I think they made a song about this very topic
Sorry, that’s “dance with who brung ya” . . . my mistake.
When I started learning firearm related self-defense and small unit tactics, one of the things I would do was attend randomly scheduled rifle qualifications. Show up to class to learn and you find out today’s a random qualification day . . . Some folks attending class would want to take what seemed to be an hour zeroing their carbine / rifle. Sometimes . . . these folks had been to several iterations of courses and still requested EXTRA time to zero . . . . WTF right?
So inevitably the a standard came through – “Dance with what you brung”, and it stuck with me. If you grabbed a particular pistol or carbine and brought it to class, and it wasn’t zeroed . . . and it was a qualification day . . . no zero time – that should have been done weeks ago. Today, you shoot the course of fire with what you have: “What if $#!+ got real today and THAT’s what you had on you?” Then you shoot the course of fire with an un-proven, un-zeroed firearm . . . then you get to see how well you would have stopped the threat in real life.
Having “dance with what you brung” standards in training forces one to address the problem better than “I would have qualified but my rifle’s not zeroed . . . . I would have had a few more hits but I’m not familiar with my platform so when I had a malfunction I lost time . . . I would have scored higher but I need a better trigger. . . . I WOULD HAVE QUALIFIED, BUT I DIDN’T HAVE MY OTHER FIREARM. . . but but but”. But in real life you’re dead because you settled for saying “but” all the time to make yourself feel better when you sucked at training. When I say “you”, I mean, you, me, we, she, he, them, us, it.
(Just so no one thinks I’m being condescending, I have to kick my own butt regarding training standards on a regular basis.)
Harsh right? Well, that’s how I was trained, and I was lucky to have that/those lesson(s) and my family is safer because of it. If striving to be a warrior was easy, grandmas would be special operators. Reliability, Familiarity, Marksmanship, it’s all got to be there when you “dance with the one you brung”. One has to be positively sure, and the way to be sure is to . . . wait for it . . . dance with the one ya brung, on a regular basis.
It might not be as sexy to run through fighting to your pistol and getting your pistol into the fight with a Kel-Tec .32 ACP over your Glock 19 . . . but . . . if your (I shudder as I say this), little Kel-Tec gets carried 95% of the time . . . it should get the nod for training time most often. If you don’t feel that the firearm you carry most often is capable of being used to make CNS shots at 7 yards, or is reliable to work 100% of the time even when dirty, or that it “eats well”, why are “you” dancing with it?
Anyway, this is a friendly service reminder to and me – “train with the firearm you carry the most” or as I remember it – dance with the one ya brung . . . there might be a test. H/T to a buddy of mine that brought that up in conversation the other day.