The Possibilities

Kimber Raptor II full sized 1911 .45ACP

Kimber Stainless Ultra TLE II 1911 .45ACP

Smith & Wesson M&P 9mm

Smith & Wesson Escort .22

Sig Sauer Nitron 1911 .45ACP

Sig Sauer P238 .380

CZ 83 .380

Mossberg 500 shotgun

Mosin-Nagant rifle

That’s all of the guns that live in my house currently.  I’m a little amazed at how many there are, and also kind of surprised that there aren’t more.  I know how to shoot, disassemble and clean almost all of them (Mossberg disassembly lesson tonight?).  I’m proud of that, eager to learn more, and periodically astounded that this is my life.  Sometimes the process of change seems very gradual, and then sometimes it feels like you wake up in someone else’s shoes only to realize that it’s your crazy-ass life.

I was a vegetarian for about 10 years, through most of high school and all of college.  I was committed to not eating meat, sometimes going stretches of a few months with no animal products at all.  It felt like the right way to live my life at the time, and I wouldn’t have believed that I would ever eat meat again if you’d tried to tell me otherwise. I ate a lot of soy-based proteins and meat replacements.  Consuming animal flesh seemed gross and foreign and cruel to me.  Then I decided to go to culinary school.  No one at the school made me eat meat.  It just seemed like the best way to fully understand the food I was cooking.  How was I going to prepare and serve meat to people without having any idea how it tasted?  Also, I was paying for this educational experience and  I wanted to learn as much as possible about food.  It started to make perfect sense for me to eat meat.  Then it started to make sense for me to look into where my meat was coming from and how it was treated when it was alive.  Supporting small, local farmers who make a living raising animals for food in a responsible way seems like the best choice for me right now.  I have a lot of friends who are vegetarian and vegan, and godspeed to them.  They have to do what’s right for them, and I have to do what’s right for me.

I don’t think that everyone in America or everyone in the world needs to get involved in firearms.  I respect that some people are uninterested, apathetic or entirely against gun ownership.  And I’m not out to convince anyone otherwise.  I have absolute faith that you, Reader, know what’s right for you and your life.  I humbly suggest that you just be open to the possibility that what’s right for your life can and will change.  We live in difficult times.  Traditional paths to success aren’t as available as they once were.  If you want to make your own path to success, it’s very possible that you’re going to have to change your mind about some things.  In the past I was worried about changing my mind too often.  I was concerned that people wouldn’t take me seriously.  If you watch politics, you  might think that changing your opinion on something is akin to killing babies with your teeth, the way politicians are raked over the coals for “flip-flopping”.  But I  have much more respect for someone who is willing to change their stance based on new information, rather than cling to old ideas in an effort to save face.  To me, it’s not about being right or being wrong.  It’s just a process of evaluation.  You’re like a radar system.  You send out your pings, they bounce off of what’s around you and come back.  That’s how you orient yourself in the world.  You don’t stop moving and the the things around you don’t stop moving, so the process of evaluation and orientation is on-going.

I have no idea how long guns are going to be a part of my life.  Right now, it’s a fun hobby and an interesting lens to view the world through.  Maybe someday it won’t seem relevant to me anymore.  And that’s cool.  I have to remind myself often that it’s ok to toss out things that aren’t working.  All I can do is be where I am right now, and trust that I will be open to whatever comes my way.