Living in an Imperfect World

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“Don’t hate people, just feel better when they aren’t around.” – Charles Bukowski


good morning, Arizona


Tiger Hunts

Howdah pistols were handguns adapted or designed to the specific requirements of hunting Indian wild game from a platform on the back of an elephant, also known as a howdah.

The sport became a favorite pastime of upper-class Britons during the crown rule of India, starting as early as the late 18th century with flintlock weapons. It quickly became apparent then that not only could the wildlife fight back by climbing the ass-end of your elephant to maul you in your silly little basket, but that said basket was then way to small to properly use your hunting gun in. The only solution, aside from not risking your life and that of others for pelts and bragging rights, was to create a shorter more maneuverable weapon yet still capable of dealing with a tiger. Hunters simply took to shortening their rifles into high-powered handguns, before gunsmiths back in England took notice and started crafting them as such.

Howdah pistols as such were rifle-powered handguns made from hunting long arms or using similar layouts as if they’d been, more often than not boasting several barrels to give their users quick follow-up shots on target. Both these features made howdah pistols very simple, sturdy weapons, which they needed to be as any misfire could spell the death of their wearers. Howdah hunting was popular all throughout the British Raj and as such many weapons were converted or made following these specifications.

Up until the adoption of the .455 Webley revolvers by the British army, such handguns were allegedly the only reliable way to stop a local charging at you. Firearms evolved.

Ruger Super Alaskan Redhawk .454 Casull

Today, it’s good to have something handy that can stop a local who may wish to do you harm. Everyone has their own idea about which caliber will do the job best and which ammunition works best. Best not be a victim.


Auto Porn
Wiesmann GT MF4…


Where do YOU get your kicks?




Blue Flight

A co-worker of my son-in-law, who works at a Southern California police department just bought a home in Peoria, Arizona, west of Phoenix. He works a 3/12 schedule. He’ll spend four days in Arizona and three days in SoCal. Other like minded police officers have leased a place where they will stay when in town, working.

It’s a 5 hour drive from Peoria to work for the co-worker. By comparison it’s taken me that long to drive from my home in Orange County, CA to the Grapevine (highway out of Los Angeles to the north, because of traffic. Don’t believe me, try it on a Friday afternoon.)

You will see more of this. The officers can put their families in conservative Arizona, while they do their time in SoCal until they retire. They basically live like firemen.

I heard a talking head on TV speak about how almost all of the Minneapolis PD live outside of town. That is true of almost ALL metro police departments. They live where they can afford a home, and who would want to live in the ghetto?  The issue is even more about where your children go to school, and I’m not talking race here. Who wants little Johnny and Sally going to a gladiator academy down the street from the police department?

The result is that you have police officers with NO investment in the city or state where they work, which is not a good thing. Neither can I fault the co-worker.


And it’s Friday

32 thoughts on “Living in an Imperfect World

  1. Detroit residency rules were set up after the riots.
    According to statistics, between 60 to 80 percent of public safety workers live outside of city limits, a situation created when residency requirements which were once in force, were struck down by the Michigan legislature in 1999.

    That GT sure looks like an E-type. Which is a good thing.

    1. Some enlightened locations (but not many) offer police officers no interest loans or negative interest loans to buy a home in the city where they work. Of course that costs money, but the payback is quick response by off-duty detectives primarily. It means that the officers will have buy-in to the welfare of the community, not just a place where they work like hired guns as with the Range Wars in the Old West (more of that coming up in a blog post soon).

  2. In Norway, it used to be mandatory for police officers to live in the same police districts as they worked. Leaving the police district for vacation needed a permit from the chief of police. It is a good reason for having such a system but in places where the crime rate is high, it will be hard to recruit new officers since no one wants to have their family living in such places. Since the police get all the information about problems in the area it is hard to fool them to stay. Maybe financial compensation would help, but since the problem consists of so many factors a police officer can not make the difference alone. Chicago with its socialism should have the best conditions to subsidize police officers and fund them to live in neighborhoods politicians want to behave according to their standards.

    I guess new technology and information systems if used properly will serve as a reservoir of information so the collective knowledge about what is going is a good substitution for having officers living where they work. But in nice neighborhoods, police officers are appreciated as an asset not a target.

    1. Norway is cool, John. I’ve hung out there with you. They need to have more aggressive policing but we’ve chewed that bone to the nub. Living anywhere in Norway should work — IF they can afford it. If not, maybe government underwritten loans for housing is the answer. If they quit the department the notes become due and payable and they have to sell the house. In the City of Minneapolis, there are very nice neighborhoods but they are out of the reach of police officers financially.

  3. I understand those howdah pistols were often chambered in .577 and must have been interesting to shoot. Of course when the adrenaline is pumping, I’ve found that one doesn’t notice recoil quite so much.
    Kaepernick would be the perfect salesman for that line of shoes. I imagine Nike founder Bill Bowerman, who served in Italy during WWII and was awarded the silver star, would not be happy with his company today.

    1. If a tiger was crawling up the ass of the elephant that you were riding, I’d think that you would be thrilled to have a .577 caliber weapon to fire at it. Having fired a lot of black powder, it’s not so much the diameter of the round as it is the powder load. I’m sure that they loaded them down from what they’d need in a rifle, and they were meant to be shot at 0-7 feet, and punch through a tiger.

      You could also toss your faithful loader, Gunga Din off the elephant to distract the tiger while you lined up your shot.

      “Though I’ve belted you and flayed you,
      By the living God who made you,
      You’re a better man than I am,
      Gunga Din!”

      1. Black powder is fun. There’s nothing like the sound and smell of it, and of course, the smoke. I have experience with both flint and caplocks as well as the cartridge varieties. There’s a gentleman who frequents the range who owns several vintage rifles and loves to shoot his collectibles. He sometimes lets me try them. Another time I was at a shoot and a Canadian gentleman asked me if I’d like to try his short lever Martini Henry. Of course I did.

      2. Hah. Tossing your loader… The Indian version of throwing the baby or grandmother out of the troika when being chased by wolves.

        Not that wolves have ever attacked men, according to all the environmental peacenik idiots out there…

  4. I agree with the Bukowski quote. Hate should be used sparingly. I reserve mine for Warren Wilhelm and his horrible education chancellor Richard Carranza. Two of the most loathsome people walking this planet.

    Regarding the winding road photo, what would it look like if instead of Friday as the goal a sane country were the goal? A photo looking out to the next galaxy?

  5. At the risk of using a movie quote, in this case John Wayne, from “The Shootist”, “I won’t be wronged. I won’t be insulted. I won’t be laid a-hand on. I don’t do these things to other people, and I require the same from them.” I’ve learned over the years to keep my mouth shut when it needs to be, and to control my temper, which I do a good job of if I do say so myself. If I was diagnosed with terminal cancer and a date certain of my demise, and if I was well enough, there is a list that might be sent beyond in front of me.(

    just kidding…

    1. I have felt the same way. But then your family has to deal with the fallout of any bucket list. Also most of my list would be people I have distanced myself from on purpose. Living well is still the best revenge.

      1. Maybe, but at a mile out, prone, with a Barrett .50 and hand loads, or closer with Raufoss rounds (penetrate a light skinned vehicle and explode), and a bit of care, it’s hard to find you if you only shoot once.

        And if you have a short time left.

  6. Those late 1800’s black powder guns were the same ballistic concept as a 12 gauge loaded with heavy slugs. Like a Brenneke 1 1/4 oz. 1500 FPS , 3/4″ diameter and hardened for penetration.
    When the velocity is limited, the obvious choice is to make the projectile bigger. I think it was Sir Samuel Baker who used a 4 bore (gauge) in Africa. Nothing like a 1/4 lb chunk of lead! (A guy with a fascinating history, BTW. He purchased his wife in an Ottoman slave market.)

    1. I wonder whether Sir Samuel Baker’s purchase resulted in a “Stepford Wife” or whether she turned into a ‘regular wife’ when he got her home? Don’t hate me women, I’m only asking the question of Raven, and it’s rhetorical.

      Those slow moving slugs had to rip a big hole in the target because there was no hydrostatic shock effect to do the killing the way that modern rounds do.

      Then again there is the .50 BMG, and when you hit human targets (don’t know about a tiger), center mass, limbs blow off, etc. most impressive. They leave enough to bury, but definitely a closed casket affair.

      1. His wife was, IIRC, a white Hungarian maiden. Even though they spoke no verbal language in common at first, the communication was apparently quite enthralling. She was devoted to him for the rest of his days, and accompanied him on his expeditions to the Darkest Continent.
        Much better than ending up in some potentates harem.

        1. It sounds as though he made a wise investment. Slave market, huh? Good strategy.

  7. The batarang swoosh is a good feature on those Red Guards brand sneakers.
    I won’t be able to take advantage of it though, I’ve worn no sneakers other than Chucks since I’ve been old enough to buy my own. Damn shame they’re made in the PRC now.


    1. Maybe Nike will bring production to North America (Mexico is close enough) and the precursors for meth are included in the ingredients to make Air Jordans. Not all of them, but enough to satisfy the cartels.

  8. Regarding police residency requirements, in my experience (39 years working in the largest city in my state) it’s a poor substitute. You spend you time hiring quality people (not as easy as it was) and train them well. Then you support them with a whole agency attitude of service, protection, honor, and even handed action. Meeting frequently with community leaders and regular folks in your district (getting out of the car a nd walking).
    On the residency requirement, if you live in your district then every person you ever arrest know where you and your kids live. It makes you subject to intimidation which affects how you work.
    However, if it’s riot time, you want your cops calm and even tempered, well trained and ready for battle. Rioters are not interested in holding hands and talking with hugs. Unfortunately, the good people protesting have filters mixed in with them. You have to honour the threat. Honest protesters should have the common sense to recognize the events around them and get home before nightfall. There is truth in the saying, “The animals come out at night!”

    1. Our local agency restricts take-home cars to officers living within a certain radius of the police station. And gives incentives for officers to live in ‘vibrant’ sections.

      You are very right about cops not wanting to live where they work. It’s just stupid to do that.

      1. The co-worker mentioned works a patrol supervisory assignment so he can commute from Arizona to California, and a 3/12 shift helps the situation. If you had an investigative or SWAT type assignment that required an on-cal response, you couldn’t pull it off. My sense is that he has the seniority to have weekends off so he works mid-week and can testify during that period if needed in court.

  9. Nice holster.
    Diamond D Leather from Sarah’s AO?
    I got mine with the detachable flap, because…I could.
    Beautiful workmanship.
    There is enough room on the harness for a short fixed blade between the holster and the harness hardware. Very handy location for a utility blade.
    The Ruger Alaskan is handy in Grizz country. Not as effective as a 12 gauge stuffed with Royal Brenneke’s, but much handier in the outhouse and deployable with one hand.

    1. Yes, from Sarah’s AO. I have several holsters from Diamond D Leather. They are excellent, rugged, well conceived, workmanship is top notch. My grandsons and grand daughters will use them.

  10. BTW, I like the idea of the lanyard ring.
    Obviously not a factory options n.
    How did you manage to get one installed?

    1. The gun shop that ported it, installed the ring. The lanyard is seven strand parachute cord.

  11. Good Lord…a 454 Casull in something with a barrel that short?

    No wonder you had it ported!

    One of my instructors carried a S&W 357 “AirLite” revolver with a 2″ barrel as his back-up-to-the-back-up.

    He let me fire it.


    I gave it back and said “No Thanks”…..

    He laughed and said if he didn’t hit ’em, the flash and muzzle blast would incapacitate ’em.

    1. If you come down here or if I go up there, I’ll let you test fire it. The recoil isn’t that bad and whatever you hit, dies.

      1. A part of “Recoil Management” is the grips. My wife’s 357 has nice, thick rubber grips, and doesn’t kick bad at all. It’s a large-frame S&W M&P with a “Scandium Alloy” frame, and it’s very well balanced, another part of good Recoil management. My friend’s little belly gun would just about come out of my hand, and I couldn’t hit anything beyond a few yards. But then it’s meant as a last-ditch weapon, not to put food on the table.

        I’ve always liked the 454 Casull, especially after seeing James Caan handle one in “Alien Nation”. Very potent round.

        And one of my bucket-list firearms is a Mateba Autorevolver in 454 Casull. I’ve lusted after one ever since I first saw it in the “Ghost In The Shell” anime series.

        1. I never heard of a Mateba Autorevolver until you sent me scurrying to look it up. Wow. Neat. This is my thing, DRJIM. If it comes down to that, I want to make it loud and splashy. I own two large caliber handguns. A Super Alaskan Redhawk and a S&W 460V, which is an order of magnitude more potent than the Casull. A mass hit with either on meat is simply not survivable. And if it comes to that, the survival of my enemy is not high on my list of concerns.

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