Weaponry

slingshots

05.13.09 | 13 Comments

First there was a rubber band gun, a ton of fun. The rubber band would smack the back of my grandfather’s leg and there was just something funny about that.

When I  turned seven, my grandfather trumped that toy with a new slingshot and turned me loose in the backyard one summer day. I spent that first afternoon armed with a stockpile of acorns at my feet under the oak tree trying to peg squirrels. Of course, there is no good reason to bump a squirrel off balance. It seemed like harmless fun at the time. Making squirrels jump was about as silly as whacking my papaw’s leg with a rubber band.

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Chas and Ford took the slingshots like ducks to water from the get go, chucking Legos across the room toward a box on the other side.

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It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to make a slingshot; I picked up a handful of these from a Mexican spice shop. They’re handmade from walnut stock. Each one has rubber tubing and a leather sling; it’s the real deal. They’re sold in different sizes for all different grips, big and small. I think they even make them for toddlers, because someone down in Mexico once sat at his workbench and thought to himself,
“Why the hell not?!”

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I gave the boys a day with these slingshots and they quickly began sleuthing the backyard for slingshot-worthy sticks: healthy greenwood, stout and forked. By all means take the slingshots outside to their true realm; don’t try playing with them indoors. But if you do, make sure you’re ready for flying Legos.

By Ford’s suggestion: Stack tin cans atop the fence for target practice. Or place an empty milk jug atop the recycling can. BANG!

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Adds Ford, “Oh yeah, you shouldn’t shoot when there are people in your way. Unless you shoot marshmellows at them or something! That would be so cool!”

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In related news (and still kind of silly):
students suspended for making slingshots




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