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October 15, 2007

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One Thing in Common

Back in the early 1980s, I was invited to join a group of men who went out to dinner every Thursday evening. They were all customers at a small-town gunshop who had gotten friendly with the owner. An extremely unlike group of people, they included myself, two gunsmiths, a retired New York State trooper who was now a locksmith, a high-school English teacher who had a degree in comparative literature from Harvard, a Wall Street plutocrat, and a machinist.

We would go to a local restaurant, ogle the waitresses, argue, insult each other, and talk about guns and hunting and the military. The intellectual progress of mankind did not advance one iota, but we enjoyed ourselves and each other.

Of course it did not last. One of the gunsmiths moved away; the Wall street plutocrat retired and moved as well; the machinist and the English teacher died, and finally the gunshop itself closed. We were all very lucky to have had what we did, and we knew it even at the time. And I can't think of anything save an interest in guns that can bring together so disparate a group of people, again and again, in place after place.


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Clay Cooper

A young gentleman from Dominion Republic that I’m his sponsor for his U.S. Citizenship, I just set him up with a Parker Wildfire XP. After a quick sighting at 10 yards, I went back to the 20 yard line and William Tale the first two arrows costing me two new arrows! Talk about a deadly accurate bow for under $350.00 ready to shoot. I’m tempted to swap him out with my High Country Four Runner that I got $900.00 wrapped up in it!

Dave in St Pete


There is a crying NEED for both gun safety and hunting classes in schools.

I am 53 and took my hunters course last year with my then 13 year old son (He - 100, Me - 98).

I am still trying to learn the state laws on hunting and how to field dress. (please don't say go to my local wildlife office, they are all fishing oriented in Florida).

In any case I WILL get it done but a school course or even a local college course in "Hunting 101" would really help as I have a thousand questions.

Clay Cooper

Congratulations Sir!
I’m proud of you Young Man!
When I went to school, we didn’t need hunter safety classes. Hunting was a way of life back then and as soon you were able to walk, you wear out with your Father hunting. A lot has changed since then. In High School everyone including the Principle knew I had a rifle behind the rear seat of my Ford Bronco and it wasn’t a problem. A lot of things have changed.

Rocky Mtn Hunter

Been a hunter, gun nut for the past 62 yrs of my now 72.Have made many friends from California to Canada that I never would have meet if not for hunting and guns. Some of those guy/gals continue to e-mail weekly and we discuss our family's health, guns and hunting. In l990 I became deathly sick. Was in Hospital for 6 months and back again in l991 for 5 months. Had it not been my desire to go to the Rockies and all the hunting literature people brought me, I doubt I would be here today. I was left disable/handicapped from my illness, but guns and hunting and hunting companions keep me going daily. I eat, sleep, dream hunting, plus buy a gun now and then.Only a couple of guys I;ve meet hunting proved to be SOB's. Most of the serious hunting world is made up of hard working good people. Hunting is a joy to me, successful or now. Just a day in the woods is a new experience and look forward to opening season here in N.C. and my next trip to Montana. A gun shop is one of the greatest places to meet great guys, plus this BLOG. Keep up the great articles Dave, thanks for allowing me to be part of it. Have fun hunters, the worst day afield is better than your best day at work.The old N.C. Gunslinger

"There have been more ducks killed around pot-bellied stoves than in an entire season along the Illinois River" - Anon

Clay Cooper

Rocky Mtn Hunter, our business is finally booming and for the first time in years I’m able to go hunting every day and I got this darn knee brace on, hobbling and grounded to the house! MRI scheduled this thursday. Good news is I got until Feb 28 2008!

worst day afield is better than your best day at work


I believe it would be a blast to take David Petzal on a New Mexico hunt, Clay style!

Dave Petzal

To Michael: We actually have a copy editor, and she is the best I've ever worked with, but proofreading the blog is not one of her responsibilities.

It's one of the givens of the editing business that you can't proofread your own stuff, and the young man who is supposed to proofread me is of that generation that was never made to spell or learn the fundamentals of grammar.

What we are witnessing is nothing less than the breakdown of the English language. Many of the e-mails that I see are incomprehensible. The English used on the local news station sounds like my attempts to speak German. I hear, on a regular basis, the kind of grammatical mistakes that should have been corrected in the fourth grade. And misprononciations? Mein gott!

Much of this stems from the failure of our educational system. A college English professor friend of mine, who retired last year, summed up her career thus: "I spent my entire time teaching remedial high school English."

And then of course, we have texting, and the phonetic spelling that is coming into use.

Welcome to Babel!

Dave Petzal

That should have been mispronunciations.


my hunter education course dident teach me any thing new.when Im in the woods im safe because I know that if I mess up,deddy is going to be waiting for me at home.
oh yea mr.Dave is my spelling any good? Can you understand me?


well said, Dave.
I agree. I spent the last 12 years of my 29 year career in public education teaching the Texas Taks test so the district I was working for would receive high marks for student success on the test which means absolutely squat on how well students are prepared for life after high school. However, like all things in the great state of Texas, it is about money and politics. The company that produces, prints, and scores the Texas Taks test is paid $85 million a year. $85 million a year so last year 44,000 seniors would not graduate because they failed to pass one or more parts of the test. In effect Texas is saying: "If you do not pass this test you are too dumb to even enlist in the military and serve your country." That is why I retired.


Dave, the way things are going you will have to take English as a second or third language. I have nothing against people speaking a different language but please speak English when I buy my morning paper and cup of coffee. Gotten Abine


No clay
No Hunting yet

Was scheduled for Wi last fri ,..
early gun deer in Souhern Region ,.. but a client got her thong in a knott,..

Just miss comunication but had to untie the knott,..
Plus it was warm and rainiing in the hunting area . So called it off.
,. Plus doing remodel on my hovel,..and flooring guy
just F^%^*KING vanished.

Plus frined has 65th birthday this Sat,..
When he and I go to a saloon together always tell bar tender / maid
"My Dad here is buying first one,..
He does have a head start on me,. close to ten years,..but he gets worked up when I do that,. So beter attend ,.. we would both rathetr be hunting ,. but his wife insists on throwing party ,.

Women ,...

If stars line up and no more thong knotts appear ,. maybe
take a few days off during week,..
Go chace Bambi ,. with 54-70.

You ?


Transposition 45 - 70

coach ike

dear dave,

sounds like deer camp, only more civilized.

Rocky Mtn Hunter

Gun owners, hunters, speak a different language than the other people who do neither. May take us a second to understand, but give us time,we will get it done. I never majored in English,I majored in making a good living, having a great life and enjoying it to the fullest. Yes, guns/hunting was part of that and is yet at 72.

Rocky Mtn Hunter

Clay Cooper:Hope your MRI was successful and your condition improved. I fully know being house bound/hospital stays as well as anyone. The one good thing about such, is that you hope/pray one day you able to get to the woods again. When that day arrives you care less if kill game, just to be out there is the best Rx you can get.Since my disability sickness in l990-1, I;ve had the opportunities to hunt the Rocky Mtns almost every year. I have hunt from vehicle permits for 5 western states and belong to many clubs out there. My most enjoyable hunt was with a bunch ( 12) disabled guys for Lopes in WY. I thought I was in poor condition till I saw some of those guys, but look around us and you can find otherwise. All of us over 3 days filled our tags on lopes. The 2nd most enjoyable hunt was in Colorado in 97 when I Killed my first 6 x 6 bull elk at 265yds with a Rem 742 Auto in 06). Now I use a bolt 06 700 CDL for longer range. No place like the Rocky Mountains to take care of your immediately worries. AS a few days out there, you forget all your past, present, future problems and just concentrate on the NOW. I wish you a complete recovery and many more great hunting days. Maybe we both will luck out and get a extra hunt or two in. Take care. Old gunslinger down south

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