I have quite a few bits of news for this portion of the week. Luckily, they're types of good news -- a welcome change from last week -- but unfortunately they each have their own bit of bad news.
For example, the kickass news is that using the flexibility gained by doing his hard-ass stretches, I successfully kicked Michael Goldman, third degree black belt, right in his stupid head. Twice. (Granted, he was bending down a little at the time.)
The bad news is, that's not what I meant to do. Or what we'd been practicing. Or even a part of what he'd been teaching me at all. It was just kind of a reaction...twice. After our session today, he discussed with me whether I really thought martial arts was my "thing," and suggested that we eventually stop the lessons.
I can only assume that this is at least a little bit of a result of me being so rubbish at this that when I finally did land a good hit, it was practically a freaking accident.
(They were good hits, though -- he's got bruises and everything. That's for making me so sore all the time and giving me bruises, you jerk!)
Slightly-scary-but-also-kind-of-kickass news is that my father decided to go through it and spoke to Sheriff Thomson about getting me a gun for defense. I've already been safety-certified in firearms, so as a result of the sheriff's connections, I'm now the owner of a Beretta Px4 Storm, a .45 caliber semiautomatic pistol that also happens to be the same type issued to the state police. And, like most things meant to intimidate criminals, it is a big, black, scary fucking gun.
Okay, so it's not that big -- as far as handguns go, it's actually in the medium-to-small range, and it fits my tiny, tiny hands very well. But to a small human, it's a big gun.
I can't carry it in public yet, because the paperwork hasn't cleared for my permit, but Detective Goldman says it shouldn't be a problem; if a crazed hillbilly out in the mountains in Garrett County can carry a rifle to protect his barn from aliens, Jews, and smart people, then a noticeably frail and uncoordinated (hey!) teenage girl about to go to school all by herself in need of protection will certainly get through.
Which leads me to a problem -- this would be the bad news to go along with this, and it's actually kind of a long story.
See, once my permit clears, I actually need a method by which to carry this big (okay, small) badass gun. It comes with a holster, but it fits onto a belt and the State Police are a bit "no me gusta" when it comes to carrying your pistol out in the open, wild-west style. As a joke (she's very anti-gun, and, you know...anti-my-father), my mother got me an honest-to-god thigh holster, saying that if my dad wants me to carry a gun, I may as well make it sexy. Cue several spy jokes and an impromptu singing of that secret-agent-man song.
I laughed it off at the time, but honestly, I don't have any other holster and I cannot describe how uncomfortable the idea of keeping a gun in my purse, even with the safety on and in the hip holster, makes me.
I could go out and get another kind of holster, but I don't know of any other kinds that are really subtle -- because I do not want to advertise that I'm packing heat, not when rumor has it that the proxies are gaining confidence and aggression. Practical Cat may be down, but something tells me he's not out, and just in case he's not, I want to look like the least threat as possible. Most other holsters are designed for middle-aged men, either fitting into the waistbands of pants or making it easy to tuck a shirt in over them. An ankle holster is one option, but I want something that's a quick draw as well.
And I have tons of foofy skirts, the kind with plenty of drape to cover anything under them. And I've noticed that if I wear a pair of jean shorts under them, I can still wear the thigh strap, and it sits right where my hand naturally falls -- no discomfort from being in a skirt, no worrying about anyone seeing my lady bits if the wind blows the wrong way. One flick of fabric, and I get the drop on anyone who gets any ideas. I have to be honest; gag gift or no, I'm warming to the idea of this thing.
So Special Agent Keaton, meet Secret Agent McLachlan.