G is for guns, guns, guns.
If I were a political creature, I’d be so far left-leaning that I’d topple over. Probably. I say probably because since I’m apolitical, I’m by choice not politically-versed enough to know for sure. But I’m pretty sure on the side I’d theoretically be on, I’m not supposed to like guns.
Except that I do.
I am of course, against permissive gun laws, in keeping with my Leaning Tower of Pisa nature (the tower leans south, which any southpaw might tell you, is honorary left). But from the pearl-handled Lady Belgian Revolver of Agatha Christie murderesses to Bonnie and Clyde Tommy guns, if it weren’t for the lost life and injury, it’d be hard to deny that guns are badass little feats of design.
Naturally, any bullet fired by me would be exclusively relegated to cans on barrels, paper targets at the shooting range or sadistic serial-killers charging me with oversized X-Acto knives.
Having said that, here are five of my actual encounters with guns:
That time I was “kidnapped”
For an entire day, the silver fox police chief of the Lyndhurst, NJ station let fifteen-year-old me sit in his office while we told each other our hopes and fears. We became such buds that when I pointed to the locked glass case on his wall containing a gun collection, he unlocked it.
He let me handle an unloaded .38 Special and that was my first encounter with any gun, anywhere.
What about said kidnapping? Read about it in The Jail Incident.
That time I was obsessed with destruction
In my early twenties, I thought of heroin and handguns as great conversation pieces in order to put forward the tough-chick persona that seemed to matter to me. Maybe it had to do with the fact that just out of a relationship with my first love, I was certain I would never smile again.
Two new guys began pursuing me, and when my birthday came around, each knew the way to my heart was through a gun.
The long-haired musician was a self-proclaimed pacifist, so he delivered to me a high-power plastic water-rifle the color of Sunkist, wrapped in a ribbon.
The conservative Columbia grad, on the other hand, managed passes to an NYPD shooting range where we got to shoot a variety of guns. This included a semi-automatic assault rifle, which to me was close enough to a machine-gun to make me squeal happily.
Still, the water-gun boy won and we began a five-year relationship.
That time I shot a Luger
I was the star of my first movie and I had a chance to portray my inner and outer tough chick. The movie didn’t go anywhere, but in it, I got to load and shoot blanks out of a real WWII Luger.
That time a cop pointed a gun at me
We’ve all been in a dysfunctional relationship. At least, let’s pretend we all have, since I for one have endured outrageous dysfunction.
It was night and we were parked in my car in an ATM lot of a small town. My guy was arguing with me to death—and ashes and beyond—about something preposterously immaterial, like whether it was appropriate to honk your horn when waiting for someone outside their house, or whether big cities were entitled to water sources from small towns.
Soon he was maniacally banging his fist against the dashboard and shaking my entire car. Within minutes, there were sirens and the arrival of two cop cars. The police yanked him out of the driver’s seat and dragged him aside to question. Apparently some other ATM couple had called in a report of someone’s head being bashed into the steering wheel. Even though no such thing had occurred, ugly was ugly, and I remained in the passenger seat with the door open, equal parts mortified and fuming at my guy’s latest Jerry Springer debacle.
That’s when a young male cop appeared at my side.
“Ma’am, would you get out of the car please?”
I slowly turned my head in his direction. Noticing he was holding something, I picked that moment to be overcome with the rage I had contained while interacting with the abusive guy the police were questioning outside.
“Are you pointing a GUN at me?!” I snarled, eye-level with the weapon. I had no fear of the gun, certainly not of him holding it. He probably didn’t even have his wisdom teeth in yet.
“Yes…ma’am. We don’t know what we’re dealing with.” His voice was tentative and I imagined his hands shaking. I snorted and looked away, refusing to get out of the open door until he put away the gun. He had deeply offended me.
If this had been Los Angeles or New York instead of this little cop’s little town, I would have been billy-clubbed, or worse. The terrifying part was realizing I wouldn’t have acted differently. In daydreams where I am heroic, I always theorized a gun wouldn’t make me cower. Being proven right in real life was no comfort—people get shot for far less provocation than defiance.
Eventually, the young cop put the gun away and I got out of the car. He then very nervously handcuffed me, but the handcuffs slipped off and I felt awful for having terrorized him.
Later, after the matter was cleared up, I apologized to the cop.
That time my girlfriend married a military guy
My most traumatizing encounter with a gun was when my sweet, honey-haired girlfriend went to a gun show in Texas with her military husband and came home with a brand new Glock for herself. The evil, flesh-exploding type of bullets weren’t my only issue. It was that all this deadly menace was housed in a holster of…hot pink.
~ Part of the A to Z Challenge ~
A post a day except Sunday for the month of April to cover topics beginning with each letter of the alphabet. Events always real, names always changed.
Cathartic Monkeyism returns in May.
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