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Shooting Industry November 2011 Digital Edition - Page 26

Back Blast Back Blast & other hot gases azda is recalling over 65,000 cars from all over Canada, the U.S. and Mexico, and it ain’t about brakes or steering — it’s about spiders. Mazda officials reported yellow sac spider webs had been found in the fuel tank vents of Mazda6 cars, and though it seems like a stretch, they said the webs could cause vent clogs, which could place pressure on the fuel tank, which could lead to cracks, leakage — and fires. Officials didn’t say how many cases were documented, just that they “had no specific connection to a particular region of North America,” which would seem to imply, “lotsa cases all over!” And no other models were affected — only Mazda6 sporty sedans built between April 2008 and February 2010. The carmaker will clean out all fuel tank vents and install a newly designed spring device to prevent creepies from creepin’ in. Yellow sac spiders, by the way, have become the most common spiders in the U.S., are responsible for perhaps 80 percent of all spider bites, and yeah, they’re venomous, causing instant, stinging pain and nasty aftereffects. We wanta know these two things: First, what kinda engineer designs spider-blocking devices? And second, if this kinda thing happened with guns, would it be . boresnakes? The live, slithering kind? Commander Gilmore Be Thankful It Hasn’t Happened With Guns M Illustration by Nick Petrosino During my long, long career as a cop, I’ve been assaulted with just about every possible kind of weapon — but never with a tomahawk! And now a couple of Palm Beach, Fla., cops, who are probably clean-cheeked youngsters, get to have that distinction in their personnel records! And I’m sure they don’t even have the white hairs and chrome-domes to make it believable! If I said I’d been attacked with a tomahawk on duty, people would look at me and just naturally assume it happened during, like, the Ghost Shirt Wars in the 1890s. Anyway, the report doesn’t detail why officers approached a 30-year-old female sitting in her car on Cypress Terrace in Palm Beach — maybe ’cause she seemed a little nuts? — but it does make clear that the lady leaped outta the car with a tomahawk and lunged at the officers, whose instincts kicked in handily, causing them to jump backward faster than she advanced forward. When it appeared she couldn’t scalp ’em, Ms. Hawk got back into her 26 NOVEMBER 2011 Assault By Tomahawk car and prepared to repel boarders. Instead of trying to get past the lady’s slashing tomahawk, officers hosed her down with pepper spray until they could arrest her without losing their scalps or appendages. Pending a mental wellness tune-up and exam, our retro-warrior is charged with three counts of assaulting police, two of obstructing justice, one of intending to cause grievous bodily harm and one of public nuisance. I gotta wonder if the weapon was one of those new full-auto assault tomahawks . I remember when a state university first offered a bachelor’s degree program in Clownology. That’s right — how to paint an oversized grin on your face, walk in gigantic yellow shoes and adjust fright wigs, I guess. Since then, universities seem to have a competition going in who can offer the wackiest degrees. Now Mary-Lu Zahalan-Kennedy has become the first graduate of the Liverpool Hope University master’s degree program in Beatles studies. Now, don’t laugh. One outcome could be that this kid lives in her parents’ basement in perpetuity. Another is that she winds up applying her encyclopedic knowledge of the Beatles to asking people, “Can I biggify those fries for ya?” But the most likely outcome is that she’ll make more money than both of us combined just on grants to work on her doctorate thesis, “The Impact of The Beatles’ White Album on Western Civilization.” Freddie Mac, the giant home mortgage institution, is a weird animal to begin with — privately owned, but government funded. It’s either like a critter with two heads and no tail, or perhaps an animal with two big butts and no head. And now, you might say, the two heads are trying to bite each other. The IRS says Freddie owes the Treasury Department $3 billion in back taxes. Freddie is fighting it. Both are represented by legions of taxpayer-paid lawyers. www.shootingindustry.com A Ph.D. In “Pilin’ It Higher” Whoever Wins, We Lose Subscribe to SI DIGITAL

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