Thursday, June 13, 2013


...after a couple of weeks out of pocket. I need a clone. Me, the "Other Mikes," Seeklander and Janich, Marty Hayes and producer Matt Shults have been working on planning for the new season of THE BEST DEFENSE...I'll post our final list of scenarios in the next couple of days. I think it's going to be a great season — last season, I believe, was our very best., and we're looking at upping it for the next season. We start filming SHOOTING GALLERY in 2 weeks, and it's going to be a killer season. Seeklander and Iain Harrison ramp up RAPID FIRE Season 2 in early July. Whew! Send in the clones...there ought to be clones...

Looks like I am going to be able to lay my hands on a Benelli Nova pump for the He-Man World Championships. I keep reading how crazy hard the match is...perfect! Once again I'll be in over my head! I hope that sometime I can get the new Geiselle  trigger in the Colt 901. I got a new recoil spring for my Wilson 1911, and I need to detail clean it as well. I still can't shake this damn head cold, either.

BTW, I have some cool stuff coming...a Blade-Tech holster set-up for competition. Plus, I have a SPECTACULAR shoulder holster system from Survival Sheath System essentially designed for the prepper community:

Robert Humelbaugh from SSS designed a great system for carrying extra ammo for a handgun, so we worked out a rig using his ammo system for the 3-inch 629 .44 Magnum Jim Stroh at Alpha Precision built for me years ago. He added a sheath for a classic Buck hunting knife on the off side (no, I knife doesn't have to be labeled "tactical" to do all the things a knife can do). I can't wait to see the rig "in person."

BTW BTW, you absolutely must be keeping up with the 1911 threads on Modern Service Weapons and elsewhere. Tim Lau at MSM, who has forgotten more about 1911s in the last 30 minutes than I know (and I have spent a bit of time around 1911s!), mentioned that yep, they're finicky, require maintenance and a few other points that we all know, and you'd think he said John Browning ate babies. It's all pretty funny and is entertaining reading.

It does touch on some important issues though, a couple of which me, Janich, Seeklander and Marty Hayes have discussed over the last 2 days. If you're one of the Pod People, you already know I have a big issue with this whole meme of finding "what's best" for self-defense. Of course that's been fodder for the firearms media ever since there was a firearms media (and, in truth, I've written heaven knows how many articles over the years on "what's best," for which I'm probably doomed to some kind of gunwriter hell).

But over the years I've had somewhat of a turnaround. What we choose to defend ourselves with is a profoundly subjective decision. The overwhelming factors in that decision are strictly personal — age, body composition, weight, height, physical condition, level of skill, daily routine/job/commute, commitment/time to train or practice, where in the country one lives, federal/state/local laws, children/no children, and on and on. Add all those factors up and you end up with a profile every bit as unique as a fingerprint or a retinal scan.

What is best for me will not be the same as what's best for Mike Seeklander or for my Sweetie. In fact,
"best" is a fallacious concept because there is no set of objective criteria for evaluation that works "across the board,"so to speak. That's where self-defense training differs from competition training. We know very specifically what a competition guns needs to do because each competition organization has a rule book that not only says how we'll be scored in the end, but specifies what the targets must look like, where they can be placed, when and how we can engage those targets, which direction we may and may not move, at what point we start and stop, etc. The result of all those specifics allows us to tailor the tool for the specific outcome desired.

In self-defense training, it is the opposite. In fact, any assumptions we might make about the number or physical ability, or mental state of potential "target/s," the environment in which we have to use our self-defense weapon, our own physical and mental state, etc. have the potential to backfire very badly...perhaps even lethally. One of the most important things I learned in my years in very high-risk sports was that assumptions can and do kill. "Assumptions" are another way of saying that we have created a mental pattern for an event; the danger is when we mistake the pattern for reality (I think I'm badly quoting Bruce Lee here). That mistake creates "lag time" in our reactions. Worst case is the classic "deer in the headlights" — "holy crap what is that bright li..." SPLAT!

Best case is we still lose critical time as we mentally spin from I know what's going to wait a minute, it's not happening that what's really what should my response be now. There's plenty of time in there for a SPLAT.

Given that time is quite literally of the essence, we choose a self-defense tool that is most appropriate to our specific situation because that is the tool we will use most efficiently. As trainers, we understand — or should understand — that any and every choice is a compromise. Like the old dojo line — if you knew you were going to be in a gunfight today and you could not stay home, what would you carry? I'm going for an Apache gunship and a bunch of Seeklander's friends.

I think the appropriate role for trainers, or at least one of the appropriate roles, show the available options (and certainly suggest the pluses and minuses of each option), help people understand the compromises they are making, then teach how to utilize the chosen tool to minimize the consequences of those compromises. Make sense?

And yes, the 1911 is finicky when compared to modern service pistols. Porsches also require a greater level of skill to drive well than, say, a Chevy Aveo  (my aging Honda Element, of course, being the ne plus ultra of performance vehicles).


Matt said...

Hey, I enjoy that 8 minute video you did with Joe Mantegna.

What a couple of classy guys!

clark myers said...

The mention of assumptions imposing a frame on perceptions reminds me of the utility of Brian Enos - Maku Mozo - don't be deceived by the framing device.

I think the older posts were purged in some long ago reorganization but a short discussion on there is no best by Patrick Sweeney on your site was the best nutshell I've seen. Much was made of the point that much like confidence intervals the ranking must be by individual examples with no assumption that brand rank orderings can be applied to all examples.

Though the point is correct, I think the critical gap is between the Porsche as a street car and a true modern race car. On the street I'd say for most people the Porsche can be expected to outperform the Chevy for most everybody - but although it's possible to pick a couple audience members to study carbine with Kyle Lamb it would be pointless to pick an audience member to take laps in a Formula 1 car - it takes a good deal of high level experience just to get the car (and tires) warmed up and moving.

Anonymous said...

Will you ever answer the question "what about those of us who don't have cable/satellite?" . I'd pay for your shows if I you'd offer them on iTunes, amazon prime etc.

Anonymous said...

I don't think that ALPHA PRECISION link was the one you wanted to use. It links to some semiconductor outfit in Yorkville, Illinois.

DVR is already set for the next season.

Michael Bane said...

Sorry! Fixed the Jim Stroh link! Also, for Anon, man, if it was in my power I'd have the shows up on the Internet within 24 hours after broadcast. But that is totally out of my hands. Marshal Halloway at has done yeoman's work on getting up all the content we're allowed to post on the site, and that's one of the reasons we do so much original material.


Unknown said...

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