May 06, 2008

Daisy

Almost twenty-five years ago I made a trip to K-mart. My Crossman BB gun had gotten to the point where it had become bothersome in the BB gun wars. It was the type of gun that you had to pump up then pull the bolt back to load the round. By the time you accomplished this maneuver you had been fired on at least half a dozen times by the people carrying Daisy BB guns. One cock with a Daisy and you were ready to go. So I made an anger purchase; spent twelve dollars and got a plain Jane no frills Daisy. That gun went with me through countless hours of tracking down the enemy. It was used to pin down people and keep them there until, in desperation, they would muster the courage to run for better cover or to get out of range. It was used to drive entire teams from the trailer that was used as a fort. The object was for one team to hold the trailer while the other team led an assault to capture it.
The daisy has had hundreds of bottle rockets launched from its barrel, spent a while with a small flashlight attached to it, was lost for a period outside, slew many soda cans, (my dad hit fourteen with it once without missing a shot), was the primary weapon of destruction when you built forts with small army men then took turns shooting at each others base until there was a clear winner, cracked a few windows, was shot straight up into the air and waited with me to hear the sound of the round hitting something, (hopefully not your own head). The Daisy has stoked fires, been used in hand to hand combat, and hunted several small game morsels. It has been rusted, sanded, painted, bent, buried, been through several modifications, and held together by duct tape until new screws were added.. And come to think of it, I don’t believe I have ever put any oil in it…
Its appearance is as you would imagine, dinged, missing a screw or two, flaking paint, a crack here or there. But… when you cock it and pull the trigger, it fires true. (And only one BB comes out). Right now its sitting on a small gun rack next to the door with my fourteen-year-olds Red Rider.
It has gone through a phase of neglect. Soda can hunting, plinking and sniper practice have now been usurped by the Ruger 10/22s . Or the Thompson home protection unit.. But don’t worry… There has been a recent rebirth of the daisy.
The Daisy now serves as the primary form of personal protection when going on night patrol. Night Patrol is a recent invention of my four-year-old. (this guy) and yes..... he is a true bad ass...


It’s the same thing as an “adventure” it just takes place at night. We load up with weapons, he with his latest toy rifle and me with the Daisy. We get on the Kawasaki mule and ride through the woods at about walking speed, being very quiet, to make sure all is well. We stop at different places and turn the Kawasaki off to listen for anything out of the ordinary. These are his first experiences at night in the silence of the woods. The other night we made our way through the woods, picking our own trail after having left the main dirt road far behind. We worked our way precariously around the pond to the dam. We then cut the engine and sat listening for bigfoot, who lives just across from the garden, and the great white that lives in the pond, just to make sure they were both behaving accordingly. But after a few minutes of silence we each began to watch the stars. He started out by pointing out planes to me as they passed over, then I pointed out satellites and the few constellations I know by name. We were lucky enough to catch a few shooting stars as well. I told him about playing in these woods as I grew up and he pelted me with questions about what I had done. (as only a four-year-old can do). On one of the rare moments he stopped asking questions long enough to take a breath I pointed out the fog that had begun to form on the pond. He found it “scary” like in the monster movies. I told him that we would be ok as long as we didn’t touch it because it would turn us inside out (Simpsons). The big eyed look of terror he gave me forced me to admit my joke quickly, to which he told me that I was silly, with a huge look of relief. We then shot at the water for a while, primarily at the pine cones he tossed in. They became a fleet of pirate ships coming to steal our treasure from us, the treasure was locked in the five gallon bucket on the back of the Kawasaki and I was assigned its protection. I checked it when we got back and smiled to myself as I saw the soda can and rag that constituted our vast wealth. We have made several patrols through the woods with the Daisy in tow providing the necessary protection. I had thought of tossing the thing out over the last couple of years, but now I think that in the next few years it may find its way into the hands of the one kid I know that will refuse to let it rest, and that is how it should be. Have fun James....... I know I did.....

5 comments:

HeartofGoldPlate said...

He'll shoot his eye out! :D

Jules said...

He won't shoot his eye out heartofgoldplate...but maybe one of ours!

Jules said...

That made me smile and gave my heart a squeeze Big Daddy. You know the easiest way to me is through my children...or in this case I should say our children. When he is old and gray he will remember checking on Big Foot and the "big white" shark and it will forever keep you close to him.

Anonymous said...

What beautiful memories you are making with James.As he gets older when he hears the name Daisy he will not be thinking of a girl.
Keep making new memories with your boys and telling of the old memories.
MJ

The Angry Georgian said...

That is just awesome. Thanks for posting this. You brought back so many good memories.