Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Yard Sale

There was a yard-sale in town a couple of years ago, early spring. The usual stuff. We bought some books, and spent a little time at the "Growed and Goed" table looking for cheap and disposable toys for Zelly, the then brand-new granddaughter. Maybe a funny hat, or some cool sunglasses. We were about to leave when I saw it, a beat-up black beauty.

I had no idea I wanted, or would ever want, a compound hunting bow, but now I did. I picked it up, an old friend. Drew it. "Don't dry-fire it," the man said. "Bad for the lam'nations."

"Right." I eased the string back to neutral. It had a ranging sight, with six steps. I couldn't believe my luck. "How much?" I asked him. I'd never held a serious bow.


"Done." It came with an archer's glove, four 385 grain aluminum deer arrows tipped by murderous razors, and a T-shaped trigger thingy that grabbed the string and allowed a perfectly smooth release. There was simply no excuse for not buying this.

I hied me to the greenwood at the first opportunity, carefully laced on the glove, and started trying to murder a nearby maple. No danger there. Nothing touched that tree that day, nor the next and--well, you get it. I spent more time searching for arrows than improving my aim. An intuitive sort, I immediately surmised that this was probably going to take a bit of practice.

But practice didn't help. I'd been careful not to move the range steps, but the sight seemed to bear no relation to any target I might pick. Finally, reasoning that I couldn't possibly do any worse using only my own, flawed judgment, I took it off. I found a target with my own two eyes, a stump, about 18" across, about 35 or 40 yards out. I stared at it until my eyes burned, then drew the bow. When I could see through the stump, I let one go.




  1. Mmm, not so keen on killing devices, but came across a pair of antique beaded slippers a while ago. After an hours fight, where I had stalked off vowing never to return to the miserable cow, I eventually beat her down from £20 to £5.

    I wear them often.

  2. Not keen?

    Nothing, or nothing further, will be killed by this bow. It's an impartial arbiter, really, more than anything. If you don't do everything right, you will miss. Period. Trying not to miss is the whole and only point.

    Easier to carry around than the cello.

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