Petzal: A Few Items of Culture

Sporting Classics and Robert M. Lee have collaborated on a calendar showing some of the more breathtaking guns in Mr. Lee’s collection, which is probably the finest assemblage of sporting arms in private hands in the world. The calendar is so gorgeous that my wife, whose indifference to guns is total, nagged me until I put it up. If I read the information correctly, the calendar is $14.95 from 1-800-849-1004 (or you can get it online here -- Editor’s Note: bad news — the calendar is now sold out, which is why the link stopped working).

In the March issue of Rifle magazine, there is an article by John Haviland entitled “Big Results from Small Cartridges.” Get it. Read it. Take it to heart. Force your shooting friends to read it. Have it tattooed on your back.

While at SCI I bought “Finn Aagaard, Selected Works,” 36 chapters on all sorts of subjects, and a reminder of how much we miss him. He was a good, clear writer with tons of experience, a scientific approach to what he did, and a no-b.s. approach to shooting and hunting in general. Softcover, 202 pages, and $28 from Wolfe Publishing Company, 800-899-7810.

In 1992 I hunted in Zimbabwe with Buss Charlton, who was then a 16-year-old apprentice PH. Now he is all growed up, a co-owner of Charlton McCallum Safaris, and a specialist in elephant hunting. He has produced a CD entitled “Zambezi Extreme” (Zambezi being the river near where he does a lot of his hunting, “extreme” referring to the fact that he takes lots of chances in the course of same).

Z.E. gives about as accurate a picture of what African hunting is really like as I have seen. It is not professionally slick; there is no dopey background music, no Redneck Antics, no product endorsements. The episodes are long enough to show that real African hunting is sweaty, bug-filled, brush-choked, and occasionally, very scary. There is one client here who has plainly had enough fun and games, and an elephant charge where the PH holds his fire so long he seems certain to be killed. The CD is $39.95 from By the way, if you don’t see any use for all the big guns I write about, you will here.