Skip

Hanging the machine guns on the wall was a bad idea.
January 26, 2012 11:48 AM   Subscribe

If you like real-life crime drama, Burgled in Philly, by John Davidson, will keep you occupied for a few minutes.

"When John Davidson’s apartment gets robbed, he learns that the easiest way to get his stuff back is to have one drug dealer lie to another drug dealer while he lies to the police."
posted by gilrain (40 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
A word about the machine guns: one of them is mine, the other one is Matt’s, and they were for decoration. They were functional and we had ammunition, but they weren’t really for home defense or hunting. We thought they looked badass hanging on the wall — and they did.

Matt found his thimbles somewhere in there and got back to the venue with just enough time to slam a celebratory shot of whiskey before we took the stage. It was one of the best shows we’ve ever played.
Later, Billy told me how it had gone down. After he left my apartment he went to the tavern across the street where this guy Big Mike always hung out. Big Mike was the fattest crack dealer/user I’ve ever seen.


Why do I feel like I'm reading Part 2 of a Million Little Pieces?
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 12:07 PM on January 26, 2012 [5 favorites]


I usually try defend hipsters but I couldn't get past his statement that none of this would have happened if they'd only had the foresight to shield their unsecured, automatic weapons from public view.
posted by bonobothegreat at 12:08 PM on January 26, 2012 [2 favorites]


A well written little story but I felt my eyes start to roll when I got here:

A word about the machine guns: one of them is mine, the other one is Matt’s, and they were for decoration. They were functional and we had ammunition, but they weren’t really for home defense or hunting. We thought they looked badass hanging on the wall — and they did

And I am with the police all the way here:

The cops told us we would have to come down to the station and talk to some detectives because firearms had been taken from our apartment. They were angry with us for even owning firearms and appeared to have very little sympathy for our plight, despite our explanation that the rifles were legal and only for decoration, which they thought was stupid.

I guess it is nice that one criminal got another to return the property based on the first criminal's respect for a third but my overall feeling is that these two should never have been allowed to have guns in the first place, on the grounds of extreme idiocy. Machine guns are likely not legal under long standing federal firearms laws, and in any event they are not toys or decor.
posted by bearwife at 12:08 PM on January 26, 2012


These aren't really machine guns as I understand the term (i.e., automatic weapons). They are military rifles.

I agree that they aren't toys, and using them for decoration suggests a certain amount of unseriousness, but the fact that they're guns doesn't mean this is any less a robbery or that these guys deserved to have their apartment broken and entered.
posted by gauche at 12:21 PM on January 26, 2012 [2 favorites]


Jesus, people, SECURE YOUR GODDAMNED GUNS.
posted by rmd1023 at 12:25 PM on January 26, 2012 [7 favorites]


Just to get this out of my system: what he describes as an "M4" appears to be a Mosin-Nagant M44 carbine, and what he describes as an AK-47 is probably an AKM (which is the improved, vastly more common version of the original AK-47 design). And neither of them is a machine gun: the M44 is a bolt-action carbine, and the AKM is an assault rifle.

(Not a gun nut, despite the above -- just an irritable pedant.)
posted by McCoy Pauley at 12:28 PM on January 26, 2012 [10 favorites]


Crime, like entrenched pessimism, is a part of the landscape in Philadelphia.

The night after I lost my job I went drinking up in Fishtown, the Brooklyn-ish bit of Philly (it even has it's own Barcade). After bidding adeu to my friend I was left alone at a bus stop. Next to me, someone approached and asked what the time was. After telling him it was 12:30 and there probably wouldn't be a bus for 30 minutes he informs me he has a gun and that "this is a robbery".

My reaction was, naturally, disbelief. "I don't see a gun" I said "where's the gun?" to which he looked at me incredulously. I told him I lost my job earlier that day and "Didn't have time for this shit" before walking off the bus stop. "Wait, Don't Move" he said as I left him behind to look for a cab (THANKS, SEPTA, STILL USING TOKENS?!)

this was probably a bad move, because I later learned that everyone in philadelphia has guns.
posted by hellojed at 12:30 PM on January 26, 2012 [19 favorites]


this was probably a bad move, because I later learned that everyone in philadelphia has guns

Many of which were likely stolen from idiots like these.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 12:42 PM on January 26, 2012


Nice story! Did anyone else read it with a Damon Runyon narrator?

So this Billy, a party who is a member of the locality, but is not a local in the commonly accepted manner of speaking, is living in an apartment in back of the building that is so small you would not swing a cat unless it is maybe a kitten who is not minding being hit around the head a few times.

Billy likes to spend his time playing pool for pennies in the tavern across the street. He is knowing everybody, being a citizen of some standing in the neighbourhood. Billy is deeply concerned by the episode of robbery he is witnessing, on account of feeling that someone breaking into the building is an act of some disrespect. Being a right guy, he conceives that some action dast be taken.

Afterwards some citizens at the tavern are proposing that Billy's concern is stemming from the 20 large ones he has concealed in the building in case he is needing to take it on the lam, but owing to certain of his other actions which I will not recount here Billy is a guy of whom people are sometimes apt to assume the worst.

posted by Sebmojo at 12:48 PM on January 26, 2012 [3 favorites]


If you leave weapons like that lying around your house you are an idiot. You certainly don't deserve to be robbed. But you are still an idiot. Because robberies happen. My first thought in a situation like that would be, "How many innocent people are going to be injured or killed because I'm a moron that left firearms lying around like toys?"
posted by Splunge at 12:57 PM on January 26, 2012 [4 favorites]


No way either of those clowns has a valid Class III firearms license.
posted by whuppy at 1:17 PM on January 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


Neither of these guns is a machine gun. Hell, one of them is a bolt-action!
posted by Guy Innagorillasuit at 1:35 PM on January 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


Being in Philly, I would guess most burglaries get "solved" this way. And yes, hanging guns on a wall is a dummy move.
posted by Katine at 1:37 PM on January 26, 2012



As a victim of many a household burglary let's get this straight, robbed is when you are accosted by another person and induced (threatened) into giving them your valuables.

A burglary is when someone breakes into your property and takes your shit. No threats, and probably no weapons involved. HUGE difference.

Also a pendant.

Double also, these guys are idiots.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 1:49 PM on January 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


This will give his band so much street cred.
posted by Ayn Rand and God at 1:51 PM on January 26, 2012


Seriously, this story feels like it should end with "...and that's how a Mosin-Nagant carbine from Philadelphia fell into the hands of a group of Somali pirates in the Gulf of Aden."
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:52 PM on January 26, 2012 [2 favorites]


This will give his band so much street cred.

"You're the dudes with the machine guns, right?"
posted by Guy Innagorillasuit at 1:53 PM on January 26, 2012


Ah, this story brings back so many great Philly memories. Like the time a would-be burglar threw a brick through my window and my boyfriend of the time, wielding a hammer and wearing only boxers, chased him off. Or, the time that same boyfriend took the wrong bus, ended up in Point Breeze at 3am and was then held up by a guy brandishing an Uzi. Or the time another boyfriend got pistol whipped on South Street. Or the bazillion times my and my friends' cars got broken into. Good times, good freakin' times...
posted by medeine at 2:05 PM on January 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


Hmm, this is not helping my paranoia, and I feel reasonably safe a couple blocks from the Italian Market.
posted by zeek321 at 2:24 PM on January 26, 2012


The Dudes with The Machine Guns is a good band name.
posted by vidur at 2:40 PM on January 26, 2012


I do not miss Philadelphia.
posted by evilDoug at 2:56 PM on January 26, 2012


I will not miss Philadelphia.
posted by zeek321 at 3:05 PM on January 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


I agree with the police detective ... those guys are idiots.
They could have at least disabled the weapons (effed up the receivers or something) so they couldn't be fired. And if they were just for decoration, why did they have ammunition?
I dunno, maybe none of it's true.

Cool story, though, bro.
posted by zomg at 3:07 PM on January 26, 2012


A washboard? Really?
posted by Big_B at 3:16 PM on January 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


I know this building, my friends run a drafting business and live there... funny.
posted by PJLandis at 3:39 PM on January 26, 2012


I'm probably the only person who laughs every time I hear the word "burgled".

I also get freaked out by the word "moist".
posted by bpm140 at 3:42 PM on January 26, 2012


I do not miss Philadelphia, and I sure as hell don't miss Fishtown.
posted by ssmug at 4:19 PM on January 26, 2012


Pretty sure I topped 90 on the Schuylkill the morning I moved out. Until I caught morning traffic, that is.
posted by hellojed at 4:41 PM on January 26, 2012


Pretty sure I topped 90 on the Schuylkill the morning I moved out. Until I caught morning traffic, that is.

No doubt somewhere right around the Conshohocken Curve.

Worst. Road. Ever. Built.
posted by ssmug at 4:43 PM on January 26, 2012


what he describes as an "M4" appears to be a Mosin-Nagant M44 carbine, and what he describes as an AK-47 is probably an AKM (which is the improved, vastly more common version of the original AK-47 design). And neither of them is a machine gun: the M44 is a bolt-action carbine, and the AKM is an assault rifle.

At least the thief didn't find his Glock 7.
posted by Blue Meanie at 4:54 PM on January 26, 2012


punched a guy so hard the guy died right there on the sidewalk

SO HARD HE DIED YOU GUYS
posted by The Hamms Bear at 5:54 PM on January 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


Wait, which fictional character is this? Mac or Charlie?

Yes, that really is all I know of Philadelphia. And the cheese, of course the cheese.
posted by formless at 6:13 PM on January 26, 2012


That was a great story, thanks.
posted by Dasein at 6:48 PM on January 26, 2012


I would also suggest that if you don't know what kind of firearm you own, you probably shouldn't own it.
posted by Dasein at 6:49 PM on January 26, 2012 [3 favorites]


To defend Philly, I have not been burgled or had any crime issues, and I live in not-good neighborhoods. There is a house of drug dealers across the street from me, but they're pretty nice guys, like a gang of grandpas.
posted by schroedinger at 8:06 PM on January 26, 2012


Are we neighbors, schroedinger? It was my understanding that they were bookies.
posted by The White Hat at 8:13 PM on January 26, 2012


Another defender of Philly here (although, to be honest, I live in SF...)
posted by flamk at 8:57 PM on January 26, 2012


the M44 is a bolt-action carbine

Here's a full-auto conversion of a Lee-Enfield bolt action rifle into a crude assault rifle/light machine gun. Mass produced, no less.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 10:56 PM on January 26, 2012


Here's a full-auto conversion of a Lee-Enfield bolt action rifle into a crude assault rifle/light machine gun. Mass produced, no less.

There's a lot of things different between a Lee-Enfield MLE and a Mosin-Nagant M-44 carbine that make this virtually impossible to apply. Mainly, the Enfield has a rear locking bolt while the Nagant uses the bolt handle pressed against the stock to lock it in place. That means the bolt pull on an Enfield is more of a dagonal up-and-back, down-and-forward, while the Nagant cycles up, then back, forward then down. That means that beautifully simple piece of machining on the Charlton is just not going to work on a Nagant.

Next, the Charlton converted external-magazine fed Enfields, while the Nagants have an internal magazine. This means that to load the Nagant you have to stop with the bolt open and press a strip of 5 rounds into the top of the open magazine, this woulf be very difficult if the top is covered by the machanism that automatically cycles the bolt, especially if you are only getting 5 shots at a go.

To turn a Nagant into a "machine gun" or "assault rifle" takes a complete redesign.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 5:38 AM on January 27, 2012 [1 favorite]


"dagonal"

Hey now!
posted by Splunge at 4:13 PM on January 27, 2012


« Older loading up dream-catchers with wild and beautiful...   |   Un, deux, trois dit miroir noir Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments



Post