Go Big or Go Home
The following was sent to me in a message from a friend of mine who posts by the name "Jusme" at TexasCHLForum.com. It was funny enough that I asked and received permission to post it here, adding to the legacy of the 9mm vs .45 ACP debate.
After years of carrying and shooting a polymer-framed, striker-fired 9mm semi auto pistol, and having endured backhanded ridicule regarding my choice of carry firearm, I decided to see what all the fuss was about regarding a 1911 in 45 ACP. So I set out on a mission to try one for myself.
My wife had left me to my own devices while she went shopping, so I decided to go see what I could find.
I found a beautiful 1911, at a local gun store. As soon as I got it in my hands, I realized, that it was a much heavier gun than what I was used to carrying. Since I had already agreed to purchase the pistol, the clerk said that I would not be responsible for the shattered glass on top of the display cabinet, when I dropped the gun. Fortunately the gun came with a plastic carrying case so I was able to use both hands to carry it out to my truck. I also purchased a holster for my new gun so that I could carry it on my belt.
After arriving home, I threaded my holster onto my belt, and then managed to heft the gun into the holster. At that point, it, along with my pants, hit the floor, causing some minor damage to my wife’s newly installed wood flooring. Knowing my wife’s propensity for noticing minor details, I knew I had to find a way to conceal the damage. Luckily I found a small rug that was large enough to cover the damaged area.
I then set about figuring out how I was going to manage to carry the much heavier gun, on my belt. I found two pair of suspenders; and by securing one set to my belt and the other set to my pants, I was able to reach a gravitational equilibrium. This did cause some shoulder discomfort however, but I figured I would just “tough it out” — although I could see that it could negatively affect my interactions with others.
On a side note, I knew that the standard method of carry for a 1911 is “cocked and locked”, with the safety engaged and the exposed hammer cocked. I could already see some problems, especially if I happened to encounter a group of MDA members. I had a very dreadful mental picture of soiled undergarments, fainting, and screaming. They would also probably be upset after seeing an armed man screaming, fainting, and soiling his undergarments, while wearing two pair of suspenders.
Realizing that my muscles had, no doubt, atrophied from only carrying the puny 9mm for so long, I decided that I needed to “bulk up” some if this was going to become a daily carry gun. I knew that trying to do too much, too soon, would probably be more detrimental than beneficial; so I decided to start out slow. I went to the local convenience store and purchased a 24 count case of 12 ounce liquid filled weights. I then returned home and began a strenuous workout, making sure to switch arms with each 12 oz. curl set.
I had completed approximately 18 sets of 12 ounce curls when my wife came home and immediately wanted to know why I was wearing two sets of suspenders, and why the welcome mat was in the middle of the living room floor. I tried to explain that it was a new type of feng shui, but my strenuous workout had caused some slurring of speech — which I attributed to my dedication to my fitness program, and the resulting endorphins associated with it.
I showed my wife my new 1911 but I didn’t try to lift it, since my arms were somewhat exhausted from my workout. She gave me that look that I have seen before, like she was trying to decide if my health benefits would provide her enough income while I was safely ensconced in a mental health facility.
She told me to clean up my empty weights, and go lay down before I fell down, obviously sensing my exhaustion. Fortunately, she didn’t probe further as to reason for the welcome mat. This was made moot however, as her toy fox terrier at that moment decided to enter the living room — and being curious, immediately headed for the center of the welcome mat, at which point she became instantly trapped in the floor, with the rubber mat encasing her as she pitifully yelped. My wife then began her usual tirade deriding my lack of responsibility regarding anything nice — and a lot of other things that I don’t remember since my workout had caused so many endorphins to flood my brain, it impaired my ability to concentrate.
I knew that with my wife being so unreasonable, it was probably better that I spend the night on the couch....... or it may have been her suggestion...... as I said, my workout was much more strenuous than I had anticipated.
After awaking the next morning (morning being a relative term), and still feeling the extra endorphins in my head, I decided to take my new 1911 to the range. I drove to a nearby discount store where I purchased some 230 grain 45 ACP FMJ. I soon realized that I was going to need more “bulking up” because after years of only handling miniscule 124 grain 9mm rounds, it was obvious that the new rounds were going to require more upper body strength. Fortunately, the manager allowed one of his warehouse workers to utilize a forklift to help me load all 100 rounds into the bed of my truck.
I then went to my local range, where I told the manager that I just purchased a 1911 and wanted to try it out. After ascertaining that it was indeed my first foray into the 1911 realm, he allowed me to back my truck up to the shooting station, and provided some employees to help me offload my pistol and my ammo.
After setting my target at 10 yards, I loaded a couple of rounds into the magazine. I would have loaded more, but I was curiously out of breath after only 2. I managed to rack the slide after 3 or 4 attempts, and drew a bead at center of mass on the target. As my arms were about to collapse from the sheer weight of my gun, I squeezed off my first shot.
My first shot was spectacular. I say this, because my safety glasses shattered into a bizarre spider web pattern, my ear muffs flew backwards and shattered the back window of my truck, which was still parked behind me. My arms and shoulders felt like they had been pushed back hard enough for my shoulder blades to crash together on my back.
These distractions kept me from noticing that four other shooters, two on each side, had been rendered unconscious by the concussive shockwave of the shot.
My target had one large ragged hole in the center approximately the size of a large dinner plate, but even more amazing was the huge hole in the berm behind my target.
While medical personnel attended to the other shooters and the range master had someone start the bulldozer to repair the berm, I took the opportunity to go to the gun shop and purchase some more safety glasses. I bought several pairs as I planned to do a lot of shooting.
I retrieved my ear muffs from the back window of my truck, and carefully removed bits of broken glass from them. I used one pair of my suspenders to fashion a makeshift chin strap, and prepared to fire again.
I set up another target, and noticed that they had repaired the berm with, not only dirt and railroad crossties, but also some plate steel. With my arms screaming in agony, I took aim once again. My second shot was even more spectacular since now, wood, steel, and one of the bulldozer tracks became part of the shower of debris. I’m not sure why they parked the bulldozer directly behind the berm in line with my target.
Unfortunately, this was all of the range time I was able to get in with my new gun. My body was racked with pain; and had my earmuffs not been securely attached at my chin, I’m sure I would have heard the range manager asking me nicely to leave. All I could actually hear was some incoherent screaming.
He was not so generous with helping me reload my gun and ammo into the truck however, so my departure was delayed while I carried ammo three rounds at a time.
I do now understand why people are so fond of the 1911 and the 45 ACP. And once I recover from my double shoulder replacement surgery, I plan to shoot it again.