Saturday, March 24, 2012

Gun Show Saturdate

"Do I look like I'm ready for a gun show?" He plops on his favorite Whitefish, Montana cap and stands there in his khaki cargo pants, rust Henley shirt with olive drab short sleeved overshirt and olive drab vest with 100 pockets. His shoulder bag with another 100 pockets is slung over his left shoulder. His blue eyes twinkle and the beard on his chin is as white as the snow. His droll mouth is even drawn up like a bow. We had to get up really early for this. We want to be there before the dealers have all bought from one another to stock their tables and upped the prices.

I am a gun owner. My husband is. My son is. My daughter doesn't own one...yet. We enjoy target shooting together. It's a fun family activity we can do together without spending too much money unless you choose to.

So when the gun show comes to town in spring, we are there...in case we choose to. But mostly we just look around, buying only when something looks like a good deal. There's usually something there to catch the eye, even if it's just a new case.

This is a big event here and draws lots of people: men and women; and families with well behaved kids who don't touch, don't whine, don't have to be carried, and aren't sticky. For some reason they know how to behave here, or maybe these are the parents that have it figured out.

Every available piece of real estate is sporting a pickup truck and every truck is adorned with a plethora of bumper stickers - great bumper stickers proclaiming freedom, pride in America, fairness, love of country, and work ethic.
"Your fair share is not in my wallet" seems to be popular here.

We walk to the front doors of the Armory and pay before we step out on the paper covered gym floor.

Just inside the door a bearded man is bellowing "Breakfast dogs wooo-oooo! Another breakfast dog down! We need more breakfast dogs!". People are buying steamy red hot dogs and piling on the onions and bacon bits to start their day right. We've already had a hearty bagel egg and cheese sandwich at MacDonald's so we're set to go!

We start our rounds of the hundreds of tables covered with about anything you can imagine even remotely associated with survival and hunting. My husband has his routine so that he doesn't miss any display or sale...start on the left (is that because he's left handed? Because I'd like to start on the right.), up the left most table against the wall, back on the other side of the aisle on the second table. Weaving up and down, up and down. The first show I ever went to I looked on both sides of the aisle glancing back and forth in one trip up the aisle. Wrong. I had to go back the way we'd come while he looked on the other side, so I was seeing everything twice....or not at all, according to my husband. I don't think he's right, but evidently the rest of the crowd agrees with him. So I do it his way now.

Cute little derringers catch my attention. I don't have one of those yet. Some women must like to be known as girly-girl gun owners. There are enticements obviously meant for the feminine set: bullet replica earrings and necklaces, and camo vests with pink polar fleece. There are pink gripped .22s. A dad's buying one for his daughter that looks like a combat rifle in pink camo...obviously meant to blend in with her Barbie dollhouse.

Pink for girls.
When my back gets tired I find a place to sit down and write, and my husband makes his second trip around to rethink potential purchases. He's seen everything and knows the prices so can now go back and decide whether or not he's making a purchase today. Somehow he always remembers where he saw things and can go right back to the spot. Often that's on a third trip. Usually he comes to find me before the final round begins in case I'm hungry. Really he wants to let me know he hasn't left without me. The excitement of a gun purchase could do that. I reassure him I'm okay and that he can continue to take his time perusing the firearms.

After my writing break, I head back to the floor to see if I can spot him. I'm looking for an over 50's male with white/gray hair and beard with an olive green hat, olive drab shirt and olive drab vest.
That narrows the field down to half the crowd.

1 comment:

  1. Donna, you just have the most delicious sense of humor. This is both interesting and fun to hear the comments here and there, like that last line of course-"That narrows the field down to half the crowd." Fun, fun!

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