September 22, 2009
Petzal: A Motto to Live By
By David E. Petzal
Everyone needs a motto. My high school’s motto was “Spirit o’er circumstance, ever supreme.” We changed it to “Screw it o’er circumstance, ever supreme,” and it seemed more appropriate. My Army regiment’s motto was “Esse quam videri,” “To be rather than to seem.” However, the best motto for my stage of life was provided by my fellow gun writer Stan Trzoniec: “Who gives a s**t?” Stan says that when you’re over 65 matters are truly out of your hands, and you can now relax and watch things come apart at the seams without getting your guts in a knot. For example:
“The American people have finally become aware that their government is no longer able to govern.”
“Who gives a s**t?”
So there I was shooting at 300 yards with a rifle of proven accuracy and a scope that worked fine and for some unfathomable reason I was spraying bullets all over the target. It wasn’t the wind; I had a wind flag downrange. The idea that I could be shooting badly was to absurd to contemplate, and that left me fresh out of solutions. So in a resonant voice, I said:
“Who gives a s**t?,” packed up my stuff, and drove home.
It felt good. You should try it, even if you’re under 65.