Rottenweilers and Gas Meters, Circa 1996: Why I love Meter Men

This is a discussion on Rottenweilers and Gas Meters, Circa 1996: Why I love Meter Men within the In the News: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Sheldon J's post about Pit Bulls reminded me of an incident in which I was involved back in 1996. It was the weekend after opening ...

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Thread: Rottenweilers and Gas Meters, Circa 1996: Why I love Meter Men

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    Distinguished Member Array randytulsa2's Avatar
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    Rottenweilers and Gas Meters, Circa 1996: Why I love Meter Men

    Sheldon J's post about Pit Bulls reminded me of an incident in which I was involved back in 1996.

    It was the weekend after opening day of rifle season. I had scored a nice buck on opening day, and since I was hunting in a bucks-only area, I was done for the season.

    I was celebrating my good fortune at scoring the previous weekend, because the weather had turned Bad with a capital "B". It was 25-30 degrees and sleeting, and I was thinking of all the poor guys out in their stands, shivering . I was lounging around my living room, in front of a fire, with my daughters playing at my feet.

    I heard a very strange noise in the back yard and looked out the window. Two Rottenweilers were playing tug-O'-war with one of my daughters' cats.

    They were promptly Remington 870'd.

    Good a tale as that is by itself, it isn't all there is.

    You see, you're supposed to KNOW what is BEHIND your target when you shoot- -even when using a shotgun with No. 4 shot.

    In my case what was behind the first of the dawgs from the nether-regions was a gas meter. And I noticed an unfamiliar "whooshing" sound when I was dragging the dogs to the curb after having gone to the vet in a vain attempt to save poor Shaggy cat's life.

    I put 2 and 2 together- a quick inspection of the meter revealed more than just a few No. 4-sized holes.

    Eek.

    I called everybody. The cops, the Fire Department, the Gas Company, etc.

    The cops came out, took down the serial number of my shotgun (after getting lost in the subdivision once), shrugged their shoulders, and took off. The fire department tried to have me arrested.

    The Gas Company guy, however, was as cool a man as I have ever met. He was highly amused by the whole situation, and kept me from getting a ticket (or a trip to the crossbar hotel). He had asked his dispatcher on the way out to my house if the shotgun was secured- he wasn't coming out until it was...caution born of experience, I guess.

    He told the FD boys to cool it, 'cause that sort of thing is something they take into account when designing meters and formulating what gets pumped into gas pipes. The absolute worst-case scenario would have been a single, weak, blue flame and that might have happened if I had been using a tracer.

    Not only did he 'splain the situation to the Nervous Nellies at the Fire Department, he replaced the plate with the pellet holes. He also GAVE ME THE OLD ONE, COMPLETE WITH PELLET HOLES, which I treasure to this day as a cherished souvenir.

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    VIP Member Array NCHornet's Avatar
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    Sounds like you were very fortunate the FD didn't have their way. People watch to much TV and movies, you know where a lead bullet hits a metal object and sparks go flying!! Or when they shoot the car and it explodes, I mean C'mon do they think we are stupid? It is amazing how this becomes a belief in some peoples minds. What did the owners of the pit bulls do? Just curious.
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    Distinguished Member Array randytulsa2's Avatar
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    I don't know that the owners ever did anything. They may never have found out.

    My ex-wife (quite sensibly) talked me out hanging the dogs at the entrance to the subdivision with a sign on them ( ala' "this is what happens to assassins in Big Whiskey" like Gene Hackman did with Morgan Freeman's body in "Unforgiven") explaining the situation and expressing my displeasure.

    I just dragged them out to the curb, put a trash bag over them, and called the city's animal control department. They picked them up the following Monday morning.

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    VIP Member Array Sheldon J's Avatar
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    Very funny story I needed that, thanks.
    "The sword dose not cause the murder, and the maker of the sword dose not bear sin" Rabbi Solomon ben Isaac 11th century

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    VIP Member Array TN_Mike's Avatar
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    That is a great story!

    I'd have added that Gas man to my Christmas card list for sure. What a level headed and logical fellow.

    Did you hang the plate on the wall?
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    Distinguished Member Array randytulsa2's Avatar
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    No, I didn't hang it on a wall, but now I'm thinking that maybe I should. I've got in a dresser drawer full of mementos and such....

    It wouldn't look bad in the living room, though, not at all. It might fit in with the racks of deer that had the misfortune of meeting me.....

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    VIP Member Array Tom G's Avatar
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    Dogs that size should not be running free. That cat could just as easely have been some ones child holding a cat . There are too many cases of joggers and children being malled due to owners allowing their dogs to run free. I'am a dog lover but I think people should be more responsible. Randy By the (good shot).

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    Member Array cpmiv's Avatar
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    Any pix of the "ventilated" plate?
    There are over 550 million firearms in worldwide circulation. That's one firearm for every twelve people on the planet. The only question is: How do we arm the other 11? (Yuri Orlov [Nicolas Cage] Lord of War)

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    Good Story...

    but should I assume that you have NOT contributed to your local firefighters 'assistance fund'?

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    Good story. Sorry to hear your FD employs "Nervous Nellies". Such is life.
    eschew obfuscation

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    Distinguished Member Array randytulsa2's Avatar
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    I got the wife a digital camera for Christmas, so when I figure out how to operate the doggoned thing (bad pun intended), I'll get some pics up.

    Strangely enough, I was so grateful to be let off the hook by the Gas guy that I've just never held it against the FD.

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    VIP Member Array Sheldon J's Avatar
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    I'm a Fire Marshall

    For a private company and in my 35+ years of experience (N more training hours than I care to count), with the local FD I have noted more than once that although they may be great at what they are trained to do, and that is put out fires...

    They are all often lacking in knowledge about the other aspects of fires, suppression, equipment, types of, and various hazards associated with.

    While this is simply a training issue that varies by department, most of them have a specialist when the problem arises, however all to often the man in the field will take it upon them self to give a opinion one that is often incorrect but the police will act upon it irregardless of it's accuracy when requested.

    Their only excuse is a valid one though it is better to err on the side of caution, too bad that it can cause trouble for some Innocent, M just glad the the real professional was there to bail you out, the gas man.

    But the story still makes me laugh though.
    "The sword dose not cause the murder, and the maker of the sword dose not bear sin" Rabbi Solomon ben Isaac 11th century

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sheldon J View Post
    with the local FD I have noted more than once that although they may be great at what they are trained to do, and that is put out fires...

    They are all often lacking in knowledge about the other aspects of fires, suppression, equipment, types of, and various hazards associated with.

    While this is simply a training issue that varies by department,
    I agree as a firefighter, also with more training hours then I like to count, I find that many in my Dept. are not at all aware of anything other than how to put a fire out. It is a culture of training that helps and what you want to train for. Most guys only care to train on putting fires out , but that accounts for 10-15% of my companies annual calls .

    Another reason to train at all we do.

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    8 years ago, had a neighbor a few houses down that let his pit bulls run loose. Animal control never could catch them though. One afternoon, I heard a commotion in my back yard and a similar scenario was playing out. The two pit bulls had my neighbor's cat cornered. I grabbed my 1911 and stepped out the back door - the pit bulls left the cat and came at me. Needless to say, they only got a couple of feet from their original position before they expired. Local chief of police showed up in a few minutes wanting to know what all the shooting (2 rounds of hardball) was all about. I told him, he asked to see my 1911 and his comment was "Nice gun". That's all that was ever said to me, and he, not me, notified the owner of the pit bulls that they were deceased and that he'd better not try to harass me over shooting them. Love it when the LEO's are sensible about stuff like this.
    KSCCHTrainer
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