Saturday, April 16, 2011

New Experiences Saturday

We started off Saturday morning checking out a local farmer's market. Even though I've never cooked them, I got bags of Swiss Chard and baby Collards from here:

I heard they're healthy, but I really don't have any idea how to prepare them. I'll have to google/Martha Stewart/epicurious/Real Simple it. We also got these zesty salad greens with the orange flowers:

From City Roots, this local self-sustaining farm here in Columbia.

And we also picked up a block of tomato basil cheese from a local dairy, Happy Cow:

We pretty much ate the cheese when we got back. In the afternoon, we were invited out to a shooting range with Professor X:

Coming from a university neighborhood in Irvine where guns weren't even allowed, the girl was a bit apprehensive, understandably.  I told her that this didn't mean we were going to get a gun, but that this was an opportunity to learn something new.  And the more you learn, the more prepared you may be for new situations in life.

She offered dryly, "You mean like if there was a time machine and I was suddenly transported to the Old West?"

"Well, let me give you an alternative scenario."  I said.  "What if this city was over-ridden by zombies and you managed to get yourself to a gun store.  You'll want to have known how to load, aim, and shoot a gun in that situation, right?"


"Or think of this analogy. Even though most cars are automatic, there are still some cars with manual transmissions--like our old Mazda. And even though both our current cars are automatic it would be smart for you to know how to drive stick. Say you have a friend that drives you to a party and she gets sick. You want to drive her home but her car is a stick! See?!"

"Or if the party is overrun by zombies and the only car to escape in is a stick."


Anyhoo, at the shooting range, we were both thrown off by how loud it was (it was indoors) despite our earphones. Between that and the fact that neither of us had shot real bullets--getting muffled instructions on loading a .22 caliber rifle was a bit surreal.  Fortunately, it had very little kickback so the girl was okay with it.

I managed to get all my 8 bullets in the red zone but not quite on the "X". I hope it doesn't take such precision to take down a zombie:

Paul was more familiar with rifles, having had some experience growing up in Nebraska:

Funny, I would have thought there'd be more than three rules:

Professor X also let me and Paul try his .44 Magnum revolver.  Unfortunately I was total novice holding it:

As evidenced by my bruised thumb and gunpowder detritus:

Also, this .44 magnum has a LOT more kick than the .22 rifle.  It was like a little cannon, complete with a burst of fire out of the barrel.  I have to admit, the firepower of this revolver was pretty intimidating and nearly jumped out of my hands.  Or it might have been me nearly jumping out of my skin.  Needless to say one round of it was enough for me.  Going back to the .22 was nearly like a toy afterward.

It was interesting to look around and see that it was somewhat a diverse group in the shooting range.  It was mostly men, but age and race varied.  There were a few couples, include a young one in matching USC Gamecock t-shirts.  There was also a father and his two teen kids in the booth next to us and I have to say, whatever the dad was firing was crazy loud--I want to say louder than the .44 revolver.

Also I would say the attitudes varied as well.  On the one hand, there was Professor X who not only had the unloaded .44 magnum in a locked case, but also an additional lock around the trigger.  Then on the other hand, there was a car in the parking lot with a bumper sticker that said "Keep Honking, I'm Reloading".

We finished out the day with a nice salmon dinner at The Mediterranean Tea Room:

A great way to end a day of new experiences.


Tomb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pound said...

dang all you need to do now is to go to a nascar race...