Monday, June 29, 2009

*** Prussian Humour—Three-Star Style ***

No less an authority on military matters than
Generaloberst Heinz Guderian informs us—
in his operator’s manual to Dr Ferdinand Porsche’s
new heavy tank ‘Tiger,’

~ that the reason the Thirty Years War lasted for thirty years...

was that it took a soldier
27 distinct steps to load the
goddamned arquebus before he could shoot anybody...

~ as duties and ditties have permitted, I found an idle moment to translate and list the procedures involved:

1. hold the gun at an angle in front of you, barrel pointing up
2. with the butt in front of your left foot
3. take the cartridge out of the ammunition pouch
4. cartridge into the barrel
5. take out the ramrod
6. hold ramrod ready in front of you
7. ram cartridge home, 1-2-3
8. remove bullet-clip from ammunition pouch
9. hold clip in your mouth
10. bite one bullet off of the clip
11. bullet down the barrel
12. ramrod ready
13. tamp the bullet home, 1-2-3
14. take the feather from your hat
15. cradle the gun in front of you
16. wipe out the touchhole with the feather
17. put the feather back in your hat
18. take out your powderhorn
19. pour powder into the pan
20. replace the powderhorn
21. make a ferocious face
22. cock the serpentine
23. lay barrel upon gun-rest
24. aim well
25. ignite match in the doghead
26. Lord help!
27. FIRE!!!

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