Sunday, January 30, 2011

Range Report

I think Big Mike's email read, "Want to get some practice in on Saturday?" Me, being a man of few words as illustrated by my succinct reply to Mike's somewhat terse message affirmed what he already guessed: Yes. So it was off to The Bullet Stop to perforate a few targets in dim light and low temperatures. We could see our breath inside the range, which is 'heated' by a few economical electric heaters mounted at various points in the ceiling. Standing directly under a heater will cause the top of your head to overheat in a spot the size of a poker chip. If you tilt your head back, you can thaw out the end of your nose. In short, while I like the Bullet Stop the place is a fucking ice box and it's hard to hold your pistol steady while you're shivering from the cold.

.22 Handguns at 30 Feet
We started off with .22 pistols, as usual. Big Mike shot his Buckmark and I used my .22 Ruger Mark II Government model. I took the target on the left and put about 90 shots into it. On observing the used target, Big Mike commented that he hadn't fired as many shots as I had. I observe that fewer holes in the paper does not necessarily mean less brass on the floor.

.38, .380 and .45 at 30 Feet

We switched to larger calibers. Mike practiced with his .380 sock drawer gun, which is beginning to have an annoying tendency to hang up on the first two bullets. Mike was shooting the hard to find economically priced ammunition which does not have a brass casing, and he surmised that the case had a lot to do with the misfeeds. In this case, the slide wouldn't drop completely and had to be helped along with a slight push. This is not something I'd lose a lot of sleep over were it not for the fact that this is the pistol Mike will pick up should the bad guys invade in the middle of the night. My choice for this target was my Colt Trooper shooting .38 ammo. I didn't do badly.

.45 at 30 Feet
We switched to our .45 pistols and put up a fresh target. Mike shot his Kimber and I used Betsy. As usual, Betsy allowed me to put everything on the paper and look good doing it. The fliers are mine, made when I was shooting at slightly faster than one shot per second, which is about as fast as I can shoot and hit anything - including the water from the middle of the lake. Mike did better with his Kimber, and little wonder. The sights are easy to see and the trigger pull is about perfect.

All in all, this was a good shoot and I'm pleased with the results. We repaired to the Maumee Bay Brewing Company for beer and food, and here I will comment on the service at Maumee Bay Brewing.

There used to be a real good bartender at Maumee Bay who saw to our needs. Anthony never failed to deliver the first beer as quickly as possible and always, always got our first beer order before we were completely seated. You know, if you have a beer in front of you (particularly at a brewery) you don't mind waiting around a little for your food order. But even when it was busy, Anthony was prompt in getting our order and delivering the food from the kitchen. Naturally, Anthony is no longer at Maumee Bay.

The girl that waited on us was nice and polite, but she obviously had a few too many things on her mind and we failed to ascend to a prominent position on her list of priorities. Big Mike was a little irate and I could understand his point. When we wanted the waitress, she was no where to be found. Mike flagged a bus boy who immediately vanished in the wake of a promised to go and fetch our server, but as is typical of those who wander off alone in a Grade B horror movie, he was never seen again. He probably was drowned in a vat, or maybe a stack of kegs rolled over him. I didn't care; he looked kind of retarded anyway.

Undaunted, we tried again, this time flagging a short, somewhat stocky young man of agreeable demeanor who promptly fetched another beer and introduced himself as Ivan. Ivan picked up the noticeable slack left by our original serving wench, who finally appeared when we wanted the check. So new?

Big Mike and I looked at each other over the check. I advocated tipping the worthless serving wench a few dollars and Ivan a few dollars more. Mike agreed.

We'll likely return to the Maumee Bay Brewing Company, but when we go back we will ask for Ivan. I recommend you do the same.

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