September 20, 2011
Petzal on Shooting Snakes, Bullet Packaging and NYC Police Shooting
By David E. Petzal
- A while back, I advised that if one sees a venomous serpent crawling along, the proper response is to open fire. This was wrong. A crawling serpent presents hardly any target at all. If it’s a pit viper, such as a rattlesnake, the proper response is to fire a shot just ahead of its nose, which will cause it to coil. Then you have something to shoot at. Aim at the base of the reptile. I recommend high-velocity quick-expanding bullets. If the serpent is a cobra, a mamba, a krait, etc., which does not need to coil, drive to the nearest airport and leave.
- I figured out what happens to the people who flunk out of industrial design schools—the go on to profitable careers designing boxes for .22 ammo. A few weeks ago I got sick of boxes that crack, shatter, delaminate, rip, and otherwise implode and got three Rubbermaid food containers at a hardware store.
The bottoms are translucent plastic and the tops are a strange shade of maroon. Two are just big enough to hold 50 rounds, and the third will take 300 or so. They’re cheap, strong, waterproof, and don’t open accidentally.
- And finally, from the Oligarchy of Bloomberg comes a New York Times story (Sept. 9th issue) of another NYPD fusillade. Eight of New York’s Finest were involved. They fired between 2 and 16 rounds each for a total of 73 shots. Total score: two hits resulting in two dead perps and, possibly, a third hit which may have killed an innocent bystander. Then came this paragraph:
“John Cerar, who was in charge of the department’s firearms and tactics training from 1985 to 1994 said the number of shots fired—73—and the number that missed their mark—all but 2—was not unusual.
“He said the fact that two police officers were shot made ‘for more frayed nerves’ which he said decreased accuracy.”
Anything I could add would be superfluous.