I was asked recently if I'd recount a tale about a date I'd gone on with a seriously anti-gun girl. And it's true. I went out with one once. But to be fair, I didn't know that she had this mental illness at the time I asked her.
Now this wasn't recently--I know better now--it was back in my law school days. And this gal was one that I'd met at school and she was pretty hot so I was willing to overlook her basically liberal outlook on things. Now at the time, I did not know that she was a hoplophobe (gun hater) but she was liberal so it was pretty much assumed that she wouldn't have been impressed by my uber-cool Springfield Armory 1911. Hey--it was law school--98% of the women in law school are to the left of Marx on most issues so you've got to learn to accept this if you ever want some female company. And on this date, I was doing very well at managing to steer our conversations away from all things political and as a result, the date was going quite well. It was going so well in fact that we wound up back at my apartment after dinner and I had little doubt as to how this evening was going to end as she was sitting on my sofa playing with Oliver, my first German Shepherd.
As she looked around my stylin' bachelor pad, something--I forget what--caused her to frown and ask, "You're not a hunter, are you?" And she asked it in such a way that I knew what the answer had to be if we were ever going to get to where I was planning this night to go. So of course I immediately denied it and told her that I was a big-time animal lover, which was all technically true. I do like animals and I have not been hunting in a long, long time. I of course did not tell her that I was a competitive shooter with rifle, pistol and shotgun or that I was at that time a lobbyist and legislative drafter working on behalf of the gun industry. I knew instinctively that such news would not go over well, and this was confirmed when she smiled and told me that she was relieved because she was very much against hunting and gun ownership. She went on to tell me that she was actually one of the leaders of a campus anti-gun movement that was tied in quite closely with what what then known as Handgun Control, Incorporated--Sarah Brady's group. She told me that she didn't believe in guns or think that anyone should own one.
I was smiling pleasantly on the outside, but on the inside, my mind was laughing hysterically at it imagined the conversation that we were likely to have before she left in the morning.
Now let my cut into this tale briefly to describe my apartment at that time. I was living in a fairly upscale complex in a rather liberal college town and I had a two-bedroom apartment. I also had roughly seventy or eighty guns and a large quantity of ammunition and accessories for them. Because I knew that the management here also frowned on guns in the apartments, especially in that quantity, I had turned the second bedroom, the one at the far end of the hallway, into my gun room. In that room, all of my guns resided on display racks and all of my gun books, shooting awards and pictures, and other things associated with my shooting lifestyle adorned the walls or occupied space on shelves devoted to displaying them. It was quite the "man room" to say the least. But that room was closed off from the rest of the apartment by a door, and when that door was closed, as it was at this time, there was no indication at all that a gun owner lived there.
So after I managed to get the conversation back away from those evil guns that clearly haunted her so badly, things were progressing quite well again. A couple of bottles of wine had been consumed and we were starting to get quite comfortable and cozy. Yeah, she was clearly nuts, but she was also smoking hot and we both knew by this time that she had no intention of going home before morning. Confidence was high as she excused herself to use the bathroom down the hall.
But then Oliver had to get into the act.
You see, Oliver was one of those driven dogs who was positively obsessive about playing fetch. Once you touched his ball as she had done when she first came in, you would have to throw it for him over and over and over again. He never tired of it, so while he'd been outside on my deck as we got to know each other, I'd taken his ball and tossed it into the gun room so that he'd quit pestering her to throw it for him when I finally let him back in. And as she was in the bathroom, I let him in, with the expectation that he would go lay in his spot by the door while she and I took our party down the hall to the other bedroom. However, Oliver went down the hall and met her just as she walked out of the bathroom.
"Hi, Sweetie," she said to him. "Where's your ball?"
Hearing this--and knowing where his ball was--Oliver walked over to the gun room door and jumped up against it, knocking it open. The door swung aside to reveal an arsenal that would have made many police departments and a few small nation-states jealous. All I head was a shocked voice exclaim "OH...MY...GOD!!!" and suddenly she was storming back down the hall. Without another word, she grabbed her jacket and went straight for the door. I tried to stop her, but she wasn't having anything that I had to say. She wouldn't even let me drive her back to her car--she told me that she'd call for a ride. Then she was out the door and gone, leaving me alone with Oliver, his ball, and all my guns.
Ah well...it would never have worked out. I knew that. But I'd still have preferred it if this scene had played itself out after breakfast. Thanks, dog. Thanks for nothing.