Thanksgiving weekend, we shot guns.
We were in Vegas (where else?) for the holidays, and after two days of traditional Vegas gambling and drinking, GF Kasey and I decided to schedule a nice date. Something fancy. Something romantic.
"Do we have to make an appointment to come in and shoot guns?" Kasey inquired into her cell. "We saw you guys on a billboard."
"Nope! Just come on in," said Gun Lady, who I pictured answering calls with chains of bullets wrapped around her torso.
So we got all gussied up, collars and heels, because that's really the way classy people shoot guns. Especially when they're going to a musical and martinis at Lavo afterwards.
We arrived at The Gun Store on Tropicana expecting to be limited to tiny handguns, since neither Kasey nor I have any business whatsoever handling firearms. Instead, we were greeted by this.
They told us we could rent anything we wanted. Kasey opted the "Ladies Package", the cheapest option on the menu, which included two clips for her handgun and thirty rounds for a machine gun that we decided was an AK-47, though we were both too excited to pay attention when they told us what it actually was.
Notice that our supervisor guy has a gun on his hip. We thought there was going to be extensive training, and maybe some kind of background check... nope. You just pay your money, walk right into the range, and this dude gives you your first gun. Training and long lines kill business; it's much easier to just give him a gun too (all the gun range guys have extensive military training), and if anybody starts getting naughty with their weapon, he just pulls his out and takes care of business.
Strangely, no place feels more secure than a gun range. Even with the piles of shells lying everywhere.
Oh, I forgot to mention - they let you pick your target. And these aren't just your plain, outline number targets. These targets have style.
Kasey opted for numbers 3 and 10, because apparenly her secret fear is sketchy-looking white guys who look a little like Kurt Russeel in 'Big Trouble in Little China'. I opted for #1 to get a little of that vintage target style, #4 from the moderately-racist terrorist section; and #14 because if there's one person I'd like to shoot more than Hitler, it's zombie-Hitler. I also considered one of the targets of terrorists holding my family hostage, but was worried that my lack of aim would result in my shooting my homely future daughter in the face.
I bought the Iraqi package, which featured three guns actively used by American soldiers overseas. I followed Kasey and wildly fired my handgun at my first target. Neither of us could aim particularly well, because we both kept giggling like idiots after every single shot.
Next came the machine guns. Note the shell casings, flying all over.
I tried to pull out my Osama Bin Laden target for gun #2, but the guide caught my hand.
"No no," he said, pulling out my Nazi Zombie target instead. "You save him for the big gun."
And a big gun it was.
It's called a SAW - which stands for Sweet Ass Weapon - and comes with a tripod to rest the gun on, and a bandolier of bullets.
"Do people ever get really mad at the targets?" I asked our guide. "Like, people from New York come in and swear at Bin Laden as they're shooting him?"
"Had these two guys in from Dubia last week," the guide said. "They both picked that target, and sawed the thing in half with automatics as they screamed at the top of their lungs, tears streaming down their faces. I guess they had something personal."
"Have you ever been shot?" Kasey asked.
"Yeah, seven times," he said, as he casually removed a shell casing from the treads of his combat boots. "But it's not a big deal."
On the way out of The Gun Store, we noticed that we'd missed the bazookas they apparently also sell.
Not to shoot, though - unfortunately you have to buy your bazooka and have it shipped to an authorized weapons store in your home state. Second Amendment, my ass.
"Hey, wait," our guide yelled, catching up to us. We turned, as he held something out. "You forgot your reciept."
I glanced down at the piece of paper in his hands, which was about to become the manliest thing I own.
Later that night, at Lavo, my credit card was declined.
I suppose with a previous charge like that, I shouldn't be surprised.