Painless “Oh Crap!” moment.
I know you read it in a gun forum somewhere, IDPA will get you killed. There are some illustrated fools who make their life in forums by bad mouthing IDPA for whatever silly and/or nefarious reasons. Some are just repeating what they read somewhere, some have a vested interest in you attending their Ninja Gunfighter School of Magic Tricks and some probably sucked so bad at the sport that their egos still have not healed.
I am not going to launch into another tirade in defense of IDPA and other shooting sports but rather describe a teaching moment courtesy of an IDPA match. Yours truly is called to the line to face a 9 target Course of Fire to be shot on the move. The rationale behind the stage was that you were caught in the open when a gang of miscreants decide to come after you. You were to draw and engage all of the Bad Guys with at least 2 good shots on each target as I made my way to the safety of my vehicle. Bad news: All but 2 of the bad guys are behind some sort of hard cover and I wasn’t and that meant shooting on the move and fast. As per Safety Officer’ instruction I load my gun and get ready…BEEP!
I had decided to play it safe, shoot fast and shoot every target at least three times and by golly I did. By the fourth target I perform a reload from slide lock that was a smooth as if I was Head SWAT Master of the Ninja Tactical Academy. I keep going fast making all sort of neatly placed 9 mm holes in the targets and reaching the last target that receives one shot before the gun goes again in slide lock. I reach for the remaining spare mag in my waist and….. it was not there. Oh Crap!
I knew I reloaded all the mags and had them in place before the stage started. Stupidly I look down and I see the freshly empty & ejected magazine at my feet and then I look to my side and see 2 magazines laying on the ground some 15 feet away. I run back and identify the loaded mag, retrieve it, load the gun and proceed back to the last target that gets 3 more rounds on account of me being royally pissed at myself.
After unloading, showing clear and holstering, I found out what happened. My mag carrier is a leather Bianchi double stack, double mag pouch with tension screws. The right pouch is a bit looser than the left and somehow while retrieving the mag for the first reload, I somehow managed to unseat and drop the second one. My fellow squad members were torn between pity for a run that was going great and laughter at the Keystone Cops performance at the end by yours truly.
It was not a total loss. My equipment was not in combat condition, my fault alone. Did I forget to mention I shoot what I carry everyday? So I learned the cheap way that my lack of maintenance might have cost me dearly if the situation was real. Although I dislike eating humble pie, be subject to public ridicule and administering myself several hard ones to my rear end, I rather have that than be full of holes and being attached to a feeding tune at the local hospital.
So now my pouch is fixed, my holster was given a thorough check and even the belt got a nice cleaning. Contrary to the expectation of the nay-sayers, IDPA did not get me killed but it might have seved my life and taught me a lesson.