Thursday, January 18, 2018

The freeze is gone

Current state of the area: No water pressure due to busted pipes just about everywhere. Lots of people I know had their pipes freeze and bust, but not I, as I kept every faucet cracked while the freeze was ongoing. I'd planned to insulate the pipes after the last freeze, but one look under the house showed me what I'd be up against--every pipe runs the length of the house underneath and every one is fully exposed. Damn. This is going to be a project...but one worth doing, I suspect.

The city is under a "boil water advisory" now due to the low pressure, but fortunately I have a month's supply of water put up for me and the hounds so I've got plenty--enough for us and to spare a few gallons for friends in need. I'll replenish the stock this coming week. Good to rotate out some of the older gallons anyhow.

The cats are back outside, much to the dogs' contentment. Now they have something to bark out the windows at again. I've been getting Belle somewhat acclimated to them by having her come in and lay by the cat cage. She was usually ok, as were the cats (usually), but any time Murphy even came in the room they immediately hissed and snarled. They know his heart, it seems.

Speaking of which, I just figured out how I keep getting dog hair on me every time I sit on my couch.
He knows he's not allowed up there. Either he's not hearing me coming down the hall any more or else he just stopped caring.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018


So now it's 20 degrees. Last night we had sleet so every vehicle is coated in ice and none of the locals here can seem to figure out how to scrape that off since they have no ice scrapers or snow brushes. (HA! I do! And they are for rent semi-reasonably!)

There is a dusting of snow on most grassy areas. (They call it snow. I call it heavy frost.)

All highways and major bridges have been shut down, including every elevated span leading into/out of the city. Streetcar and bus service has been suspended today and every public building has been closed.

Meanwhile, now that I don't have to go to work today, I'm going to walk down to the bar and get me some coffee.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Back on line

Computer is fixed...and the dogs send their regards.

Actually they're a bit miffed, because it's so cold outside tonight that I've brought two of the outdoor cats in. The cats are currently residing in a cage in my office for safekeeping and the dogs, by necessity, are barred from the room because they won't stay away from the cage. The dogs aren't pleased, but the outdoor cats do such a fine job of keeping the rodent population down that I can't just leave them to freeze out there as the temps tonight will be dropping close to 20 degrees. So two of the tamer ones are inside now, and the third--the most anti-social--is still outside and I wish it well. But my last two attempts to pick it up have left me with claw marks so it's on it's own.

This is Mama Cat.
She's in now.

This is Tommy Cat, a first-timer to our hostel.

They'll be in until the weather goes back above freezing. And the dogs, Miss Belle in particular, can just kick rocks.

Sleeting utside now and below freezing, so the ice on the morning roads, especially the raised portions, should be epic.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

I am still alive...honest

I'm just not posting much now as my computer monitor,gave up the ghost and trying t post of an iPad just isn't that much fun. And the work computers have a security setting now that lets me read blogs (on most days) but not post comments. So I'm keeping up with everyone, I just can't say anything. 

But I'm out here. And I still have two misbehaving dogs. And the three of us are getting ready for Mardi Gras big time.

Oh--I've also apparently got pneumonia again but I'm getting treated for it earlier now so it should be gone by parade time.

Last year I caught 21 parades. This year I a aiming to beat that. And if you are planning to come down during the parades, get with me.

Wednesday, January 03, 2018


So I got my tax stamp today and went to pick up my new suppressor.

The can is a Gemtech HALO, and Aaron of the Shekel and I each bought one several months back. They were listed as used demo models, but when I first saw mine, I was shocked to find nary a sign of use on it...and for less than half the price of a new one.

Anyway, it fits nice on my 16" carbine that I built up post-Sandy Hook, when it really looked like the Dems had the numbers and the resolve to hose us on ARs. But they did not, and as a result, I ended up with two more ARs that I really didn't need. One is my Special Purpose Rifle (SPR) and the other is this handy carbine, now decked out for quietness.

The older HALO is still a bit on the heavy side, and it's noticeable but not impossible to deal with. But it makes the rifle "hearing safe' by lowering the decibel level to the point where hearing protection is not required. (Still a good idea in non-emergency shooting though, but this rifle exists for emergencies.)

The HALO can also be moved between other rifles with NATO flash hiders but for some reason it would not quite fit onto my SPR, which also has a standard AR-15 flash hider. Oh well...guess I got to get another can just for that rifle. (I was gonna do it anyway.)

Happy times.

NOTE: For Unhappy times, check out Aaron's post about how the same seller, Stephen Douglass at Paducah Tactical in Kentucky, screwed him out of a suppressor and his money. Fuck you, Stephen Douglass!

Monday, January 01, 2018

Happy New Years from New Orleans

T'was a good way to send off 2017 indeed.

Best wished for a good 20128 for all of you and yours.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

One more Springfield for 2017

So this just happened.

One more 1903 Springfield comes onto the armory.

Older one, too. Serial number puts it at 1907 manufacture.

Has a newer barrel though. Barrel dates to February, 1933.

No hatcher hole on the left side.

New barrel and old parkerized finish suggests a World War Two-era rebuild, not uncommon to 1903 rifles. It also unfortunately saw a scope mount courtesy of some bubba at some time, but it's been repaired pretty decently and it's not nearly as obvious as this photo makes it out to be.

The barrel rifling is strong and sharp, and I bought this one to be a shooter--a 1903 that I can take to the range and enjoy without worrying about putting more wear on it. So those repaired scope holes won't bother me a bit.

Walnut stock has the faint remains of an FJA (Frank J. Atwood) acceptance stamp and a Springfield Armory rebuild stamp.
Sanded and refinished obviously but still would have been a decent stock for a "shooter" 1903 except for the fact that it came cracked.
Yep. That goes all the way though at the wrist. Can't shoot this one.
I saw this as soon as I un-boxed it. I then rechecked the pics that the seller sent me and I couldn't discern any cracks in those pictures. I checked the box that the rifle came in, and while there were some creases in the box that could suggest rough handling, it wasn't really dispositive one way or the other.

I contacted the seller and we went back and forth a bit He swears it wasn't like that when he sent it and he struck me as a decent sort so I tend to believe him and lean towards blaming UPS. I suggested that he initiate a claim with UPS but in the end, the seller just refunded enough of the purchase price to make me feel ok about the stock. On the plus side, stay tuned for a future blog post on how to do vintage rifle stock repairs. I'll try it. And if all else fails, I think I've located an adequate replacement stock and it's on order already, as a spare if nothing else.

Monday, December 25, 2017

Christmas Bonfires

Last night I traveled up to St. James Parish to see the bonfires along the levee--a 200+ year old tradition that involves bonfires lit to show Papa Noel the way on Christmas Eve. The fires stretch for miles, with over 200 of them being lit at the same time. The little town of Lutcher, population about 3,700, gets roughly 86,000 visitors for a few hours on this night, so you can say it's big. Add in music and fireworks and small-town American patriotism on display, and it was a great night for all.

Merry Christmas

The Birth of Jesus Christ
Luke, Ch.2

In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And all went to be registered, each to his own town. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. 6 And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.

8 And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. 10 And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Long days, longer nights...

Sorry for the lack of posting. What with year-end work to be done, and my "extracurricular activities" after work, I've been pretty busy.

But extracurricular activities are seldom dull or unrewarding.

And Aaron, these young ladies remember you fondly and told me to tell you hi.

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Out and about with my guest.

Yesterday, it was the World War Two museum.

Charles Lindbergh did his best to keep us out of the war against Germany. But once we were in, he at least worked tirelessly to help us beat the Japanese.
And Joe Louis joined up when he didn't even have to. And he's buried in Arlington National Cemetery today.
And there were planes.
And guns.
And lots of other great stuff. We where in there for over five hours.

Then off to a bar with the best happy hour oyster deal I know--.50 oysters with drink purchases. Aaron had never had oysters before but he gamely tried one...and then proceeded to clean the place out as he declared them to be the best food ever.

Then it was an eternity in various T-shirt shops while Captain Indecisive agonized over which souvenir T-
shirts to buy his daughters.

It kind of went like this all week:

Aaron on Friday as I pick him up at the airport: "I have to get some souvenirs for my wife and kids..." (buys nothing all day.)

Aaron on Saturday: "I have to get some souvenirs for my wife and kids..." (buys nothing at any of the museums of shops we're in or near.)

Aaron on Sunday: "I have to get some souvenirs for my wife and kids..." (buys nothing all day.)

Aaron on Monday several times: "I have to get some souvenirs for my wife and kids..." (buys nothing at any of the museums or shops.)

Aaron Monday night: "Take me to a T-shirt shop! I need souvenirs!" (Then spends an eternity looking over the crappiest crap while disregarding my heartfelt efforts to assist him select quality stuff for his wife and daughters.

--Jar of stripper glitter? Nope.
--Shirt with a picture of a unicorn giving the middle finger? Nope.
--Bettie Page wrist bracelet? Nope.

Some people are just impossible to shop with.

Finally he gets some stuff and then it's off for one last night out. "But it's OK," he assured his wife during one of his required hourly check-in calls...we're just going to play bingo. And we did.

With strippers.
And he won.