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Old 10-21-2010, 06:21 PM   #1
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I shot Gary


Christmas was always a special time. It was the one time of the year that I could ask for something and probably get it. The trick was to ask for that '' one right thing'' because after ''one'' the probability of getting more ran out real quick.

Christmas, I had asked mom and dad for a BB gun for Christmas. Like the kid in ''You'll shoot your eye out'' I asked for a Daisy, Red Rider BB gun. On Christmas morning there was a special box under the Christmas tree and it had my name on the tag. I had to open other gifts first and that one came last. After the usual sox, and tee shirts,, and other ''stuff'' Dad handed me a long box that was kinda heavy and made a rattling noise....

With great determination and patience I slowly unwrapped the Christmas paper from one end of the box. On the end of the box it said ''Daisy'' and I knew it was not a flower.
I carefully opened the end of the box. For those of you that have never owned a Daisy, Red Ryder BB gun you have missed a most wonderful ''smell''. When you ''open the box'' the odor of oil and shellac rush out to fill your nostrils. It is an odor that every boy can identify above all others.
I reached in with two fingers and slid out a genuine Daisy, Red Ryder BB gun with a two power scope on top and a genuine leather strap on the saddle ring and a genuine compass embedded into the stock. I wanted to ''cry with happy'' but I did not. The gun was perfect and more than I had asked for because it had a genuine two power telescope on it and a piece of genuine leather on the saddle ring and a genuine compass embedded in the stock and the name ''Red Ryder'' was burned into the stock and not just ''pressed into the wood''. I was told that there were packs of BB's in the bottom of the box and I upended the box and out tumbled nine large packs of BB's and one empty pack. Also, out tumbled what seemed like a million lose BB's. One of the pack had come open and the shot had spilled out. Mom got the broom and Dad and I held newspaper while she swept up the lose BB shot. I just sat there with it on my lap and looked at for the longest time. Dad finally asked if I was going to shoot it and I said yeah. I put a few BB's in it and went to the back door and cocked it and shot and hit the outhouse somewhere because I heard the ''thud''.........
Mom started cooking breakfast and dad advised that if I wanted to go shooting I should get my warm clothes on so I could go outside. All during breakfast I sat and watched my BB gun in the corner. When I finished my breakfast Dad said that mom could sure use a fresh bucket of water and maybe a turn of firewood and then it would be nice if someone would sweep the kitchen. The ''chores'' were almost lightning fast and he smiled at me as I hurried so I could go shooting. Finally chores were done and I donned my coat and crammed two ''ten cent packs'' of BB's in my coat pocket and went out in the back yard. Standing there I could hear the ''thump thump'' of air rifle shot hitting our neighbors outhouse. I walked up into Charles and Gary's yard to discover that they also had BB guns for Christmas. They immediately stopped shooting in order to inspect my ''special gun''. Much ''to do'' was made of the the two power telescope, the leather lanyard in the saddle ring, the genuine compass embedded in the stock and the ''burned in'' Red Ryder signature in the stock. Their guns were just regular Red Ryder BB guns. While they were looking at my gun two more neighborhood kids walked up. It was Ronnie and Jimmy and they had single shot BB guns. Their guns had to be re loaded after each shot and to ''cock'' the gun you broke it down over your knee like a single barrel shotgun. You would ''spit'' a BB down the barrel and tap the stock on the ground so the BB would ''seat'' and not fall out if you pointed the gun at the ground. These guns were cheaply made but they were Dasies all the same. Little did we know that these two BB guns were the most powerful in the lot. With one of these you could shoot thru both sides of bean can. My gun would just dent a bean can.

After much standing around it was decided that we should go up into the ''big woods'' and find something to shoot at. There was a big garbage dump in the big woods so there would be lots of target material to ''kill''. We marched away ready to kill a lion or what ever we might encounter.

Up in the big woods we found a couple of rotten dead falls and we made a ''pretend'' fort from them. We then went over to the garbage pile and selected many targets. Bean cans, milk cans, medicine bottles, fruit jars, lids, and every variety of item that could be used as a target. We went out in front of our ''fort'' and arranged these targets in trees, on stumps, on the ground, behind limbs and in every conceivable place that we could reach. We adjourned to our ''fort''. We were sitting there in a circle planning our ''attack'' when Gary accidentally shot Charles in the foot. It seems that he had cocked his BB gun and forgotten it. The wound amounted to a blue spot on the side of his foot with no real harm done. We laid our plan that we were pioneers in a fort besieged by hostile Indians. We all cocked our guns and laid them across the log in front of us. On command we all started firing at the targets out in front of us. It sounded like a herd of bull frogs farting. Occasionally there was the crash of a bottle or a jar or the clank of a bean can being hit. Each of us cocking and firing as fast as possible to get the most hits on all the targets. After a couple minutes of steady firing Charles stood up and yelled ''' CHARGE''' like they do in the movies and we all Charged over the log toward the imaginary Indians. In the confusion Gary tripped over a root and I accidentally shot him in the butt. After much rolling around on the ground laughing we discovered that Gary was really all right except for a blue place on his ''right cheek''. That was probably the only time there was that many of us together to shoot the BB guns. We played and shot most of the day and some of the guys ran dry on BB's and I shared the large ten cent packs until the were all gone.
I am ashamed to tell it now but we shot birds back then. When my Dad saw me shot at a bird he made me promise to only shoot at Grackles and Thrushes and that I must bring home and eat what ever I killed. My granny could cook them on a cookie sheet after I would clean them. They are actually quite good as I remember.

So it went when I was a small boy with my first Daisy, Red Ryder BB gun.

All from the memory of an old man that was once a Little Boy......

Seajay the sailor man ..

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Old 10-21-2010, 06:44 PM   #2
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You little devil!

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Old 10-21-2010, 08:29 PM   #3
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A Natural Born Army Sniper and you waste a tour in the Navy.
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Old 10-22-2010, 06:00 PM   #4
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Hi Seajay,
I hope you keep all your writings. You could easily make some $s as a published author. The stories would also raise the spirits of all those who read them.
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Old 10-22-2010, 06:45 PM   #5
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I remember getting my first BB gun. We went out with a flash light to the chicken house after dark and shot sparrows. That was considered great sport in the 50s. Hitting a sparrow was not as easy as it sounded. Rite of passage for a young farm boy.
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Old 10-22-2010, 07:36 PM   #6
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Thanks Seajay, that story made my day. I had a lever action Daisy, dad didn't like me shooting at light bulbs stuck in the top of the sawdust pile LOL.
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Old 10-22-2010, 07:57 PM   #7
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One of those Daisy's helped develop my first set of adolescent muscles - cocking mine when I was a runny-nosed kid took most all I had at first - but pretty soon my newly developing arm and back muscles handled the task with ease.

Neat story, brings back memories nearly lost...
John Day....|'88 Winnebago Super Chief 27ft. Class A
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Old 10-22-2010, 08:03 PM   #8
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You would have loved my last tour before I retired from the Navy. I was in an F/A-18 Squadron as an AT-1 (E-6). The ship asked for some airwing guys to volunteer for 50 cal assignments. IE: USS Cole incident. So I did. It was a blast to practice with that thing. They would have a SH-60 helo drop a smoke target about a mile off each side of the Carrier for us to practice on. Just a little nervious pulling into forgein ports manning it though. It was a lot bigger than my 30-30 Winchester model 94 Saddle rifle.

"I won't be wronged I won't be insulted I won't be layed a hand on. I don't do these things to other people. And I require the same from them." (John Bernard Books) John Wayne The Shootist his last Movie.
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