Thursday, January 30, 2014

Crankin' It Up: Brat Takes A Break As We Recycle One For You

My Handy Man was recorded by Ethel Waters in 1928, and we have featured it here before through YouTube.  YT gave me grief about it, and tonight we put it back up on DailyMotion.  I hope it doesn't cause any trouble for us over there. 

My Handy Man by TrueBlueSam

Great Deals On Rugers, Benton, Illinois, Rural King Store
                                                           Ruger M77/44® Rotary Magazine Rifle

We all piled in the Explorer tonight and went to Benton to shop at the Rural King store.  They are having a big sale event this week, and one of the segments of that sale is 10% off all Ruger guns in the store.   You never know what to expect with sales until you spend some time shopping in a store, and I think you will be impressed with the Benton Rural King.  The Rugers in the rack and display cases still had the same prices they had before the sale, which are all below the suggested retail price.  The one that made me go weak in the knees was a 77/44 All Weather Rifle.  The suggested retail on this rifle is $969, Rural King's price is $649.95.  Take 10% off that with the sale, and your price before the Illinois sales tax is just $585!  This sale goes on through Saturday, so if you are in the market for a new Ruger, check it out.

We went there to shop for an air compressor.  I behaved myself and stuck to my shopping list, so that beautiful hog rifle is still in the rack waiting for you.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Why Johny Can't..... venison this winter.

 One of our hunting friends missed a trophy buck with an easy 50 yard shot in December.  His mistake was thinking his miss was some kind of fluke, and he did not check his zero to see if his scope was on with the ammo he was using.  He came out to hunt during the last firearm weekend in January, and he missed another deer.  He had one more day to hunt, and I left a target clipped to a sheet of cardboard in the barn for him.

Here's what he learned.  The slugs he was shooting from his shotgun were printing about 6" high at 25 yards.  I don't know just what the problem is; maybe he sighted his shotgun with a different type of slug than he used to hunt, maybe someone fiddled with the elevation on his scope.  Whatever the problem, my friend would have bagged a couple deer if he had just taken a few minutes to check his zero before his first hunt last fall.  

Another hunter I know recently told me that for years he has fired his muzzleloader twice a year; once to check his zero, and a second shot to kill a deer.  I think he would enjoy life more if he spent more time shooting, but it's a good lesson.  Zeroes aren't forever, and you must check how your gun/ammo combination shoots if you change anything.  Now, go and miss no more.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Rip It Out Of The Ground!

Scrolling back through photo files I found some unused raw video from our timber harvest in 2012.  Here we see the Timbco pulling a tree out of the ground to open up the woods for trucks to come in.  It takes a while to learn tricks like this one.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Any Ice Today, Lady?

We're going back to work this week in the deep-freeze....

Does that qualify for  Back To The Old Grind?

If that doesn't work, this will....

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Not My Victrola: Stereotyping, Or The Way It Really Was?

This humorous Edison disc is one that falls into the category of what folks used to call 'coon songs'. Edison liked the genre, and recorded them long after other recording companies dropped them, and it's one reason Edison lost market share, and ultimately went out of the record business.  But, this razor business; is it an unfair stereotype or maybe even something like the dreaded 'profiling?'  I think there is a lot of truth in it from history that I have heard and read.  My dad often spoke of seeing men with scars from razor fights when he was a kid in Moline, Illinois.  One of my professors at Mizzou told me about a man he knew in his younger days who killed a man with a razor.  It's an incredible story, and the man wasn't prosecuted, because the man he killed was having a rendezvous with his wife.  The way I see it, it isn't any different than talking about gang-bangers today doing drive-by shootings, or holding their pistols sideways.  Whatever your feelings on the subject, have a listen to this oldtime, obscure classic (that I learned forty-five years ago) and have a few good laughs.  I especially like the verse about the insurance.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Weekend Steam: It Sounds Like A Locomotive!

This home video from YouTube highlights a 1902 steam motorcycle on its first run.  In the early years of motor-transportation, the four stroke gasoline engine was not quite a done deal.

If you liked the motorcycle you will love Jay Leno's restoration of a 1906 Stanley Steamer. It's mostly early Twentieth Century technology, but Jay has done some impressive tweaking to the design so this car can go right down the freeway. It sounds even MORE like a locomotive!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Ruger's Auction To Benefit Homes 4 Wounded Heroes

Ruger's firearm up for auction this week is another special one.  This is a Red Label 20 Gauge shotgun that was made in 1999 as one of the commemorative guns Ruger built and decorated for their 50th year.  It has been stored all these years in the Ruger vault, and has just a few minor marks from those years in seclusion.  The hammer will fall on this sale mid-day, Wednesday, January 22, 2014.  Take a deep breath and Click Over to make your best bid.  100% of the proceeds will go to benefit Homes 4 Wounded Heroes.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Heat For Shooting Coyotes?

Caleb over at GunNuts, in a post about the .357 Magnum made a comment about using that cartridge on coyotes, and the gist of it was that he rather enjoyed seeing a coyote pile up when hit.  There were some negative comments about that, and when I offered support for shooting the nasty predators, I found out that I'm a Creep, or words to that effect.  Here's the deal with coyotes.  You have to fight them whenever you can, or they will take over the place.  If people enjoy hunting them with varmint calls, hound dogs, or quarter-mile varmint rifles, I'm all for it, because it helps me, and all my neighbors who have cats, dogs, and livestock.  Our little gray cat Snaggle was our first casualty in our neigborhood coyote war.  Snaggle liked to sleep on the back step instead of going to the barn at night, and one morning he was gone.

Scooter showed up as a dumped kitten who wasn't really old enough to be away from Mama, and he was a faithful companion for many years.

Petey was dumped on us as a young adult, and he and Scooter became fast friends.  They were always together, and the coyotes picked them both off in the same week.

Last year we lost Pansy, the little tuxedo cat on the left.  She had a bad eye, and that may be why she was caught. The rest of the cats in this group are pretty wary.

Donna, the black and white in front of the barn is still with us.  I saw the critter below making his move on her early one day, and I had a rifle beside the door.  I was just barely quick enough to save my cat.  We also have coons who carry distemper, rabies, and particularly nasty worms, skunks with rabies, possums who crap all over the barn, and snakes that have killed all our barn swallows.  Wild predators don't belong around your homesite, and I'm glad to shoot every one of them that comes near our house. 

Tuesday Turbo Boost: Johnson County Jail, Paintsville, KY

This song ran in my head all day, and now you all get to enjoy it.  True Story by Tom T. Hall.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Not My Victrola: A Good Old Jimmie Rodgers Tune

I haven't seen a bum riding a freight for forty years, but songs like this still appeal to me.  The stories I've heard and read paint a pretty sad picture of life for the men who hopped freights, and that mode of transportation would be difficult today, with the cars used on railroads designed to discourage riders.  An old boy was telling my dad and me about hoboing, and he stated that he never stole anything.  Dad set me straight as soon as we left that guy.  Dad told me that bums and hobos couldn't survive if they didn't steal, and I think that's true.  Nearly every home had a chicken house in the early part of the Twentieth Century, and the chickens weren't safe if their house was near a railroad track.

Another old boy told me about hopping freights to get to a bigger town about twenty miles up the line from his home.  He would hop a train with a friend whenever they wanted to go to town, but on one trip they encountered a railroad detective who kicked them off the train.  The friend of my acquaintance took it personally, and he rode again.  He threw the detective off the train, killing him.  It was pretty common for men to be locked in a car and to die from thirst, cold, or hunger, and the unwary could be robbed and killed in the hobo jungles along the railroads.  It was a rough life out there.  Anyhow, here's Hobo Bill's Last Ride, by Jimmie Rodgers.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Robert Service Global Warming Special

All of that global warming blowing down off the Arctic reminded me of this classic by Robert W. Service: Click Here to read The Ballad of the Ice Worm Cocktail.  Be sure to click to Page Two at the end  of Page One. 

Gunblast Covers Day 3 At Shot Show!

Jeff takes us out on the floor with his third report from inside Shot Show 2014.

Plus, bonus coverage from Range Day!

Weekend Steam...

....Another cold wave is coming, and it brought this to mind.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Gunblast's Shot Show Review, Day 2

Crankin' It Up: The Brat is Back!

I gave Brat the week off and recycled an old record vid last week, and he was ready to get back in the saddle tonight.  Flapperette is a lighthearted Fox-Trot, and Brat gives us some good tail-shakes to show his approval. 

Flapperette: Nat Shilkret by TrueBlueSam

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Gunblast's Reports From Shot Show

Jeff Quinn makes the most of his time in Vegas and videos his booth visits for our gratification.  There are a lot of new products coming out this year, and I wish I could be in Las Vegas to see it myself.  Check out Mr. Quinn's YouTube channel (GunBlastDotCom) to view more of his coverage of Shot Show.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Shot Show Goodies At The S & W Booth... Jerry Miculek.

 It looks like Smith and Wesson has some exciting new choices for steel shooters,and for hunters.

Ruger's Auction To Benefit Homes 4 Wounded Heroes

Note: This is a two week auction, and it will end on January 15, 2014, mid-day.

Ruger's auction this week is a .44 Magnum Carbine that was shipped to K-Mart in 1972, and then later returned.  You will see in the description and the photos that the gun is a bit shopworn, but that doesn't seem to bother the folks who are bidding.  Click over to to Ruger's GunBroker page to see the entire description and to place your bid.  100% of the proceeds go to benfit Homes 4 Wounded Heroes.

Update:  $1675 on Tuesday, January 14.  Take a deep breath before you bid!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Shot Show Coverage

One of these years the True Blue Sam team would like to attend the Shot Show in Las Vegas, but for the time being, we will have to be content with following the reports of other attendees.  Mr. Completely is on his way to the annual trade show, and he will be making an important announcement about Gun Blogger Rendezvous while he is in Vegas.

Caleb Giddings of Gun Nuts Media will be there, as will Jay G of Shooting Illustrated, and Jeff Quinn of  I'm sure that other bloggers I follow will be there, and one of the easiest ways to find reports is to click on Gun in my blog list.

Update:  I just saw on Facebook that Molly Smith, famed revolver shooter, will be working at the Smith and Wesson booth.  Molly's Facebook page is here, and her blog, The Molly Minute is here.

Cheaper Than Dirt is there, also  Armed Candy,  and Julie Golob.  Also, The Firearm Blog.

Tuesday Turbo Boost: Memories Of Snowmageddon

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Not My Victrola: A Special Treat By Vernon Dalhart...

...and shared with us by MusicBoxBoy.  Vernon Dalhart has never been a favorite of mine, but that's because I don't like The Prisoner's Song and It Was Sad When The Great Ship Went Down.  When I spotted The Big Rock Candy Mountain, though, I had to listen and I really like it.  I am familiar with Tex Ritter performing this classic, but I had never heard Vernon Dalhart sing it.  I think you will like it, too.

Passed Photo Shop...

...failed Westerns 101

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Mr. Completely e-Postal Hosts, 2014

2013 was a great year for the Mr. Completly e-Postal contests, with good participation from blog followers.  All of the hosts for 2013 have been contacted, and only Carteach is dropping out.  Merle, the most prolific e-Postal participant-ever, has graciously agreed to develop a target for August, and will be hosting on Sand Castle Scrolls and here on True Blue Sam.  Here is the lineup for 2014:

March:  Mr. Completely
April:  Jimmy B, theCUG 
May:  Sand Castle Son at Smallest Conservative
July: Billll of Bill’s Idle Mind  
August:  Merle, the most prolific e-Postal contestant (Hosting at Sand Castle Scrolls and True Blue Sam
November: Danno at Sand Castle Scrolls  

Susan and I will be spending many pleasant afternoons out behind the barn to test target concepts before September and October.  

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Milk And Bread Alerts

Sometimes we refer to the winter weather forecasts as "Milk and Bread Alerts" because you see unprepared folks rushing out to the stores to load up on groceries.  We live way out in the sticks, so we load up whenever we go to town, and rarely are caught short on supplies, and that goes double for firewood.  We work up firewood on the weekends except during hot summer weather.

We really don't like making wood in the snow, but it sure beats doing it in rain or mud.  You don't have to worry about ticks this time of year.  This snag was dried "on the hoof" and went right into the stack to burn.

 We have lots of tree top wood from the harvest last year, and the small to medium size pieces are dry enough to use straight out of the woods. 

Snow in Southern Illinois usually doesn't hang around for long, and one snowfall is usually gone before the next one rolls in.  The county roads are difficult to negotiate after a big snow event, because they are only bladed, and not salted.  I grew up driving on ice in Iowa, but I never have learned to enjoy it.  Most of my driving on back roads today was at 30 mph or less, especially on icy roads with a high crown. 

Skip is thinking, "Must we do this again?"

Monday, January 6, 2014

Tuesday Turbo Boost

Just in case you missed it New Year's Day.

It Blows Leaves, and More

The Red Max took a couple extra pulls to start, but if fired off and warmed up to run just fine in the below zero temps.  Temps are forecast to go above freezing Wednesday, so I wanted the snow off the wood right away.

It Ain't Turnin' Today!

The road is drifted shut, and I'm phoning it in.  I hope you can, too. 

Photo Credit: Gary Bahre

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Not My Victrola: Helen Kane Favorite

That's My Weakness Now, by Helen Kane has been one of my top picks from the 1920's for years.  EdmundusRex posted this one, and if you click the video to see it on YouTube, you can read the writeup he provided with this record.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Weekend Steam: Photography Lesson

I am always taking pictures, and I have learned that you have to get out ahead of the subjects you are photographing, or all you get is butt-shots.  Scrolling through the archives I just had a revelation; the same goes for steam engines.  If you take a shot of the back end of steam engines, you also get the back end of the folks hanging around those steam engines.

My photography should improve this year...

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Jack's Cadillac Doghouse

Jack must be part Malamute.  He pulls the bedding out on the porch and sleeps outside rather than go in his DogLoo.  He would go in the hut with HeyJoe when precip was falling, but after Joe died, we had a problem.  Jack refused to go in his DogLoo no matter how bad the weather turned.  We have been bringing him into the utility room for bad weather, but that is hard to manage, especially when we get snow on a regular basis.  'Long about Christmas I woke up from a dream, and had just built a doghouse for Jack.  Here is what I built in my sleep.

It's built out of rough lumber we bought for barn repairs, and it is all put together with screws.  The roofing is old tin from the stash in the barn, and it has a heat lamp inside to keep Jack warm on cold winter nights. I cheated and used plywood for the floor.

The roof was harder to move than the rest of the house, but it's all up on Jack's porch, and I'm hernia-free.  I spent half an hour introducing Jack to his new home.  He's a sucker for peanut butter biscuits.  The forecast is for snow tonight, so we will know in the morning if he accepts the new accommodations.