Thursday, February 23, 2012

Winterfest Pictures

Jaclyn and I wreckin' shop in the kitchen

There was a ton more food yet to show up...

One of our landowners, Jeff Smith with Ron.

What was left of my little brother Joe's excellent deer steak.
He might be an airhead, but he can cook.

Ron givin' out some door prizes.

Joe and Spangler followed the splittails all night. Whodathunkit?

Sunday, February 19, 2012


Another Winterfest come and gone....

Our annual trek up to Ron's house for his Winterfest party yielded the usual awesome food, ample adult beverages and tons of laughs and good times. This was the 7th official year that he's hosted the party, basically a mid-winter cure for cabin fever. Lemme tell ya, if you go away from Winterfest hungry, sober and angry, it's yer own damn fault. Plenty of good stories told, and we even had time for a low-stakes game of Hold-'em.

Even though some of us were nursin' hangovers this mornin', we spent the afternoon blowin' shit up. A buddy of ours had a clay-bird thrower and figgered we outta burn some gunpowder. It's a damn shame that I wasn't prepared for that kinda thing, or I woulda brought more guns and ammo to play with. As it was, we had five shotguns and four pistols at our disposal, so we made the most of what we had. Wish I'da had the foresight to take some video and pictures, but shit happens. Regardless, we had a damn good time.

A weekend well spent in  food place with good friends... never a bad thing.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Wednesday Grind

As much as I hate to do it, my Wednesday and Friday music segments are gonna have to get tabled for the foreseeable future. Postin' links and video are a bitch to do on this phone, which is currently my only source of internet. I also don't have reception at the new job for the rare occasion of havin' nothin' else to do, and by the time I get home, I have other things that need attention.

I'm just as bummed as the two of you are, trust me. I love me some good heavy shit on a Wednesday.

In the meantime though, the fine folks over at GGDF can sate your metal desires...

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The adventure continues...

A few quick and random observations from my first two days at the new job...

- Gettin' up at 5am for anything other than huntin' is for the birds. I don't much care for goin' to bed by 9pm either. Although doing both regularly will make gettin' up to hunt easier.

- My skills (or lack thereof) with a skidloader need to improve, quickly.

- I'm havin' severe withdrawl of the internet in general and blogs in particular, both readin' and writin'.

- I'll like my new boss a lot better when I don't have to rely on him to answer questions to shit I don't know.

- Neccesito apprender hablo Espanol (or somethin' to that effect).

- My brain and body are gettin' a major wake-up call. After essentially spendin' my whole life as an 8-5 desk jockey, all this walkin' will hopefully whip my ass into shape. On that note...

- I don't have time to snack, somethin' I did faithfully to pass time in the office.

- It doesn't matter how large a farm is... Somethin' is still bound to be redneck-rigged together.

- Feedin' newborn calves ain't as fun as it looks like. Neither is bein' shoulder-deep in a cow's ass to make sure she's indeed pregnant (weird cow fact: you can feel an unborn calf through the intestinal wall).

- Irate cows are much better than irate people.

- I miss my old co-workers. I sure as shit don't miss my old job.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Movin' on

Startin' Monday, I'll be takin' on life's next great adventure. I accepted a position as a Dry Cow Herdsman at Mason Dixon Farms, one of the largest dairy farms east of the Mississippi. In simple terms, pregnant cows stop gettin' milked a few weeks or months before they have their calves. Those are the animals that I'll be responsible for, anywhere from 200-600 animals at any given time.

For many years, MDF has been on the forefront of technology and research in the dairy industry, as a Google search will quickly reveal. As large as it's become, however, it's still a family-owned farm. After spendin' the last few years jumpin' through hoops for some faceless bobblehead in Denver, it'll be a nice change of pace to regularly exchange pleasantries with the head men.

This'll be quite a jump, as my professional life to date has more or less revolved around newspapers, computers and design. All things considered though, it's significantly more money, access to thousands of acres of prime huntin' land, and hopefully more physically and mentally stimulatin' that what I've been dealin' with here. I've never been entirely comfortable in an office environment, so hopefully this job will feel more at home for me. I've worked with some great people here and I'm sure to miss them,  but I sure won't miss all the corporate bullshit that came with it.

I apologize in advance, because my postin' (and readin') of blogs might go a little light for awhile. I won't be spendin' much time at a computer with my new position, which is a blessing and a curse.

Friday Honky-tonk

There ain't much better than ol' Junior Brown with a guitar. I could listen to him pick for hours...

Recorded live in Michigan in 2003. You won't find a studio cut anywhere that I could find, but you can find a similar live track from '05's Live at the Continental Club.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Spring Hill Song Dogs, Part 2

More photos from they coyote-huntin' gang up around Ron's house. As of Sunday, they were up to 16 dogs for the year. Keep it up, fellas!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Makin' the rounds on Facebook....

Some things I thought I'd share with you.

Some humor, from Hoagy:
The Pope and obama are on the same stage in Yankee Stadium in front of a huge crowd.

The Pope leans towards obama and said, "Do you know that with one little wave of my hand I can make every person in this crowd go wild with joy? This joy will not be a momentary display, but will go deep into their hearts and they'll forever speak of this day and rejoice!"

obama replied, "I seriously doubt that! With one little wave of your hand.... Show me!"

So the Pope backhanded him and knocked him off the stage!

AND THE CROWD ROARED & CHEERED WILDLY and there was happiness throughout the land!
And a more serious matter, from Jaclyn:

Wednesday Grind

I know I just did Maiden a month or two ago, but fuck it.... I'm doin' it again. I could listen to Maiden seven days a week, 365 days a year and not get enough.

Live track's from '02's Rock In Rio DVD, recorded live on 19 January, 2001. The original track is from '81's Killers.

Horns Up!  \m/     \m/

Monday, February 6, 2012

Happiness is some trigger time

Checked out the 500 project gun with the buckshot, then ran a few rounds through the .357 revolver and emptied a few mags through the .380. Hardly organized but a helluva fun way to burn an hour and piss off the neighbors.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

The weatherman is an asshole

Yup. Slight chance of rain in the morning, clear in the afternoon. Nice prediction, you asshat.
Yes, that's about a quarter inch of ice and snow stuck on my windshield. Not quite a butt-puckerer, but not the funnest ride home.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Friday Honky-tonk

Recorded live on 20 November, 2011 at Clifton Park, NY. He's got a ton of live footage out there, but unfortunatly most of it's cell phone quality. For that reason, here's the studio cut for ya too...
I won't list the studio album though, since it was released more or less a "fuck you" from Curb Records to Hank III.

If you've never had a chance to see him live, make time and get it done. Basically he plays three sets; a traditional county set, a rockabilly set, and then a speed/doom metal set. Most of his shows are anywhere from three to four hours... he makes sure you get your money's worth. Schlongie and I went to a show about five or six years ago, and it was fuckin' awesome. I wasn't quite as much into the speed/doom metal at that point in my life, so we took off after the Hellbilly set. I've been tryin' to get a chance to see him again ever since, but I just haven't been able to make it work yet.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

The Mossberg 500 project

The "before" picture. This ol' gal has shot hundreds of ducks
and geese in her day, among other critters.
A little bit of a back story first....

For as long as I can remember, there's been a Mossberg 500 layin' around our house. Dad's always had one for a primary or backup bird gun, and he's got another one rigged up specifically as a slug gun for deer huntin'.

Perhaps I'm biased for that reason, but I'm rather partial to 'em. They've got a great history and a tradition of dependability. There are other good all-purpose shotguns out there, but O.F. Mossberg and Sons does it just as good, if not better, than the others.

I'm not sure where this particular gun's story begins, as Dad bought it used after retirin' his first 500 for reasons I can't recall. Shortly thereafter, he won a Mossberg 835 from a gun drawing, so the 500 was primarily used by me and Jesse. Long story short, Jesse wound up with his own 835 as a graduation gift, so I wound up as the sole user of the 500.

A few years back though, it started actin' up. Nothin' major, but every now and then it would go into full auto mode; basically, as soon as the forearm was locked back into place after I pumped it, it would fire another shell regardless of what my trigger finger was doin'. It would have been awesome if it was controlable or predictable, but it was neither. A few months later I picked up another 500 at an auction, so the ol' warrior went to the rack and stayed there.

Since then, it's only come off for the occasional cleanin', so when I was at the gun show on Sunday and saw a tactical home defense kit for a good price, I spontaneously decided that the ol' warrior needed a new cause.

Now, don't get me wrong... I don't really live in fear where I'm at. We're in the sticks, and with my grandparents at the bottom of the hill and my aunt next door, there's almost always someone around to keep an eye on things. Alas, it seems that home invasions and overall thefts are up in the area, and there are some crazy fuckin' people out there. Havin' a reliable shotgun within easy reach is cheap security in an uncertain society.

The Ultimate Arms Gear kit I picked up is not top of the line, but from tinkerin' with it, seems to be well-built and relatively rugged. Only time will tell on that, and given the fact that I won't be usin' this gun on a regular basis, should be more than enough. The stock has five adjustable positions and included a 5-shell holder and a pretty stout recoil pad. Five minutes and two hex-head screws takes it to a plain pistol grip if that's whatcha want. The forearm has three Weaver rails, two of them removable. Installation was a cinch... it took me longer to get the old wood furniture off than it did to throw everythin' else on.

I had a buddy who does metal work whack down an old barrel we had layin' around from 26" to 18", which is the legal limit without havin' to jump through hoops. To finish it off, I picked up a new fiber optic sight to replace the bead that was cut off, and a cheap laser sight from Hellmart. And by cheap, meanin' it probably won't hold a zero after the first three shots. However, the reviews on it were decent, the price was right and a potential burglar likely won't want to take chances when he discovers the red dot on his chest, zeroed or not. Either way, I'm gonna put that 1-year warranty to the test. Last but not least, the beast needed to be fed. To feed it, I picked up a box of Federal Premium 00 buckshot.

Overall, it was a quick, cheap conversion from a rack rider to a closet queen. I won't lie, I did sleep a bit better last night knowin' that it could be in my hands and ready to roll in a matter of seconds. The gun is pretty old and worn, but it's one endearing quality is that it's never failed to fire. Ever. That's a good quality to have in a home defense gun. Couple that with a whole new look, and I'm pretty pleased with how it worked out.

Now that it's done, let's hope I never need to use it for what it's rigged up to do.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Wednesday Grind

Live cut's from 5 August, 2006 at Wacken Open Air Festival. Original track is from '80's Ace Of Spades.

Horns Up!  \m/     \m/