Monday, May 22, 2017

Spirits and Sparks

Went to a thing called Spirits and Sparks featuring fire drums, fire music, a really nice French food truck, a DJ, and about 15-20 craft distillers making everything from traditional moonshine to some pretty good whiskys, rums, gin, vodka, and other stuff.



These pics were taken early, before the official opening. Once it got going the place was pretty full.
The Denver Mad Scientists Club provided a bit of the entertainment at our table

providing instant solutions to whatever problems you might have. We added a disclaimer at some point denying all responsibility for injuries, dismemberment, jailing, or whatever else might accompany implementation of our suggestions, but generally we provided some good solutions to everyday problems. That barrel on the table is a smoke ring generator that can toss a 12 in smoke ring all the way across the room. Smoke was provided by a generator on the right side, barely visible.

How's your Latin? Translate the motto on the sign and win 10 extra points. Click pix to enlarge.

All in all a fun event. I had no idea there were that many craft distillers along the front range. I had some coffee liqueur from  Black Canyon Distillery that was better than Baileys.


Politics As Usual - Stringing The Beads

So here's a political party that;
1.  In court, argues that the central committee DNC has the mandate to select the party's candidates no matter whom the constituents prefer.
2. Seems to have solved their leakage problem by assassinating the leaker.
3. Invites terrorist groups to strategy meetings to deny conservatives their 1st amendment rights.
4. Will probably pretend to be surprised when more and more conservatives complain of receiving death threats. Taking a cue from the Muslims who assure us that they want nothing but peace but can't be held responsible for the actions of a few extremists.

Makes you want to run right out and register as a Democrat if only to avoid the attention of the Brownshirts later. Convert or be vandalized you know.

Friday, May 19, 2017

High Risk Jobs

Not the job as such but the people you wind up hanging with in the process of doing it. There's a list out there of people who died under questionable circumstances while working near the Clintons for example. Some of the deaths are sketchier than others I'll be the first to note, but it totals in the 40's at last count. Here's 4 more:
Sorry for the fuzzy quality, but that's what I got. There's more here at Theo Spark.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Weekend Entertainment

As part of the Maker Faire this weekend, there's the part where the makers doing demos are craft distillers and brewers. There's also this:




Springtime In The Rockies

Remember that 1.75 inches of rain we were supposed to get starting last night and changing to snow around midnight tonight?
Here's the breakfast view this morning after I had knocked the snow off most of the plants. As of right now, it's still snowing. Should stop tomorrow sometime. Yes, I know it won't help, but it would be therapeutic to kill a warmerist right about now.

Committee

[kuh-mit-ee] n. A life form with 6 or more legs and no brain. See SMBC. And don't forget to click on the big red button at the bottom.

Why am I reminded of the current state of government in Washington?

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

QOTD - Mathematics Is Oppressive

Having made most of my living by knowing simple math, I never thought it was all that oppressive or difficult, but then this is a journalist talking. She cites a new paper covering "intersectional mathematics". The lines quoted in the article read:
Mathematical ethics recognizes that, for centuries, mathematics has been used as a dehumanizing tool. Does one’s IQ fall on the lower half of the bell curve? Mathematics tells us that individual is intellectually lacking.

And here I thought that psychologists defined what constituted "intellectually lacking" and the math was only to figure out the degree to which you were afflicted.

The thing about mathematics is that it can be used by almost anybody to add a sometimes much needed patina of legitimacy to an otherwise completely hare-brained theory of anything from global warming/cooling to even suggesting an economic validity to a government budget request. As long as half of ones constituents fall on the wrong side of that bell curve, adding a few formulae to an otherwise dull Power Point presentation will fool 50% of the voters into thinking you're on to something. Include a bribe for one or two people who can see what you're doing and voila! you get your grant.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Springtime In The Rockies

That would be the day in mid May when you have to hurry to get the lawn mowed before the arrival of the snowstorm. Never put the snow blower away before June 1.
3-5 inches! Plus a tiny blip below freezing. It's a wonder anything grows at all around here. Looks like a good year for tree services removing broken limbs though. Most likely none of this will stick to the pavement and it'll all be gone in 24 hours.

On the medical front I got out of the cast today. My wrist is very stiff, atrophied, and about as sore as when I broke it. I get a removable brace for 3 weeks then some physical therapy. The doc says no pistol shooting for the 3 weeks so I guess I'll be learning the finer points of PCC a while longer.

IDPA Stage Design - PCC

And here I thought incorporating a PCC into an IDPA stage might be overstretching credibility, see below reference to Larry Correia. Here we are in Houston where a homeowner is attacked by a carload of miscreants and just happens to have a long gun handy.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

IDPA Stage Design

We had a stage at todays match the like of which I haven't seen in some time as it is shot completely from a prone position. The story is that you went out partying and awaken lying in a gutter to find yourself being used for target practice by the Gutter Gang whom you have to out shoot from your position horizontal in the gutter.

There are no negative outcomes for this scene. Either you kill all of them and the gunfire stops, or they kill you and the gunfire stops. Anyway the stage brought to mind a song variously ascribed to the WCTU or some pack of happy drunks:

THE PIG AND THE INEBRIATE
from SONGFEST by Best and Best


It was early last December, as near as I remember
I was walking down the street in tipsy pride
No one I was disturbing, as I lay down by the curbing
And a pig came up and lay down by my side


As I lay there in the gutter, thinking thoughts I cannot utter
A lady passing by was heard to say,
"You can tell a man who boozes by the company he chooses,"
And the pig got up and slowly walked away.

I know the tune, but I have no idea where else it may have been used so you'll have to come up with your own. It's a slow paced song of the sort that gives you plenty of time to remember the next word in each line.

UPDATE: Thanks to Dave, here's a link to the tune.

IDPA - Pistol Caliber Carbine

Picking up some hints and tips as I go along here.

First is that shooting an IDPA match at the relatively short distances they use, you are probably best served with Iron sights. This allows you to get on target rapidly and with a low sight line elevation, will hit where you're aiming. Second best is a red dot although these are generally higher up above the barrel. You need to either adjust it to hit the dot at 10-15 yards or set it for 25-35 and remember that at close range you need to aim high, that is put the dot at the top of the head to get a center of head hit. Third, a scope is a waste of time. Your field of view is too small to get from one target to the next without getting lost. It also will trnd to hit low if you zero it to any reasonable range.

Shooting around barricades while maintaining cover requires switching from a right hand hold to a left hand hold quickly and smoothly. For me the switch involves first moving the stock from right to left shoulder, then moving the right hand to the fore grip, then moving the left hand to the trigger. Don't forget to switch eyes too. Going back is the reverse. YMMV but whatever you use, you need to practice it until it's automatic.

Having one hand in a cast is not a common disability, but... incorporating the slide hold/release lever from their pistols to their carbines couldn't have been that difficult a job for the folks at Hi Point now could it?

Friday, May 12, 2017

IDPA - New Rules

According to the IDPA rules, stages must have some sort of cover story to go with them. This is a good idea as it lends motivation to the job of shooting all that cardboard while moving, ducking, hiding, reloading, etc, etc. Some of the stories come across as a bit forced, but then we can't all be Larry Correia. Still with the introduction of the PCC class, some of the stories become more than slightly weird. Of course a story that's built around a concealed carry gun may have some problems translating over to a rifle: "You are walking your dog through a sketchy neighborhood, when you round a corner and see a mugging taking place..." or "You are picking up some soda pop at the Stop-N-Rob, near the back of the store when a band of hoodlums bursts in to rob the place and takes some hostages..."

Add a carbine and things just don't sound the same. "You are mowing your lawn with your rifle slung over your back when a carload of zombies turns the corner and heads up your street..." Actually that sounds like something Mr. Correia might use to start a chapter.

The genuine use in this case goes:"You are at your local IDPA match, but have fractured your wrist earlier and are essentially unable to use your pistol with a cast on your left arm. Not wanting to shoot the entire match strong hand only, including the weak hand sections, you bring your carbine and proceed to deal with the zombies/miscreants/terrorists. The "dance steps" required to do this with a rifle are new to me so I'll be learning/inventing them as I go along.

The stupid cast comes off Tuesday, then I get to try to restore the strength that 7 weeks of inactivity have wrought.
My daughter liked the color and added the comment.

Breakfast

Try a Scottish omelette. Haggis, hash browns, egg, and jack cheese. Delicious.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Exercise

That which doesn't kill me... yeah, yeah. The approach matters. Last weekend was supposed to be 2 bike rides, one of 22 miles and one of 7 which all together would visit 4 craft breweries. This is like finding those health boost boxes in a Doom game. 29 total miles, 4 beers and half an hour rest at each stop.

Didn't happen. Instead we got 8 inches of snow which makes for dicey bicycling, even with snow tires.

This weekend I tried a makeup ride. By way of prep I had Mexican breakfast of 2 eggs, Chorizo, potatoes, and green chili topping. Your heart starts slowing down just reading the menu at El Tejado. 5 cups of coffee counteracts this. Leaving my house, 16 miles up to Great Divide Barrel Bar, 2 beers, and back. Worked out pretty good. I only needed 45 minutes of unconsciousness when I got home to resume normal functions.

Great Divide had only just opened when I got there so no crowds. The Roadie Grapefruit Radler really hit the spot, thirst quenching, refreshing, vitamin C and 4% ABV which is about all I want. The Velvet Yeti Nitro Stout is a nice main course as well at 6% ABV and very smooth.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Anticapitalism - Drinking

Colorado by any standard seems to fall in the middle of any sorting method. Average everything and our liquor laws are no exception. We retain about half of the prohibition regulations left over from the 20's and the purveyors of drink seem to control which ones.

A bill was recently introduced to allow our 140+ craft breweries and 50 or so craft distilleries to open 2 additional tap rooms each at locations remote from the originating facility. This has been shot down mostly through pressure from restaurants and bars who note that the tap rooms, which would feature only in-house products, wouldn't have to jump through as many hoops as the full-service places. Tap rooms for example don't have to serve food. Most of them have a food truck that visits the place and pizza and other delivery services advertise in them.

The Official Reason for killing this is that the expected 380(+/-) new businesses would require the services of 3 additional state employees at an aggregate cost of some $160K/yr. Like these places wouldn't generate $420/ea/yr in taxes.

When the right to conduct business is controlled by politicians, the first thing bought and sold is the politicians.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Glock Bulge Buster 2

I ran 200 cases using the rig shown 2 posts below and had 6 cases refuse to go through the die. Thinking about that it would seem that pushing the cases through this kind of resizing open end up might tend to force the bulge down without pushing it in plus balancing the cases on the pusher makes for a difficult time trying to hit the die mouth so I tried something different.
Note that the new pusher is nothing but a .38 super brass fitted normally into the shell holder. The open end of the shell is tapered from being pushed into the .40 shells placed over it.

The shells feed into the die much more easily and the bulge is forced the opposite direction from before eliminating the possibility of developing a wrinkle. Finished shells pop out the top of the die as before.

Like I said, I don't shoot 9mm from a Glock so I have no brass problems with this BUT it seems like doing this to your 9mm brass before doing the usual size-and-decap would probably reduce any Glock bulge to manageable proportions.

Monday, May 1, 2017

QOTD - Trump Derangement Syndrome

Found on Insty:

“You know, I’m honestly starting to think that Trump has actually driven a lot of people to madness.” Well, to be fair, most of them were close enough to walk.
                                                                  Second sentence from Glenn Reynolds
 Reminiscent of the classic reference to the $.50 cab ride.

May Day

Here we are again at that iconic holiday celebrated the world over for different reasons, some better than others. The older and more light-hearted version goes

Hurrah Hurray
The first of May
Outdoor f*****g
starts today.

Your climate may vary. This year around here while most of the 7-12" of snow we got 2 days ago has melted, the water saturating the ground is only a couple of degrees warmer than the remaining snow.

In the last 100 years or so May 1 has become an excuse to skip work and carry red banners denouncing the dehumanizing effects of working. By contrast, remember the successes of the capitalists, who recognize the humanizing effects of eating regularly and sleeping indoors, at the Battle of Berkley and the 2017 D.C. inauguration. Try this in consideration :
  
Hurrah Hurray
The first of May
Bash a Commies
head today.

Some of the participants in the inauguration are complaining that after dutifully following the lead of some shadowy Fearless Leader had gone out to beat people and break things, are finding themselves on the wrong end of federal anti-rioting charges, looking at 1-3 years in the Federal joint, and seem to  have been hung out to dry with no one in a position to order the justice department to stand down to help them.
“Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.”
H.L. Mencken, Prejudices: First Series
 Nice sentiment in the right context. Seems however that Mencken was unaware that a major religion had already incorporated this into their fundamental doctrine.