Recently moving to Florida, I have been tasked with finding a new… everything. New doctor, new chiropractor, new mechanic, new barber, new dentist. You name it, I’ve either looked for it or have already found it.
On most of these first trips, somehow the topic of firearms comes up. Here’s how two recent trips went.
I needed a prescription refilled and since my NY doctor knows that I’m in Florida, it was time to find someone local. I got on Google Maps and searched for general practitioners in the area and stumbled upon one with great reviews. I set up my appointment and headed over a few days later.
In Florida, I now know that many people carry and many people are into firearms. It’s a big difference from New York, although I did have many pro-gun folks up there as well.
I walk into the doctor’s office and am called almost immediately. I head to the room and wait for the doc. He comes in and we discuss my medical history, and then he asks me what I do for a living.
Me: I run a pro-gun website.
Doctor: Oh, that’s great. May I ask what it’s about?
Me: It’s primarily about concealed carry, and the importance of firearms for self-defense.
Doctor: I’ve had my permit for many years now and go to a local range each Thursday night.
Me: That’s great! I’m actually looking for a new range to call home.
Doctor: Well I can write down my number and we’ll arrange to go shoot sometime.
Me: Sounds great to me!
Of course this is not verbatim, but you get the idea. It was a pleasant encounter.
This isn’t actually my dentist, but a specialist that my dentist referred me to in order to have a tooth evaluated for a possible root canal. Spoiler alert; I’m having a root canal done on Monday.
This was just the other day, and the conversation wound up just like the one above.
Dentist: What do you do for a living?
Me: I run a pro-gun website.
Dentist: Ha, that’s great. Rebecca (the assistant) and I both have our concealed carry permits and carry everywhere we go.
Me: That’s great to hear! My website actually focuses on concealed carry.
Dentist: What’s the name?
Me: Concealed Nation
Dentist: I haven’t heard of it (sigh) but will definitely look it up!
Me: Here’s my card. Do I get a pro-gun-concealed-carry discount?
Dentist: Haha no, but we should go shooting sometime!
This was just two days ago and was the result of me tackling a project that got the best of me. I have a Jeep Wrangler and love working on them. If it’s something that I can get to without needing special tools, I’ll do it myself. I happened to need new brakes for the rear and figured I’d just change them all out. All four rotors and brake pads. Piece of cake, right?
The front was a breeze, but the back proved challenging. I’ve been backing the Jeep into salt water to launch the jet-ski, and haven’t had a salt water problem in New York. Obviously. So, even though I rinsed everything off when I returned, it wasn’t doing the job.
The first rear wheel was off and I got the brake pads and caliper off. Easy. Now all I needed to do was get the rotor off.
Five days later, I decided to give up.
Even with a rotor puller, this mofo wasn’t budging. I called up a nearby mechanic to explain my problem. I knew off the bat that I had to be careful with my words, because most mechanics don’t like you bringing your own parts with you for them to put on. I slurred my words and sounded like an idiot, and he told me to shut up and bring it over.
One call to AAA and a flatbed was on the way to pick her up.
I get over there and meet two of the nicest people I’ve met in my life; a father and son mechanic team.
When I walked into the office, I was greeted with this:
He saw me looking up at the signs.
Me: Those signs are awesome! Would you mind if I took a picture of them to use in an article on my website?
Mechanic: Sure, be my guest! What is the site?
Me: It’s a site about concealed carry and responsible gun ownership.
Mechanic: Well that sounds great. My son and I both carry and have been for years. I always have a gun on me.
We ended up talking for the better part of two hours, all while they were fixing up my Jeep. We talked guns, concealed carry, laws, Jeeps, motorcycles, cars. But mostly guns, of course.
It’s not that work never came up when talking to people like this in New York; it did. But the conversations usually never went anywhere because there was generally little interest in the topic. While New York is seen as an anti-gun state, that’s not true. If you’re talking about NYC, sure, but the rest of the state is pretty pro-gun.
But Florida. Oh, Florida. It’s an entirely different world that I’m having no problem getting used to.