Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Click, Click, Boom

Two tours, over 600 days in Iraq, and finally fired my rifle for the first time today. (Of course it was on the rifle range)

C’mon, you think I got out from behind a desk and was in c-C-COMBAT?!

I went to the range to qualify with my rifle. It’s an annual requirement, and one I want to get ahead of before I take my team home. If you remember way back to September of last year I discovered to my mild surprise that I needed glasses for distances. I wore them for a while here but just found it easier to sit near the front of the room than remember to bring them everywhere. Oh, vanity! I did, however, remember to bring them to the range.

My Army issue sunglasses allow for optical inserts so I can see without squinting into the sun. But they’re awkward and dust can get between the two sets of lenses. At least I could see the target clearer!

Iraq, Ft Dix, Ft Drum - every range looks the same!

I fired and qualified even though the glasses gave me trouble focusing on the front sight post of the M-4. I ran into trouble in the kneeling position when I brought the weapon sight close to my nose. The instability of the kneeling position set me off balance just enough where the rear sight tagged the bridge of my glasses leaving a red abrasion.

(Note: Never, EVER, try to get your significant other’s sympathy over a boo-boo with an email that’s titled, I Think I’ve Been Wounded!)

So while I am no longer too dangerous with a rifle, I dare any of these kids to outdo me in making PowerPoint slides! HA!

We also brought along an AK-47 for fun.

“This is the AK-47 assault rifle, the preferred weapon of your enemy; and it makes a distinctive sound when fired at you, so remember it.” - Gunny Highway.

I had never fired an AK before. What it lacks in style and accuracy it makes up for in sturdiness and stopping power. I learned why we attribute the term “spray and pray” to the weapon and the men who carry it. On full auto you have to muscle it to keep it in front of you and not let it push you backwards as your rounds drift high and right; it's like a small jackhammer in your hands.

And if you can't shoot great at least you can look great shooting.

Speaking of movies and things that go Click, Click, Boom; I did, as promised, sit down with the chaplain to watch The Godfather. I even printed off a cheat sheet of the characters so that he’d know who was who. Have you ever shared what you think is a universally cool thing – like, say, The Godfather – with another person and watch it have NO effect whatsoever?

I suppose the whole superimposed baptism/retribution scene was a little more than he was expecting. Sigh. So I am going to redeem myself with him by watching Casablanca. He’s never seen THAT movie either?! Ugh.

And in return I am going to his service on Sunday. It’s not personal, it’s just business.

1 comment:

Lisa said...

Hey! I never got a cheat sheet when I watched it with you for the first time. That would have helped a lot. Can I still get one?