By Cranky Buddha
I happen to love the smell of gun cleaner, particularly the classic scent of Hoppe’s No. 9. In terms of my favorite aromas, it ranks right up there with new tires, gasoline and motor oil. It’s not quite up there with the smell of bacon or my wife’s Carne Guisada but it’s definitely one of my top ten fragrances. Unfortunately, my wife says it gives her a headache and since I do love her Carne Guisada (along with about a bajillion other things about her) a compromise had to be made. In this case the Hoppe’s had to go . . .
I did some research on alternatives to the old standby and found one that wasn’t priced too much like unobtainium. I also found it to be in stock at a local “big box” sporting goods store. Since I had nothing better to do, I spent my lunch hour heading over to there to pick up a bottle.
The current ammunition drought has developed some fairly Pavlovian responses in many gun owners, myself included. One of those is that I’m no longer able to walk into a sporting goods store without checking what ammo they may have in stock. Again, this has become a conditioned behavior. I had already spent my ammunition budget for the week and knew I shouldn’t even look but, well…I couldn’t help myself (see conditioned response).
It was as if I’d been digging at the “X” on the treasure map and my shovel hit the wood and iron of a buried chest. There were AR-15 magazines on the shelf, there was .22LR on the shelf, and there was .30-30 on the shelf. They were at reasonable prices and there was more there than I have seen since December! True, there was still no 5.56 or 9mm, but I had seen and purchased a couple hundred rounds of each earlier in the week. Which brought me to my quandary.
My weekly ammo allowance had already been spent. But there was ammo. Right there on the shelf.
It didn’t take long, but I figured out a way to make the purchase split among several cards so that it would fly under my Wonderful Wife’s radar (remember my love of Carne Guisada and a bajilion other things?).
As I was walking out of the store, bag of ammo in hand, I was hopeful that this was a sign that the current drought was nearing its end. For validation I headed over to one of the local gun stores and made a beeline for the back wall. Sure enough, there were AR’s in stock. Not a lot (maybe 10), but that particular stretch of wall had been empty for the last three months or so.
I left the store in a pretty good mood until a little later in the day when I received an email from my wife. It was a screenshot of the account balances accompanied by a frowny-faced emoticon and a few rather harsh words. There will be no Carne Guisada or additional ammo purchases for quite a while. Which made me wonder…
Is supply finally catching up with demand or is the gun community just running out of money?
Cranky writes at at Notes From a Cranky Buddha.