December 21, 2011

The best gift ideas...

...often go down in flames.

Last Saturday, my stepdad had a run-in with a skunk.  A comical, wake up the neighbors with 17 rounds fired at o'dark thirty, kind of a run-in.  My stepdad is an early riser and he generally makes a predictable circuit, walking out to the back of the property to the barn/man cave, to turn everything on in preparation for his morning workout, then out to the street to get the newspaper.  He was returning from getting the paper, having come in the backyard gate to enter through the patio door, when he almost ran headlong into the skunk.  He gave it a wide berth, heading back out to the barn to get his old .22.

This was probably around 5:30 -6 am and it was still quite dark.  He was doing his best to hold a flashlight and fire at the skunk with his old .22, since the controls for the outside lights were all on the other side of the skunk.  After several rounds fired, my mom was awake enough to determine that he probably needed assistance.  When she came out, the skunk had been declared dead and she was supposed to hold the flashlight while a shovel was fetched to scoop up the carcass.  She spotlighted the skunk, who was apparently only dazed, and began wobbling around again.

Tired of this, my stepdad called for a handgun, the noise of which woke up the house guests and several neighbors (if lights suddenly switching on is an indicator), yet didn't phase the skunk, whose drunken movements in the dark were a hard-to-hit target.  The shooter was blaming the flashlight holder, who was flailing wildly, trying to cover her ears.  I wish there was video, it would make us at least $10,000.

After being berated for the noise of the handgun, my stepdad picked up the old .22 again, positioned and threatened the flashlight holder (mom) and FINALLY got the skunk between the eyes.

After hearing the story, I thought the perfect gift would be a red dot and flashlight scope for the .22.  Sure, it's overkill, but there are some inexpensive versions and it would make the old .22 a true varmint gun for my stepdad in his leisure years.   I called my mom and asked about the make and model of the .22, for fit.  'Old' was her reply.  "I know," I said, "that's why we call it the 'old .22'". 

It took several days before mom had the opportunity to get me the specs on the gun, 'Old' is the understatement of the year.  It is a Remington Model 33.  They stopped making them in 1935.  Anything I could buy would probably be worth more than the damn gun.

I don't have a new .22 in my budget at this point, but think I will keep it in mind for his September birthday.   The Remington was his granddad's, so it should be put up and saved, not pulled out for skunk shooting.


CenTexTim said...

Yep, I would pay to see the video.

How about one of those lights that you wear on your head? There's two kinds; one with a couple of elastic straps that look like a miner's light, and one that clips on the brim of a baseball cap. They cost around $10, and work great. I've got both kinds, but prefer the clip-on one.

kerrcarto said...

Tell him to use a damn shotgun next time.

Harper said...

He has a couple of headlamps that are on the stretchy headbands, I am sure they were located somewhere else. When I was at Cabela's today I picked up another headlamp that clips on a hat visor. I also priced a new .22 for his birthday.

I think the shotgun was probably also on the other side of the skunk, if it was in its usual place. The skunk was trying to get on the patio, blocking the back door. I am sure it was one of those times that the time and effort of walking around to the front door to fetch a gun and then back around seemed much more strenuous than blind firing the weapons at hand!

InsomniacSeeker said...

My grandmother had a run in with a skunk once. She grabbed her .22, loaded it up and emptied it a couple of times and didn't even phase the skunk. Did I mention that the box of ammunition was the box of blanks? She cussed big time at that skunk.