Wednesday, May 15, 2013


Today, Allahu Akbar!, the plan is to drive to New Hampshire and pick up my older son from college and bring him home for the beginning of his summer break.

I say "Allahu Akbar!" partly because it is tasty and feels peppy, but mostly because the drive means I can once again sidestep the pile of shirts I have washed but have yet to iron. I made a start and ironed four or five yesterday, but the work is not only somewhat tedious but also dispiritingly tiring. How the hell can running an iron around be tiring ...

That's ridiculous!

Ridiculous, but also (shit!) true.

Besides offering an opportunity to procrastinate and the enjoyment I foresee in linking up with a son I like, the drive opens a couple of doors to whimsy. I like whimsy ... doing stuff that has no special importance ... doing stuff "just because."

In this case, the drive to New Hampshire means that I can buy my younger son a rocket -- a Fourth of July firework. New Hampshire sells fireworks where Massachusetts, where I live, makes them illegal. I would like to buy it as a present to mark my younger son's upcoming graduation from military basic training ... something a little off the wall (and naughtily illegal) and yet something, in years past, he always wanted to have on the holidays marked with ooohs and ahhhhs and big noises. It's naughty and could get me arrested, theoretically, but it's got some zip and strikes me as worth the risk.

The other thing I would like to do for no particular reason is to visit a gun store in New Hampshire. There are several on the route to my son's college. I don't own a gun or have an overwhelming desire to purchase or shoot one, but a friend of mine likes guns and has complained that he hardly goes shooting any more at his local range because ammunition is in short supply.

Gun owners are hoarding ammunition because replacement ammunition is not readily available, he says. In a capitalist society, the idea that a much-desired item would not be for sale is odd: You'd think some businessman would fill the gap and restock gun store shelves, but apparently this is not the case and I would like to hear a gun-store owner's take on why this might be so, if it is. Some suspect that since the Newtown, Conn.,  elementary school slaughter Dec. 14, 2012, -- a horror that 'horrified' politicians who want to get re-elected -- the government has been cornering the market: They won't pass meaningful legislation (the past proves that), but if there's no ammunition available and no effort to find out why, well, politicians are off the hook and the guns fall a bit more silent. Anyway, that's the rumor and I want to see if a gun store owner, who must be feeling the financial pinch, has any substantive proof or whether the deliciousness of a Big Brother speculation convinces him.

It's all whimsy ... but it gets me out from under the ironing for a while. I have an excuse -- going to pick up my son -- and I intend to milk it.


  1. Ammunition In Short Supply Across Nation

    May 15, 2013
    CNHI News Service

    CUMBERLAND, Md. — A shortage of ammunition has caused inventories at sporting goods stores across the country to drop to record low supplies.

    Shop owner Jim Wiegand said his inventory of rifle ammunition has been depleted.

    “We don’t have nothing. We can’t get nothing. We don’t expect to get nothing,” Wiegand said this week.

    It's been that way for a few months, he said. “The manufacturers are saying it will be a year to a year and a half before supplies are back.”

    The bare ammo cupboard at Bassin’ Box reflects a national dearth that began with the November re-election of President Barack Obama that caused shooters and hunters to anticipate restrictions on guns and ammunition, according to an article on CNN Money.

    That concern became frantic following the mass-murder of school children in Connecticut and gun control legislation that followed on the national level and in some states.

    “We sold 3,000 boxes of .22 (caliber) ammo in 2 1/2 days,” Wiegand said, referring to the run on shells following the introduction of gun control bills in the Maryland General Assembly.

    Wiegand said he has orders into manufacturers, but is not optimistic they will be filled any time soon.

    The websites of large online ammunition vendors, such as Cabelas, indicate that the popular rifle calibers such as .308 would be backordered with an estimated shipping date of 10 to 11 weeks.

    Some sites are restricting the number of boxes that may be bought per customer per day. Cabelas limits buyers to five boxes of Federal .243 caliber, for example.

    Dan McKenzie at Moore’s Gun Shop in Cresaptown, Md., said the store has no pistol ammo and no .22 ammunition, including .22 magnum shells.

    “Customers are going everywhere and anywhere to find what they need,” McKenzie said. “Some of them are driving two or three hours away if they find a place that has their caliber.”

    A Missouri vendor told CNN that a massive civilian arsenal buildup is taking place.

    Not surprisingly, the cost of ammunition has increased dramatically.

    “The places that sold out first were the ones with the lowest prices,” said Wiegand at the Bassin’ Box.


    Details for this story were provided by Cumberland (Md.) Times-News.

  2. More on Ammo:

    Evidently even law enforcement departments around the nation are suffering just as badly as hunters and gun hobbyists. Also in the video report linked to below is a statement that Homeland Security is planning to buy a billion rounds in the next few years.

    A billion rounds for Homeland Security??!
    Holy Sh*t!
    I am feeling less and less secure all the time.

  3. Be interested to read what the gun store owners have to say; if they know any more than anyone else.

    BTW -- If you're really motivated as well as curious, you might learn something more at the W. Springfield, MA Militaria Show June 1 & 2

    1305 Memorial Avenue
    West Springfield, MA

    600 TABLES


  4. I'm paranoid enough to remember the oil embargo of the 70's, a fraud perpetrated on the people to raise prices and profits.