I’m in a practical shooting match as I type this

Tam has a good funny.

I’ve said before that it would be cool to design an IPSC stage in which there are no “shoot” targets (only “no shoots”). Maybe even, everyone goes home without firing a shot that day, because that’s more “real life” than anything else you could set up.

The most unrealistic thing about a Practical Shooting match, then, is that you go to one knowing for a fact that shots will be fired, and you are thus prepared for it. In real life on the other hand, you never have that advance notice, there are no rules, no scratch lines on the ground, no range Nazis to correct your “mistakes”, no timers, no “walk throughs” prior to shooting your stage, and probably not even any safe places to shoot at all.

In that most realistic sense then, I’m in an IPSC match right now, as I type– I’m carrying a gun and assessing the environment, seeing no immediate threats. I’ve been in this particular “IPSC Match” for over 20 years already and have yet to draw my pistol, much less take a shot. This isn’t merely similar to real life; it IS real life. I only draw and fire my gun when I’ve decided to pause the “IPSC Match” for a while, and find a safe place to shoot.

The range mentality has gotten so insane that I’ve seen multiple gun demonstration videos in which the shooter loads five of six, in a percussion revolver (which is stupid right there if you understand how a percussion revolver differs from a cartridge gun), fiddle farts around trying to lower the hammer on the empty but inadvertently lowers it on a live chamber instead and has to fiddle fart with the gun some more to be sure it’s “safe”, walks five feet to the firing line, confident that he’s “being safe”, and then looks down and shuffles around a bit to make sure his feet are right on the scratch line. Stuff like that.

Don’t even try to talk to me about it. I’m just…not…listening…anymore. I’ve hear it all before anyway. Hell I wrote some of those the rules, literally– I was once the president of a Practical Shooting club.

Go ahead and call me crazy though. I’m accustomed to it, as you may well imagine.

4 thoughts on “I’m in a practical shooting match as I type this

  1. I think the NTI has a couple of force on force stages every year were the object is to disengage without drawing your weapon.

    Our local club has had a few blind shoot house stages were there are only one or two shoot targets and 8-10 no shoots. The gamers were offended they could not run through the house. The local IDPA jeffe informed us they were illegal and not in the spirit of the game. Go figure.

    • “The gamers were offended they could not run through the house. The local IDPA jeffe informed us they were illegal and not in the spirit of the game.”

      That’s an excellent illustration of the point.

  2. “The most unrealistic thing about a Defensive Shooting class, then, is that you go to one knowing for a fact that shots will be fired, and you are thus prepared for it.

    Unlike Real Life, you’ll even have someone to help you out if you can’t do it. No need to worry about being a “second place winner” because there won’t be a first place winner anyway.

  3. My father and I used to joke about possible Real Life shooting stages at Cowboy Action matches.

    At the beep: climb out of bed, retrieve your shotgun and open the door. Fire one shot at the coyote trying to get into the chicken house. Curse. Go back to bed.

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