Monday, February 06, 2006
Since we didn't have any plans to party on SuperBowl Sunday, I set aside a few hours to shoot a few rounds of trap at Metcalf.
My first round, I shot terribly. I hit only 15 out of 25 from the 16 yard line. Dismal.
My second round I joined a squad shooting from the 20 yard line. Despite the increased distance, I hit 20 of 25. Improvement.
Round three, I returned to the 16 yard line. A fella on my right was nailing every shot. I hadn't missed either and by my 16th shot, I was getting nervous. A perfect score was within my grasp. I struggled eliminating the visualization of me missing my next shot. With a deep breath, concentration on just shooting the clay. No pressure, no pressure, this next clays was just like the previous ones...
I tried to calm down despite the thumping of my heart. I breathed deeper, opened my eyes wider, called "Pull!" and smoked the next target.
I made it to the last station. No dropped birds yet. I almost blew it on the 22nd clay, but managed to chip a chunk off of it. When I called for the last bird, I knew I was going to hit it. As soon as I pulled the trigger I knew I nailed it.
The guy next to me hit 25 too, but obviously he wasn't sweating it at all.
"You hit 25 too?" I asked.
"Yeah, but I've hit 25 many times," he said.
"That was my first." I said.
Another guy chimed in. "You'll have to lose that hat."
"What do you mean?"
"When you hit your first 25 straight, it's tradition that we get to shoot your hat," he informed.
They grabbed my hat, put 3 clays in it, lined all of us shooters up in a row, and tossed it high in the air, where between 12-15 of us shooters took a shot at it.
I think the 3rd or 4th shot nailed it and my hat was smoked.
So it was official.
I got some congratulations and gained some self-confidence. I also gained some pride in knowing that my $490 used Remington 1100 synthetic out-shot a bunch of people on the line with $3000-$5000 guns.