Sunday, August 25, 2013

Confessions of an Ammo Junkie

Alright, alright, alright,  My name is Double Tap, but my friends call me 2X.   I have a problem.   I'm an ammo junkie.   There I said it.  First step to recovery right?   Thankfully, my problem is limited, I only horde ammo for guns I have, so I can't be that bad right?   I know many of you out there buy ammunition for guns you don't even own.   You think it'll come in handy some day, but it doesn't it just sits out there and collects dust. So before you haters start judging me for my problem, pull up a chair and listen.

My addiction started right after Christmas 2012, before New Year's.  Our Governor had stated that he was interested in gun control.   My part time job at a gun shop exposed me to the horrors that became my addiction.   The thin man came to the counter, asked for 22 and as I pointed to the rack of some 40 bricks of 22, he turned and and hustled double time across the store...the fat man and the bald man followed, each coming back to the register with 3 or 4 bricks a piece piled high in their arms. The signs went up proclaiming box limits, which made things worse.  As the rules of the game changed, the buying behaviors changed as men drug their wives and girl friends in to purchase ammo for them.  Gun Gals brought their boyfriends in and the store became twice as crowded.  2 box limit, here's my 2 and here's her 2.  Damn, I thought, I better get some too before it's gone, so I put 2 bricks away to pay for later and just like that I began my spiral into uncontrollable ammunition purchasing.  I felt guilty...don't ask me why, I couldn't tell you, maybe I was depriving some father from taking his kid shooting, or some  grandmother from shooting a neighbor's noisy ass dog.  Reluctantly, I put one brick back on the shelf and took the other home.   I dwelled on that brick all night long, how it needed to come with me, how I might not be able to find another, what if I couldn't take my daughter to a match because we didn't have ammunition for her gun?

The next day, after my other job, I hustled back to the shop and to my horror found there were no more bricks, none, nada, zip.  Ha I thought, I must not have needed it anyway...but it got worse.   I grabbed 2 boxes of 9mm and a 40 for good measure (those would disappear soon).   I didn't even own a 9mm, but I was going to get one, I wasn't going to be one of THOSE people.   I had 200 rounds of 9mm before the Glock 17 made it off the shelf and into my hands.  I was NOT one of those guys.

I thought it was over and that my flirtation with "using" was on the draw down, but no, 223 was flying off the shelves and I only had 3,000 rounds of that, so I better get another 500.....Ok another 1000 rounds for good measure.   The zombie apocalypse might start any day according to DHS and I should be prepared....My Government told me to "be prepared, make a plan, get a kit", which translates to buy ammo, acquire ammo, and obtain ammo - I listened.   It didn't take long for the disposable income to dry up, but just one more couldn't hurt right?  I could just find one more box for under $10 so I could end my hording on a happy note...but no, it didn't happen that way - $12.50 - damn them.  Forget that supply and demand necessitated a price increase, I wanted to pay $8.50, but those days were gone.  I looked for new suppliers and new dealers to satisfy this craving, but they all wanted $12.50...and some even wanted more.  $12.50 plus shipping.   Cheaper than Dirt became Cheaper than Gold, but I had to have it...oh and another 30 round magazine for my AR....and my basement office became my arsenal with ammo cans piled in every corner and hiding under my desk and even one box hiding behind a Coke in my tiny office fridge.  Ssssshhhhhhh.  Boxes from Magpul lay about the floor...

Soon, the range that I took my kids to were selling 22 only to those people that were going to use the range, so I would take my daughter and her 22, buy a box of CCI mini mags - gal behind the counter would sell me the 100 round count box because she liked my daughter, but I would make my daughter sit in the chair while I shot my 45 (only 1/2 a box) and I'd take the 22 home in my range bag to satisfy a future itch.   The look on my daughters face said it all, the pain and the misery, and I knew that...I just had to do this 3 or 4 more times to build up a satisfactory 22 stockpile.   She could tough it out, she is young and strong and....could keep her mouth shut for just bit longer.  Ice cream - that would do it, ice cream on the way home.   We amassed another 600 rounds of Mini Mags.   That itch finally ceased, but other more exotic calibers awaited and called to me every time I walked down the ammo isle....I could hear them call my name.

I got desperate, Cabela's website told me they were out and my heart began to race and I did something I never do, I went to Dick's Sporting Goods, then Wal-Mart, and even to Sportsman's Warehouse but only to find empty shelves and the laughter of  store clerks and the ghost boxes ringing in my ears.   "You could have had us last month, but you were too good to come here..." They laughed at me and I heard them, I heard each and every 38 special and 357 mag round mag round that could not be had.  Sleep became an all consuming nightmare, where to go next, when, how, why?  Do I go to a match and use my precious rounds or do I turn into a Gringgots Goblin and sit on my piles?

My problem was just not with the 9mm, 22 or 223, no it went beyond that.   I had to have 38,40 and 45 as well, I'm an instructor right?  I had to have this stuff for class, how can you teach if you don't have ammunition?   How could you offer a quality class if you couldn't shoot the gun, dry fire only gets you so far and snap caps do a great job of giving you look and feel, but you need to feel the power and hear the roar and feel the recoil. Yes, you do, so with credit card in hand I went shopping.   When stores ran box restrictions I would get my limit and circle back around in 30 minutes if they had inventory, and if they didn't I'd bribe a kid with an icee and give them the cash to buy me a box of 38.   You know how hard it is to dodge security cameras in Wal-Mart?  Man, I never thought I'd use that knit hat with dreadlocks wig again...It's tough to disguise a middle aged, white haired, white guy with dreadlocks and sunglasses, but cut the hair short, stuff it under the cap and some brown shoe polish for the beard and with my Jamaican accent and best tie died peace shirt...Good thing I took up running too.   Security guards give up after 1/2 mile.

I had it bad, but as bad as I had it, the guys that shot the exotic stuff had it worse.   The hipsters and their 5-sevens and the guys looking for AK or worse AK-74 - those guys looked like skeletons with a twitch and pasty.  Plastic in hand and ready to pay, but they couldn't even find fulfillment in a dream.  They didn't believe the run would last long and even if they did, they couldn't buy enough inventory and soon they were going through range withdrawal.   I wouldn't let that happen, I kept to the "easier" to find and limited myself to once a week, I limited my students ammunition count and shot the extras when they had left for the day.   What they didn't know...

I'm better now.   I'm feeling secure in my abilities to scrounge if needed and with the quantities at hand.  It's been a tough slog, but the stuff is back on the shelves and the ghosts have dissipated.  22 while still scarce is making a come back, and for old time sake I picked up a 1600 round count of 22.   I could have passed it by - I could have. No, I could have...well maybe...   I'm getting better I'm on a program now.

I'm 2X and I've not purchased ammo in 6 days.

Shoot straight,
Double Tap.


GunDiva said...

Oh, 2X, I should have listened to the shooting hubby years ago when he told me to stock up. But, no, while I had a hard time finding Jay's 9mm, I could *always* find my .45. Always. Well, guess what? Now I can find 9, but I can't find .45. What's a girl to do? Pick up another shooting hubby? One with potential leads on what I need?

SENIOR said...

I kind of have the same condition, I just can't get enough .22, either LR,Short, CB Short. I'm a .22 Junkie. Try, has online listing of major online retailers who have various types of ammo. I have used it before.

Momma Fargo said...

Strange. I never heard of such a thing. Have you thought about therapy? I hear they have it often at most firing ranges.

Double Tap said...

don't tell me 45 is hard to find? I've always been able to find it. Oh no, another panic attack setting in.

Is She Dangerous said...

I so enjoyed reading this, thanks so much for the chuckles. I just want to hug you and say, it's okay, we all understand ;)