Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Welcome even more readers. Gun bloggers are cool. And they've taught me much.

So anyway, back to my story...

When I last left you, I was headed to the store to buy my first gun.

I had never looked into it before, but a quick check on my iphone revealed a nice shop close by - West Coast Armory.

I headed down and was greeted by a small store chock full of weapons. Lots of pistols. Lots of what at the time I would have referred to as "assault weapons" on the wall.

The staff was a bit off-putting at first - I think more because I was in over my head than anything - but I managed to talk to him. I confessed I was bit out of my league and he pushed me towards a 9mm taurus something or other. It wasn't very big, but it was a double stack and felt thick and a bit unwieldy. I asked to see the Bersa Thunder .380 and it felt just right (with appologies to the thee bears). It fit my hand (I'm not a particularly big guy) quite well and seemed just to be the right thing for me. And the price was right.

So I plopped my card down and signed the papers. I was told it would take a week to get approval. Not a big deal for me really, I wasn't dying to have it. I figured that if it kept crazies from guns, that was OK. And I still mostly feel that way (although I get around it now by having a concealed permit).

I'll admit to having quite a big pit in my stomach. I can certainly see why noobs feel on the outside of something (be it guns or computers or anything) but this was a deadly weapon and I was quite apprehensive. I was doing it. I'd mulled it over for years, and something was telling me to take care of it. Inspiration if you believe in that.

I was out of town for the next week, so off I went...


  1. I am glad you went and got a gun that fits your hand. It is intimidating at going to a gun store and the wait staff often will not really be helpful to newbies. Since you feel unsure it is difficult. However you properly stood up to get a gun best suited to yourself. As a woman it is typical that men push women to get a big heavy gum. I heard about a woman getting her first gun a .357 revolver and that is probab;y a bad idea. Shooting should be confortable to the shooter and too big a gun will not encourage a new shooter to keep shooting and practice.

    Now that you got a gun please take a course and learn to use it well.

    Enjoy shooting and it can be fun. Join a range and encourage your family to do it also.

    Hopefully you never have to use in need.


  2. Are you suggesting that in states that have no waiting period for lawful gun purchases that crazies are buying guns? I'd like to see the stats on that. The waiting period is nothing more than a red tape roadblock. And you might feel differently if you had no gun but felt you needed one imminently to defend your life, such as in cases where a spouse threatens violence upon being served papers.

  3. BTW, nice blog... nice story. Although your description of your beliefs really make it sound like you are moderate, not a lefty. Nothing wrong with being either. I tend to be more to the right, but almost all the people I go shooting with are to the left. Bring 'em on, I say. If it gives a common understanding, I'm all for it.

  4. Fritz,

    Welcome to the blogging world, especially the gun blogging community.

    I know the feelings you describe, I was fortunate to inherit a couple of pistols before I bought my first one..but the process is still new to me. I purchased my first firearm back in March of this year.

    I have added you to my daily read, it will be interesting to follow your story. If you are ever hesitant of asking a question of some of the more experienced bloggers/gunnies( you shouldn't be but I understand why some people are), I hope that you'll think of another newbie like me.

  5. Fritz:

    Is there a local (Seattle or WA) waiting period?

    That was my first, noob experience with gun control. As a newly-minted professional (i.e., galley slave chained to a drafting board) I put a shotgun on lay-away at an Atlanta pawnshop. After spending most of a year paying for it $20, $25 or $50 at a time, I finally paid it off.

    When the paperwork was complete, the clerk handed me a receipt and said,

    I said "What!?".

    "You can pick that up in 14 days", he repeated.

    Clearly this was not his first conversation along these lines because, when I opened my mouth to rant, he sighed and told me, "DeKalb County does not have a waiting period for long guns. I can transfer this to our Candler Road location and you can pick it up tomorrow. Is that OK?"

    Mollified, I decided 24 hours was better than 14 days (or no gun).

    Waiting periods went away in my state (GA) when the General Assembly passed a pre-emption law. The Federal waiting period >shudder< went away when we got NICS (instant background check).

  6. I don't want to hammer you - my previous post notwithstanding - but... The "waiting period" thing accomplishes nothing but disarming the law-abiding.

    Personal/true story that kicked off MY trip to The Right: I was threatened by a known criminal. A real NUT who broke in houses while people were home - they're eating dinner, he's upstairs cleaning out the jewelry box. He told me he'd wake me up to say goodbye before he killed me.

    Being a law-abiding citizen, I went to purchase a gun for self-defense, only to be told the law required a 7-day wait but the police were taking 3-4 weeks to process the paperwork.


    I exited the store and was approached by a young man in the parking lot who offered to sell me any of several pistols from the trunk of his car.

    Facing the possibility of having to call the police to remove a psycho's body from my bedroom, I was concerned about the provenance of the weapon: I didn't want to be found with something that ballistics would show had been used in a crime or murder! So I asked "will you give me a receipt and ID?

    **F^(K NO, MAN!!** he said as he slammed the trunk and peeled off.

    If I were looking to run a "drive-by shooting" or murder someone and throw the gun in the river, I'd have no problem being armed in literally minutes.

    As a law-abiding citizen, I was forced to wait WEEKS.

    How do waiting-periods stop "crazies" again?


    Many states now - with NCIC - have no waiting period at all. Show me ONE case of a "crazy" LEGALLY buying a gun and running off to wreak havoc which would not have happened if he'd had to wait a week. JUST ONE.


    All laws do is disarm the law-abiding.


  7. You make good points DD. I think alot of these laws we now have make the non-gun owner feel good. Like something is being done. I suspect this might be one of them.

    Here in a America, we tend to get all excited over stuff, and then when someone proposes something (anything!) 8 out of ten slap their hands together and then move on to the next outrage.

    Outcome studies need to be done. We need to study the effects of our laws in a rigorous way and then feed that back into the system.