Tactical or Practical?

In the wake of the Aurora shootings I’ve been re-appraising my own skill set. Toss in TSO’s trip down HIS memory lane and I realized there was room for some geezer ruminations here. And a question or three.

First let me offer some background if I might. Been shooting since I was a very young teen, and used to do some hunting. First formal training was in The Boy Scouts (I think) and involved an M1 Garand chambered for .22 LR.

Later on in the Navy I received formal training on what one would expect in the mid to late ’60s – .45, M1, M14, M16, MA Deuce, and an air cooled 30 cal MG (forget the name). Training was cursory… field strip, clean, and target shooting to “qualify”. Fired or crewed once or twice in real life situations ie small craft warnings, etc. And, for instance, standing watch in Da Nang harbor, or the like, with a loaded M1 and and/or a loaded .45. Some Navy types will be going Huh? Always wound up in the Weapons Division. Long story, but for another time. Got pictures!

To be accurate I also was gun captain on a 5 inch mount, AND carried a chromed 03 with a chromed bayonet (GLakes Drill Team).

Forward in time to now. I have firearms, and a range on site. I can’t say I practice religiously (whatever that means), but I can plink with the best, if not as loud. Jonn likes hand cannons.

Now for the questions… assuming you are NOT currently serving?

How often do YOU practice? Do you wear ear/eye protection always? Have you compared your competency with or without such?  I suspect it might matter? Indeed, that first flinch might be important.

Lastly… I’m considering a visit to PFT. Might be a sort of pipe dream, but is it practical for a geezer who plinks regular, AND doesn’t out much?


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