Tux Challenge Day 20: Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang

Elizabeth Lavin took this photograph. "Here, smoke one of Zac's cigarettes," she said. Sure. Why not?
Elizabeth Lavin took this photograph. "Here, smoke one of Zac's cigarettes," she said. Sure. Why not?

My apologies. Friday was a tough day, and I was unable to deliver a proper report on the Great Tuxedo Challenge of 2012. Zac and I were fortunate enough to participate in the Big Clay Shoot, out at Elm Fork Shooting Sports, a charity event benefiting Big Brothers Big Sisters. Some 250 people showed up to shoot, and a good time was had by all, including yours truly, even though I twice came close to passing out. Friday was hot. And humid. In other words, not the best day to shoot shotguns in a black tuxedo. As I guzzled water pretty much nonstop, I sweated clean through my undershirt, dress shirt, and jacket.

Did I pour myself a Patron XO Cafe on the rocks to steel my nerves and steady my aim? No, I did not. Alcoholic beverages — even delicious, refreshing alcoholic beverages — are not allowed at Elm Fork Shooting Sports for reasons that should be obvious. Did I look smashing, even though I was near death? Yes, I did, thanks to the helpful, knowledgeable staff at Al’s Formal Wear. When I returned to the office, Krista said, “Ew, you don’t look well.” No, I did not look well. But I did look good.

You will be curious to learn how Zac and I performed. I will tell you. On the ride out to Elm Fork, Zac complained about how he hadn’t shot a gun of any type since he was 17. I therefore set a modest goal for him. A full round of sporting clays entails 100 shots. I told Zac he should set his sights on five. Anything more would be a bonus. Guess how many clays Zac shot. You got it. He shot five (putting him dead last among shooters who hit at least one clay; there were several who fired up goose eggs, which is hard for me to imagine). The winning score was a 94. And your well-dressed buddy Tim? I shot 42. All things considered — the gallons of sweat pouring off my person and creating puddles in my sneakers, the irregularity with which I use a shotgun — a perfectly acceptable outcome.

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