As long as I've known Joe I've known he was into guns - hard to miss the giant green gun cabinet he had in his room! Since he shot competitively in high school this hobby was impressive to me rather than a turn-off. BIG turn-off when guys are "into" things that, in reality, they don't know much about; if he'd had a gun cabinet full of guns he wasn't properly trained to handle or shoot I would definitely have written him off as a REDNECK (which, deep down, he kinda is anyway. But moving on). He's taken me shooting at a shooting range a few times, which is really fun! I'm no Calamity Jane, but I'm not a bad shot, if I do say so myself. Since we keep handguns in the house (hidden and completely inaccessible to Patrick, of course), Joe always wants me to be comfortable and practiced with them, so we shoot the handguns when we go camping - a nice way to keep from getting too rusty, plus it's fun. I've urged him since we were dating to go hunting because it's a great way to use what he already has (guns and talent with guns), we live where there's access to good hunting spots, and he really needs to get some hobbies. Me, I love to read and bake and scrapbook and paint the house and blog... Joe gets pretty bored after a day or two when I'm not around. If I AM around, though, sometimes I just want to do MY thing and him to do HIS! Until recently, though, he hasn't had much of a "thing" to do, so my things like scrapbooking get put off until he wants to watch a movie that I have zero interest in (Scarface? No, thanks!) and can get out of watching. I have to laugh that his interest in hunting has taken off so SUDDENLY, though - one day last month he went out and bought all the hunting licences he could get - deer, elk, small game (rabbits), ducks and geese, fishing - you name it, he got it! Where he hasn't gone once since I've known him, now he's gone twice in one month, with another trip planned for next weekend, as I am hugely pregnant. I'm not worried about going into labor early or anything, I'm happy he's going, I hope he brings home a nice elk, but something tells me this is just as much about him wanting to get those last few gasps of freedom before the new baby comes as it is about going hunting. And THAT'S what I think is funny!
Anyhow, I know lots of people disagree with owning guns, shooting guns, or shooting guns at poor, defenseless (delicious) animals, but I'm just not one of those people. I'm proud of Joe and how well he handles and maintains his firearms, and I'm proud that he'll teach our kids how to be safe and responsible with them as well. Instead of teaching firearm "abstinence," I think it's important to teach safety and respect for all firearms - hunting rifles and handguns alike. Now THAT'S hot!