Living in Texas isn’t always riding to the trading post on horseback and shooting Injuns. Between Dallas, Houston, and Austin, we have some serious high power, hi tech cities. I just happen to live in the liberal oasis of Travis County. Seen in this photograph. Keep in mind that I grew up in the sea of red west of Austin where guns are tools a person uses to get things done. They aren’t scary killing machines. They are like tractors, trucks, and women. Some are a little nicer than others, some a little heavier, some a little shinier; some have a bit too much power. But, when the rubber meets the road, they all have a purpose . . .
Austin is a bit different. It is as close to Berkley as Texas can manage. The kind of place where you can enjoy fine foie gras one night, and make talk of secession the next day while carrying concealed. But I digress.
The other night, I was attempting to take some pictures of my guns for RF. It was going horribly, and I was quite frustrated when I heard a knock at my door. At this point, I realized I had two major problems. One, the door wasn’t dead bolted. Two, I had a firearm in hand and no ammo close by. Way to properly prepare for an evening alone, right? Luckily, it was just my new neighbor coming by to deliver some fresh basil and to ask if I would water the plants while they were out of town for their honeymoon.
Back home, answering the door with a gun isn’t exactly common. But, it wouldn’t really surprise anyone. It would be akin to answering the door with a spatula.
Again, Austin can be a bit different. What should have been a totally innocuous conversation between neighbors became one that was quite awkward. Once I figured out that my neighbor was knocking, and not some meth addled zombie hellbent on kicking my cat, I realized I was standing in my living room with a gun. Which is why I answered her knock with a gruff, “Who is it?”
That probably threw her off a bit. Then, I felt it necessary to apologize for my tone. Which I did by telling her, “Sorry for sounding so surprised. I was here taking pictures of my gun when you knocked.”
To which she responded, “Oh. Well, at least we know where to go if we need a gun.”
We needed to exchange contact info, which required her to come in my home. I caught her checking out my gun from the corner of her eye a few times during our conversation. Before she left, I told her that I write in my spare time for TTAG and that taking pictures of guns in my living room is a totally normal activity, which seemed to alleviate things a bit.
And it is days like this that make me homesick. I’ve never had to explain having guns in my home. In fact, I’ve had to explain a lack of guns before! So why did I feel like my mom just caught me with a dirty magazine? Better yet, why did my neighbor feel so uncomfortable? We’ve met outside before. I’m a nice enough guy. I set the gun down before I answered the door.
So I turn to you loyal TTAG readers. Should I pretend this never happened? Should I offer to take my neighbor and her husband to the range upon their return? In the immortal words of Lebron James, “What Should I Do?”