About That Knife Maker

You all may recall one of the Christmas presents I got two weeks back:

Well, thanks to Alert Reader Mark D, we learn the truth about “knifemaker” Ed Mehler (my emphasis):

Ed Mehler is a knife seller for Knives Ranch and that he had previously been told to stop representing himself as the maker of Knives Ranch knives he was selling (at least those with the Knives Ranch logo stamp on them).

Note that this dates back to 2014, which means this asshole is still in business.

Caveat emptor (let the buyer beware) — in my case, emptor morsus est (the buyer was bitten).

Oh well… at least I have the best-looking boxcutter in Texas.

Winning A Raffle

Many years ago, I was invited to a prairie-dog shoot out in West Texas.  The only problem was that at the time I didn’t have the right gun for the job, and couldn’t afford to buy one that would, at least, give me a chance at bagging a few of the little critters and not just waste ammo for two days.

So I had a raffle back at the old Nation Of Riflemen website, which worked as follows:

  • Tickets cost $20 each, limit one per Reader
  • The goal was to get a decent rifle and scope — the highest quality rig I could purchase with the ticket proceedings
  • After the shoot, a third party would draw a ticket number, and that lucky Reader would get a pretty serious varmint rig shipped to his FFL (at my expense), all for an outlay of $20
  • Which is what happened — I do not  remember the Reader’s name, only his Reader ID, and that he lived somewhere around Atlanta.

I don’t remember the actual gun we ended up with, but I think  it was a Cooper Arms Model 21 HB in .223 Rem, topped with a monster Leupold 24X scope:


Whatever, the rig was an absolute monster, and when sighting it in, I was getting .25″ groupings at 100 yards in windless conditions.

As it happened, the prairie dog shoot was called off, which meant that the winner got a gorgeous varmint rifle and scope with fewer than a dozen rounds through its barrel (sighting-in only — I never even got to practice with the damn thing).

For $20.

Here’s the actual announcement post from the time (scroll down to see the winner’s reaction):


We Have A Winner

October 15, 2007
6:46 AM CDT

Yes, we held the drawing for the Ultimate Varmint Rifle over the weekend, and we have a winner (and a runner-up, in case said winner doesn’t contact me in 30 days).

Full details will be posted anon, but unless both these conditions are both met, you are not a winner:

      • Name: John L. L.
      • Residence: Atlanta GA

I will be contacting Mr. L. by mail over the next day or so, but if you read this happy message, John, feel free to email me.

A full account (including pictures of the draw) will be posted as soon as I have all the details available.


  • Aww, man.

    Well, congrats to John!

    Author ID: 142 | 10/15/2007 07:04 AM CDT
  • Dang it!! long face

    Congrats John, enjoy!!

    Author ID: 9172 | 10/15/2007 07:18 AM CDT
  • w00t! Congrats John!

    Author ID: 41 | 10/15/2007 07:20 AM CDT
  • Congrats John! Make damned sure you post pics of your first targets.

    Author ID: 112 | 10/15/2007 07:29 AM CDT
  • Kim, I changed my name to ‘Brutus.’  Please send everything to me at that address.  Much ‘bliged.

    Author ID: 10034 | 10/15/2007 07:37 AM CDT
  • Nicely done, congrats!

    Author ID: 2166 | 10/15/2007 08:48 AM CDT
  • who was the runner up? Gotta know!

    Author ID: 8372 | 10/15/2007 09:45 AM CDT
  • Congrats, JohnLL, I’m a little bit green with envy; and thanks for the fun contest Kim.

    BTW, when is the next contest? (Be sure to set some aside as a ‘gratuity’ for your work this time.)

    Author ID: 8969 | 10/15/2007 10:14 AM CDT
  • Carnaby,

    I’m not going to post the runner-up—that would be cruel. But I can say two things: a.) it’s not you and b.) he’s a (very) Long-Time Reader of this website.

    And don’t let’s have any LTRs pestering me either, because that’s the last word I have to say on the topic.

    Kim | 10/15/2007 11:20 AM CDT
  • I’m with Les on that ‘gratuity.’  I don’t know what an appropriate ‘Entrance Fee’ would look like but I plan on doing this next contest and a small entrance/processing fee would be acceptable for all your hard work and effort.  And as much as I am a hunter and enjoy scoped out long guns, I sure would like to see an M-14 as the prize!  Surely, you could break it in, too.  You wouldn’t want to send of a liability.

    I have to confess, too, that I was only pulling your leg: John L. from Atlanta didn’t change his name to Brutus.  Sorry, John, that was rather dishonest of me and congratulations.

    Author ID: 10034 | 10/15/2007 11:23 AM CDT
  • Congratulations to JohnLL.

    Didn’t want a .223 boltie anyway, mumble mumble mumble…  wink

    Author ID: 1448 | 10/15/2007 12:08 PM CDT
  • Congratulations, John!

    Author ID: 503 | 10/15/2007 02:53 PM CDT
  • Just so it’s not my brother-in-law John…

    If so, John… <suggestion to let his first target be his face deleted in the interest of good taste.>

    Author ID: 8950 | 10/15/2007 05:54 PM CDT
  • Aww, darn it!  Well, enjoy yourself, sir!  And may this be the 1st of MANY that Kim does!

    Author ID: 9123 | 10/15/2007 06:40 PM CDT
  • Kim,
    You’ve mis-spelled my name. It should read E*** J****. I forgive you for the error, please feel free to ship to my FFL at your earliest convenience. grin

    Author ID: 6138 | 10/15/2007 06:40 PM CDT
  • Well, at least my homeboy got it. Maybe I can talk him into a day at the range just to fondle…er, test-fire it a few times.

    Author ID: 8681 | 10/15/2007 07:22 PM CDT
  • John, congratulations!

    Kim, I still hope you got to break it in after all.


    Author ID: 359 | 10/15/2007 07:48 PM CDT
  • Hey, Kim…when you post the follow-up, be sure to re-post the photo of the rifle…my keyboard doesn’t have enough drool in it yet.

    Author ID: 7656 | 10/16/2007 02:46 AM CDT
  • HOLY )$#@($#* , I actually won something!!!!!  *does the happy dance*  Either that or there’s another John L. L. who also lives in Atlanta who just happened to enter this raffle.  Sorry guys, but I’m making sure my claim is staked on thiswink

    Author ID: 7371 | 10/16/2007 05:23 AM CDT
  • Reader JohnLL is indeed the lucky winner. Congratulations.

    Kim | 10/16/2007 06:34 AM CDT

Anyway, that’s what happened.  Tomorrow I’ll post the details of a new drawing, this time for the Ultimate Long-Distance Rifle — to be used at Boomershoot 2020 in May this year.

Monday Funnies

Oh, hooray.  It’s the first Monday after the holidays, with a full work week to look forward to.

So let’s try to get things moving with a little humor.  Before we get going, however, I had no idea that Conan O’Brien played in the U.S. Women’s Soccer team:

But on with the show:

…not that they should, of course:  that’ll just weaken the bloodline.  And speaking of weak and whiny men:

And in the spirit [sic]  of the festive season just past:

Just sayin’.

But hey, it’s a new year, right?

,,,but just be sure where that light is coming from.

Before we do all that, however, let’s just wallow in the past a little, so to speak.  Back by popular demand, here’s a Swede nicer than the Mauser 1896, Anita Ekberg:

Now get going into that new year…

Losing Your Audience

I see that Formula 1 has lost a boatload of UK viewers ever since they moved from free TV to subscription TV.  Time for Ye Olde Cluebatte:

If you’re going to require people to pay for something that they’re used to getting for free, it has be something they can’t live without, or else something which is “new ‘n improved” — i.e. that justifies the cost.

And Formula 1 has managed to go down ever since they stopped using loud, balls-to-the-wall engines, and pricing Everything F1 into the stratosphere.  In other words, the product has become tamer, less passionate and shittier, ergo not worth paying for.

I love Formula 1, love it with a passion, always have — but not  always will.  The plain fact of the matter is that after the first corner of the first lap, F1 races are nothing more than a 66-lap procession, where races can be decided on the time and number of pit stops, where refuelling midrace has been outlawed, tire types are restricted, and so on.  F1 has also become technocentric, and techno is expensive — which limits the number of teams which have the money or desire to participate.  As a result, there are essentially only three teams — Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull — who have any consistent chance of winning a given race.  Here are the teams’ points position at the end of the 2019 season, and note the points disparity between the top three and the rest:

It was more or less the same in 2018, and 2017, and 2016… and there are only four actual engines used (Ferrari, Mercedes, Renault and Honda) by all the teams.

I have some suggestions.

  • Ban all team-driver radio communication.  Let the driver figure out what’s going on with the car, and signal to him only from the pit wall.  Right now, the whole thing is just a techno-chess game, where race decisions can be made in Maranello, Woking or Surrey rather than at the track or in the car.  In fact, very few decisions are now made by the driver, which means that at some point, driverless cars are going to be suggested (and upon that  change, all F1 fans will disappear from sight.)
  • Ban remote engine changes from the garage.  Right now, the team can make changes from the pit wall to the amount of power a car can generate.  Screw that nonsense — let the driver use as much or as little as he’s got.
  • Dump the dual-engine (hybrid) formula and stick to fast, powerful (and loud) 3-liter V6 or flat-six gas engines.  Leave all the electronic stuff to Le Mans prototype cars.  Here’s the thing:  not every auto manufacturer can afford to build a modern F1 engine — but all  of them can make a fast, powerful and reliable 3-liter six-cylinder one, which opens up the race for other car manufacturers to participate.  (And the louder, the better:  F1 fans just love  the noise.)
  • Make the races longer — 80 laps (or 150 miles) minimum — so that the cars have  to stop to refuel their (mandatory) 100-liter / 26-gallon (US) tanks.  (Ignore that “safety” bullshit:  if the sports car teams can manage refueling safely, so can F1.)
  • Let the teams choose whatever tires they want, and drop the “two-type per race” mandate.  If a team wants to race the whole thing on one set of hard tires, and another wants to use three soft sets (for higher speed) or two medium sets (compromise), then let them.
  • Ditto engine changes.  Right now, F1 teams can only use three engines per season (without penalty).  What bullshit.  Let them use a new engine for each race, if they want.  The problem is that engines now cost so much that only a couple teams could afford to do that — which is part of F1’s problem.

There’s a reason that I’m suggesting all the above, and it’s not just a hankering for the old days (as is my general tendency).  As racing becomes all the more technical and much less human, people get turned off by the loss of human interaction. 

In gun terms, it would be like watching a rifle-shooting competition between remote-controlled gun platforms made by only Mitsubishi and Honda.   I wouldn’t cross the street to watch that, for free.  And nor would many others.

Now hold a competition, in any format, between humans shooting Remington, Colt, Ruger, SIG Sauer, Blaser, CZ, Mauser, Winchester and HK rifles… oh man, sign me up now.

That’s the problem, and all F1 needs to do is to bring back the human element into racing.  You heard it here first.

News Roundup

All the shit that doesn’t deserve its own post.

1) Leader of attack on U.S. Embassy in Baghdad was a guest at the Obama White Housewouldn’t surprise me if his “welcome basket” included a bj from the First Lady, either.

2) Trump orders our Dealers of Death to blow up various terrorist assholesplease Sir, can we have some more?

3) Iran Threatens “Escalation” — go ahead.  Here’s what happened to another country  (Japan) which escalated on us.  We even have a term for it:  “massive retaliation”.

4) Fidel Raul Julian Castro quits the presidential racewho?  And speaking of hopeless losers:

5) Democrat presidential hopeful Joe Biden launched into the New Year by urging voters to make 2020 the year for gun controlgo on, Joe;  write off well over 50 million gun owners (who all vote) before the primaries… yup, that’s going to work well for you.

6) Veganuary makes its appearanceas if Dry January last year wasn’t enough to make us want to throw those scolds off high buildings, now the nut-eaters are joining in.  Time for some serious counter-measures:

As my old buddy Paterson used to say:  “A meal without wine is… breakfast.”  One could say the same about steak, except that Steak & Eggs is one of my favorite breakfasts.  Anyway, to continue:

7) Virginians are buying guns and ammo in record numbers, and paying with cashbut yet they’re going to vote for some another Democrat and his gun control agenda in November, we’re told.

8) The Internet strikes again, and againremind me again how we’re so much better off with technology.

9) Appeals court orders Arizona State to reinstate male student expelled for having a threesomefinally, some good newsJust watch:  the Leftists are going to try and create national nookie control, nextThey’ve already started, on campuses...

Then again, I’m so old fashioned, I thought a threesome meant this:

…and not this:

Friday Night Music

Add this guy to one of the greatest composers you never heard of.

Okay, that’s not exactly true, but Neil Innes was certainly the greatest satirical  composer ever.  Here’s just one example:  Hold My Hand (The Rutles).  Yes, that’s Monty Python’s Eric Idle on (McCartney-) bass, and Neil doing his John Lennon impersonation on vocals.

I’ve played song that to fanatical Beatle freaks, telling them that it was an undiscovered Beatles song which actually spawned Please Please Me, I Wanna Hold Your Hand  and She Loves You — and not one ever called me on it.  And then there’s Get Back Get Up And Go… and I Am The Walrus  Piggy In The Middle.  The list is endless.

Here’s Neil talking about The Rutles, and here’s the entire All You Need Is Cash  TV show.

Let’s not even talk about Neil’s 1960s Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band and Urban Spaceman… which took aim at the drug culture before that became cool.

R.I.P. Neil Innes (1944-2019)