Implements of too much fun

And these guys *are* having fun (and yes, I’ve posted this photoooo before, probably a few times…). That’s Grandroobly on the right. Long before he became Grandroobly or even Dad. His life-long buddy Jim is on the left. They were red-blooded American boys who loved tramping around in the woods and shooting guns. Among other things. Canoeing, skiing, driving, flying, to name a few.

I’m sure that there were guns somewhere in the house I grew up in but I do not know where they were stored and I can count on one hand the number of times my dad actually got one out. He was not a hunter and we were definitely not the stereotypical “redneck” family. No pickup trucks with gun racks in our driveway. My dad was busy with his banking career and he was a very intelligent man who managed to store his firearms in places his kids couldn’t find them.

Not that I ever looked for them. I am really not interested in guns. Actually, they kind of scare me. Except. Back in the mid 1990s, we had a serial killer running loose in our loverly Planet Ann Arbor neighborhood. This nefarious character’s modus operandi was to bludgeon women from behind and run. Usually but not always in one of our many woods. Some lived, some didn’t. Hey, it’s a safe neighborhood until it isn’t. I walk alone. (da-dum da-dum. I prefer to be by myself.) Despite this killer, I still walked alone (I am ACUTELY aware of my surroundings when I walk). I was walking by the Deep Dark Scary Woods one day when a neighbor asked me if I was scared. Well. I was. But I was more ANGRY than scared. I mean, fer kee-reist! I went on to say to her that I thought that every woman on The Planet Ann Arbor should learn to use a gun and take a shift standing outside whatever woods was near their house. Yes, I know that there are MANY problems with that but this wonderful, liberal, peace-loving friend of mine looked a bit startled. Like, yeah. Let’s take back our streets!

I never have learned how to shoot a gun, despite the fact that I know more than a few people who could teach me. So. Yet another shooting spree has happened. In Tucson. Where I have cousins! What do we do? Do we outlaw guns? I dunno. I don’t think so. But I think it is a trick to try to keep firearms out of the hands of nutcases. Which is what the Tucson shooter is. Heck, I took community college classes for a while too, and there were a couple of nutcases in my classes too but that would be a whole ‘nother blahg entry. Anyway. My college summer/holiday job was at the Tempo store up in Sault Ste. Siberia. It’s been defunct forever but think KMart. I worked the cash registers and I also worked back in the “office” (think customer service plus accounting/bookkeeping). One day, I was hanging out doing my job in the office and a man walked up to one of the “windows” and laid a rifle across the counter. He wasn’t aiming it at anyone but it was pointing at me! Well. After a moment of panic, somebody in the office asked how we could help him. Well. He told us that when he had bought the rifle, he had answered one of the questions wrong on the application. It was something like, “Have you ever been in a mental institution?” He had brought the gun back to ‘fess up that he had lied on the application. In the end, we sold the gun to his mother… I don’t really think that particular person was a threat but who knows?

A few minutes ago I had some sort of conclusion to all of this worked out and then the GG distracted me and now I’ve lost it. It was the nine-year-old victim and the neighbor who brought her to the event that we were talking about. I have daughters and I remember vividly when they were around nine years old. I’m not sure I could’ve gone on without one of them, not to diminish the tragedy of the other victims. I don’t think we can or should outlaw guns (automatic-type guns, I am not so sure about). But somehow, we have to do a better job of identifying those folks who are a genuine threat. I am pessimistic about this. I think there will always be “crazies” out there.

5 Responses to “Implements of too much fun”

  1. TMOTU Says:

    The picture was taken on Labor Day, 1940 by Pete Sherman. Jack and friends walked from town with their guns – target shooting on the clay-banks of Mosquito Bay.

    Kayak woman was surrounded by guns – she was (is) not interested enough to know they were (are) there or care.

    Cannons don’t sink ships. Pirates with cannons sink ships!

  2. Aimee Nassoiy Says:

    OK, so here is the real tragedy. . . The young man who killed and injured, way too many people, was mentally impaired. How sad that he did not receive treatment when the college personal noticed that he needed help. In our current environment of budget cuts and fear of “socialized medicine” he still would not get the help he needs. It costs all of us plenty when we don’t deal with mental health problems within our society. And no matter how well we function in this moment, we all could be in those shoes. Makes me stop and think. How about you?
    If we can’t afford to treat mental health issues we must restrict access to weapons that kill so easily.

  3. Margaret Says:

    This kind of tragedy will keep happening over and over again in this country; we live in a gun culture where too many people who have power will never allow them to be restricted or controlled in any meaningful way.

  4. Marquis Says:

    31 round Glocks kill people, that is what they were designed for.

  5. Jay Says:

    As for the Fin Family guns, KW may not have known where they were, but the Engineer did. On at least one occassion up in his room he showed them to me.