Yep. Tam's taking another class; Peter Pan may've sung, "I won't grow up, I don't want to got to school," but it turned out he had 1337 combat skilz anyway.
Grownups have to learn 'em, or maybe relearn them, which is why my roommate, with tens of thousands of hours on the firing line, has put herself in the capable hands of Louis Awerbuck. Every little bit more of correct drill you do, every morsel of information from the folks who have Been There and Done That you absorb, the better off you'll be.
One of the basic benefits (and therefore often overlooked) is that any good class will instill and reinforce good gun-handling, a topic that has been much on my mind since I dropped a gun week before last. I'd had a little .32 repaired (a Star, a very pretty example of their 1911-inspired platform; like Tam, I'm fond of .32s but I confine my collecting to Star, Savage pistols and the occasional Astra) and the 'smith had put it in the triangular gun rug upside down to the way I'd sent it. Opened it too casually and down it went, right to the (hardwood) floor.
You might say, "No worries, it's steel and no self-respecting gunsmith would send back a firearm with one in the chamber!" True, but they're only human -- the fellow who fixes my Stars, he may be pushing "superhuman" -- and it is Always Loaded. Oh, it's not like I tried to catch it; one of the Minor Rules but an important one, Never Try To Catch A Dropped Firearm. Nevertheless, I treated a gun about like it was a slab of bread and darned near broke a toe in the process; and I'd've still been lucky if that was the only negative outcome.
The cure for that is more class time; barring that, more time on a range where the other shooters -- or at least the guy(s) in charge -- do not hesitate to call out bad gun-handling. Before you can think about hitting what you are aiming at, you've got to make safe handling skills your default behavior.
Which is a long-winded way of saying I have got to get to the range -- any range -- this weekend! And it's about time I took another actual class; somebody's got to be running a "Handgun 201" refresher.
T. R. MCELROY'S STREAMLINED TELEGRAPH KEYS
5 months ago