Teach me to shoot: Part 15
This is the continuing fictional saga and guest report of a man teaching a woman to shoot.
Our guest writer is reader, Jack Cooper. Take it away, Jack.
Teach me to shoot
by Jack Cooper
This report covers:
- Quick update
- Jill’s new student
- Jill goes alone
- The OK Corral wasn’t quick and clean
- No touch-a da trigger!
It’s been almost 5 years since I wrote the last part of this report, and I have been asked several times to continue it. It is the fictional story about one of our readers who teaches a woman how to shoot. It then branches off and he teaches her girlfriend to shoot so she can hunt with a flintlock. It’s an interesting series and I recommend that you read at least the first two reports that are linked above before you start today’s material. I will write it to stand alone, but it helps to know what has gone before.
Jack and Jill were married in 2019, and they are good shooting buddies today. Jamell, Jill’s girlfriend, learned to manage her flintlock fowler and in 2020 she took an American Elk on a guided hunt. She can hold five shots from her fowler in a 6-inch circle at about 50 yards and she took her elk at 45 yards after a lengthy stalk.
Jill’s new student
You may remember that Jill is a surgeon. One of her patients is a woman who told her that she wanted to get a handgun for self defense, but her uncle who promised to teach her to shoot had botched the job miserably. He told her that revolvers are more reliable than semiautomatics and he gave her a snub-nosed .38 Special to learn to shoot with. The gun recoiled so much that it frightened the woman and she abandoned her shooting lessons after the first time at the range. But she told Jill she still wanted to learn how to shoot. Wasn’t there a better way to go about it?
Little did she know she was preaching to the choir! Jill had turned to Jack, who eventually became her husband, to learn to shoot, because she had a similar experience with a macho boyfriend years before. Jack listened to her story and then walked her through easy steps to learn:
- Gun safety and etiquette
- Learning how the sights work
- Starting with a Daisy 499
- Moving to an air pistol
- Moving up through firearms
Jill told her patient, Karen, that she was now an accomplished shooter, thanks to the training she had received. She would be pleased to pass it along if Karen wanted to learn. Karen jumped at the opportunity!
Jill goes alone
Jill discussed this with Jack and they decided she should do the training alone. Karen felt intimidated by men, whom she thought would all be like her uncle. Jill understood perfectly and decided that on the first session that would be about gun safety and etiquette, she would start out by letting Karen tell her all she knew about shooting.
The OK Corral wasn’t quick and clean
Karen started out by telling Jill that she knew she could never handle a gun like Wyatt Earp at the OK Corral. She was surprised when Jill told her that Wyatt Earp couldn’t handle a gun that well, either. Hollywood and books have romanticized the 30-second gunfight in which the shooters stood as close as 6 feet apart and missed each other repeatedly! Jill told her that when they were finished with this training Karen would be able to put five shots from a powerful handgun on a playing card at 45 feet. Karen just laughed!
No touch-a da trigger!
For their first session Jill took along a pellet pistol, the Crosman 2240 she had learned to love. She used it to teach all the aspects of gun safety and she corrected Karen, when she said she wanted to learn to shoot “real” guns”. Jill told her the 2240 was as real as they come. And then she explained the difference between airguns and firearms — they are all real.
When Karen took the pistol from Jill the first thing she did was put her trigger finger around the trigger! Jill stopped her right there. She told Karen to never touch the trigger until she was ready to shoot. As Karen withdrew her finger Jill asked her, “And, if you were ready to shoot right now, what would you be shooting at?” Jill thought about it for a long moment and then realized that the muzzle of the pistol was pointing at Jill! When she realized that she pointed the muzzle away and Jill taught her the first rule of gun safety (airgun or firearm makes no difference) — never point the muzzle at something you don’t intend shooting.
When Karen responded that all shooters she has seen always have their fingers on the trigger, she was assigned to watch a short video on firearms safety, which Jill modified to include airguns, because “they are all real guns!”
When Jill asked Karen where “all the shooters she has seen” were, Karen thought about it and then smiled sheepishly. “In the movies, I guess,” was the answer. The point was made.
Not a single shot was fired in this first training session. Jill decided to use her Crosman 2240 pistol to train Karen on safety and etiquette because, unlike the Daisy 499 that Jack had used with her, it was possible to illustrate unsafe acts more easily with the smaller handgun.
Next session will be Karen’s first session shooting, though there will be a review of the safety rules and some training on the sights and trigger control first. Stay tuned!