…getting dressed this morning. Waiting for the first cup to kick in. I’ve got three pistols I actually use, but for EDC There Can Be Only One. And I’m no longer certain which it should be.
This is my Taurus Tracker .44 Magnum. I’ve had it for about a year and a half. It’s not an expensive pistol but it’s accurate, light to carry, has a good single-action trigger and okay sights. It’s not perfect: It has timing issues that can cause clicks instead of bangs in rapid double-action fire, but that’s not the way I shoot so what the hell? Best of all it’s enough gun to hide behind when scary things happen, which, in the boonies, they occasionally do. If I ever have to climb under another house looking for a bear, this is the gun I’ll bring. With my Peltors. Because I’ve become more and more reluctant to fire the Tracker casually. Because it’s really damagingly loud. I’m already half-deaf and have permanent tinnitus, because when I was young I was stupid. I carry earplugs with me all the time but if I have time to screw in earplugs before taking a shot, it couldn’t have been much of an emergency. Honestly, the muzzle brake is cool but I’m learning to regret having fallen in love with this pistol.
This is my franken-Mak, the Prole-Killer. It’s my go-to-town gun when I don’t feel like dusting off the 1911, and it was my fall-back EDC gun for several months after I hurt my shoulder because it’s so snubby I could draw it. It’s surprisingly accurate for what it is, though those tiny sights aren’t much help to ol’ blind Joel. Uses scarce ammo, because I don’t reload for it. Doesn’t sound like the world’s ending when I pull the trigger. Some days I carry it even when I’m not going to town, because it’s reliable and close-range accurate and not a hassle.
And this is my old faithful Ruger 22/45. I’ve had this gun since the turn of the century. I clean it every year or two, when it gets so gunked up it stops working, because it employs the patented Ruger what-the-hell-were-they-thinking reassembly procedure. It’s a .22. I’ve killed more things with this gun than with every other gun I possess combined, because most things I want to kill are small. I trust this gun. Except when scary things happen. Which, in the boonies, they occasionally do. Because it’s a .22. Which is why I normally carry the .44. Which is hurting me. Which is why more and more often I carry the .22.
I probably shoot to kill more often than you do, but it’s never a gunfight. Most commonly it goes like this: I want to explain to a squirrel’s next of kin that they should stay the hell out of my pantry, so I draw the gun I’m carrying and kill the squirrel. I have to do it quick. I do it casually if I’m carrying the Ruger. Somewhat less casually with the Mak, because scarce ammo and besides I’ll miss. I’ve grown reluctant to do it at all with the Taurus.
This is as close as a desert hermit comes to a philosophical conundrum. I just don’t want it to lead to an existential crisis. Y’know?