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Category: Hap’s Corner

The Emperor’s New Clothes…

by Hap Rocketto It has been more than six decades since I wiled away lazy days in the cradle of my education, Mrs. Levinson’s kindergarten class, at Harbor School. The boxy three story red brick building, known to its inhabitants as ‘The Old Brick Jail,’ had the usual elementary school fixtures, baseball fields, asphalt basketball […]

Imponderable Questions

by Hap Rocketto For over a half of a century I have been involved in various shooting sports and from time to time I have come across things that seem imponderable. By definition that means a question or situation that is either difficult or impossible to be assessed. We are all familiar with some of […]

Tunes of Glory

by Hap Rocketto Smallbore rifle shooters, particularly prone ones, actually all shooters, are always on the hunt for something that will reduce group size. The quest for the Holy Grail of a ten shot 0.50 inch group at 100 yards usually begins with testing lots and lots, of lots of ammunition. This quest can reach […]

Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris, and Me

by Hap Rocketto Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris, and Me As both a pilot and Boston Red Sox fan the New York Yankees draw my attention. From an aviator’s point of view Red Sox left fielder and the “Greatest Hitter Who Ever Lived” Ted Williams and Yankee second baseman Jerry Coleman stand out. Both served in […]

Because it is there….

by Hap Rocketto Andrew Waugh, the British Surveyor of General of India, had not been able to enter either Nepal or Tibet because they were closed nations and, therefore, could have had no idea that Peak XV was known to the natives as “Mother Goddess of Earth,” Chomolungma in Tibetan.  He just wanted to honor […]

Boxers or…

by Hap Rocketto  As I was maintaining my shooting gear one Saturday morning the local sports network’s personality was musing on the little thoughts in sports and life that beg to be resolved. Over the faint crackle of my workshop radio I heard him say, “For example, why are the tall poles installed as vertical […]

Jebediah Nightlinger On The Veracity Of Hap’s Corners

From time to time I am asked about the sources and, in particular, the veracity of the many anecdotes, incidents, and occurrences that form the basis for Hap’s Corners. In my half century of competitive shooting I have met a good deal of people, done a good deal of things, seen a good deal of […]

Generally Speaking He was the Worst

by Hap Rocketto The young lieutenant was at his first posting. Fresh from West Point he firmly believed that troop training ranked as his priority. Being well trained and spruce was the hallmark of a professional soldier and professionalism mattered. He rapidly won the respect of his subordinates and superiors for his successful pursuit of […]

I love the discipline of sitting…

by Hap Rocketto “There sighs, lamentations and loud wailings resounded through the starless air, so that at first it made me weep; strange tongues, horrible language, words of pain, tones of anger, voices loud and hoarse, and with these the sound of hands, made a tumult which is whirling through that air forever dark…” wrote […]

Shooting at a Mark: An American Tradition

by Hap Rocketto The study of United States history is one of my great pleasures and the more obscure and mysteriously obscure the greater my enjoyment. I revel in the trivial minutiae of our nation’s rich past. For example do you know that the USS Merrimack and the CSS Virginia were the same ship? How […]

Target, not just a department store…

by Hap Rocketto From time to time I wonder what course my shooting career might have taken if I were born a few years later. When I began shooting the Army Marksmanship Unit was just five years old and only beginning develop the seminal training methods and great shooters which would dominate the international scene […]

A Juxtaposition of Passions

by Hap Rocketto After my bride and two daughters my passions are shooting, and then, in no particular order, aviation and baseball. The America’s Cup used to be up there but since the grand days of the statuesque J Boats and thoroughbred 12 meter yachts have degenerated into soulless corporate financed multihull boats I fear […]

Wind: Another Four Letter Word

by Hap Rocketto I don’t play golf but it seems to me that it is a game that, in many respects, is very much like shooting. They both have long history filled tradition, are practiced on similar outdoor venues, have participants from all strata of society, are a gadget lover’s dream, membership in a private […]

Shooting at a Mark: An American Tradition

by Hap Rocketto The study of United States history is one of my great pleasures and the more obscure and mysteriously obscure the greater my enjoyment. I revel in the trivial minutiae of our nation’s rich past. For example do you know that the USS Merrimack and the CSS Virginia were the same ship? How […]

You can stumble or you can soar, it is up to you…

by Hap Rocketto It has happened to all of us. Some unforeseen event occurs at a match that causes us to either meet the dark angels of our shooting soul or presents a stumbling block over which we soar. For some it might be the very first rain squall that comes rolling in from 12 […]

Number 42…

by Hap Rocketto The summer of 2013 was marked by a quartet of worthy athletic feats. The Boston Red Sox rebounded from a terrible 2012 season in spectacular fashion by going from worst to first in American League East. Oracle, the United States America’s Cup scandal tainted, billionaire funded, carpetbagger filled, entry, on the verge […]

The NRA Bursts My Balloon

by Hap Rocketto As a kid, back in the early 1950s, one of my big thrills was watching the US Navy’s K-class blimps glide over New London while on antisubmarine patrol between Naval Air Station Lakehurst in New Jersey and Naval Air Station South Weymouth in Massachusetts. If we were in the classroom the windows […]

The Black Hawk Bagel Boys

The Black Hawk Bagel Boys

Competitive shooting, and all of the minutiae that goes with it, has a long…

Jay Meets Brownian Motion

by Hap Rocketto Jay Sonneborn has an impressive resume in the art and science of the hard hold and easy squeeze. He has been three times a member of the US Dewar Team, including a stint as captain. As fitting one who has been so recognized by being an official on the most prestigious of […]

Bell City And Pamplona

by Hap Rocketto The last prone match that most folks in the New England area shoot before departing for Perry is the Bell City Rifle Club Metric Prone Regional. The match precedes the National Championships by a week or so and usually falls on the second or third weekend of July. By happenstance some 85 […]

Campy and Ralph could have been rifle coaches

by Hap Rocketto Simply not athletic enough to play baseball, my childhood passion, I was fortunate enough to come upon rifle shooting. Shooting played upon my athletic skill set, that of being able to stay still for long hours and to think. I have never lost my love of baseball, which started at my Grandpa […]