In line with the discussion on the “Girls With Guns” post, I was reminded of an experience The Oracle and I had about 3 months ago with one of his co-workers.
One of the people who reports to The Oracle at work is an Indian (of the Asian variety). He is what we call an onshore consultant, meaning he possesses a work visa and is employed by an outside company; part of the influx of such workers to corporate america in the past 10 years.
Vinoth (his name) became curious a while back about what we do for enjoyment and relaxation after hours and on the weekends. He is very fascinated with American life and culture and all that. So one thing leads to another and The Oracle tells Vinoth about our hobby. I expected to hear that he was horrified but I couldn’t have been more wrong – he was thrilled! He wanted to experience as much American culture as he could and the only time he’d ever seen shooting was in movies; he was very eager to try it out on his own. So an invite to our house after work and a quick safety lesson in the basement and we were off to the range.
Vinoth was surprised at how much fun he had. He confessed that he thought all Americans involved in the shooting sports were Wild West types, with guns strapped to our thighs and murder in our eyes. It was a revelation to him that in fact the shooting sports – tactical shooting is what we had him do – was enjoyable and made you think. He really liked how he had to tune things out to really focus on the front sights and manage the recoil.
He peppered us with questions all night long, watching us intently as we illustrated grip, stance, focus and finally the very satisfying hole in the target precisely where you wanted it. Vinoth was a willing and apt pupil.
He tried every single gun we brought with us – from a Kimber 1911 .45acp to a 9mm Beretta 92fs to a 9mm Smith & Wesson M&P to another Smith & Wesson in a .38 Chief’s special revolver all the way to a 20 gauge shotgun. He loved them all – but was very partial to the .38 (mine, of course ). And damn if he wasn’t really good at it!
He came to us only knowing things from American movies – right down to taking my beloved .38 revolver and – gasp – spinning the cylinder and smacking it back in. Vinoth left that evening wanting to come back and do it again. So, a few weekends later The Oracle invited him to the range to observe the activities in their weekly Tactical Self-Defense Shooting League. Vinoth came and, according to The Oracle, was practically giddy with what he saw. He met about 20 other people who all show up every Saturday morning to practice their shooting skills and share a camaraderie that is like no other.
I don’t think Vinoth has been the same since. And we remain quite proud of the fac that we showed a person who comes from a very anti-gun culture that the American sport of shooting is fun, builds character, makes great friends and teaches countless valuable skills.