Friday, December 22, 2006

Tonight: Completely buzzed

Yeah, okay, so being now sober I feel like I had to edit the drunkposings that were posted here earlier.

This weekend, Saturday, I actually felt GOOD and healthyish! For the first time in what seems like forever I didn't feel like I was going to drown in my own lung secretions. It was great.

Heck of a busy week at work, being the week before Christmas, you would think it would be pretty quiet, but it was not the case. I cam home prety tired on Tuesday, but was looking forward to the Micros Northeast Christmas party, which I had missed for like four years running. They take over half a restaraunt, open menu, open bar, from 6pm till closing time.

Scott and I went.

Well, we had a great time.tons of people, all of them quite nice. We both took advantage of the open bar, and as the proprietor said to me later regarding scott, "That kid can DRINK!" We talked with a ton of people, ate and drank an awful lot. There was a woman there named Tracy who I thought was John's wife at first, and she was a climber so we chatted about that. I decided to play at flirting, something I could never do in college or high school, because she was unattached. I hope I don't have to say that I never had any intention of actually having it lead anywhere, what with me being already married to the best person in the world, just that it amused me to practice something I've never been good at. It was fun, and I considered myself quite dashing, but it was probable in reality, that I was drooling on myself or something. I wish that Molly could have come, it would have been nice to a) have some nice party time with her b) stay with her in a nice hotel, sans children present and show her off as trophy wife #1 at the party.

Scott and I stayed till about 1AM, where I called a cab to take us back to the hotel. Poor Scott could hardly walk. I poured some asprin and water into him and crashed... but oddly couldn't sleep much. Read on the internets for a while, slept a couple of hours, and got up at 6:30 for some nice room service breakfast ( I was starving).

Good time, I will make it a point to go next year! (Hopefully with Molly?)

Monday, December 18, 2006

So Ive been sick...

Since coming back from RSNA after Thanksgiving.

Started out with fever, chills, and a bad chest cough and congestion... After 1 ER visit and two Dr visits, it finally seems to be clearing up, three weeks later.

Never ever go to a medical convention- you just dont know what youll pick up.

And yes, my apostrophe key seems to be broken.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Mythbusters with kids

So the kids are playing "Mythbusters"... a show that qualifies as N and my favorite show. Today's myth is "A boy was throwing a medium-heavy ball straight up, and it hit him on the head!"

I play Jamie Hyneman (Well, my name *is* James) and give him testing criteria.

First, scale up, start with small objects. Second, throw it up until it hits you on the head.

hilarity ensues

Myth, Plausible!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

"How to cook a turkey" by a 4 year old girl.


a potato
a banana

Mix them up with a spoon. Use a bowl to mix them in. Put in a special container. Put it in the oven. When it's done, you take it out and give to all your friends!

Very long!

Very hot!

Rachel Ray, eat yer fuckin heart out.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

New holster for the 340

I've been trying to find an OWB holster for the 340 for when it gets sick of being in my pocket. I know that if you are going to carry a gun on a belt that you should chose a bigger gun than a 5 shot lightweight .357, but this one is more likely to "be there" than the many other candidates in my safe.

So far I've only found the Desantis 55L Lightning holster, built specifically for hammerless small revolvers. Only thing I don't like is a semi-exposed trigger, and the fact that it seems to make the gun look really long, and bigger than it really is. And the thumbstrap.

Other than that, I like it. We'll see how it works after it arrives.

Note To Self: Gun Vault Manual and reset instructions


Backup of manual:

Programming Your Access Code

There is a soft “beep” sound and a brief light with each keypad entry. Enter the factory-default, from left to right: one, two, three, The door will open.

Leave the door open. Find the Learn Button (see above).

Press and hold the Learn Button for two seconds. You should see the green light and hear the two-tone beep – the unit is now in “learn” mode.

Enter your new code. The light will remain green. Press and hold the Lean button again for two seconds. The light will turn red, and you will hear a beep. Release the Learn Button. While the light is red, enter your new code a second time to confirm it. Press and hold the Learn Button a third time for two seconds. Release the Learn button. The light will blink green five times. And you will hear five beeps, confirming that the new code has been accepted. If the red light blinks three times with three soft beeps at this point, and error has occurred. Just start over by depressing the Learn Button for two seconds.

help from someone else:
Yep. Been there done that. Start by pulling the batteries out for a full 30 sec. Replace the batteries and start over. Press the "learn button" per the manual and follow the rest of the instructions. When you enter the code you need to do it quickly and press the "learn button" within 5 sec max. I called them the first time I tried to program the safe and the gentleman said that the unit will become "confused" with multiple attempts to program. Pulling the power will reset the unit and allow you to program the code. I used one hand to hit the learn button and other to enter the code. Good luck. If you still have issues, give them a call. They are part of Cannon Safes now.

Notes and help from

Saturday, November 18, 2006


N had another Migrane this morning. he said it was not a usual one, rather it was in his eyeball, and it hurt inside and out. We got 2 tsp tylenol in him, he didn't vomit, and seemed to be better in an hour or so.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Smith and Wesson 340PD Range Report and Review

This is the first new revolver I’ve ever bought. All of my other ones were bought used, and were built in the 1970s, 80s or early 90s. I had never bought a revolver with an internal lock, but I wanted this gun so much that the lock became a non-factor.

Picking it up out of the box, it is light as hell. I remember the first time I ever picked up a 340pd a year or so ago, it felt like it was made out of plastic. It practically jumped up from the table… of course I had been carrying an old Model 60 snubby, an all stainless gun that weighed in at around sixty pounds. Felt like the hard rubber Hogue type stocks were at least half the weight of the gun, so I replaced them with my much more handsome and carryable Ahrends Cocobolo stocks.

Hearing some negative things about new guns from S&W, I carefully inspected it from all angles, looking for scratches, nicks, dents or anything of the like. It appeared to be in very good shape, except for the white lettering stamped into the barrel. The “357 S&W Mag” marking was stamped well into the barrel, but the white anodizing was very faint, where it was bright and clear on both the “No less than 120 gr bullet” and the funky S&W atom logo thingy.

Dry firing the 340pd was not comforting exactly, and the trigger pull was considerably stiffer than the model that I had tried in the store. You have to overcome serious initial resistance before the trigger moves back in one swift movement and the hammer releases. It is difficult to pull the trigger slowly and in a controlled way due to the stiff initial pull- once you put that much pressure on it, when it gives, it goes back all the way. After dry firing it a few hundred times, the trigger becomes much smoother, with a more controllable pull back. Later on at the range I was able to smoothly pull the trigger back with no drama.

When the hammer falls it makes a non-confidence-inspiring “tinngggg” sound that resonates a little bit, very different from the solid bank-vault like CLICK that an old steel gun makes. In addition, it seemed to me to be too easy to release the trigger just short of the stop so when you pull it again it rotates the cylinder, but does not actually engage the internal hammer.

I can’t have a new gun in my possession for more than a few hours before firing it, so despite having a cold, and being pressed for time, on the way home I found an old dirt road, went a ways down and opened up the trunk to see what kind of ammo I could find. I found a bag of handloaded .38spl rounds that I knew to be pretty gentle- plinking rounds. The lighter powered rounds fired as expected, slight recoil, no big deal. A couple of Winchester White Box .38 +p Personal Protection rounds later proved that it was a good, controllable gun that I could put multiple shots on target, quickly.

When I finally got to the range a couple of weeks later I was ready with the WWB +p 125 grain, Speer 125 Grain .38spl +p, and Speer 125 Grain 357 magnum HP rounds, several water jugs, a chronograph, some targets and a shooting glove.

The first order of business was to chrono the three types of rounds and see if .357 was significantly better. At the same time I’d test the grouping and accuracy from a two handed, kneeling position. Based on strings of ten shots, the average velocity of all 125 grain bullets were as follows:

Winchester: 749.6 feet per second
Speer 38 +p: 826.1 feet per second
Speer .357: 1090.3 feet per second

Which means as far as energy delivered to target:

Winchester +p: 155.92 ft-lbs
Speer +p: 189.37 ft-lbs
Speer .357: 329.87 ft-lbs!!

Looks like .357 out of a snubby delivers TWICE as much energy to the target than .38+p! Clearly .357 out of a snubby is considerably more potent than .38+p, so so much for the myth of there being no difference between .38 and .357 out of a 2" barrel! I noted as well that the Speer was loaded a bit hotter than the Winchester. Now let’s look at the targets.

Winchester .38 +p Personal protection

Speer Gold Dot .38+p (Ignore the Winchester box, I put it there by mistake.)

Speer Gold Dot .357

Seems that the Speer gold dots grouped significantly better than the Winnies, but didja notice what happened to the accuracy with the .357? :D

Yeah I saw it and I felt it. .38 +p out or this gun is a piece of cake, and I wasn’t expecting .357 to be too much worse… but it was.

I noticed that when I shot the .357, the trigger guard would come up and hit my index finger right at the first knuckle. Didn’t dent it or make it bleed, but it was noticeable. Also noticeable was the kick on the pinkie finger as the grip flicked it out of the way during recoil. The gun otherwise seems to push right back instead of flip up. The first shot was surprisingly powerful, and stung my hand. The second shot stung more. The third shot actually hurt my wrist! And this was with a padded shooting glove on! No wonder my accuracy went to hell. 

So it seems that the best grouping and accuracy comes from the Speer GD .38+p, which is probably what I’ll run in it. I noted a small amount of bullet pull in the Speers, but not too much.

Let’s do a penetration test! I lined up some water jugs, Box-o-truth style.

The first shot skimmed the bottom, holed the first and third jugs, and disappeared, missing the second and fourth jugs. What the heck?
Lining them up again, a better shot penetrated two jugs just barely, leaving the fully expanded JHP nestled there.

I couldn’t leave without firing barehanded with the .357 rounds.
Eyyouch. I’m a righty, and shoot right handed. The gun slapped back with the first and second stunning rounds, and I became afraid of the third. By the fourth and fifth rounds I was actually pulling the gun back in anticipation of the recoil. Terrible, and I’m not at all recoil shy.

There was no actual blood, but there was considerable pain in the base knuckle in the index finger and the web of the hand. It actually made the index finger and pinkie pains go away in comparison. :p It took me a minute to recover to try another 5 rounds. I really could not do five rounds accurately, really no more than two before my sense of limb self-preservation made me undergo silly gymnastics to compensate for the recoil.

I took exactly one left handed shot- you can never tell if you will have to use your non-dominant hand. It was so bad, I couldn’t do another…unless my life depended on it I suppose. It is a few hours after I shot it and my left thumb still hurts as if I overextended it backwards, which I probably did. Just for fun with one of these shots I fired at a still full water jug that was coming right at me with a knife. It was entirely destroyed.

In conclusion, I think it’s a great gun, and easily controllable with .38 +P, but not controllable for me at any range with .357. Use with that round would be limited to card table distance, and no further- at least not for more than two shots. I am considering carrying it with 3 .38+p and two .357, in that order. The two .357 rounds are all I could fire accurately anyway, and the three .38+P would hopefully get any social work job done with maximum controllability nad speed in followup shots. I’d just have to remember that the last two are real kickers.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Advice for a new Baby, from some recent babies.

My brother in law had a new baby (thier first) a couple of days ago.

Molly had the kids dictate a letter to the new baby. The letters are as follows:

Nate's letter:

Dear Baby,

So, How's it going? We hope you're having a good time. We really hope you like it at Auntie Sally and Uncle Tom's house. Here are some things you need to know:

Your parents need to teach you how to be a good little kid.

You should eat properly with a spoon or a fork. And when you're a big kid you would need to learn how to eat with a knife.

You need to sleep in your own crib So when you sleep you need to not make so much noise. And you need to be real quiet when you're sleeping so you don't wake your parents up and get in trouble.

When you are friends with other people you need to be nice to them, you can't be mean because then they will hate you and you should tell mom.

Little baby, you should understand about toys.
Some toys are very delicate and some aren't delicate at all! Some are medium delicate, and medium-not-delicate.

And there is a special time called Christmas. And someone named Santa comes to your house at night pulling a sleigh with magical reindeer- he puts a train around your tree, then when you go downstairs in the morning there will be presents wrapped in wrapping paper!

When you are playing, you should be careful- if you play too rough, you might get really hurt... You might need stitches.

When you go to the doctor you might need shots.
You might get stitches, shots, pricks in your back, or a checkup. Or, you might just have a checkup, it is fine, they listen to your heart and weigh you and measure you.

Dear Baby, this is my biggest hope for you. I hope you stay calm and very brave when you go to the Doctor.

Love, Nate (Age 6.5)

Tess' letter:

Dear Baby,

I really love you on your first birthday.

I really want you to sleep in your bed, don't ever wake your parents up, and when you're thirsty just get some water.

You have to be patient with friends.

And when you are at the doctor's you have to be really still. And he puts things in the holes and it makes silly sounds. [editors note: what the fuck?]

You have to swallow when you are eating.

You have to play with toys so you might like to choke on one.

You have to peek carefully so don't wake up Mommy and Daddy and get in trouble. [editors note: I'm noticing a trend with the waking of the parents...]

Love, Tess (Age 3.5)

Monday, July 10, 2006

Firefly- Season 2?

Possibly the best thing going...

right here.

Put down your name! Show your support! Bring back Serenity and Crew!

Monday, June 12, 2006

Nice evening at the gravel pit

Sunset at the standish gravel pit. Almost looks like Sauron is out there, about to make an appearance.

I blew up a couple of cans of shaving cream and a can of spray paint. I used the 77/22, and the Ruger Bisley.

As usual, I came back with a small plastic bag filled with garbage. Posted by Picasa

Friday, June 02, 2006

Holy Crip it's a Crapple!

From the OT (9vapors):

Anyway, I once said something to a lady that parked in a handicapped spot, here goes:

John-"hey lady, you don't look handicapped"
Lady-"you do!"

She torched me, and I couldn't think of a comeback, so I just laughed. I learned my lesson, never to attempt to be good again...


Thursday, May 11, 2006

Fire Dept arrives

The Gorham FD lesurely puts out the smoulder Posted by Picasa

Pics of the fire area

Pics of the fire area: Posted by Picasa

New bikes and a brush fire

So I bought the wife n kidz new bikes this weekend. Nate got his first "big boy" bike with hand brakes and a grip shifter, and Tess got her first 2 wheel bike.... with training wheels of course. :) Molly got a nice comfy but light and pretty nice cruiser.

We found a parking lot to ride around was such a beautiful day, and Tess needed some gentle space to practice in. When we first got there Molly said that she thought she smelled smoke, and sure enough, I did too. We assumed that someone was burning leaves somewhere nearby.

We rode around for about twenty minutes, going around and around, the kids getting used to their new bling rides, and Nate and I are off in another part of the parking lot when Molly shouts out "James! There's a fire!!"

Sure enough, some bushes spontaneously caught fire in one of the parking lot islands. We called 911, the fire dept arrived and put it out. Posted by Picasa

Monday, May 08, 2006

Has it really been this long?

Has it?

I suppose it has.

In the intervening time, I have:

Had tear duct drain surgery

Loved my job

Hated my job

Bought a Glock

...and a colt defender

Traded my M60 .38 for a M38 Bodyguard

Seen Nate's first T-ball practice

Had Christmas at out house

Had my 40th b-day in a hotel near the data centre, working

Discovered a great Shootin' Pit just a few miles from home

Hunted with Tom again (saw deer, did not shoot)

And a lot of other stuff. Now that picassa can link photos to blogs, I will blog more stuff.