The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

It Was Totally Awesome

Posted on | July 5, 2012 | 30 Comments

Supplies for the McCain family fireworks show, July 4, 2012 (click photo to enlarge)

For the past two years, I had missed the annual family tradition of shooting off a crapload of fireworks on Fourth of July.  This year, however, we secured a shoot site and a sufficent stash to do it right.

Rather than just shoot a bunch of random stuff, my sons and I actually put together a show, using timed fuses to sequence the fireworks, with finale boards full of multi-shot aerial repeaters and racks full of 1.75-inch mortar shells.

This year’s show opened with a board of 12 fountains, followed by a board with six repeaters (106 shots total), then my sons fired two matching boards simultaneously (806 shots total), and then the one-minute finale: Three boards with a total of 811 shots, plus 96 mortar shells.

We used fast fuse (about 5 seconds per foot) on the finale and it all went up so quick that I didn’t even realize the mortar racks had fired until the finale was over. When fireworks are going off at the rate of about 15 shots per second, it’s kind of disorienting. In a good way.

It was an all-day job putting together the show — building boards, filling the racks, connecting fuses, etc. — and because it all had to be done outdoors, I sweated until my shirt was soaked clear through. I’m exhausted today. My legs and backs are sore from the constant stooping and bending, and even my fingers are sore because of splinters from the wood and so forth. But it was worth it for the look of joy on my sons’ faces as we exchanged high-fives afterwards. It’s kind of a male-bonding thing, a father-son tradition.

Unfortunately, in all the excitement, Dad forgot to get video of the show. So you’ll have to take my word that it was totally awesome.

Robert Stacy McCain, Whereabouts Unknown


30 Responses to “It Was Totally Awesome”

  1. Finrod Felagund
    July 5th, 2012 @ 2:35 pm

    Excellent, I’m very glad you were able to celebrate Independence Day in true red state fashion.

  2. richard mcenroe
    July 5th, 2012 @ 3:01 pm

    California needs you…

  3. vermontaigne
    July 5th, 2012 @ 3:03 pm

     It was a Flying Spaghetti Monster of premature ejaculation.

  4. Zilla of the Resistance
    July 5th, 2012 @ 3:07 pm

    This is one of the many important ways that the right differs from the left:

    Conservatives – enjoy colorful fireworks to celebrate Independence Day

    Leftists – embrace terrorist BOMBERS like Brett Kimberlin and islamic jihadis every day of the year.

  5. Cube
    July 5th, 2012 @ 3:19 pm

     Leftists also outlaw fireworks in the hands of individuals because we’re too stupid to know how to use them safely.  (There are some idiots that seem determined to prove the Left correct on that point.)  But the same Left has absolutely no problem with concentrating power in the hands of bureaucrats many of whom are completely incapable of functioning outside of government.

  6. richard mcenroe
    July 5th, 2012 @ 3:21 pm

    As someone pointed out on twitter earlier, “We don’t blow shit up because we love America; we love America because it lets us blow shit up.”

  7. Quartermaster
    July 5th, 2012 @ 3:25 pm

    I shot some off with the Grandkids I’m raising.  Personally, I prefer my fireworks start and end with C-4 (and feel the earth move beneath my feet), but since that isn’t available at the local fireworks tent I had to settle for TNT brand Fireworks instead.

  8. ReaganiteRepublican
    July 5th, 2012 @ 3:32 pm

    Friggin pyro- worse than me lol

  9. Bacadog
    July 5th, 2012 @ 3:44 pm

    Awesome!!  Nothing like mixing testosterone with explosives.  Your sons will remember it forever.

  10. Red
    July 5th, 2012 @ 3:55 pm

    Your show, while outstanding I’m sure, was lacking in Black Cats.::tsk-tsk::

  11. Gus Bailey
    July 5th, 2012 @ 4:17 pm

    I mean no disrespect, and I’m glad you could enjoy the holiday; but such an extravagant and conspicuous display seems incongruous with the implied blegging for the shoe leather fund.

  12. Bob Belvedere
    July 5th, 2012 @ 4:48 pm


  13. Evilbloggerlady
    July 5th, 2012 @ 5:00 pm

    The Fourth of July without fireworks is like pancakces without syrup.  

  14. Red
    July 5th, 2012 @ 5:28 pm

    Those look more pricey than they are plus folks chip in. Gotta have a big family fireworks blow out and those Super Pac(k)s (lol, totally punny) make it easy.

  15. Red
    July 5th, 2012 @ 5:28 pm

    Yeah, just quick bread. BORING.

  16. robertstacymccain
    July 5th, 2012 @ 5:59 pm

    “Extravagant”? In 2005, our Fourth of July finale was about $1,o00 worth of fireworks — that was the wholesale price — and that was just the finale. So a few hundred dollars’ worth for the entire show scarcely seems “extravagant” to me.

    It’s a matter of perspective, I suppose. Some people take beach vacations or drive new cars or otherwise indulge in things I might consider “extravagant.” Fourth of July fireworks doesn’t seem that way to me. Anyway, it’s only once a year, like Christmas.

  17. robertstacymccain
    July 5th, 2012 @ 6:03 pm
  18. JeffS
    July 5th, 2012 @ 6:18 pm

    I hit the tip jar on a regular basis, and I’d rather the McCain kids have a great show on Independence Day than sit around because someone might think that’s an “extravagance”.  

    In the words of Robert Heinlein, “Budget luxuries first“.

  19. rosalie
    July 5th, 2012 @ 6:26 pm

    The fireworks display in our town will take place this Saturday.  Believe me, your finale was better than any finale I’ve seen here.

  20. Matthew W
    July 5th, 2012 @ 7:37 pm

    Good manly bonding with the sons !!

  21. DonaldDouglas
    July 5th, 2012 @ 8:13 pm

    D’you have video of this year’s show?

  22. Mike
    July 5th, 2012 @ 8:50 pm

    Great Ceasar’s ghost!  You boys have talent!  Thanks for sharing that.

  23. Dianna Deeley
    July 5th, 2012 @ 9:33 pm

    I giggled happily – and disturbingly – just looking at the picture. It’s always nice to meet someone else as fond of making things go “boom” as I am. 

  24. Taxpayer1234
    July 5th, 2012 @ 9:40 pm

    Here in Tinderbox Colorado, personal fireworks were banned this year.  I’m not resentful, just bummed; but glad you could put on a show for your family.

  25. Dianna Deeley
    July 5th, 2012 @ 9:43 pm



    Sincerely, that is just about the best private show I’ve ever seen. I’m drooling.

  26. sheryl
    July 5th, 2012 @ 10:36 pm

    LOL…great news! We had a ball too! first time this year that fireworks were legal in Michigan. (besides sparklers and some really small stuff) I bet Ohio was a little bummed this year, Michiganders generally made the trip south for a little illegal purchase of the nasty stuff!

  27. Gus Bailey
    July 6th, 2012 @ 9:46 am

    Well, as long as you’re comfortable and enjoying yourself at your undisclosed location; since you had to flee your home and all that…

  28. Gus Bailey
    July 6th, 2012 @ 9:56 am

    On second thought; NO. I retract my criticism and my sarcasm. I donated to the Shoe Leather Fund to foil Brett Kimberlin aka “The Speedway Bomber” in his attempt to squelch the truth and inhibit you and your lifestyle.

    Good on ya, and GOD Bless ya.

  29. » Quote of the week
    July 6th, 2012 @ 2:22 pm

    […] About the only thing she didn’t do was unleash a crapload of Chinese-made incendiary devices, though the McCains were there, or at least somewhere, to take up the slack. […]

  30. Mark Goluskin
    July 7th, 2012 @ 12:06 am

    Well, ANYONE’S fireworks were better than what the folks in San Diego at the bay got this year. Fifteen minute show in 15 seconds. Oh yeah, and the probably banned fireworks.