Saturday, May 11, 2013

Barbeque Gun

I've read about Barbeque Guns before.  The term refers to a fancy gun you take to social gatherings.   I accidentally came up with a new category of Barbeque Gun last week.

My brother and I had been talking about going to a Barbeque place that he had heard about on the internet so, when he came to town last week, I left work early Friday and we headed to  B C's General Store in Yalaha.  Yalaha is  a crossroad community between Leesburg and Howey In the Hills except that the side road doesn't actually cross the road.  It just comes up to the highway and stops.  The store is right there next to the Post Office where the side road meets the highway.

The place is somewhat famous for its barbeque.  The building  is old Florida.  You walk in past three smokers in that little screen room out front and find yourself in a place that looks like a cross between Sam Drucker's General Store and Sanford and Son's Salvage Yard.  The floors tilt and the walls sag.  You wonder it its weighed down by all the layers of lead paint.  There's a cupola in the roof for ventilation 'cause there weren't no air conditioning when it was built.  The ambiance is reminiscent of Nordic Pawn in Wildwood except there's no dead animals hanging from the ceiling.  The dead animals are hanging on the walls and posed on a wood stove in the middle of the store.  A fox squirrel holds a sign that says "Buy BBQ."  

When I ordered, the lady at the order takin' counter took a big slab of pork out of a cooler and commenced to mash it with a meat cleaver.   It was so tender the cleaver just cut right through almost on its own weight.  No need to chop!  She piled it high and poured the sauce on thick.

We paid our money and took our food across the street to the open  air dining room.   The store is on the Southwest corner where the side road meets the highway and you eat at picnic tables on the Southeast corner.  It would be a sidewalk cafe kind of thing if they had a sidewalk.

There's something about eating good BBQ and sipping on a beer in the shade of a nice oak tree.  The BBQ was even better than we had heard.   I'm not the biggest fan of baked beans but their's were good.  I don't think I've ever had better baked beans. 

We finished lunch and found we still had much of the day ahead of us and no plans beyond the now-completed  BBQ eating so I suggested that we make a slight detour to Mt. Dora and A.W. Peterson's Gun Shop.

 I really just wanted to see if they had any ammo or powder in stock (they did) but my eye caught the curve of a Savage 99 receiver on the used gun rack.  I was thinking I'd look at it and it would be in some mundane chambering like 300 or 303 Savage and that would be the end of it.  I did have the thought that I'd really have something to worry about if it was chambered for something less common like 22 Savage High Power or 375 Winchester but, come on, what are the odds of that happening?

I saw right off that it was an 1899 takedown model.  I like takedown models.  Twenty inch barrel.  Nice.  Light as a feather.  Wait.  Light as a feather?  A Featherweight.  Sweet!   The action is buttery smooth.  Almost sensual.  Then I read the barrel:

 "25-35 Winchester."

Is there no mercy?   That's a whole heap rarer than one in 22 High Power. Savage didn't make any in 25-35 after 1917.  It came with an extra barrel in 303 Savage too.  I thought about it for a while and then walked around the store trying not to think about it for a while longer.  I actually made it back to the car without buying the thing.   It bothered me all the way home.  When we got back, I began to ponder how I might trade into the little rife without spending a pile of cash.  Of course, this line of thought was purely academic.  I wasn't actually planning to go back and buy the rifle. 

I  didn't start out to go back the next morning but the dog was pitching fits every time he saw squirrels.   Crazy dog sounds like a cross between a run over dog and a chimpanzee when he gets wound up.   I couldn't get a thing done at the house and then my brother sent a text saying he wanted to go someplace.  I suggested the Bubba-Ques in Jonesville with a side trip to Pickett's Weaponry in Newberry.  He suggested Yalaha again so I suggested Peterson's again.

I still think it was a setup.    I'm always having to tell friends and family things like "it's not my fault that guns like me better than they like you" or "its not my fault that guns want to go home with me more than they want to go home with you" and "you talk about me and my guns but its just because you're jealous."  I suppose that I have become a somewhat predictable old  gun slut.

I took a gun that didn't like me  for trading fodder. The counter man conferred with the boss and we worked out  a deal.  Bottom line is that with my trade, I paid $194 out the door for the little rifle and the extra barrel and they threw in a Lyman tang sight that's worth pretty close to the cash out of pocket that  I paid for the whole deal.  Its like I bought the sight and traded into the rifle for free. 

The little gun was built in 1911.   It has about two lifetimes of dings in the wood and somebody varnished it.  Thankfully they didn't sand it.  The finish is gone from the receiver but there's no rust.  The 303 barrel looks like new inside.  The grooves in the 25-35 barrel are dark but the lands are sharp. 

I suspect it will shoot.  Brass and dies arrived today.  Mr. Lee's manual  has a pretty fair amount of data for it and there's some in Ken Waters'  "Pet Loads" too.  I really like the little thing.  The Lovely Bride held it and wants to shoot it.  Its nice when you set out to eat barbeque and come home with a new to you rifle and your wife likes it.  Reckon I'll be keepin' 'em both.

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