What I'm Carrying Now SIG P229
Courtesy MLee
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What I'm Carrying Now EDC SIG P229
Courtesy MLee

MLee writes . . .

I’m a little older and retired. I’ve lived through the eruption of Mt. St. Helens, a devastating firestorm, ice storms, windstorms, an earthquake and more recent catastrophic forest fires where smoke was so bad it was off the scale. Now the world contends with COVID-19 the likes of which we have not seen. Those of us with more life experience tend to roll with the punches better than others. We know it will work out despite inevitable changes. We will continue to exist, perhaps a little different for a while.

As we learn from experiences many of us better prepare for tomorrow. I’m not a “prepper” just a survivor. If the water and electricity quits and stores close, I’m prepared and  I’ll stay warm and fed. I have options.

My daily carry changed slightly. I’m now carrying spare mags along with the Surefire 6PX Pro flashlight. I home carried much of the time to begin with, now I home carry all the time. From the moment I get dressed to the moment I go to bed,  I’m carrying. At night my SIG P229 is beside me. It’s loaded with Hornady Critical Duty carried appendix in a Sticky Holster. The magazine pouch is a The Master’s Holster hand made leather.


[This post is part of our series, What I’m Carrying Now. If you’d like to submit a photo and description of the gun, holster and gear you’re carrying in the new world in which we live, send it to us at [email protected] with WICN in the subject field.]

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  1. Seems right. As an old warrior whose been through the shit a time or two. I understand where you are coming from. Living the lifestyle helps takes care of the hard times.
    Be Safe Maintain OP SEC and as always Keep Your Powder Dry.

    • His reference to the Mount St. Helens eruption takes me back.

      Of course I was in kindergarten at the time.

      Still, it was a pretty interesting experience. Ash fell from the sky like snow. We played with the ash using magnets. It was fun, though we just had a little bit of ash at my childhood home in Eastern Washington.

      • I remember St. Helens, but was on the other coast when it happened, so didn’t experience it. Although when I went to Alaska in August ’92 for college, Anchorage was raining ash from Mount Spurr to the west. That was the last time, prior to COVID, that I saw people wearing masks everywhere as I arrived at Anchorage airport. Everything was grey and looked dystopian. My freshman year transportation was a new Trek mountain bike. That pretty green frame paint was permanently scratched after that. I waxed it once to try and fixit but said ‘aw f-ck it’ after that.

        • I was 7 at the time and watched the side of the volcano disappear on TV in the cafeteria in school. I also seen the space shuttle explode on TV in the same cafeteria.

  2. I really like what you wrote about rolling with the punches, and that is one powerful looking piece.

    • No – if I can’t got watch the latest Harvey Weinstein film, I taking my 11 year old daughter and she is going to open carry an AR15 condition 1 into a government building. Muh constitution and being in the same political party as LINCOLN (who upheld the constitution all the time- never doing anything like suspending Habeas Corpus) protect me from this virus which escaped a Chinese weapons lab.

      • Psychotic anti Conservative trolls are doing their best to try to ruin this forum. Sad really. A psychologist would have to clear an entire day of their schedule to examine this dipshit’s ass-clownery.

  3. It’s always good to read from am old timer. Take a blue pill and ride me already!

    • Quite a few of us old-timers have no need for the little pill… 😉

      • Even if you have no ‘need’, you owe it to yourself (and her) to try it sometime. You may find yourself bigger and harder than you have been since you were 18. Not to mention it can add a few more innings to your ball game.

        • If you still trust the pharmaceutical industry, I’ve got some prime beachfront property for you in South Dakota. 🤪

        • Art, I can only tell you that the blue Nizagara pills I got on the internet were the real deal. They’ll turn your vision slight red-tinged from excess blood flow to your eyeballs, and you’ll be a bid red in the face as well, but they deliver where it counts!

  4. I’m lovin’ the rosewood. I have an Elite Dark with plain grips, but the short reset trigger works well. Mine is showing wear also, but those rosewood grips you have add character. Seems recently a lot of the WICN submissions have either HST/Hydra-shok or Critical Defense/Duty ammo.

  5. 6PX is a nice light. Use that one as my car light. Are you using a holster for it? Does SF even still make light holsters for your belt?

    • I actually have 2 of those 6PX lights. One stays beside the bed so I have it available if needed and never have to worry about remembering it and then the other I carry around. They are not so big really is they go into your pocket without being too obtrusive. It’s like anything, once you’re used to it, you don’t notice it.

      • Larger lights like this I always carried in a holster for ease of access during weld inspections when I had to crawl into things.

        I stopped using SF lights for that particular purpose and relegated them to personal use only when I recognized that nice lights had a tendency to grow legs when unattended for a few minutes.

        I literally did an inspection at one point, reached out and set the light down, checked some wiring for about two minutes, wriggled out backwards and the light was gone with no one in sight. Never did that again on the job.

  6. Yep, that’s a nice little rig. Had to put the glasses on to see those pretty booze bottles better, which turned out to be a couple of Colemans. Happy weekend!

  7. Live debt free. Have a circle of family and trusted friends. Don’t let the hard times make you bitter and angry. They will pass.

    • Good advice.

      But, and don’t take this the wrong way, living debt free has a large element of luck to it. Most people don’t make enough money in 20 years to simply pay off the bills I got last year without basically annihilating their retirement.

      The median retirement account for people in their sixties would have covered about 71% of those bills. After insurance.

      A misdiagnosis of something significant is more costly than most people can imagine.

      • So…. Basically, our overpriced medical system has severe problems. True

        I am very sorry to hear about the difficulties you dealt with.

        It is still good to live debt free if you can. Many people could do so if they set their minds to it.

      • Strych9,

        You have it exactly! I have read that medical bills are the number one cause of bankruptcy in this country.

        For 13 years, I went deeper into debt every year due to my family’s medical bills. Three more years to pay it all. The good news is that I found ways to get my family the care they need. Retirement seems unlikely; good thing I like my work.

      • “So…. Basically, our overpriced medical system has severe problems. True”

        You get what you pay for. A medical education costs real money, medical technology like MRIs cost big money, and developing drugs costs even bigger money.

        There’s cost-effective medical care available, just go to Cuba or Venezuela to get it.

        If you are so deluded you think a single-payer medical care system is the way to go, you can’t be helped. Because you will get Cuba or Venezuela quality care from it.

        And one other thing they neglect to mention – Will their improved system *require* doctors to work for what the government pays Medicare doctors? Because a whole lot of doctors will say “fuck that noise” and leave medicine altogether if that happens. Then have good luck in finding a ‘free’ doctor see at all.

        There are no easy solutions to this, because the alternative is Cuban and Venezuela care for the masses, and very expensive private care for those with the money to pay for it on the other. What an *ideal* way to breed class resentment and conflict if that happens…

        • Not sure how you turn his comment into wanting socialized medicine. He’s right, the system is broken but that hardly equates an argument for a Venezuelan system.

          Until you’ve had a family member need serious medical care you don’t see just how bad it is. Most people in America are just one major medical crisis away from financial ruin. And that’s WITH insurance.

          When I had my last major surgery the hospitals finance folks told me I was lucky because my insurance at the time was much better than most. They said it was heartbreaking to see what happens to most people that come in. Now, even with my so-called “golden” insurance the out of pocket cost was very high. After paying what I thought was the last of it I still got bills for the next two years!

          Even now, with insurance, my monthly medical/medication bills are hard to cover. Ever look at a detailed itemized breakdown of a hospital bill? A 10 cent syringe is billed to you for $1.50. Then there’s the medication in the syringe, also hugely inflated. Everything from a bandage to your bedpan is billed like that. That cost is passed on to the insurance company who turns around and passes it on to it’s customers in the form of high premiums.

          Why do the hospitals upcharge every little thing? Because they lose so much money from people who get medical care and can’t afford the high cost so they default. It’s an insane crazy circle. Then, on top of that, you throw in the financial crapstorm that is the pharmaceutical industry. Between the pharmaceutical industry and the health insurance industry they make up the largest criminal organization, operating legally-ish, in the country by an immeasurable margin.

          Yes, good medical care is expensive but because the system is so out of control it’s way more expensive than it should be. But hey, since all the hospital, pharmaceutical and insurance execs are making huge profits off the broken system surely it trickles down to the rest of us.

        • BeoBear:

          There are also other factors you’re not considering.

          The insurance you pay for covers the insurance the hospital and the doctor carry in case something goes wrong and a lawyer convinces you or your family that the hospital is liable for it. In many cases this isn’t about actual fault but rather about money. They’ll launch a lawsuit specifically tailored to cost more to defend than the hospital’s insurance company will calculate is worth doing. They do this to force a settlement and, in some cases, that’s an undeserved settlement. Cost goes up. Then there’s the law which says a hospital cannot turn away indigent patients. Nice law, but the government no longer reimburses the hospital for the costs incurred. So everyone else gets that care added to their bill.

          It’s also true that the ACA itself causes problems. Very long story short, the ACA tries to discourage “unnecessary testing” because Congress believed that this was a way that docs gouged patients. The result was that my docs office was essentially forbidden from doing a test that LabCorp will do for $12-$14 cash out-of-pocket.

          I almost died because the government essentially told my doctors not to do a cheap test.

          So yeah, I’m not a fan of socialized medicine. I have family in the UK that’s lost members of the family to treatable ailments for exactly the same reason. Fuck that.

        • @strych9
          That’s another example of the broken system. A friend of mine who’s a doc told me he wishes he had become a Physician Assistant instead of an MD because of that very thing. He said the malpractice insurance they are forced to carry takes a huge part of his income and at the end of the year he was making considerably less money than his PA friends. That’s messed up. Then include the massive student loans most docs have to pay off for the first 10-15 years of their practice. I knew one doc who was living in a crappy apartment because that’s all she could afford after insurance and college loan payments.

          I totally agree that socialized medicine isn’t the answer, however, our system here is broken. Very, very broken.

      • Luck plays a big part in our lives. Most males are lucky just to survive to adult status with the really bonehead things we like to do before we smarten up. If we ever manage to smarten up.

        But living the frugal lifestyle can insulate your life from a lot of bad things. Random genetic choice can also play into the luck. I’m fat. But it’s common for the fat folk in my family to see 90-100 birthdays. I’m in my 60s. I’ve stayed overnight in the hospital exactly twice in that time. Mostly I get stitches and a lecture from the er staff.

        Our choices in how we live guides our luck, somewhat. No alcohol, no tobacco, no drugs. That right there would make a lot of folks bad luck go away.

        Of course there is just the plain old random bad luck. I watched a 15 yo buddy of mine in school die in a freak dirt bike accident. Snap your fingers. That’s how fast a kid died and a family was torn apart.

        Murphy is real and out there. Maybe you make a valid arguement for National Health Care like Canada or England?

      • I’m not going to type out a fully fleshed out response here since I’m on my phone but I am in no way suggesting that Socialized Medicine is a good thing.

        If you Google “Britain has the worst outcome for…” and throw in a bunch of various common ailments you find that the NHS knows it sucks. They rank at the bottom for lots and lots of things and they know it, they discuss it in paper after paper. That’s why the UK now has a two tiered medical system. The survival rate for me in the UK 17 months ago under the NHS was, and still is, a fraction of what it is the US.

        Bills that are part of my “buy a house with cash up front” fund or death isn’t much of a choice IMHO.

        I would also note that this entire area is a place to be careful with how we present ourselves. Without an understanding of nuance we open ourselves up to unwarranted criticism.

        For example many of the regulars here would be surprised, given my personal proclivities and abrasive nature, that if we played a “If SHTF which TTAG commentors would you pick for your team?” game that I’d actually have you, a self admitted fat guy, in my top 2 picks, and in fact be hard pressed to decide to draft you 1 or 2.

        Part of that is because they haven’t bothered to really read what I’ve actually said and part of it is because in the interest of trying to avoid writing novels, I haven’t spelled it out because I often don’t have the patience for the TL;DR crowd.

  8. Spent a few years living in the Alaskan wilderness, Coleman gas lanterns we’re a real luxury item, as long as you had enough ‘Blazo’ fuel. Metal cans of fuel packed in wooden boxes… There were lots of things built out of those wooden boxes and sheet metal fuel cans…I could go back to those simpler times, no problem…

  9. I’ll never forget the view of Mt. St. Helens from my flight into Seattle in 89. Sweet Sig.

    • You can see pictures of it all day long but until you look at it, you just don’t capture the magnitude. Being a pilot, one day I got a hair up my ——, grabbed a plane and flew over to Mt. St Helens. I approached the rim from the west on a due North heading and flew over the blown out face. It was REALLY IMPRESSIVE. There just isn’t the words to describe it and I’ve been flying close to 40 years but that was one of the most memorable flights I’ve done.

  10. Dude, stay where you are and dont move here because evidently there is a dark cloud hanging over you. Good gear though. I guess you would have to have good gear to survive all that.

    • Naaaa no dark cloud, I call it luck! I wouldn’t want to miss all of it and have lived a dull sheltered life.
      That’s what defines a person and instills perspective. But yes you are right. With the ice storm and a November wind storm, houses were crushed and power lines down all over. You’d drive down the street and people were sitting in their cars trying to stay warm. Not me.

  11. Looks like a solid EDC to my eyes. I’ve not had the opportunity of using a Sure Fire product, mainly because I’ve used and been a fan of Streetlights for many years.
    Nice to see some old lanterns. I’ve a few old ones, but none in such excellent condition.

  12. Sarah, This is the best and most financially rewarding job I’ve ever had. I actually started this few Weeks ago and almost immediately started to bring home minimum 74BUCKS p/h. I use details from this Address…. http://www.­6.gp/a72HQ

    • I guess it doesn’t say in the main article huh! Mine is .40 also. I like .40 I hit really well with it and besides, everyone and their second cousin twice removed carries some striker hunk of crap in 9mm.

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