Pew Pew… or maybe Plink Plink…

Bought the kids a couple guns last week.

My 13 year old son has high functioning autism and a dislike of loud noises and firearms in general, but we’ve managed to get him to shoot a pellet pistol some at ballons and he had a good time. (Note to self – Do this again!) I’m not sure if he’ll ever be a ‘gun guy’, but that’s alright. We’ll work on it and he’s still awesome even if he never picks up a gun for the rest of his life. He’s gonna be a Marine Biologist who studies sharks anyways, so maybe spear guns and diving knives will be in his future. OR, if I get real lucky, he’ll go with studying dinosaurs and becoming a Paleontologist and we can move out west. (A guy can hope – right? I really don’t want to live by the ocean!)

My four year old daughter may have autism as well. She’s… a character. She’s the most ‘princessy’ girl ever who has to change outfits constantly and play with mommy’s makeup, but she’ll also punch you in the groin the moment she gets angry. She’s our little fighter. She wants to go pew-pewing so bad. Last week she saw last months(I think) edition of American Hunter by the NRA, there was a cover of a little girl with a very, very nice buck she’d just harvested and she’s been making pew pew noises ever since.

But I bought a Savage Rascal, in alligator hide camo. (Apparently a Swamp People edition). Beautiful little gun, weighs less then three pounds. I can’t wait to try the kids out on this gun. The only downside that I can spot off the bat, it’s not threaded for a suppressor. That’d really help my son be able to shoot I think, and heck, pretty much everything is threaded these days anyways. But – added cost. It might be something I can have gunsmithed later. But a superb little single shot rifle, great reviews as well. From what I gather the accuracy is rather ‘meh’. But good enough to teach a kid the basics of rifle marksmanship and safety on.


Also bought a Ruger Wrangler in Burnt Bronze. A gun that I’d been wanting to put my hands on for a couple years now anyways. (Haha! Daddy gets to shoot it first!) I was first taught with a little Taurus .22 revolver, which my dad still has, so I figured why not another .22 revolver for my kiddos? And what better than the Ruger Wrangler?

Okay, maybe the Ruger Single-Six, but that’s about $400 more. I dunno, I should probably pick one up and see if I can feel the quality difference. But the Wrangler is so -cheap-, and the reviews are stellar on them. So… enh. Should be a great gun for the kids to start learning how to be pistoleros on.


As for the kids… well…

My Daughter doesn’t have the maturity yet to shoot, as much as she may want to now. My Son will require more effort and working with on the pellet gun. So I kind of bought them early. The kids don’t even know about them yet. And probably won’t for several years… (I kept the boxes for when I finally ‘gift’ the guns to them though.)

So in the meantime, I’m going to play with these pretty inexpensive guns. (They each ran about $200) I think for the price, and the value of what you’re getting, you can’t go wrong. Especially the Ruger Wrangler. I’m going to put them through the ringer and see how they do. When the kids get them, they’ll be ready to go!

In other, sadder news.

My Kimber passed away.

Story time.

Once upon a time, circa 2008, I was planning on going to gun smithing school after I finished college. I was accepted and everything. While I was trying to figure out how to pay for it, I wandered by a ‘Adopt A Pet’ event outside our local mall. Looking around, I found this kind of ugly dog that no one seemed much interested in. But she seemed interested in sniffing my hand when I held it out, and being kind of impulsive then, I took her home.

She had one ear that stayed bent over, and a snaggled tooth grin.


Now… At the time, I was seeing a girl who was kind of rich, snobby, spoiled, etc. She named the dog ‘Dulce’ after ‘Dulce and Gabbana’… which is some famous brand of something er other. I’m not sure what. Clothes? Perfume? I dunno. Don’t care either. A month or so later we broke up for the first time, and I renamed the dog Kimber. I figured a gun shop dog needs a gun name, and she was a really sweet little girl, and I felt like even though we didn’t know what breed she was, she deserved a good quality brand name.

Thus, she went from Dolce (Shudder) to Kimber (Woohoo).

She also went from wearing ‘dog clothing’ to laying on my bed, eating popcorn, and watching Magnum PI with me. 🙂

Gunsmithing school wasn’t meant to be.

In the end, I enlisted in the Marine Corps and shipped out for Boot Camp then School of Infantry. My parents kept her and she became my dad’s dog. Shortly after returning home from training, I met my lovely wife, and the rest was history. Except Kimber couldn’t move in with us because we were renting, so she continued to be my dad’s dog.


Over the years I saw her whenever we visited, and each time she had a few more gray hairs around her warg like face. Then last year she got bone cancer in her leg, and fought that… but eventually it beat her a couple weeks ago…

She was a very, very good dog.

Now, some people wonder if dogs go to heaven. I don’t. And neither did Billy Graham.

“God will prepare everything for our perfect happiness in Heaven, and if it takes my dog being there, I believe he’ll be there.” – Billy Graham.

And I firmly believe that. I look forward to seeing my sweet, snaggle toothed Kimber again in a better place.


On the writing front…

Book is still with the editor. I was asked if I had any cover art suggestions. I had one, and I threw together this horrible Paintshop job showing what I liked. We will see if it takes or not, personally – I think it would look awesome.

I may throw it up here in the future. IF they take my suggestion and run with it, it’d be pretty cool to show the ‘thrown together’ version of stacked images to the professional image.


I hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July, are staying safe from the Corona Cooties, and rioters. Keep your powder dry.

Author: Erik 'Tracer' Testerman

Erik Testerman is a Marine Corps grunt, a competitive shooter, and an admirer of fine arms and armaments. He lives in the mountains of North Carolina with his lovely wife, two rambunctious children, and a slobbery English Mastiff. To learn more about Erik Testerman and read samples of his work, visit

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