22 November 2010

QOTD: F#(% You! I'm Irish!

God bless the Irish!  Bunch of drunk, take no bullshit, hard asses!  If more political discourse was of this nature, maybe we would actually see more progress! 

From (of course) Zero Hedge comes our quote of the day.
A year ago Irish Green Party politician Paul Nicholas Gogarty told Irish Labor Party TD "With all due respect, in the most unparliamentary language; Fuck you, Deputy Stagg, fuck you!... We Are Screwed As A Country Because Of The Wrongdoing Of Others."
As the Tyler Durden relates after the quote, it took them almost a year to prove it, but can the Irish Green Party can say "We told ya so!"  Further, Durden opines:
Now that the "others" have been identified as virtually every UK and German bank, not to mention every insolvent financial institution in the world, and of course, the Fed's banking buddies, one wonders: just how will Ireland respond? Also, when will America finally see one of its pathetic excuses for representatives finally do the right thing and actually speak the truth. InTrade over/under: never. 
Of course, poor Ireland was backed into a corner and forced to take a second bailout without much choice from the EuroZone.  As AK Fan and I discussed earlier today, the European Monetary Unit has never been about openness and unity as much as it has been about controlling the political disagreements amongst the member states.  In good times, the nationalistic pride is easy to forget, but in bad times, the resentment is hard to keep from festering.

In terms of political progress and the hopes of freedom, I certainly wish the Irish people well in their efforts to right their economy and get a handle on the plutocrats who are controlling their country and destiny. 

Slice of Life: Goose Season Returns! "Well Great, Now What?!"

Wildlife: Noun, Wild animals and vegetation, especially animals living in a natural, undomesticated state.  Add lib: "Well great, now what?!"

On opening day of goose season this Saturday, that was exactly the question myself, my father, and our friend were left asking as we sat in the blind befuddled, amused, and amazed.  Hunting isn't supposed to be easy, or hard, but it certainly is unpredictable.

I arrived at my parent's place for a quick breakfast and cup of coffee before heading out to the blind.  My dad is fortunate to be surrounded by farmland on three sides of his place, and even more fortunate to be friendly with the farmer.  Factor in that the fields were due for a corn year in their crop rotation and everything was coming up Milhouse.  So our friend arrives a few minutes before shooting time (whom we shall name as Agent Parsimonious, AP for short) and we depart the 100 yards from the house to the blind, a tough walk for three's company and the dog, I can assure you.

A beautiful morning greets us with little dew and some chill and of course just enough sun to blind a horse.  Fortunately, it wasn't a completely bluebird day as to prevent the goosers from getting off their full moon duffs and getting out for a morning flight.  From 0700 to roughly 0930, we had a steady stream of action to watch, call to, and even a few chances to take a shot.  So in an early summary, it was a nice start to the early season, and I hope that holds well into January.

The first flock that looked "goosy" (as my dad describes groups that are willing to come to the rig) looked at our bias ply tires and silhouette decoy spread, and even seemed impressed with our calling.  They circled several times, before making one final pass which allowed my father to call the shot.  From left to right Agent Parsimonous, myself, and my father stood up to take our bead and our shots.  The salvo opens!

BANG! pump BANG! pump BANG! pump, SHIT!  I had missed on all three of my shots.  My father to my right missed his (or hit it and the goose refused to fold).  AGENT Parsimonious to the rescue!  One bird down, and I resume blowing on my call profusely to bring the flock back.  Kudos to the birds for knowing when in danger, the best thing to do is fly away.  Reloaded and confusion settled, time to get the dog to retrieve the bird.  No wonder I missed, as the dog had to hike her butt a good 65~70 yards to make the retrieval, but to her credit, she came back, bird in mouth!  Good dog Holly, good girl!  Note to shooter:  MORE LEAD STUPID! 

Bird retrieval completely and situation returned to nominal, the three of us settled back into the routine of talking, telling stories, and watching the various flights of geese far off on the horizon.  Next thing we know, we're feverishly attempting to call in another group.  Dad is quietly giving instructions on how much to call and how much to listen, as well as tracking the birds through the intensely blinding sunlight.  As the birds circle we hear, "This time, I want them to come into the decoys, let them come final."  We waited for the shot to be called, but alas, it would never come.  The birds flew right over our heads, with no volley, only to turn around and land into the wind about 110 yards from the blind.

Decoys in foreground, the invaders afar!

"Well great, now what?!"  The calls go silent, and so do the birds.  It's a standoff!  No one moves.  AP and myself start chuckling quietly as neither of us have ever seen such a sight before.  It was humorous and neat in that we did our job, only that it wasn't a complete success.  My dad shakes his head and says "I'm gonna have to move those birds."  Not wanting to let them sit there and eat out the field, or ruin our chances at getting another flock to the blind, it was necessary to move the birds.  Doggy up!  She goes for the birds, only for the stinkers to move about 25 yards further out.  "Good dog Holly," my father shouts.  "Guess I've got to go out there and help," and finally the invaders departed.

Departing from our high ground, the invaders are forced to leave.

In all, it was a great hunt and when you consider I didn't even make a shot on a goose last season, I was certainly excited by the flocks that were attracted to our rig.  Hopefully this will be a good start to the rest of the season!  I can't wait for the next hunt, and neither can the dog! 

Olympic Bobsledder Also Vermont National Guardsman

In a little known Monday fun fact, the Military Times has this little snippet on Olympic athlete John Napier.

As a member of the US Bobsled team, Napier competed in both the two and four man competitions this past Olympics in Vancouver, but also has another hero's role as that of a National Guardsman.  Thankfully, Napier is returning to the interational bobsled circuit in the month of December to join fellow teammate, and veteran (and Olympic Gold medalist), Steven Holcomb, where they will compete for the world championship in sliding.


Credit to Military Times for the info and the picture.