My old friend John Bianchi, the master holster-maker, propounded what he called “Bianchi’s Law” for carrying handguns. It was “same gun, same holster, all the time.” (That could be read as same type of gun, same type of holster, in the same place.) It was to make sure that if you reflexively needed to draw and fire, all the habits for doing so would be hard-wired in.
Bianchi’s Law makes a helluva lot of sense. Unfortunately, I occasionally have need to break it. A lot of the sidearms I test for gun magazines are carry pieces, and part of the test is actually carrying them. I want to see if there are sharp edges that will discomfort the wearer or tear up clothing, or angles that will cause undue, unwanted bulge – “printing,” as we call it in the business.
Moreover, my primary job is teaching firearms and deadly force. The instructor who uses only one pistol is poorly suited to teaching a class of many students carrying many different pistols and revolvers. I used to change gun types every training tour. I’ve grown lazy with that in recent years, and now the changes are less frequent…almost seasonal.
Seasonal, and selfish. I like to carry what I’m going to be competing with. It “builds the repetitions” and sharpens familiarity. The way my wife’s schedule and mine coincides with the matches we most like to shoot together (www.gssfonline.com), the first quarter of the year is Glock season for us. The Glock matches don’t involve running, and between her bad knee and my bad back, shooting athletics are kind of off the table for us for now. I’ll be competing in the Polite Society match that is part of the Rangemaster Tactical Conference, where I’ll be teaching (and learning) later this month, so the pistol I’m carrying at the moment is what I’m most recently familiarized with. It’s a stock Glock 19 Gen5 9mm. It won High Lawman for me at Tac-Con in 2018, and I’ll probably use it there again this year.
June will be our next major shooting event, The Pin Shoot (www.pinshoot.com). As the name implies, you have to blast heavy bowling pins three feet back off a table. For that I like .45s, and there’s no .45 I shoot better than my old favorite 1911, so I have a feeling the second quarter of 2022 will see me carrying one of those old classics.
Bianchi’s Law is solid and logical. If I’m breaking it, I’ll try for a Doctrine of Competing Harms and Needs defense.