June 09, 2006

My newest idea!

It's something I've noticed for a while, that being the propensity of our Arabic friends to express joy through the indiscriminate firing of weaponry into the air. This photo of an Iraqi granny emptying the mag of a gat into the air in celebration of al-Zarqawi's devivification reminded me of this phenomenon.

Now then, while I think this is charmingly juvenile, being a guy and all, I think this only because I'm looking at it on a monitor and not having to dance around and dodge a hail of falling 9mm and 7.62mm slugs!

Ishmaelites! Peoples of the Desert! Falling bullets are DANGEROUS! You could be harming or killing people who don't need a good harming or killing!

Now then, again, it's not like I don't understand the allure, and it's actually not something that is strictly Arabic in nature. Back in the 18th Century, the idea of having a military celebration with a rattle of musket-fire was pretty common. The French called it a feu de joie, and all the cool armies did it, even folks such as our own Continental troops, who would be ordered on special occasions to let loose to celebrate days such a July 4, or when they went and did something really nifty like defeating Cornwallis.

BUT HERE'S THE DEAL--the quartermaster would issue blank cartridges to everyone, because even though the science of physics was still in its infancy, they still understood that dancing about to dodge a hail of .75 caliber lead balls falling from the sky really puts a damper on any celebration.

So, I propose that we institute a program whereby we assist the Iraqi people in procuring a sufficient store of blank cartridges that each family--including Mee-maw--would have a sufficient number of rounds to provide noisesome and gratifying celebratory gunfire, while limiting the amount of falling projectiles.

Posted by Terry Oglesby at June 9, 2006 11:24 AM


I will shortly expect a draft of the environmental impact assessment on your proposal. Also do you understand that blank ammo can cause significant burn wounds and hearing loss for those in near proximity to the discharge.

I tell you this so that you may avoid the ignominy of having dog poop dumped in your office and/or cubical, as the case may be, by an irate environmental and safety "activist" named Moonbeam.

Posted by: Larry Anderson at June 9, 2006 01:03 PM

Well, I understand that it's not the optimal solution, especially related to residual issues of noise, heat, and airborne pollutants. However, this should be treated as a lead abatement program, which is good because lead is harmful, and especially to the most vulnerable members of the population. Therefore, no matter how little impact it may have in reducing OTHER bad things such as deafness, it is still worth pursuing...FOR THE CHILDREN.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at June 9, 2006 01:14 PM

Sorry, your program wasn't clear to me.

Posted by: Larry Anderson at June 9, 2006 01:26 PM

About 10 years ago I worked at a drug treatment facility that was a few blocks from a public housing project. (Clever positioning, eh?) One New Year's Eve, some of us were outside listening to the gunfire welcoming the new year. It was like a firefight!

One of the clients had some familiarity with weapons (don't ask) and was saying under his breath, as we heard different guns firing, "MAC10, thirty-ought, MAC10, twenty-two ...." Etc. etc. Then we began to hear a pinging sound. We agreed it was probably safer indoors.

Pretty unnerving to be standing in the middle of a major American city and listening to all that.

Posted by: mike hollihan at June 9, 2006 01:46 PM

Sounds sorta like some of the schools I used to visit. We'd have complaints about roof leaks, and in most cases it was due to bullet holes.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at June 9, 2006 02:04 PM