Shooting in Nirvana

I was not a good shot with a pistol. My usual pattern was down and to the right of where I am aiming. In my wisdom, or lack thereof, I had concluded that I don’t squeeze the trigger properly. I don’t squeeze with the pad of my trigger finger, but rather in the crook of the first knuckle. For the longest time I compensated by aiming at a point up and to the left of what I wanted to hit, and that worked for four shots, and then didn’t.

I have decided to obtain my CCW License, and realized that I better improve at the “hitting what I aim at” idea, and went to the shooting range for some much needed practice.  Down and to the right, down and to the right, no matter what I did, nothing changed. I noticed that the guy in the booth next to me was nailing his target, and shooting five shot patterns that looked looked like Bachelor Buttons, gaping holes in the target.

“Nice shooting”, I said. “Thanks”, was the non-boastful answer. We spoke for some time and he finally asked me if I could access Youtube, and suggested that I look up a “Focus on the Front Sight” video, by an ex-Navy Seal. I was completely blown away by this video (no pun intended). The rest, as they say, is History.  The videographer is Chris Sajnog (pronounced Saw – nog), and I recommend that anyone wanting to shoot straight, have a look at his work.

I shoot straight, I grip right and stand right. No more “down and to the right”.

Music Moves Me

 

Someone asked me the other day if I liked music. “I love music”, I answered. Why do you love music? “Because it moves me”, I said. The answer just came out of the blue, but for some reason, I knew my answer was true, but even I needed to know why. When I got home I went to my Youtube List, and started to listen to the music that I love.

So what moves me here. 1) The audience’s clammor for the three striking singers as they walked in. 2) Almost from the first chord my eyes started to tear up, and my mouth formed a smile. 3) The audience kissing and hugging eachother, smiling, crying, one person openly sobbing. 4) The spontaneous participation of the audience ranging from 5 years to 80+ years. 5) Rieu’s stimulating violin. 6) The presentation of the notes by the young women, filling their lungs and pressing the notes to higher and higher harmoneous perfection. 7) The lyrics.

And why does this move me? 1.) The adulation of a crowd who revere these two men as much as I do, numbering enough to fill Shea Stadium in New York. 2) I dare anyone to listen to this and not move their body and grin til it hurts. 3) the deafening roar of appreciation from the crowd.

For some reason I watched this season and I fell in love with this young lady. I am moved by her music and her 1) Raspy Rock and Roll Voice, that is strong, but not screechy and screamy like most young singers today. 2) her femininity and sexuality provide a warmth to her voice that makes me want to hug her (and not in a dirty old man, perveted way). 3) Her willing desire to sing a song for the value of the story and the feelings it evokes.

Turn your volume up to listen to this marvelous aria.

There is a purity to this voice that is very hard to describe, but each time I hear “Nessun Dorma” from Turandot I sob like a baby. I have since my mother introduced me to it as a boy, along with “Oh Mimi” from La Boheme, “The Flower Duet”, from Lakmé and many more.

Music Moves Me.

Dear Naomi Osaka – You’re A Winner

Dear Naomi,

I’m not a tennis fan, but I am particularly disenchanted with your US Open Finals opponent and the crowd that watched you triumphantly defeat her. (That should clear the air). I do want you to know that you are a winner, and I applaud you for your stunning win over your opponent. What happened after the final set point was outrageous and reprehensible.
Having to deal with a cheating opponent, breaking rackets, calling out judges, playing the race card and playing the #metoo card, all in one heated irrational tantrum is more than your should have had to withstand to seal your win.
What happened, Dear Naomi, was that a petulant, elitist, brute and her adoring mob of followers and her hand-signaling coach were hell bent on a come-back win to show the world that she could have a child and still return to the number one slot. I’m not saying that she couldn’t, but I am saying that she didn’t, and because she didn’t she had to blame others for her lack of performance, and try to steal your thunder at the awards ceremony. This is what petulant elitists do with impunity; you are probably too young to remember John McEnroe.
My purpose in writing this is make sure you understand that you beat her fair and square, you bested her that day and you are going to go on doing that for many years to come. You are a star in every sense and the fact that you endured that cheesy public display and went on to win makes your star shine even brighter. Excellent, excellent job.

Sincerely
Dick Jacobsen

EVACUATION

The first I heard the word Evacuation, in the form of a directive from higher authority, was in 1979 during the Iranian Revolution. I was living in a remote village in southern Iran on a construction project that had at least five more years to complete. I was aware that the revolution was in full swing, but my sense was that the Shah would be ousted, the Mullah’s would move in and everything would be back to normal. There were signs that the situation was getting hostile, so when the company finally said leave, I was ready. Life as I knew it was about to change drastically. I was never to return; my job, our only source of income was gone; I had no home so there was no place to go. My young wife and I were adrift.

We were young and foolish, full of confidence and adventure and ready to face whatever came, so we decided to take a six week vacation and tour Europe. I don’t really remember thinking about, fretting about or worrying about what was to come next. We were smart enough to realize that what was happening to us was completely beyond our control, and we could only make the best of what we could control.

Now, 39 years later, the call came again in the form of a mandantory evacuation due to the Carr Fire in the Trinity/Shasta county forest area. We didn’t have a lot of time, so we finished our dinner, gathered up the dogs, vital papers, three days of clothes and left quickly. Our plan was to drive south and find the first hotel that would take our pets , ride out the storm and deal with the consequences later. I felt eerily calm and resolute. Again, everything was out of our control. At stake this time, however was, our retirement home, 40 years of memories and priceless (to us) collectibles; in other words all we had worked for. I knew that I, my wife and my dogs would live through it.

On our 2nd day of evacuation, our local TV weatherman posted a map, showing where the fire was and what the containment levels were.  The fire was barreling toward our home and we were resolved that we were about to lose everything except our insurance policy. On day four of evacuation the weatherman updated his map and low and behold our home appeared to be spared. Fire had raged all around us, but through the smoke and ashes we could see that our property had been spared. It took us six more days to get to our property, but get home we did. What did we learn, or re-learn, about evacuations, in the process.
1. As long as you have your life, everything is going to be alright. It may take you awhile to figure out the where’s, why’s and how’s, but you will and life will go on. Heed evacuation orders, nothing is more valuable than your life and the lives of those you love.
2. Fretting and stewing is a natural reaction to stress, but preparation, heeding instructions and an excellent insurance policy goes a long way to releaving much if not most of the stress.
3. Have the things you value most identified and listed, and have managable containers available and ready for quick and easy use.
4. Some valuables are unmanagable in the short time period you have to evacuate from a fire. Photograph, document and evaluate these items and keep this information with your valuable papers and documents.

To All The Girls I’ve Loved Before

Well I just received my “23andMe” reports on my Ancestral DNA. The reports have confirmed many of my presupposed ideas that my heratige is 53% Scandanavian; 12% British/Irish (bringing in the Viking element), 28% French/German, and the remainder broadly Northwestern European. I already knew this as a result of my one and only trip to Denmark where I was able to trace three generations of Scandahouves on my father’s side (going back to the early 1800). The Vikings landed in Ireland/England in the early days.

Apparently I also contain 283 of 2,872 Neanderthal Variants (nearly 10%) , which is higher than 58% of 23andMe’s other customers (the most being 400). What does that mean? I probably have straight hair, which I do. I’m probably tall, which I guess I am at 6′-2″. I don’t know much about the other 281, they didn’t go into that much detail.

The 10% Neanderthal Variants thing started me thinking though. This means somebody in my family tree swung down and had sex with a Neanderthal at least 40,000 years ago, and I’m still taking the hit for it today.

So…..to all the girls I’ve loved before, especially those of you who screamed “You Neanderthal”, at the end of our date, you were right. Who knew.

Memorial Day and Red Meat

BBQ

All you self righteous pundits who have played the guilt cards and chastised us this Memorial Day, about Bar-B-Ques, parties and such, GET A GRIP. It is true that Memorial Day has a much deeper meaning, but you miss the point. Ten to one most of them have not lived through a war that threatened the very base of those outdoor pastimes. I lived through WWII as a child, praying our boys would “beat the hun”, that they would be safe in doing so, and selfishly worrying if I was going to be okay. Red meat was a rarity in our home during the war, and Bar-B-Ques were unheard of. For over four long years of my childhood, the war slogged on, our boys persevered and were victorious. I remember how glorious was the day the war was over.

Every Memorial Day I find the best piece of beef I can afford, throw it on the Bar-B-Que and let it smoke and sizzle. I savor the juicy meaty flavor and firery aromas and thank God and every Allied soldier, that has laid down his life for my right to indulge.

So……you snowflake talking heads, who want to make me feel bad about celebrating Memorial Day with a Bar-B-Que, listen up. Unless you are a vegan, (which you probably are), next Memorial Day (one of the two biggest BBQ days in America, and there is a reason for that) go out and buy the best piece of red mead you can afford, grill it up and salute the great men and women of our great society that have given their lives for you and the freedom you have to do that. Stop the guilt crap for crying out loud.