James Reeves’ experience at the shooting range mirrors my own, a couple years ago now, to a surprising degree.
My brother was in the Army at the time. The whole family went down to the range, his treat; I took a couple of turns and hated it — the dead, brutal weight of the gun in my hand, the overwhelming noise of the gunfire echoing back against the concrete floor in a sort of perpetual slap, the low-level terror of being around so many living instruments of death, the imputed disgrace to my red-blooded American manhood that I neither felt comfortable doing it nor proved to be a very good shot. (Yes, quite ridiculous; but not from inside.)
The only times I’ve ever, as an adult, thought about handling guns have been when I’ve contemplated suicide, and even then as if over a vast theoretical gulf — no doubt, nevertheless, an excellent reason to keep away from them. (Then again I’ve thought about throwing myself in front of traffic too, and have yet to deny myself pedestrianism.)
Anyway. It’s a (typically) good piece, and I recognized myself in it, was all I wanted to say.