The Right kind of friends


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kd7nqb
April 12, 2008, 11:52 AM
I could not find the perfect spot so I aired on the side of caution and popped it in at activism.

This weekend I am at the Oregon Federation of College Republicans confrence. The confrence will entail a number of speakers ranging from current canidates for local and state wide office as well as just oppurtunities to sit and chat.

Last night at our opening bonfire something amazing happened, the group seemed to divide itself into two groups quickly, drinkers and non-drinkers. This happens every year, however in previous years the non-drinkers were smaller in numbers and normally just those that are either too young or dont drink for personal or religious reasons. However this year I noticed a larger contingent (including myself).

I started up some polite conversation and discovered many of these new members to the non-drinker side were not drinking because they were CCW'ing. This of course made me feel in good company since I was also CCW'ing and it was great to see how quick the discussion shifted to things ranging from "How to really get CCW on campus" to "My glock is better than your M&P" for a brief time we even started had the 9mm V. 45acp debate but since 8/10 carrying use .40s&w we decided that was the answer for now.

My point being that when I showed up I was hesitent to tell others (even the ones I knew well) that I had my firearm with me. But once the silence was broken I made some real good connections with good guys. During the chat we even convinced a few new guys to go out and get their CHL's, quite possibly most important to me we convinced a young lady to get her CHL.

Now of course College Republicans are not the hardest group to convince that firearms are a means of protection but I have to say after spending all my time in the "Blue sea" of Portland it was nice to come down hang out at the beach and be able to chat about guns with some good guys.

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The Tourist
April 12, 2008, 01:34 PM
I've noticed the same thing. Personally, my initial experience started a lifetime of change.

In the early 1970's, I was broke. Every winter Harley laid me off, and on one occasion I did not qualify for unemployment benefits. The owner of The Wisconsin Inn, a unique biker/townie saloon offered me a shift as a bartender, assuming that a club member would ease the breakage and scuffles in his bar.

My friends claimed this was a "dream job." I was there most nights anyway. Now I would get paid for it.

Things were great as I started my shift. Lots of friends dropped by. I couldn't wear my colors, but everyone knew who I was and it was true, I was getting paid to be in my home bar.

After a few hours, I noticed that most folks were making stupid jokes to the delight of the crowd. By 10:00 PM, people were loudly swearing and pawing women. Not long after we had to separate a few townies, fighting to the death over a dispute on quarters laying on a pool table bumper rail. Then you could smell vomit. Fighters were now going outside.

And frankly, by midnight my own club was about the last people I wanted to be with.

The problem? I was sober.

Fortunately, the job was a short stint. Harley called me at the end of February to assemble frigid motorcycles in an unheated garage. I jumped at the chance.

From that moment on I was careful which bikers I drank with to the point that I quit drinking and started to quit smoking the last official year I was a full-time patch member. I view townies as a sub-species bent on their own diestruction one drink after another.

We often refer to pivotal events in life as a "sobering experience." This was mine. And I can readily see how your friends view their responsibility in life.

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