completed the magic that was Christmas Eve.
 My eyelids were heavy, my breathing was deep,
 Secure and surrounded by love I would sleep.
 In perfect contentment, or so it would seem,
 So I slumbered, perhaps I started to dream.

 The sound wasn't loud, and it wasn't too near,
 But I opened my eyes when it tickled my ear.
 Perhaps just a cough, I didn't quite know, Then the
 sure sound of footsteps outside in the snow.
 My soul gave a tremble, I struggled to hear,
 And I crept to the door just to see who was near.

 Standing out in the cold and the dark of the night,
 A lone figure stood, his face weary and tight.
 A soldier, I puzzled, some twenty years old,
 Perhaps a Marine, huddled here in the cold.
 Alone in the dark, he looked up and smiled,
 Standing watch over me, and my wife and my child.

 "What are you doing?" I asked without fear,
 "Come in this moment, it's freezing out here!
 Put down your pack, brush the snow from your sleeve,
 You should be at home on a cold Christmas Eve!"
 For barely a moment I saw his eyes shift,
 Away from the cold and the snow blown in drifts…

 To the window that danced with a warm fire's light
 Then he sighed and he said, "Its really all right,
 I'm out here by choice. I'm here every night.
 "It's my duty to stand at the front of the line,
 That separates you from the darkest of times.

 No one had to ask or beg or implore me,
 I'm proud to stand here like my fathers before me.
 My Gramps died at ' Pearl on a day in December,"
 Then he sighed, "That's a Christmas 'Gram always remembers."
 My dad stood his watch in the jungles of ' Nam ',
 And now it is my turn and so, here I am.

 I've not seen my own son in more than a while,
 But my wife sends me pictures, he's sure got her smile."
 Then he bent and he carefully pulled from his bag,
 The red, white, and blue... an American flag.
 "I can live through the cold and the being alone,
 Away from my family, my house and my home.

 I can stand at my post through the rain and the sleet,
 I can sleep in a foxhole with little to eat.
 I can carry the weight of killing another,
 Or lay down my life with my sister and brother..
 Who stand at the front against any and all,
 To ensure for all time that this flag will not fall."

 "So go back inside," he said, "harbor no fright,
 Your family is waiting and I'll be all right."
 "But isn't there something I can do, at the least,
 "Give you money," I asked, "or prepare you a feast?
 It seems all too little for all that you've done,
 For being away from your wife and your son."

 Then his eye welled a tear that held no regret,
 "Just tell us you love us, and never forget.
 To fight for our rights back at home while we're gone,
 To stand your own watch, no matter how long.
 For when we come home, either standing or dead,
 To know you remember we fought and we bled.
 Is payment enough, and with that we will trust,
 That we mattered to you as you mattered to us."

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« on: December 21, 2017, 07:23:05 PM »
I didn't meet the man I call my dad till I was eleven. He didn't have a whole lot of time to give me the age old, "what every little boy needs to know about becoming a man" kind of education little boys are due. But I hung on to every word I could of my "Cliffs notes" short and condensed version.

Wanna know how to tie a "half hitch" or a "Mississipi boomer knot"? I can show you, because he took the time to show me...

I know there's a thousand different things you can do to make a buck and if you do each of them you're gonna make a thousand bucks... Cause he told me...

I can always find a deal, there's always room to budge, or a discount to be had if you can articulate to the man, not so much why you deserve it, but why he should give it to you anyways... I picked that up as well!

Somewhere along the way, not sure if it was following him in to truck stops or out on the horse trails I picked up a "wink and a smile" that tends to gets me into trouble when not applied judiciously!

"Its a long way from your heart"... Even if it's infected, can't bend it, or really close to your BRAIN, it's still "a long way from your heart" and thus not an emergency!

*Nothing* marinates a ribeye better than Worcestershire and yoshida's gourmet sauce. Mrs. Dash goes good with everything and nothing tastes better after a day on a tractor or a horse than a coke from Alsup's convenience store!

Be versatile, resilient, motivated and persistent. Move with a purpose, buy low, sell high and always make time to better yourself!

Learn from your mistakes, but blame it on your son! Wait! what?? Yeah, the tailgate incident of 95' Dad, when you ripped the tailgate off your truck with the gooseneck and blamed it on me because I was always the one to unhook the trailers! Yup, member that too!

"There ain't a horse that can't be rode, and ain't a rider that can't be throwed" How many different ways is that applicable in life? At fifteen I never understood it as a metaphor I just assumed it was rather specific!

"Left leg on the left side, your right leg on the right and your mind in the middle"

"Give your heart to The Lord and ride like the devil"

I heard it all... Absorbed it... Share it when I can!

Be Proactive; begin with the end in mind; put first things first; think win win; seek first to understand, then to be understood; synergize; and sharpen the saw! Quite possibly the only teenage boy in the state of Texas that could recite Covey's "Seven Habits of Highly Effective People"! Learned that somewhere between Little Rock and Jonesboro at 87 mph with my head beating off of the door molding of an 88 Chevy on a bumpy Arkansas highway! Thanks a lot Bill Clinton!

I could go on and on (taught me that too) but I'll give it a break and spare you every single detail. I hope I grow up to be half the man he was. The best part about my old man was that he didn’t have to do all of that. Wasn’t his job. But the individual who made me was an absentee. When people ask, “Who is your real dad?”, It’s an easy answer.

(Photographic proof of a light grunt with a college diploma!)

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Build Threads / Diana
« on: December 08, 2017, 10:54:32 PM »
Meet Diana (daughter wanted Wonder Woman, we settled on Diana)

She’s a 2016 CCSB Z71. First vehicle I’ve ever had personally with heated seats!

(Here she is when I brought her home)

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CIEMR / checking in!
« on: December 08, 2017, 10:32:24 PM »
Evening gents!

Just thought I would do a quick check in! A lot has happened since I was on here last. I have checked in here from time to time but neglected to post a howdy or anything. Shame on me. It's been pretty busy around the HC ranch both personally and professionally. I took a short leave of absence to help a buddy on a contract down south in the ice cream cone shaped continent. That was a whole 'nother world for me!! But it was a great experience nonetheless. Looking at going back again sometime in the 18'. Secondary to all of that, I promoted at my real job to a rank that was more fitting of my duty assignment. I completed an advanced crime scene investigator certification, *AND* (drum roll please) I am due to graduate with my associates in Law Enforcement and My Bachelor's in Criminal Justice Administration next week! Only took 19 years! Lots of other things happening as well in my life. For the most part all good things... I am blessed beyond deserts for sure.

Anyways, I'll troll around the threads for a few and update some of my own stuff. I'll go ahead and let ya'll down now. I sold Tina. Sometimes money just talks to you at the right time and well, I'll just say, I wasn't attached to her to the extent of the amount of cash waved in my face at Casey's the other day! I had to have something so I just jumped into the best first "deal" I could find and ended up in a 2016 Silverado gasser... I'll be throwing some drooler's on a new build thread. I'm not sure you could classify her as a "real man truck" per se... but she's 4wd and has a bed! um sort of... Anyways. Look for the "Diana" thread coming to a forum near you!

Build Threads / The Reclamation of Blue
« on: May 19, 2017, 11:20:20 PM »
Blue is a 1987 Chevy C10. 350 tbi 400 turbo.  She belonged to my dad first and then me. When I was 18 I took my eldest boy (the one in the pics) home from the hospital in it and restored it in the barn shortly thereafter. Was around 2000.

I tell you what! Tearing her down today was like opening a time capsule for me. I couldn't help but reminisce the entire time. Not sure I'm going to be able to get through this without shedding a few tears along the way.

Plans are constantly changing. I know she's going to be a work kit truck so we will keep that in mind! I don't want to pour gobs of cash into it just yet because, well it belongs to a teenager and that is asking for trouble and heartaches. I know it's going to be just perfect when she's done. I'm kicking around the idea of doing a sort of faux petina on her to match the real petina and then preserving it with some satin clear.

Without further ado here is day 1. Forgive the lack of technical pictures here. I don't want to spend the whole build behind my camera lens. For the most part the pictures will just tell our story along the way! Trackin'?

Here we are yanking her out of the weed, past the chicken coop and into the garage!

Quick 360

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General Vehicle Related Discussion / Need help!
« on: April 28, 2017, 04:04:59 PM »
1998 Chevy vortec 305

Was driving along thinking about how good my truck was running and all of the sudden it wasn't.

Missing consistently and backfiring. Put it on the code reader and all I have is the multiple misfire P0300 or whatever. Posted are the stats. I compared it to one of the others in the driveway and couldn't locate anything remarkable... what say you?

Here is the frozen data from when it tripped the code

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CIEMR / Written for my step-sons senior year book
« on: April 07, 2017, 12:46:05 AM »
Late night rant!

Lighthouses do not venture out to sea in search of ships to save; they simply stand there shining guiding them home. Fear not the feeling of finding yourself afloat rudderless in the seas of life for it is in these times, your character will truly manifest. On your journey, if all else fails there is no shame in finding the lighthouse which guides you home. There was never a lighthouse built in a day and this shall be true with you as well. There will be friends, family and trusted mentors who will be the architects of your lighthouse. Surround yourself with good people.

As you move in to adulthood, you will learn while doing the right thing may be difficult, it is never complicated. You will further learn the chaos of consequence and the fact that failing to change when change is necessary is self-destructive. I once heard a seasoned old man say, “Good judgement comes from experience, experience comes from bad judgement”. Remember and hold fast to your instances of bad judgement, for those were the times you learned valuable lessons and gained immeasurable experience.
Competitiveness runs in your blood. With it runs the fear of defeat, but your resilience to adversity must remain your cornerstone.  Dr. Valerie Rice says, “Without failure, you would never feel resilience. Without resilience, you would never be strong.”  When you learn to fail with dignity, the fear of failure will not imprison you, and the just deserts of success will be that much sweeter. Your life is not about what it is today; it is about what it can become tomorrow. Fear not a circumstance in which you are presented the opportunity to exhibit your relevance, because behind every frustration was a wish that was left unfulfilled… But, never lose your humility.

Since you were small you have been the center of attention in every room. You were born to lead others. General Colin Powell says, “A good leader is someone whose people will follow him or her, if only out of curiosity.” Strong leaders inherently command respect; they do not however demand it. Respect is earned, not borrowed and at times you will face enemies who wish to bring you down.  Do not give them the satisfaction of your defeat. Hold your head high and your posture straight. Never hit if it is at all honorable to avoid hitting, but never hit soft. It is by all means better to be the warrior in a garden, than the gardener in a war. Your versatility will be the key with which the barriers of your life will be dismantled. Never stop learning.

Live every day as if the opportunity to leave a legacy will be lost tomorrow, and build your light house to weather the storm my son, for YOU were born to guide others, and they will follow you, “if only out of curiosity.”

Momma and her "baby" boy

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General Vehicle Related Discussion / Brainstorm with me...
« on: March 28, 2017, 09:30:50 PM »
My "new" old pickup just runs smooth and steady but occasionally you put your foot in it to pull in to traffic and she just sputters and falls on her face. She doesn't die and then picks up and runs out fine. Any ideas? Has new plugs, cap and rotor, fuel and air filters. Feels like a fuel delivery issue, hence the new filter. I know these trucks have notoriously bad fuel pumps but I have never had one hiccup intermittently on me when it was on the fritz. In my experience they just start quitting and you have to kick the tank once in a while to get them to run in my experience, so I feel like it's something else. But not sure what.

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Build Threads / Let's call her Tina
« on: March 15, 2017, 07:26:07 PM »
Y'all are going to think I'm crazy, but I sold the D-max.... time to build smtg new. After spending time in my daughters truck, I just forgot how much I like the 88-98 Chevys. So when my father in law offered his up for sale, I popped on it. Here's my 3800 investment so far. You may remember from duramax forum when I located this truck for him. Well he drove it for a year, had an awful stroke, and it's been sitting ever since. And it was NASTY... but here she is now, all prettied up again. Introducing Tina, the 1998 Z71

I'm going to keep her simple. This was my dream truck in high school. So I'm going to make all those dreams come true. I need to chase down a low break pedal issue and a steering wander. Reflex bedliner on Wednesday, dual flow master exhaust, 2-3" RC add a leaf lift kit and new wheels and BFG tires... that'll be about it! Stay tuned!

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D.O.T. / HC checks in
« on: January 02, 2017, 10:47:38 AM »
Morning gents-

Just heard from a couple of y'all and it seems I have been missed a little bit. Truth is I have checked in a few times just to see how things were going but I have been reluctant to post much. Honestly I have been struggling to reduce my social media signature, not do fear of the Clintons, but just because I got to the point I was too hung up on what was happening on the screen of my phone. From time to time I would catch myself lost in the forums or the social dumpster that is Facebook.

I see my older kids spending way too much time on this of that and our time is so limited anyways I tried to set the "unplugged" example. So I limited my time to 25 minutes of social media per day... which seems like a lot but it's really not.

Secondary to this, I have moved my grandmother to town and she's quite the handful. But she raised me as a boy, so I guess it's time to return the favor, seeing as how my deadbeat egg donor and my aunt looked the other way when she needed them.

Then you add in school. 9hours for fall, 12 hours this spring. But I can see the objective as far as that goes and hopefully will have my bachelors all tied up by this time next year! Haven't decided what I want to be when I grow up, but we shall see!

Other than all of that, things are going pretty smooth. I'm slotted for the NRA LE handgun instructor next week to add to my list of professional credits. House is great! Work is great! Fam is great! My eldest boy was accepted into University of Arkansas and my second eldest boy is going to be a credentialed welder by the time he graduates high school. Eldest daughter is beautiful as her momma and just got the braces off! Trickling down to the youngest girls everyone is happy and healthy!

Momma and I have worked through some issues recently. We sought out some professional counseling and we are picking away at things that have hindered each of us for a long time. Just little stuff that becomes big stuff. Its actually helped a lot! In many ways. Never fear the couch gents. No shame in reaching out for help!

I guess that's about it for now! I'll check back a little more frequently!

Y'all take care!
Stay staunch!

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Tires, Wheels, and Suspension / Big box tire shopping
« on: April 25, 2016, 05:26:12 PM »
Well I did something I never do-

I always support my local shops when I need new tires. I buy them from the four wheel drive shop and have another guy mount and balance. It generally ties up about four to five hours of my time once it's all said and done and I'm generally out around 1300 bucks.

Well I needed tires in a bad way, really bad way and called the new discount tire in my area. Tires were on the shelf!! I haggled for a minut and the guy quoted me $1000.03 out the door with lifetime rotation and balancing. New generation  BFG KO2's. He assured me their tires would come out of the same factory the other local guys tires did... In other words they weren't Sam Walton specials.

So I pulled in the drive and bit. My card cleared at 1506. I was on the interstate test driving at 1557. The crew paid damn close attention to protect my wheels and all three guys working on my truck, while I watched came over, shook my hand, thanked me for my service (veteran tag) and introduced themselves at one point or another during the process! I was super impressed!

Local guys never did that and hated me watching. I still won't use wal mart, but these guys might have a new customer...

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Firearms / Surefire xc1
« on: March 03, 2016, 09:54:24 PM »
I have had my eye on these since they were debuted. It seems they are holding up to their surefire name so I popped on one today...

And of course I had to have my buddy make me a new rig

The light runs at 200 lumens momentary or constant on a single AAA battery. It really puts out a lot of light! Ergonomically it is easily operated with both your support thumb and index finger on the mid size model handguns. It weighs best to nothing and conceals perfectly as it is no wider than the slide. If anything it makes IWB concealment *more* comfortable due to the fact it spreads the pressure more evenly across a larger area of your body. MSRP is around 275 I think. I picked this one up on my good customer discount at $225! I'll follow up after first hand range experience.

Don't mind the carry lint... It keeps the dirt out!

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Faith Discussion / Making biscuits
« on: February 04, 2016, 06:52:32 PM »

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Firearms / Higher Caliber Concepts PDW build
« on: January 28, 2016, 10:02:01 PM »
This is the place holder for my PDW build thread-
First off I had NO intentions of building another rifle until I stumbled upon one of these

For a steal on Armslist... So the PDW build is a go!
(Disclaimer here- this is just a pile of parts until the appropriate stamps are in hand)
I'm new to the SBR world so I want to first start off with some questions-
This is for all intents and purposes a low profile semi concealable defensive apparatus. It is my intent to stick with 556 but I could be convinced to go 300BLK. I want a 7" barrel upper and suppressor. Let's hear the pros and cons of each caliber from the aforementioned set up??

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D.O.T. / Is that Don waving at us from the window??
« on: January 24, 2016, 10:43:09 AM »
dude needs a wheel barrel!

D.O.T. / Sigh...
« on: January 19, 2016, 07:15:35 PM »
Another one behind the wheel

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D.O.T. / Nissan XD
« on: January 18, 2016, 09:15:48 PM »
5.0 Cummins 6spd Aisin
59k sticker

Just drove by and saw this monstrosity! Can't even drop the tail gate! Gotta wait for it to fall slowly! How inconvenient! Can't slam it neither!

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Bug-Out Bag and Camping gear / How do you tell time?
« on: January 01, 2016, 06:02:53 PM »
G-shock tough solar. Great piece. Super well built and was on rollback at wal mart a few years ago for forty bucks!

My wife got me the MTM Patriot for a "retirement" gift after my last, last deployment. It's a great piece as well with a real chrono, I guess it was pretty expensive.

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Intel / Flood maps
« on: December 26, 2015, 04:42:27 PM »
As I nail this ark together to prepare for our impending flood, I thought I would check out the area flood maps. Thought I would post it up here as a quick link so those of us who don't have a flood evac plan, can do so.


Just enter in your long/lat's or addy and check her out!

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D.O.T. / The Clarion Project
« on: December 19, 2015, 10:24:11 AM »

I have found this a pretty good resource for keeping up on current events dealing with just about everything. I spent, probably a little too much time looking through it the other night, but in my endeavor to find harsh political bias, or other negative intents, I failed. SO it must be a pretty good site.

see what yall think.

watch this in it's entirety when you have 15 mins to spare. This is what turned me on to them the other day.


Firearms / FUN little bolt gun!
« on: December 03, 2015, 04:05:31 PM »
Popped on the Ruger American Ranch of the compact type! I absolutely love it!

100yds 3rd group right, 3 rds high (oops, wrong way on the turret) 4 rds clustered on the top of the mark.

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D.O.T. / Need a truck or motor
« on: November 29, 2015, 06:31:46 PM »
My dad is in a super tight spot financially and emotionally. It's a long personal story. The motor seized up in his dually 02' lb7 duramax. I need to get him in to a different truck or source an engine for his. The only real requirement is that it's 3/4 ton or bigger and its dependable sand able to pull. Let me know if anyone has seen anything recently or possibly has something to part with.

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Soldier Up / Winded and tired
« on: November 21, 2015, 07:32:56 PM »
So I had a hot call today, physical domestic bum beating up on his crackhead girlfriend, the usual. The apartment is above some businesses downtown. Stairway of death heads up to it, loud and creaky, up two stories with walls on both side of me. It's a tactical nightmare but I digress. The only good way to handle it is a quick sprint up the steps, peak through the window and bust through to the hallway, cover to your right, reassess and continue mission.

I shot up the stairs and posted up. Found myself short of breath. Generally isn't a thing for me. Guess I have been spending too much time under the barbells.... As soon as I got off work, I stripped my gear and donned my weighted vest. 2.2 miles in 22 mins with 22lb vest.... (22 a day).

Smoked me! Time for a re-evaluation of my  fitness level and to re-focus on getting my own body moving...

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CIEMR / La Ville-Lumière
« on: November 15, 2015, 12:04:56 PM »
The quote is beautiful but exsanguinates with irony as applied to the recent incidents in Paris. Is Paris France, not “The City of Light” or perhaps, as it is often referred, “The City of Love”?  While MLK’s quote was certainly applicable to the ignorance of racism, it has no bearing and less merit when applied to terrorism instituted by fundamentally psychopathic jihadists.

There is no capacity of love or enlightenment great enough to combat jihadi assholery. We cannot love the visceral hate for the infidel out of a suicide bomber. There is no measure of light or reason great enough to keep planes in the sky as we know all too well. The only mitigation to jihadi violence is firepower superiority and .556 rounds to the cranial vault.

At some point we will realize the idiocy of our endeavor to re-program a corrupted hard drive and get down to business or get out. Until then, wolves will hide amongst the sheep as they are shepherded into our countries and more senseless blood will be shed. The tenacity of the ideologue grows with every victory. If a simple handful of terrorists can cripple a peaceful nation, imagine what an army can do.

Make ready your arms ladies and gents; Jihadi 2.0 is coming soon to a city near you. Will you be ready?

D.O.T. / Knife season 2015
« on: November 02, 2015, 02:11:37 PM »
I'm not sure if it's the squirrels or what, but the longer I sit passively in the woods with this bow, the more ideas I come up with for aggressive harvesting of deer. I have myself convinced I could sooner low crawl in to a bedding area and take one with my knife before I could get one of these guys to come in to my lane today!

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CIEMR / My Crapper Perspective, Our response to violence
« on: October 02, 2015, 04:08:31 AM »
(note, I wrote this in an endeavor to be neutral on RTKBA, for educational purposes and to spur some commentary from both sides about the, for lack of a better term wussification of our youth. I think we all *here* know where I stand.)

Crapper Perspective-

This evening on the radio, I heard a staunchly conservative, pro 2A, individual call for a certification process for gun owners in the United States of America. I then heard President Barack Obama; in an almost furious tone again call for stricter gun control measures. A friend of mine mentioned this is the 15th such address the president has made during his tenure in response to a spree killing. Our populace grows weary of violence with every breaking news headline, yet we lie in wait for our turn to be victimized and still don’t really do anything about it.

Here in Joplin, the majority felt it a luxury to equip their abodes with storm shelters until the storm of the century wiped out a third of the city and claimed over 160 souls. Now the city scape is littered with storm shelters and if you don’t own one, your neighbor probably does and you have access to it. When people re-build after fires, the first thing on their mind is a state of the art smoke detection system. If unfortunately we are burglarized, we make the call immediately to arm our home with the best alarm system we can afford. When we come down with an illness due to an unhealthy lifestyle, we relentlessly seek mitigation to return to good health.

Yet when it comes to violence, the weary people rely on hope or pray they will not be victimized. The law-makers on the right fight to preserve the right of the people to keep and bear the tools necessary to defend themselves, while the left leaning law-makers call for measures to keep the same tools out of the hands of people who intend to use them for violence. With good intentions (hopefully) they both seek to bring safety and security to us. For whatever reason, this is where it stops. Occasionally you hear the “never again” stories of the individual who made the decision personal security was their own burden to bear, but the vast majority, hopes or prays and waits for someone else to establish security on their behalf.

Where does this mentality come from? The mentality that self-reliance is imperative up to and until we are confronted with violence? When we are hungry, we eat... When we are un-quenched, we drink... When we are cold, we make a fire… But when we are met with a foe bearing an impeccable will to destroy us, we just hope or pray. You wouldn’t hope or pray not to be ejected from a car in an accident. You wear your seatbelt, drive defensively, and you pay attention to your surroundings! Yet still, when confronted with harm at the hands of another, again you hope or pray they will change their mind and spare you.

It is our culture to teach our children, starting at a very young age, that violence doesn’t solve problems. Truly, you can’t solve all problems with violence. What kind of society would we be if we tried? If a lady stands in the middle of the aisle at Wal-Mart, oblivious to your endeavor to get to the pickles, it would be socially un-acceptable to round-house kick her. Violence does however solve *some* problems. Specifically, problems of the violent category are solved with a proportionate amount of violence instituted swiftly in return.
 If we want to continually see the victimization of our people, then we should just maintain the status quo. If we wish to implement a strategy of defense against violence, it starts with the individual and developing them to realize there is more to self-reliance than basic sustenance. We must prepare a canvas within our youth which reflects hope and embraces prayer, but is not solely reliant upon it during a violent encounter. The tools of defense are debatable, but the gumption to defend one’s self is paramount.

D.O.T. / Lookin for a kill
« on: September 13, 2015, 08:00:54 AM »
Last day youth season

If the skeeters don't get us first!

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D.O.T. / Lies... All lies
« on: September 04, 2015, 11:45:01 PM »
My entire life is a lie! I can't count the number of boots I sent lookin for keys!

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Firearms / Higher Caliber Concepts Glock 17
« on: August 24, 2015, 04:15:48 PM »

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