Monday, August 08, 2011

After Action Recreation Report

I have again departed Vancouver under my own steam and without handcuffs, a city where at one time I was threatened that if I were to return to a certain venue "ever again" that I would be leaving on a gurney or in a box...
Ah, over-empowered, youthful Olympic security guards. So full of enthusiasm, so little brains.
Who's laughing now, you most-likely-unemployed Jackwagon?

So, departing the comfortable climes of Vancouver I made my way to Texas, via Phoenix.

Getting off the plane at Sky Harbor was a little taste of things to come.
When I dropped the rental car off at YVR the temp was 64 degrees...
As we taxied to the gate in PHX the pilot announced that it was 101 degrees.
As we got off the plane, the jetbridge was every bit of that 101 and probably more.

On arrival at IAH it was even worse...

I had planned a meet up w/ KX59 & the fair Southern Belle since I was going to be in the neighborhood. We arranged a time and place to meet up- little did I know it would wind up being a chauffeured tour of Large Texas City suburb...

The festivities began w/ lunch.
I was intrigued when they wrote about a post-shooting meal of Chicken Fried Steak, complete with mouth-watering pictures... See here.
So our first stop was Goodsons in Tomball - The worlds largest and arguably the best chicken-fried steak...
If you're unfamiliar with chicken fried steak, well, it's something they excel at in Texas...
I am reminded of a quote from the CBS Show Big Bang Theory-

Sheldon: I grew up in Texas. Football is ubiquitous in Texas. Pro Football, College Football, High School Football, Pee-wee Football; In fact, every form of Football except the original: European Football, which most Texans believe to be a commie plot.

Leonard: Unbelievable.

Sheldon: If you’re interested, I also know all about frying meat that isn’t chicken as if it were chicken.

Lunch started out pretty innocuously, chit chat and talking about blogs, families, and the basic get-to-know yous...
Then the chicken fried steak appeared...
It was trundled in on the backs of 4 large native bearers...it was huge... It actually had its own gravitational field.

"Oh. My. Gawd." I said...
"Oh. My. Gawd."
Hell, it was even causing a echo effect as the sound waves bounced off the damned thing's Schwartzchild radius event horizon.

I tore into that thing with the gusto of a hound dog... 8 or 9 mouthfuls in I realized that I didn't get a picture of the beast.
Oh well, that will be a good reason to get back there sometime soon!
And I didn't take KX's advice...
"If you have eyes on the delectable pies for desert, I suggest the small chicken fried steak."
Screw moderation. I had the large CFS, and a slice of the their famous chocolate meringue pie.
There was a moment of drama when the waitress tried to take my plate before I had cleaned every last tiny morsel from the enameled surface...
She had grabbed at the plate before asking- and the sub-sonic growl and gnashing of teeth sent her scurrying for the kitchen... I finished my last few bites with my arm curled protectively around the plate.
Wow.

Next Stop - window shopping and tire kicking at a well-appointed local pawn shop.

Belle drooled on several shootin' irons- she's still vacillating on what she wants to get as her primary handgun...


KX examines a tool made to secure one's domicile...

The only thing we left with was a lead on a nice indoor range with a good selection of rental pistols...

We saddled up and headed to the range and we got knee-deep in some target practice.
Belle and KX rented a Springfield XDM in 9mm, and I rented my favorite stand-by, a Beretta 92f.

This was another really nice range, similar to the one in HotLanta...- nice air handling, great A/C, well-designed target trolleys...
Belle, KX and I punched lots and lots of holes in paper. A good time was had by all.

My recoil therapy session with Dr. Beretta went well, I was released with a clean bill of (mental) health, and we were off to our next activity...
A sitdown in a well-air-conditioned purveyor of frosty adult beverages.

A good host and hostess know how to treat a guest- namely, let him prattle on and on, telling tales and nodding politely at the pauses in his prevarications, and the fair Belle and KX were good hosts...
They were able to stay (mostly) awake as I recounted some of my stranger encounters and bizarre experiences. We made plans for later that evening... a dart tournament, or as Belle deems it "Drunks throwing Pointy Things", and they asked if I was up for participation...
Well... I'm not much of a dart thrower... I mean, I can blindly fling pointy stuff at a target with the worst of them...and since it was a blind draw, that means one of two things-
I'll be paired with someone as bad as myself, which means we'll have our asses handed to us quickly and painlessly... Or, more frighteningly, I'd be paired with a good player, and drag him down to my abysmal depths...probably pissing him off for thinking I could actually compete with the big dogs.
No time to dwell on it... Dinner first, then harpoons at 8 paces.

I went back to the hotel to change out of sweaty clothes and we re-convened at a local (really really good) Mexican restaurant... (What'd you expect? Hooters?) and after a great meal we headed to the pub for Darts & Drunks.


TBG: "I see you told them I was coming."

After a suitable amount of "aiming fluid" was imbibed the tournament started- I was paired with a gent named Alex who was, as I feared, pretty damned good. I'm sure he was thrilled to be paired with an ogre with 3 thumbs on each hand. We lost a tie-breaker in the first round, then we wound up playing against KX59 & his partner James in the losers bracket... KX59 is also a very skilled player, and James was really hot that night.
As I thought- the ass-handing was quick and painless, and really fun.

We sat afterward - telling more tales and having a great time-
We parted company sometime after 1am- I had planned to retire early since I needed to be in Dallas before 1:30pm and it's a 4 hour drive...

Oh well.

I have to say- I've met a really large cross-section of bloggers- Robb Allen, JayG, Lissa & her hubby, Brigid, Tam & Roberta X, Johanna, Borepatch & the Missus, Zeeke, Mopar & his better half, OldGrouch, McThag, Og, Mr.B and Midwest Chick, Munchkin Wrangler and many more...
I've yet to find any of them to be poor company; More to the contrary, everyone I've met has been several notches above the average Joes and Josephines... Bloggers, especially the gunnie bloggers, tend to be witty and intelligent- there's always great company, fun, scintillating conversation, and usually some good beverages and food...
I've been very fortunate to be able to meet some of the best and most interesting people scrawling snark across the blogosphere, and KX59 and Belle definitely fit right in...
Thanks so much for hosting me on a hot, hot, hot day under the Texas sun.
Y'all are the best!

And, really...
The whale was horrific.



TBG- ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒE

6 comments:

kx59 said...

Sushi anyone?
bored? with The Big Guy telling a lifetime's worth of stories?
I haven't laughed that much in a single day...ever.

Southern Belle said...

Oh my, we were more than politely listening to your stories, Jay. We were loving them! It was a fun time and I enjoyed it so much. I'm glad that you liked the chicken fried steak and the drunks with pointy things.
Next time you're in town let us know, we'd be happy to hang out with you!

kx59 said...

Belle pointed out the "horrific" link, which I missed earlier.
I gagged.

The Big Guy said...

KX59...
Sushi?
Texas Sushi?
What do they use, catfish?

In re: Horrific-

Yeah, so did I.
Several times.

Especially while digging in with a pair of vise grips...

No pics of the little Japanese guy having a heart attack, but if you go to 22.06581, -80.50903, you can see the the reason I spent 3 days in a 3rd world shithole "interview room".
(They were still in the planning / pre-construction stages when I visited.)

kx59 said...

surely you pocketed at least one tooth...
google earth first thing in the morning when I get to my xp machine, my linux is not liking it much.

McThag said...

I am glad I am not the only one who thought of grabbing a tooth.