Saturday, December 24, 2011

NORAD, bless their hearts ...

... Are continuing their fifty-plus-year tradition of tracking Santa Claus, and setting records this year.


I would like to state for the record that while I would not mind in the least my tax money going to this effort, generous donors are funding the whole thing, while volunteers man the phones.

Colonel Harry Shoup would be proud.

Merry Christmas, everyone.


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Confession for the day

I was in my late teens when I finally discovered that the song was not, "Got to rescue Mary, gentlemen, let nothing you delay."

These days, I think I prefer my teenage version.


In that spirit, here is Ronnie James Dio, doing what he did best:


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Dragon Leatherworks

Herself has written a review of a Dragon Leatherworks Flatjack holster, and I thought I'd add my tuppence worth.

The first thing I noticed when we opened the package was that compared to my other leather holsters, this one felt more substantial for about the same weight.

While it is a very pretty holster, it is a very solid one also -- a detail which is fairly important to me -- with the leather at the belt slots being more rigid than an equivalent holster from Galco.
When mounted on a belt, this Dragon Leatherworks holster does not move around -- at all. Where you place it when you put it on, is where you're going to find it when you take it off.

To be perfectly honest this may be more due to the fact that my Galco has seen several years of use, while the Dragon Leatherworks is still new. Time will tell.

The rigidity of the leather also ensures that one-handed, no-eyes re-holstering is a breeze. This is a detail that I regard as mandatory for a holster, but other people may not. YMMV.

One of the first places I check on a new holster is the top inner edge -- the bit that is most liable to come into long-term contact with my tender pink hide. On a lot of El Cheapo holsters this edge can be rough, or even sharp, causing unnecessary wear on shirts or even scratches or abrasions on said afore-mentioned tender pink hide.

That edge on this holster is nice, smooth roll.

The Gun That Killed Santa Claus
is a stainless-steel Ruger SP101 .357 magnum with the 3-1/16" barrel. The current Ruger web-page lists the weight as being a full-on 27 ounces. It is one solid tank of a snubbie.

Herself's normal carry pistol is a S&W 642 Airweight .38Special in a Galco holster.

It is telling as to the worth and quality of Dennis Badurina's work that Herself found that carrying the Ruger (at almost twice the weight and double the barrel length of the S&W) was much more comfortable for her than carrying the S&W 642 in her usual Galco holster.

And that last paragraph right there says it all.

We here at The LawDog Files give Dragon Leatherworks the LawDog Paw of Approval.


Monday, December 12, 2011

Daddy's little murder machine

One of the best ratting dogs I've ever had was a chihuahua/toy poodle mix named Sally. That little dog treated small vermin like an adorable, furry little tornado treats a single-wide trailer.

And, of course, I've written at least once about Buster on these pages, so you'd think that the hunting ability of chihuahuas and chihuahua mixes wouldn't be anything of a surprise.

Chuy is a dachshund/chihuahua cross -- a "chiweenie" -- and -- as such, is not a real big dog. Solid, yes, but not much more than a lap-full.

He and Praline get the same amount of food every morning, the same amount of food that they've gotten every morning since they achieved their full growth, but while Praline's weight stays the same, Chuy had been getting ... bigger.

When he broke twenty pounds, we were starting to get a bit worried that maybe there were some health issues. Thyroid, maybe.

As a co-inky-dink, about the same time, I noticed piles of feathers in the back-yard. Several pigeons, a mocker or two, and several blue jays, amongst others not readily identifiable. At least one pile every other day, sometimes several in a day.

I know what you're thinking, but Praline isn't all that interested in birds -- not when there are skwirlz that need attending to -- so I figured that since the town busy-bodies had managed to get the entire place declared a Bird Sanctuary (Absolutely No Killing Of Birds! Ever! Even if they crap EVERYWHERE! Verboten!) some enterprising hawk, owl or other predatory avian had staked the neighborhood as it's personal hunting ground.


I had let the pups out to do the needful, and since I had just brewed a fresh cuppa, I was watching them through the kitchen window, not thinking of much.

Praline was up in the pecan tree daring the skwirlz to come down and fight -- as is her wont -- but Chuy was laying on the deck that surrounds the pecan tree, chin on his paws, and looking so totally knackered that I was actually a bit worried that he was sick.

And then ...

... I noticed that a blue jay had landed in the yard, and was bouncing here and there, looking for goodies.

Chuy came off the deck like he had an ejection seat under his furry little butt, impacted the bird square amidships and the two of them cartwheeled across the lawn in a tangle of ginger fur, blue feathers, and cursing.

This was apparently such a common occurrence that Praline looked down from her tree, cocked an ear at the full-on brawl not ten feet away, and promptly went right back to opining at the top of her lungs vis à vis the ancestry, personal habits and sexual proclivities of the local tree rats.

The donnybrook ended with Chuy spinning in a backwards circle, shaking his head so fast that the -- probably extremely dead -- bird was nothing more than a blur amid a cloud of feathers, then he trotted off to his man-cave under the Morgan building with his ears and tail at jaunty angles, and the now-mostly-plucked bird hanging limp from his jaws.


I'm torn. Half of me hopes that the local busy-bodies don't find out that he's supplementing his diet with their precious poo factories birdies, and half of me really, really wants to send them a note of thanks and appreciation signed with a bloody paw-print.


Saturday, December 03, 2011

Kith and kin

The word "kin" is still used and is commonly recognized to mean those people descended from a common ancestor and belonging to a clan or family.

"Kith", though, is less common -- indeed to my knowledge in these modern days is only used as part of the phrase "Kith and kin".

It comes from the Old English word "cunnan" which meant "to know", and means -- formally -- those people whom are your close friends.

Informally, a wiser gentleman than myself described it thusly:

"Kin are the family God gives you. Kith are the family you choose."

Phlegmmy and I met the matriarch of the Farm Family at the first Blogorado, when she was kind enough to welcome a horde of bloggers into her home; as she did at each subsequent get-together.

I will always remember the twinkle in her eye and her merry cackle at a good story.

This morning, we woke up to terrible news: she had lost her fight against cancer.

I wish that I had words to console her kith and kin; but I don't. Instead, I shall fall back on Mary Elizabeth Frye to convey that which I wish I could:

"Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there; I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow,
I am the diamond glints on snow,
I am the sun on ripened grain,
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circling flight.
I am the soft starlight at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there; I did not die."

Farm Family, I hope that the pleasant memories that you share of Mamaw comfort you now, and that they provide some small measure of peace in the days ahead.