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Fear & Loading: Darn You, CCI

Fear & Loading: Darn You, CCI

That trusted name in rimfire, CCI, quietly rolled out holiday packs of .22 LR in November—making no sound, not even that of a mouse. It’s sold out in my favorite outlets, and the shortage threatens my Christmas spirit with a watery douse.

Seriously. There was no press release. I asked. There seems to be a few of the 300-packs in scattered authorized outlets, but I’m sure by the time I drive cross country, they’ll be in shopping carts and trailed enviously by other shooters hoping the early bird’s card is declined.

Apparently in November—I can’t tell you precisely when, because, well, it’s a secret—CCI produced .22 LR ammunition in holiday packs, and the cartridges within wore bullets coated in a festive green and red polymer. MSRP was somewhere around $20 and it had stocking stuffer written all over it, assuming the holiday footwear is affixed to the mantle by lag bolts and the fireplace isn’t burning.

CCI needs to crank out another batch before Dec. 24 for those of us who consider it sacrilege to shop for Christmas before Thanksgiving. Turkeys hadn’t even thawed when this hit the retailers and it’s got my giblets in a bunch.

Just in case management has forgotten or, more likely, forced an unsuspecting intern to eat the formula to maintain secrecy, the loads were 40-gr. .22 LR with a muzzle velocity of 1,235 f.p.s. They came with festive red and green polymer coated bullets and the SKU was 921XMAS17.

If you ditch the Santa hat on the box’s bunny, I can almost guarantee any excess inventory will disappear at about the same time the Easter Bunny arrives. In other words: Turn those presses at “warp speed, Scotty.”

I’d blame the Russians, because it’s fashionable and would make me seem intelligent right now, but CCI and its owner, Vista Outdoor, are about as red, white and blue as apple pie, baseball and mom on the Fourth of July. That leaves me no choice but to point my finger at the real culprits—enthusiasts who scored a box or two before the holiday shopping crush. Santa knows who you are, by the way, so there.

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