Get to Know Zach
What drew you to become a Tejas employee?
We [Kim and I] shot together at the Midland Shooters Association (MSA). I really just did it as a favor to begin with, just to help her get through a spot where she really didn’t have enough people to work…and I just never quit!
How often do you work?
I’m only a Saturday worker. I have a regular job [weekdays] from 8 to 5.
So you must really enjoy Tejas to give up one of your two days off, right?
I do! The perks of working here are pretty nice. Sometimes the discount on a firearm is more enticing than the actual paycheck. Which, usually, you don’t have much of a paycheck left if you work here! If you like guns and ammo, and you work at a place that sells all the newest, coolest guns and ammo, it’s hard to resist!
What’s at the top of your Tejas Wish List?
I’d like to have a new 1911-style pistol. We have a couple in [the showroom] that look pretty good to me right now. I just haven’t pulled the trigger on one yet. I like the Springfield style, but I also like the Kimber – they have a custom-carry that’s pretty sweet because it has the bobtail on it, so I’m drawn to that.
What was it like moving to the other side of the gun counter, from consumer to salesperson?
When I [started] at Tejas I had to learn a whole new vocabulary. And what a customer calls something is not necessarily what a manufacturer calls something – so you have to stay up-to-date.
Can you give me an example of a vocabulary word or two that you had to learn when you began working at Tejas?
You know, there’s funny words that people mess up all the time, like calling magazines “clips.” There are only particular types of rifles, and only a few firearms, that actually take a “clip,” which is a particular way to hold the ammunition. Other than that, they would be considered “magazine-fed” or “box magazine-fed.” But a lot of customers come in and say, “I’m looking for a clip,” but they’re really looking for a “magazine,” so you just kinda have to differentiate between those things.
How do you educate the buyer and what resources do you point them to if they’re a relatively new gun-purchaser?
The internet is a fantastic tool, anything you don’t know you could almost certainly Google.
“Regarding Google, don’t assume that because
you read it online that God wrote it.
Always consider the source!
We also have private classes. If somebody wants to learn more about shooting, then I recommend Kim’s beginners’ Handgun Class because that’s kinda like the foundation. When you learn more about gun handling and safety, and the proper techniques: loading and unloading, firing your firearm, then the better basis you have – and the more confidence you have – to possess and operate your firearm.
Man, you could write for the Tejas website! You have very put-together answers!
[Laughs.] I have to talk to the press on a regular basis for my other job. I deal a lot with the public in my other job, too. I work for a church. I am a licensed minister and I also do all the construction and maintenance and head up several of the departments for a local house of worship.
When did you learn how to shoot?
My grandfather actually owned a sporting goods store when I was young and so my great-grandfather did it for the longest time, then he passed it on to my grandfather, then even my dad learned the sporting goods industry. I have big, cool, black-and-white pictures from when their shop was in full-swing, and they sold everything from shotguns to outboard motors and the whole nine yards, so it was a pretty cool deal. My grandfather bought me my first shotgun and would take me hunting on a pretty regular basis. After my grandfather had passed, shooting was a legacy he had left with us.
How about your shooting life as an adult?
What renewed my shooting was I got involved with the Midland Shooters Association (MSA) and I started shooting matches with the IDPA (International Defensive Pistol Association) at the MSA.
How are you at competitive shooting?
I’m ok, I don’t get to practice quite as much as I’d like to. But I shoot with a really great group of shooters – a lot of the IDPA shooters are, number one, fantastic shooters and, two, they’re great people.
I started shooting and practicing [with the MSA], and then eventually I became a safety officer and a timekeeper. When the current match director decided that he was done with his stint in volunteering, then he named myself and my two other buddies as the current match directors.
We have a lot of fun working with [the volunteers] and a lot of fun working beside them to help build our club and make it something cool for this area. The club has grown and we’re putting on our 2nd annual regional meet May 12th. We have people coming in from all over the place. We’ve even been in contact with a group from Venezuela. We had a guy last year that drove several hundred – maybe even over a thousand miles – to be at our match and he was in the Guinness Book of World Records for the Most Number of Matches Attended by an Individual!