Well it was my birthday so I celebrated the way *I* wanted to – by shootin off a bunch of guns!
I had always wanted to take a handgun class – I love aiming sports like archery and pool and I know from when I was a kid and shot my dad’s air rifle that I was a pretty good shot – just like Annie Oakley! I don’t like gun culture or the idea of killing animals so I never got into the hunting thing when I was growing up in Texas but guns have always fascinated me simply for their powerful pyrotechnic potential. Plus they can be a beautiful mix of metal and wood – sexy!
The Basic Handgun Safety class at Wade’s Eastside Guns is three hours of safety training and one hour on the range. The safety training was pretty interesting – I definitely have a new understanding of how powerful guns can be (can shoot through all walls of your house, skip across a lake 9 miles, shoot through steel beams, etc). But on to the fun part!
We shot 22’s – both semi-automatics and revolvers. I especially liked some of the semi’s – and it didn’t really kick back much at all. I shot probably 10 rounds.
Then as the grand finale, our exuberant instructor brought out a 500 Magnum. Holy sh-t – it was huge. The first woman that shot it couldn’t get over how powerful it felt (see video below) and I knew I had to do it. A 14-year old girl shot it before I did and it kicked back so hard that she dropped it, giving us all a little scare. Our instructor pointed out that this is why he only puts one round in it at a time! So I stepped up to the plate, got a good grip and squeezed the trigger…
KA-BLAM. Woah. It jerked my arms up and somehow drew blood on the palm of my hand (just a scratch). It was like holding onto a firework while it goes off – and not the little roadside ones you can get your hands on, the big ones they shoot off down at the lake. This was serious. I felt it in my whole body for about an hour. It was great.
I don’t think I want a gun for self-protection – I think pepper spray is better for all involved in a situation like that – but I could see myself getting into the sport later in life. In the meantime, I’ll probably mosey on back there some Tuesday for Ladies’ Night. Only $7 to shoot and it’s right down the street.