an anachronism

Perhaps this is the wrong venue to do this sort of rant, however that's just tough because within the wit there are a few points of value to be noted.

Gun shows - what's the real value of gunshows in the day and age of in-tar-web shopping and instant at your finger tips access? Given how quickly bargains can be spotted from the view-point of the keyboard cowboy - why would one, or more interesting a PACK of people enter a county fair-grounds to mill about and commiserate with the vast hordes of unwashed masses?

Admittedly, if you can go to a venue to make fun of Lynn Thompson of Cold Steel - as he prances around with some sorry excuse for a bowie knife or better yet, some silly representation of a bastard sword whilst wearing a skirt - I mean "tactical kilt" and sells top-secret ninja ready blow-guns...that's kinda cool.

But by and large, I believe the time of the gun-show being a thing of value has passed. Let me take the liberty of listing some perks of gun shows in no particular order:

1) The freak value of watching the people who dredge themselves out from under some mossed-over crevasse to participate in the silliness that stems from some old, blind, coot attempting to sell some rusted over bolt from a single edition run 1702 pre-Enfield variant that was only released in Kuwait in 1968 to assassinate the archduke franz ferdinand......

2) The potential for a one of the locals to do a private sale - always nice and there's nothing mocking to say about it. Other than the only thing most people sell are sad and broken down rifles they pieced together from parts off of their workshop floor.

3) the opportunity to trade hardware with people you meet along the way.

4) the opportunity to handle hardware before you go back to gunbroker.com to negotiate a sweeter deal on that HK-91 kit that's only missing the lower receiver but at least you have a 30 day guarantee.

5) the lovely photo opp you get from both your friends and mine, the top-secret turbo-ninja BATFE, Musn't forget, they are the gvmnt, they are here to help.

6) the opportunity to experience a one of a kind heartburn from Zeke - the purveyor of encased meats:

6) If you are extra luckly, perhaps you will have the opportunity to see Lynn Thompson of Cold Steel fame wrestle someone down for that sausage!

"The Sausage is MINE DAMMIT!"

No real disrespect to Lynn, he has made his business flourish in ways that are hard to imagine - but his damn videos are too much to bear and he deserves some fun poking at.

7) Meet-up with other gun-nuts in your area - and hope they took off their War of the northern aggression regalia long enough to shower.

8) Fill out some some forms/cards and get put on every stupid firearms spam mailing list that ever was.

9) Purchase some corrosive ammunition from Cleteus the reloader who PROMISED that the ammo with the weird writing was his own brand of reload.
10) occasionally actually meeting some interesting people. This RARELY happens so it barely gets a mention, but in all honesty, this seems to be the best reason to go to one of these maggot festering events.

In the day and age of ammoman (Go Eric!) gunbroker, ebay (bleah) I'm afraid the reasons to shop at a open air gun-show fleemarket are seriously dwindling. the vendors can barely match the pricing available by the discount houses online delivered direct to the address of your choice (AND you don't have to carry it)
The remainder gear is chosen to be sold to the lowest bidder which translates to many piece of gear along the high-quality lines of Uncle Mikes garbage. Lots of crapulent low quality tacti-cool nylon, broken down war memorabilia, the obligatory table of reproduction Nazi garbage.

Scheise Scheise Scheise! At least in the free states, there are machine-guns for sale. Alas, due to the fun that goes with tax-stamp form four tomfoolery, well, that and the typically double-digit costs associated with a fully-auto tools, that's a pipe dream too. So, with a few particular exceptions, I'm not really certain what the value of the Gun Show is anymore, other than the fact I'm heartened that they are still around despite the best efforts of Hillary Clinton style politics.

Despite the fact I feel they are lame, cess-filled wastelands of mediocrity, they represent a rapidly dwindling American right. They symbolize the right for Americans to gather, discuss/repair/sell/trade their firearms in a safe (but stinky) public setting.

There will come a time when such gatherings will be banned - just look how the gun shows have been eviscerated in CA/IL/MA - if they even have them, the shows take lame to new heights. While increasingly lacking in value for the savvy shopper, They are fundamentally American and the gun shows are still something I will participate in as long they continue to exist.

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