Aug 28, 2008

No Loaded Weapons

There was a gun show yesterday; one of those traveling, here for three days only, weapons carnival. I use the term ‘three days only’ loosely, as this is the South, and these shows roll into the fairgrounds at least once a month. In addition, if I yearn to fondle more guns and ammunition than I already possess, I could easily travel thirty miles in any direction and find the weapons carny set up in another fairground in another town.

Although I had never been to one of these gun show/sales before, I knew the purpose of the event was not so much to show guns as to sell them. Since I always buy my guns and ammo at Mike’s Gun Shop, the fact that I had to pay an entrance fee to go into the Exhibit Hall of the fairgrounds to look at or shop for guns and ammunition started the day out all wrong. I will gladly pay an admission to see something that is actually shown (museum or comes to mind), but paying to shop just grates on my nerves.

Yes, I could have chosen not to pay the price of admission just on the principle, but then I would not have the opportunity to bestow this award.

I was in line behind about a dozen of other guns and ammo enthusiasts willing to fork over five dollars for the pleasure of shopping when I first noticed the sign posted at the gate.

“No Loaded Weapons Allowed Beyond Gate”

I took the opportunity to reach behind my back and under my shirt to press the magazine release and slip the magazine into my pocket. I racked the slide to remove the final round put that in my pocket as well. Nobody noticed. I paid for my ticket and walked the few feet to the gate, where another man was tending the gate.

“Do you have a weapon and ammo on you?” The gate tender was not smiling as he looked down at me.

“Yes.” He got me on a technicality.

“You cannot bring ammunition in, you need to return it to your vehicle and then you can come in.”

Since several Sheriff Deputies were standing on either side of the gate, and at the door to the Exhibit Hall, I decided not to point out the obvious, but to do as requested. After hiking to the parking lot and leaving the bullets in my truck, I went straight to the gate, where the same gate tender asked me if I had put my ammo in my vehicle. I assured him that I had and he let me in.

I am not even going to begin to describe the scene in the Exhibit Hall (another story, another day), but I was surprised to see so many people crowding around rows upon rows of six foot tables laden with weapons of every type.

This was going to be fun.

I did not really need any ammo that day, but just because the carny attendant made me trek back to my truck in the August heat, I was going to prove a point. The first order of business was to buy bullets for my gun, which was in my belt holster, and now I am inside the Exhibit Hall with a gun and ammo.This week’s Brainless Award goes to all the traveling gun and ammo shows out there that share the “no loaded weapons” policy. Moreover, I still do not think I should have to pay to shop.

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