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GUNS Magazine December 2010 - Page 90

Memories saved by Handmade Grips. lthough I have never seen the movie The Bucket List, I A understand it is about two terminally ill men who make a list of things they wish to do before they literally kick the bucket. ReD anD WolF Most of us have a bucket list of sorts and hopefully we don’t wait until we’re ready to kick the bucket before we pay attention to the list. Anyone able to dream began compiling such a list as soon as they were old enough to look to the future. Many years ago I met a man who had made a list of 100 things to do, some of them quite difficult, during his life and at that time he had counted more than 90 items off his list. I never saw him again, however, I would certainly guess he made it. stages of my life I wanted to be a Canadian trapper, a world-renowned taxidermist, and to hunt in Africa, which I accomplished with handguns. Long before I ever owned or even shot a gun I designed my trophy room, over and over again. While the room I now have doesn’t look anything like my youthful designs, I managed to successfully cross trophy room off my someday list. High on my list for many years was to have a matched pair of beautiful large dogs. We always had a dog around as I was growing up and we also had various wonderful dogs as our own kids were growing up; but I never got that matched pair. It looked like it would simply be on my someday list forever. Then in the early ’90s I got two beautiful pedigreed 6-week-old malamute pups. My daughter, her husband, and my three grandkids had just moved to Idaho from New York and were living with us so my youngest grandson who was about 2 years old at the time named My ever-changing list has not been a bucket list but rather a someday list. All the things I would someday accomplish or acquire. As I look back upon my childhood some of them were, as expected, rather childish. I wanted to be a Western cowboy star, however is I grew up I realized my physique was more like Andy Devine’s and less like Audie Murphy’s, so that went off my someday list pretty quickly. At various Red and Wolf in their prime of life. These exquisite grips for a 1911 from handmade Grips feature pictures of John’s favorite dogs, Red and Wolf. those little pups which seemed to be all fur and sharp teeth. One was Wolf and the other was Red and I have no idea how he came up with the second name. Red and Wolf grew to be large, beautiful, lovable, dogs. They were excellent with kids and totally protective of Diamond Dot. As we ate supper each evening one would be under the table at her feet and the other behind her chair. They sometimes thought they were lapdogs and I would wind up with 150 pounds of dog joining me in my easy chair while the other one was trying to get up there too. Nothing was safe on the kitchen counter as they could stand up their hind legs and reach their long tongue out and clean the icing off of a cake. They never barked but instead howled like wolves especially when they heard a siren or accompanied my late friend the Kilted Preacher as he practiced the bagpipes. They were such a wonderful part of our life I simply could not think of being without them. continued on page 89 90 WWW.GUNSMAGAZINE.COM • DECEMBER 2010

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