Son Of A Gun

Or in this case, a grandson.  In an attempt to dilute and disperse my fanatical, homicidal, antisocial obsession with possessing dangerous weapons, he has already given me a

Sacrificial Stone Dagger
We’ll call it a Scottish letter opener.

And a



Gorgeous rapier
We’ll call it shiny, sharp and pointy.

The United States has recently endured several domestic terrorism attacks, where assault-type weapons have been used to murder numbers of people.  In an attempt to look like they’re doing something – anything – more of the wrong thing, and solving someone else’s problem, the Canadian Federal Government has passed legislation that further tightens gun-control laws that are already some of the most restrictive in the world.  At least temporarily, the purchase, sale, or transfer of legally-owned handguns has been suspended.

Unlike Hercules, the grandson cannot cut the Gordian Knot of bureaucracy, and present me with a Government-authorized pistol.  Ingenious little devil he, he has found a way to tap-dance past the restrictions.  It is legally permitted to hire the services of a licensed gun-shop/shooting range owner, who will provide supervision and safety instruction, and temporarily lend and allow me to fire, five of my favorite handguns.

A sixth, my more favorite, the Berretta Model 92, is not included in the offering.  I plan to (reluctantly) ask if it is possible to substitute it for one on their menu.  Being Canadian, I have only fired two hand-guns in my life – a Police .38 Special, and a .32 caliber Spanish officer’s semi-automatic, a darling little thing with shiny stainless steel, and mother-of-pearl handles, suitable as a lady’s purse gun, or in the don’t ask – don’t tell brigade.

I received this I Am Impossible To Shop For package as a Fathers’ Day present.  The grandson and I, and the range owner, will negotiate a mutually acceptable Saturday, probably near my birthday in late September.  This is the most useless, but at the same time, the most treasured bucket list present that I have ever received.

I’m sure that some, make us feel safe at any cost, even if we’re not, Chicken Littles will want to know why I want to fire these dangerous guns.  As Willy Sutton said, when they asked him why he robbed banks – that’s where the money is.  Or George Mallory (not Edmund Hillary), when asked why he climbed Mount Everest – because it’s there!  I feel no need to justify this adventure but, that’s where the enjoyment is, and, because I can.

I will employ my hundreds of hours of gun safety training to ensure that I don’t shoot myself or anyone else.  With my worsening essential tremor, I won’t reveal target scores.  It will be enough just to keep flying lead between the range walls.  I will report later on this guys’ escapade.  You’ll know me by my goofy smile.

Great Comedy – No Lie

The school called today to tell me that my son has been telling lies.
I told them to congratulate him on how well he tells them.  I don’t have a son.

***

Dear Lord, all I want is a chance to prove that winning the lottery won’t make me a bad person.

***

“While walking along the edge of a pond just outside my house in Florida, discussing a property settlement with my soon-to-be ex-wife, and other divorce issues, we were surprised by a huge 12-ft alligator which suddenly emerged from the murky water.    It began charging us with its large jaws wide open.   She must have been protecting her nest because she was extremely aggressive.

“If I had not had my little Ruger .22 caliber pistol with me, I would not be here today.  Just one shot to my estranged wife’s knee cap was all it took.  The alligator got her easily, and I was able to escape by just walking away at a brisk pace.  The amount I saved in lawyer’s fees was truly incredible and her life insurance was also a big bonus.”

***

The new vicar at a city centre church was delighted when he received a large anonymous cash gift. When he told the church council about it, he proposed it should be used to buy a new chandelier for the body of the church.

However, it was put to a vote and the vicar was disappointed when his proposal was narrowly defeated. The vicar noted that the church council secretary had voted against the proposal and when the meeting was over, he asked the secretary why he had not supported it.

The secretary said he had three reasons: “First, I have to write the minutes of the meeting and I can’t spell the word; second, there is sure to be an argument over who should play it; and finally, if we are going to spend money in the Church what we really need is some good lighting.”

***

The cashier at Wal-Mart said, “Strip down in front of me.” so I did as she told me.
When the hysteria died down, I found that she was instructing me on how to use the credit card reader.

***

My High School was so poor, that they taught sex education and driver’s-ed in the same car.

***

I tried to donate blood today.  Never again!  Too damned many questions!
Whose blood is it?  Where did you get it?  Why is it in a bucket??

***

A police officer pulled over a driver and informed him that, because he was wearing a seatbelt, he had won $1000 in a safety contest.  “What are you going to do with the prize money?” the officer asked.  The man responded, “Well, I guess I’ll go to driving school and get my driver’s licence.”  At that point, the man’s wife chimed in, “Officer, don’t listen to him.  He’s a smart-ass when he’s drunk.”

This woke up the guy in the back seat who, when he saw the cop, blurted, “I told you we wouldn’t get very far in this stolen car.”  Just then there was a knocking from the trunk, and a voice asked, “Are we across the border yet?”

WOW #25

Embarrassment

“Twenty words that will show your age.” – That’s the title of one of Dictionary.com’s articles.  Another is, “Only kids from the 90s know these words.”  I was already feeling old, when I ran into….

BAGATELLE

Definitions for bagatelle

something of little value or importance; a trifle. a game played on a board having holes at one end into which balls are to be struck with a cue. pinball.

Origin of bagatelle Bagatelle came to English from French, from Upper Italian bagat(t)ella, equivalent to bagatt(a) “small possession.” It entered English in the 1630s.

And the bagatelle begat Pong. And Pong begat the video arcade. And the video arcade begat the game console, and people began to ignore each other, even sitting side by side. And the game console passed its mighty power unto the smart phone and the tablet. Mesmerised by the pretty blue screens, people began wandering around, bumping into each other, street signs, and mall fountains.

….I’ve got no finish for this post, just the usual random rant about the speed and scope of social and technological change – seemingly within a fruit-fly’s life-span – from mechanical to electric to electronic to digital, and soon, to quantum, from 6-volt cars to 12-volt, from 120-volt home appliances to 12-volt-transformer units, from incandescent lights, to fluorescent, to LEDs.

I’ve played a variety of pinball machines as a teen. Even younger, my parents gave me a Christmas present of a bagatelle. It was an undersized spring-loaded plastic replica of a 1911A Colt .45 caliber pistol, which fired pea-sized ball-bearings at targets enclosed by plastic dome, 18 inches away. It may have been the cause of my life-long love of the ‘look’ of the venerable, American-designed and made pistol. It was an inexpensive bagatelle game then, but if I’d kept it in good condition, I could have sold it to a collector for enough to finance my retirement now.

In my little hometown in the late 1940s and ‘50s, there were a few intellectuals who actually used the word ‘bagatelle.’ The phrase, “It’s a mere bagatelle.” might have been a requote of actor/comic W. C. Fields. Of course, the illiterate pond-scum that I was forced to hang around with said, “A mere bag o’ shells.” The informational value is almost the same – an inconsequential thing of little value.

Your visits and comments are not a mere bagatelle. What have you got to say about this dated old word?