Beware, or I'll eat you alive.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Valentine's Day and Gun Shows~~~

Hello sweet things, Valentine’s Day had dawned cold, crisp and with a wet afterglow from the heavy storms that swept though the night before, washing the air clean, there was even a smattering of snow in the Santa Cruz Mountains just south of here which made for a very cold night.

Friday night was a very nice and relaxing evening, Yoshi and I having dinner at the Silver Dragon and laughing over the situation that had happened at work the day before, so luscious and ludicrous as one of our team members was in ‘a pickle’. “Dan” (not his real name) discovered a problem in a deal that was being worked on and if it was not resolved by Friday it would result having a few heads on the chopping block. And Dan discovered it late Thursday afternoon, he worked on it but all the information did not seem to ‘jell’ so he asked me to help and bring a fresh eye into it, Yoshi joined us as she had expertise in this field.

So here we are and all the information was coming together, then Dan started to grab his coat with the words “I need to go”, I stood up, blocking his way with hands on hips and said “Go where?” it seems that his in-laws were coming over for dinner and he had to be there. I told him that was not going to happen.

I don’t like making threats but I did, in which it could have jeopardized his job. You see my sweet yummy things one does not have to throw knives or toss people over their shoulder like Ziva on NCIS or even do a good judo kick like Emma Peel of “The Avengers” (think Diana Rigg in her younger days), to be able to “drop kick” a person.


Dan called me a name and I said “Yes, I am a Babe In Total Control of Herself” Just take the first capitalized letters and you’ll know what I mean. Then I called his wife and explained the situation to her, she was not pleased but since I’m senior to Dan I knew I could pull rank on him. I turned the phone over to Dan for him to give his apologies and with Yoshi in the background yelling for Dan to come here she found another error (Yoshi knows how to play this game very well Mmmmmm) Dan had to say “I’m sorry” and hang up grumbling.

What Dan didn’t know after he went back to his desk is I followed up with another call to a 24 hour service to send a bouquet of red roses and a box of expensive candies and champagne (they are very full service) to his house to his wife with a note from Dan with love and apologies. She received it that evening.

When we were ready to leave work I told Dan to ask his wife when he got home, if she received her gifts as an apology for disappointing her and did she like them, he looked at me blankly and I said to him “Go with the flow, kiss and hug her and be very apologetic and loving, and for Valentines day take her to a jewelry store and buy her some diamond ear studs. You can afford it.”

Oooooh sweet things the look on his face was just priceless, Mmmmm just soooo yummy.

By this time we had found the problem and we knew that we had to present it the next day to “Fearless Leader” but by uncovering it we prevented a very bad investment situation and although “Fearless Leader” would not be happy it was a far better situation than what could have happened if it had been overlooked.

So on Friday with our findings in hand, “Fearless Leader” looked it over and knowing that it was not good news it was better than bad news and he in turned presented it to our “Head Honcho”. Word came back that the “Head Honcho” was very pleased with our findings and new analysis, and our personal stock went up. Dan also thanked me for sending the gifts to his wife, she was very romantic when he came home, when he told his wife about taking her to a jewelry store to select a special gift, (and saying this in front of his in-laws) his mother-in-law (whom he can barely stand) said that it was the sweetest thing ever done, and that maybe her daughter did find a good husband after all. Poor Dan, he really can’t stand his mother-in-law, but he can deal with them.

Yoshi and I had a good laugh over it at dinner. She said she also felt better that her husband was coming home from his two week visit to his elderly parents in Taiwan, on Sunday, so their Valentine’s day was going to be late but at least he’ll be home, unfortunately those are those family things that has to be dealt with and she was as worried as her husband about his parents, the only good thing is that his younger brother lives with them and would not leave them.

She told me her husband was looking into arrangements to have his parents and brother brought over here on a compassionate type of visa. She didn’t know all the legal ins and outs but they have a lawyer working on it and so far it was looking good, and they thought the best way was to bring them over on board a ship, less stress on them and better for them to ship as much of their belongings over. Her Mother was going to help them with housing, so with hugs and well wishes I dropped her off at her house and came home.

On Valentine’s Day, having grabbed a coffee from one of the ubiquitous Starbuck’s shops, I drove the 30 miles or so to the Vallejo fair grounds to the Gun Show. There was a brisk breeze in the air, and I could see the storm clouds moving and bunching up like invisible cowboys were herding them. As I was going over the flyway to connect to 880 I had the only patch of sunshine following me; to the east were dark clouds moving away over the Bay Area Hills and into the coastal valley, I could see over S.F. were more coming and coming quickly, I knew that the possibility of rain might happen on the way but fortunately the rain held off until later.

I arrived just after 10 a.m. to the Fair Grounds, and looking across at the 6 Flags Discovery Park I could see that the rides, usually packed with screaming teens and adults, were shut down and the park closed, in this weather all the rides would be dangerous to be on, I briefly thought of Santa Cruz and imagined that it might be the same situation.

Pulling into the parking lot, I paid my parking fee to a freezing woman, who had two coats on to keep warm, I felt sorry for her just knowing that she was in jeopardy of catching a cold. I drove on towards the main building, the mud and gravel lot was pocked marked with mud puddles, it was impossible to prevent mud from splashing up on the car, ‘Oh, well’ I thought, ‘a quick hose down if possible, then detailing when we have dry weather.’

As I walked to the ticket booth I saw that the NRA stand was doing a very brisk business of signing up new members, despite the cold weather. One volunteer member said that the signups were more than the last time they were here and it’s happening all over. A lot of gun owners don’t trust Obama’s administration, and I don’t blame them.

I could not believe it, the hall was jam packed to almost over-flowing, this was not just men looking over guns, it was women of all ages with a number of elderly ones using the four wheel walkers, there were a few men and women using wheel chairs, some powered, some not, and whole families, more than once I saw Fathers carrying babies in their arms with their wives along side, looking over a handgun or rifle while the seller was extolling the virtues of it and answering questions, more than once I’d hear the wife asking a question.

I had never seen this many people before, and I was wondering what it would be like at the Gun Show at the Cow Palace in S.F. I had read that at the last Cow Palace Gun Show the NRA had record sign ups, was this a continuing trend?

There were two companies selling gun safes from the smallest to one of the hugest I’d ever seen, more than 7 feet wide, I smiled as I saw a little girl sit inside one and say “This is a good one Daddy, it’s big” and Mommy standing by with a baby in one of those baby kangaroo carry pouches, reading the brochure.

At another booth there were calendars being sold by one of the “Girls of Guns” magazine, she was signing her picture on the calendar to buyers. A DVD was playing on a continuous loop showing the pictures and advertising the magazine, you could also sign up for a subscription. One woman bought one and gave it to her husband and said “Happy Valentine’s Day, Honey” Mmmmm I have to say considering the poses, guns do sell.

There were books, antique guns, modern handguns, rifles, scopes, ammo, knives, tasers (yes, personal tasers), military collectibles, jewelry both gold and native american, old west items, saddles, scabbards, holsters, ammo vests, flack vests ( I have no idea where they got those), conceal carry purses for women, conceal carry organizers for men, leather vests, members from SASS (Single Action Shooting Society) encouraging people to join the sport of Cowboy Action Shooting, every known type of concealed weapon from small knives in lipstick tubes to pepper spray in what passes for a purse size perfume spray bottle, books and videos on guns and gun safety, taking care of your gun or rifle, even a two volume set called “The Poor Man’s James Bond” or “everything you wanted to know to blow up your nasty neighbor” and many more; things seemed to overwhelm me, I had never had that type of experience before, and again I was sensing that this was the wave of the future.

Oh sweet things, business was very, very brisk, even the concession stands were selling hot clam chowder soup with biscuits, and chili with corn bread, hot coffee and tea, and hot chocolate, forget the hot dogs and nachos with cheese and soft drinks, although available, it was the hot soup and chili that were the biggest hits, it was so cold outside.

The hall at the fair grounds is old, left over from the 1950’s and never is the temperature right, either too hot in summer or too cold in winter and the heaters were struggling, but it wasn’t too bad with all the people that were there. The women’s bathroom as always immaculate but old, and as you pass the door to the men’s, well lets say that when you go past there is always a smell that has never gone away.

There were people there taking tests for their gun safely cards so they could purchase a gun, women watching video’s showing women how to shoot a gun safely, many of them asking questions as to where they can get training. Many asking where they can get a conceal carry permit.
If the politico’s really want to get a pulse on society they should come to one of these shows in the morning and see what society is really all about sweet things. It would be a real eye opener, and these were not red necks, or rabid gun owners, many were professional people, as well as your average working American, seeking to protect themselves and keep their 2nd amendment rights. And what I was surprised to see is that there was hardly an African-American face in the crowd maybe one or two at the most, a number of Hispanic with their wives and family, a few Asian, but mostly predominantly white.

I decided when I go to the Cow Palace show to take a mental inventory of the people who attend that one, and see if the location affects the demographics.

There were people coming in from the parking lot bringing in guns to sell to any interested private parties or to dealers, and outside the gun show room were people looking to see what was coming in, I saw several times men stopping people who were carrying in their guns to sell and asking questions about them, then they would go into the show room and over into one corner to discuss the deal and then approach a licensed dealer to complete the sale transfer.

I was also overhearing some of them complaining about the increase in price on the so-called assault weapons, far beyond their worth.

The Sheriff’s department was a presence there to lock the guns coming in for private sale, patrol the room, the outside area and parking lot and sign off on those items that were antique or collectibles that didn’t need a transfer. They also over saw the area set aside to conduct private sales, and check off on the transfer situation.

There were dealers from Nevada, Mokulume Hill, Stockton, Sacramento, San Diego, Jamestown, Oregon, and places I’d never heard of.

I had the happy pleasure of running into my date for the evening, a friend of mine Joe, from the San Francisco police department, he was happy to see me and we confirmed our meeting that evening for dinner and entertainment. He said that a number of off-duty officers from different police departments were there buying guns, equipment, ammo; it was amusing seeing cases of ammo being hauled off by the cart load.

Joe and I had a cup of coffee at the concession stand and talked about what we were seeing, he told me that quite a number of police officers do not like who Obama has picked for Attorney General and are going to be doing a letter writing campaign voicing their objections and possibly seeing about having him removed. I wished him well on that, but said it would be best for the police union to work with the NRA and throw their weight in with them. He said he was going to bring it up at the next union meeting.

We talked about the BART shooting, he informed me that it was rumored that Meserliegh had gone through police training but had low grades and therefore didn’t qualify for the S.F. police dept. so he went to BART that was in need of officers.

He felt that it was an accident, that not all the cell phone videos that showed the incident had been posted on YouTube, there were others that clearly showed that Oscar Grant was struggling and attempted to kick the other officer. Joe said that it appeared that Grant was on the road to being a career criminal. But what Messerleigh did was a huge mistake, based on insufficient training. That sweet things, was my opinion as well, but only with everything being brought out in a trial will we know the full story. But there is also a question of what the Oscar Grant team will try to suppress.

My friend said to me “Why is it, that when a white person is shot, everyone is sorry and that there will be an investigation, but when a black or Hispanic person is shot, not only is their going to be an investigation but people yell that the police are to blame, that person was a good guy (not) and the police officers involved should be arrested and brought to trial and everything associated with that. And that people either will demonstrate or hold candle light vigils for the criminals but not for a dead police officer”

I looked at my friend and said “It is because people think that all police are corrupt, that the government is corrupt and that they are working hand in hand with “The Man’” (who every he may be, possibly a hold over shadow from their slave days)

We both knew that in any police force there are good cops and bad cops and the bad cops make the ones who put themselves in harms way, look bad as well. He said “It’s going to come down to the people, one day the cops are not going to help them, it’s happening in Oakland already, there are areas that the Oakland cops won’t go into because of snipers in abandoned apartment buildings and they can’t do anything to get rid of them, because of absentee owners, and the people in the neighborhoods won’t help. If they get a call to go into that area they won’t go, because the calls are 90% false, but that 10% that needs help, they won’t go because of what that community has created because they think we work hand in hand with ‘The Man’.”

He was right, Mayor Dellums won’t do anything or get anything activated to do that, maybe because Dellums is trying to prove that he’s not an “Oreo cookie”. But he is also one of the most ineffectual Mayors since Jerry Brown or what some people refer to as ex-governor Moonbeam.

And I was seeing the results right there at the Gun Show, people taking “the law” as far as they can legally go to protect themselves. Hmmmm and you know what my sweet luscious things? I found myself 100% behind them. (Growl)

He continued “On top of that we have city attorneys, mayors and overly PC city council members that won’t do anything to help eradicate this problem, the Oakland city attorney won’t even investigate or charge a criminal if he assaults a police officer; buying guns back doesn’t do it, it never fails people bring in junk guns, too busted up to have ever worked properly, out of the hundreds of guns that have been brought in from the buy back program we may have 20 in good working condition or the wives of the late owners had no idea how to get rid of them.

And those guns are run though to see if they were ever used in a crime, those that are, are set aside for evidence, those that weren’t, they go out for bid among the officers, not that there are many of them, they’re not but I’ve seen some antiques and collectibles, and those are sold at auction and the money goes into the police retirement fund or those funds to pay for the education of the children of officers killed in action. The good that comes out is small because the program is being taken for a ride---no thanks to soon to be ex-Senator Don Perata.”

I groaned when I heard that name, Don Perata, now up for investigation, for years he’d been given a conceal/carry permit but the last time he didn’t pass the exam, he demanded to have the permit anyway, but that Sheriff stood his ground, so Perata went the other way and became anti-gun---such a child! (Snarl) He’s done more to hurt the police service and legal gun ownership than help.

Then for his own personal use vehicle he is given a red Dodge Charger (his request) with fancy rims and later is in a known criminal area (Hmmmm I wonder why?) and gets car-jacked, by the same man who later attempted to hold up a gas station and shoots a young boy who was taking a piano lesson in a near by school; the bullet (a cop-killer type) goes though the paper thin walls, hits the boy and paralyzes the child (the child is making a recovery and a fund has been set up to off-set his medical and therapy fees). The criminal was caught (by the way he was African-American, the boy Hispanic)

Of course people are screaming to hang the criminal because of the boy, but they are also screaming why is Perata driving such a fancy car in a high crime neighborhood?

Joe pointed out to me several dealers that had bins of junk guns at $10.00 a ‘pop’, “Now”, he says “They are legally selling them for either parts or displays, nothing wrong with that, but some people will by 5 or 10 of them at a time, hold on to them and wait for the next ‘buy-back’ program and make a 1000% profit, but what burns me is being in the program and seeing some guys that you know are dopers getting the money to buy drugs that are being sold on the next block, I’ve seen it, I’ve seen it and what burns me more is I know I can’t do anything about it, because there maybe undercover cops waiting to catch the ‘Big Fish’.”

Ooooh sweet things, he was right, but the only way to avoid that is instead of money, give them vouchers to only receive groceries and not for beer or snack food, but healthy food, and make them non-transferable. The ‘buy-back’ program is a joke.

We continued to walk through the show and I looooved looking at what was offered, the original Colt 1911’s in good condition was going for anywhere between 2,000 to 3,000 dollars! Now that opened my eyes.

I did come across a wonderful hammerless Smith and Wesson, but it was in the process of being sold to another person, but with their permission I looked it over and asked questions about it, and took the business card of the dealer, he promised to e-mail me when he had another in stock, he even asked if I posed for the “Girls with Guns” calendar, I had to say no, and the buyer asked “Why Not?” I only laughed and thought “Yes, why not?” and thanked them for the compliment, even Joe was laughing, he said he could see me ‘crooning’ over a .357 magnum with a Harry Callahan look-a-like, I said “Why not have the real thing, get Clint Eastwood involved, fix up his hair, and have the profits of the calendar sales go to some police charity.”

Mmmmmm sweet things I had the pleasure of seeing his eyes light up---why not Chuck Norris of Walker Texas Ranger fame, Eddie Murphy of “48 Hours”, That lovely lady who plays Calli Ducane on CSI Miami, the actors from NCIS, or Criminal Minds, with that he kissed me right in the middle of the show room, and everyone cheered, but it was for giving him a wonderful idea for fund raising.

Hmmmm my Valentine’s present to him. It was getting late in the day, and I wanted to change into sometime different for our get together tonight, but I found myself a bit hungery and I knew we wouldn’t be eating until late so we drove in our own cars, back along Fairground Parkway to that guaranteed road side restaurant Denny’s, and had our “Grand Slam” breakfasts. I always know that unless there was something wrong in the kitchen that there are no surprises at Denny’s. And I knew I’d have to work it off at the gym the next day.

We made our final arrangements for that evening and drove away. Now sweet things about the evening, well I can tell you that at Georgi’s the food was good, the Music just wonderful and the comic very, very funny. We had met in our own separate cars, because he didn’t know if he was going to be called on duty, some bug was going around, we passed up the alcohol, after all we were driving.

As we were leaving he thanked me for helping him get pass Valentine’s Day, he lost his wife to cancer 6 months before, she was a good friend from my college days, like Yoshi and I liked whom she had chosen for a husband, a good man, and he was still in love with her, so he has buried himself in his work, no children, but nieces and nephews. I told him he needed to get back into the saddle, his wife would not want him mourning forever, he knew what I meant, but a cop’s life is not easy and a woman married to a cop has a tremendous amount of worry and fear, it takes a special woman for that he said, and his wife was one in a million. I could only agree, thinking on our friendship and how she helped me get settled up here, and with that we parted feeling good and a little sad but better for it.

Now this Sunday morning has dawned gray and overcast, rains had poured in during the night, the air freezing, it’s even taking longer for my home to heat up, I worked out at the gym early this morning, and then inspired, have written this up.

For me writing my postings is more not so much of being inspired but having the time, being busy with work, commitments and friends and it’s not an easy thing, I admire those early writers who kept journals or diaries, now with Blogspot, My Space, Face Book, You Tube you find tons of desperate people living desperate lives, but I think among all of that you also find those that share the same thinking process, the same feelings, up and downs and all the vicissitudes of life and it makes you feel less alone.

Many people have busy active lives, and there are those who by accident, personality, or nature’s design live cut off from being able to interact with other people, but with those outlets hopefully my sweet, yummy things, it lessens their loneliness, and makes them hopeful or be a leaning experience and gives them courage to go out and do and be a part of life, to seek help or just hang in there until the weather improves, and prevents them from being depressed.

I’ve found I’m having fun, by learning how to add things to my Blog, eventually I will be able to post pictures of my surroundings so you can have a better idea of what I’m seeing, even links to places I’ve been, oh it won’t happen all the time but enough, I guess I’m going to have to invest in a digital camera to make it easier. Just like that sweet little 4 ½ year old girl who takes a picture of her fish ‘Dorothy’ and sends it to her parents. So simple a child can do it. (purr) Yes my sweet things I’m laughing at the idea.

And yes my sweet things I’m sharing my experiences with you, so that some day you too will be able to get out there and enjoy and live life with a zest and gusto that you feel may have been denied to you as it was denied to me for so long, and I’m making up for time.

Ooooh this post is long, so I will end for now, I think later this evening I will finally write up about the repressive church that so adversely affected me, I can go down that dark path now and bring up that memory.

But for now, even with the chilly rains I have to do things, I may have tomorrow off but knowing my work, I may be called in. (Merowl) Such is life my darlings, such is life but my sweet, luscious, yummy things, enjoy it!!

1 comment:

Fram said...

If you should ever decide to become a reporter, insist that you be paid by the word. Just teasing ....

Ammo prices have been out of this world for the past few years, largely due to manufacturers using much of their resources to produce military rounds for the government. I did anticipate the cost of firearms coming down due to the general condition of the economy, but this has not been the case. Sooner or later?

I've been thinking about buying a "decent" camera, too, but I'm too lazy to do any research. If you buy, write about it.

Yes, Ms. Diana Rigg. She is so classy I even eagerly awaited watching her the few minutes she spent introducing each episode of "Mystery" on PBS way back when.