Nobody’s been shot in three years. The last was Big Jake who took a .45 in the thigh after his shotgun blast fell short of Dizzy following an argument over choice of radio stations. He limped leaking red to a neighbor’s porch, recovered and a month later canoed the Sierras. “Getting’ shot don’t spoil a vacation,” he asserted. A few months prior, the Indian shot off the sheriff’s finger because he meddled with the Indians 2000+ tire collection. Recently, Old Martha CB radioed Boy Quick to execute a sidewinder next to her truck but she packs herself and some suspect she was feeling feisty so put it there. In another event, Alice the Dog Lady pulled a rifle that looked like a broomstick in the moonlight before recognizing me broken down near her driveway, as later did TJ adding, “Good way to get plugged.” Nights a poor haunt of the desert. I’m likely the single person in the valley without a gun, but last week someone let me fire a 30-round clip in a Russian AK-47. It’s a semi i-automatic with good accuracy, range and stopping power, but little kick. I learned to crease the dirt in front of the target with the initial shot to true the remaining spurt. Gun control proponents argue to license guns for target shooting and call the police for defense of home. There wasn’t a phone in the valley until Old Man Swanson got one after a heart attack, so I can drive 45 minutes to use it. I don’t own a gun because before every emergency there are many mental rehearsals that elicit physical reactions – I want to have drilled appropriately before the next jam on a hiking trail or in a foreign country where arms aren’t allowed. I’ve learned some tricks about guns though: Drop live rounds around your property or parked car to dissuade intruders.