More RIT Training in the CUB

July 31st, 2006

I was covering for Tadema for a couple hours so I went to the CUB in the rescue. I was with Chapman and Stallcop. We did firefighter carries and also some scenarios where we had to actually find a trapped or downed firefighter and get him to safety. My knees got a little bloody doing that and of course I got all sweaty. It was hot in there. We were mainly using the fourth floor.

We are able to do what we want with anything up there so I was helping to make noise by bashing a metal pole against the walls. We were breaking through some walls. It is pretty rare when you can damage things like we are and not get in trouble.

After the training we got some Subway and went to station one to help fill the bottles we used. Following that we went to the Deuce. I hung out for a tiny bit and Tadema was able to take over from there.

I was at the office for a while and then I decided to go to My Office to see Duane and have a beer. Ross, Dearth, and Pritch were there playing darts and drinking. I said hello to them and got a time scheduled to go work on Duane’s computer tomorrow.

Early Start for a Late Night

July 30th, 2006

After being up until five in the morning I was woken up by a phone call from Chuck at eight in the morning. He was telling me that the full-timers were going to have dinner at station one. They were going to get a movie for us and dessert though.

I went back to sleep until about ten in the morning. My plan was to go to Colfax and do some laundry and then I would be on call. But that is not what happened. I got up around ten in the morning. I went to my office and did some stuff on the computer and Internet for a while.

I called Keith and Tyson and invited them to get dinner at the Emerald before we went to the station at five for rig checks. While there we did got a call as we were leaving. Rescue went en route quickly so we would not have made it. They cancelled Rescue.

We did the rig checks and got another call in the process. While we were gone the others worked on the Engine. When Rescue got back we finished that off. It did not take as long as last week because I helped do stuff rather than having the new guys do everything. But Chuck wants the new guys to do a lot until they are familiar with the equipment and its location.

James had us do a drill where we wore blacked out goggles and hooked up the rit bag to an airpack. I was a little nervous because I had not done it, but I was able to get it done.

After the rig checks the full-timers got back. We watched Mother, Juggs, and Speed. It is an old ambulance movie with Bill Cosby. It was a pretty good movie. We also had some pie and ice cream. Following that I went home and got to sleep.

D-Money’s Party

July 29th, 2006

I was invited to go to a party tonight at Duanes place. I was told to be there or “GFY”. I planned on being there. I hung out at my office all day once I did get up around eleven in the morning. I was cruising the Internet for a while and downloading video clips from Veoh and watching some on YouTube. I had planned something different on the day.

The plan was to go to Colfax, do my laundry, work in the jail, and relax around the house after I had gone shopping for things from Shopko. But with Keith wanting to watch Rescue Me tonight and with the party, that was thrown out the window.

I went to Shopko and spent over a hundred bucks on stuff. I got a lot of things because they were dirt cheap and not because I had to have them. For instance I got four boxes of crayons for twenty cents each. I am such a packrat.

Keith called around seven and said we were going to watch Rescue Me at eight. That was perfect because Duanes party started at nine. I got some pop and drove to Keith’s apartment. We watched Rescue Me. It was a funny episode as they typically are. What sucks is it always seems to end well before I want to see it end.

I got a call from Joe. He asked when I was coming over. I told him I was on my way. I got to the Skip and Go. I had some of the drink and we sat around watching some Sports Center and talking. The plan was to go to ValHalla. We went there around eleven-thirty. We were there until close. I had some pop there and that was about it. I hung out watching people and chatting with our group.

Tonight they were mainly playing eighties music. A lot of the people there were born in the eighties and they were signing along to the songs. The final song of the night was Queen’s Boheminen Rhapsody. Everyone was signing along and acting it out. It was pretty neat.

After ValHalla closed I took a bunch of people in my truck back to Duane’s place. We drank some more. I went downstairs. Duane has a pool table, dart board, and arcade version of RBI Baseball. Joe and I were playing pool and RBI Baseball together. I kept beating him at RBI Baseball. We had a girl with us who we said we would give a ride home when she wanted it. It was about four in the morning when she wanted that. Joe and I took her home and then went back to Duane’s and played one more game of RBI Baseball. It was getting light out by they time we left at nearly five in the morning.

Last Poker Tournament of the Summer

July 28th, 2006

While at work today Chris was giving me some grief over not having been over there for a while. I tried to smooth stuff over as well as I could. I pointed out that I would be back there for two weeks in August. He seemed to be a little better, but I think that he is going to put some pressure on me to be over there a little more often.

The plans for the evening is to play poker and be on call at the fire department. I went down to the fire department and we did our rig checks and a little bit of this and that. The poker game was set to start at eight o’clock. I got up there on time, but they had already started. I had missed one blind. I sat in and ate my fast food as I played card. I got a run of three back to back to back hands of good cards. My last one was a pair of pocket aces. After that run it was pretty quiet on the cards front, but I had build up a pretty good stack. After about an hour I got called away on a call. I had to leave and hope my stack would support me. We transported to the hospital, but everyone knew I was in a hurry so we did not hang out at the hospital and chat with the ambulance guys like normal.

I left to get to Mike’s. I pulled into his new apartment complex’s driveway when another call came out. I flipped a bitch and went to the station. It was a code run. We went to Beasley for breathing problems. While waiting to find out of the we would transport, we got called to a car accident.

We ran to rescue and Chuck said that I could drive. I told him okay, then went to the back of rescue to get my turnouts on. I think he thought I was just putting up the chalk. After waiting for a few seconds and noticing the back door light was open him and Tyson came over to get their stuff on too.

It was a bravo call, so rescue does not necessarily go code, however I pointed out that SOP’s are not laws, but guidelines and that I could articulate a reason for us to go code. Really we were the closest to the scene and that we would be first on scene therefore us going code will get us to the scene to check for injuries.

When we came upon the Grand and Stadium Way intersection the Ambulance was going code down Grand. We got out in front of them by about a block. We led in to the scene. It turned out to be non-injury. We got cleared and went to the Deuce. I quickly made my way to Mike’s.

When I pulled in Mike said I was on the bubble for the money. Only the top-two get paid and I am sitting at number three without much money due to being blinded. I got up there with about two-thousand in chips. The blinds were three-hundred/six-hundred. Andy said they were working as fast as they could to knock me out by blinding me. With only two people it did not take long for the blinds to come around to my stack. Andy thought that if I had been another ten minutes I would have been blinded out of the tournament.

I played and won a couple hands doubling myself up. But I was out numbered by nearly ten times. The other two had about forty-thousand each, and I was sitting around four-thousand. I found a good hand with top pair and a good kicker. I went all in and we called by the bottom pair, which was three’s. On the turn another three came out and that was it for me.

We shortly thereafter went to a cash game and I won back my lost tournament buy-in money as well as some extra pocket change. We quit playing around two in the morning. I went to my office and did some stuff on the new computer. I was floating around MySpace. I found a guy in my high school class who is gay. I don’t think we really suspected that in high school, but he was not one of the more popular kids around.

I always think about something that one of my old teachers, Aden, said. By your ten-year reunion about ten of the people in the class will have come out as gay. He was wrong about that, but I think he is right there were several gay people in my class no one knew about.

Final Jersey Night of the Year

July 26th, 2006

I spent today bouncing between my new computer and my old one. I bought another external drive enclosure and HD to put into my newest computer. I am planning on building an OS on it that I will start to use as my main computer. The HP I got when I was living in California is getting old. It is having problems playing video. In fact when a video is played it freezes the computer. It really sucks. I also got a couple bugs closed out today as well.

Around three in the afternoon we got dispatched to a call on the Old Moscow Highway. It is a gravel road and with the road construction on two-seventy, I predicted an increase in car accidents on the Old Highway. So far we have had several in the last month. Today we had two cars hit. Rescue got on scene and helped package and transport some of the injured people.

By the time we got back it was pretty late because we had to go to station one where Dearth was doing paperwork on a refusal he had. I had to zoom home and get into my uniform for softball. Speaking of softball my leg, where I was hit with the ball, is dead in the area where I got hit. There is still no feeling on the skin. Under the skin however it is very tender.

I got to the field and found out we were playing Lefty’s. I thought we were playing the Tax Dodgers. Mitzel was pitching, and in the first inning he was really struggling with ball control. So he put me in to pitch for the rest of the game. We only had ten guys so everyone was playing. The first three innings we scored five runs in each inning and had a lead after the third inning. Then we could not score after that. They went on to score twenty-four runs to beat us by nine. No one wanted to lose and we were knocked out of the tournament.

The Tax Dodgers had won and they ended up playing Lefty’s. I watched some of their game before going to My Office to meet up with the team. They were having some beer. I got a pitcher of pop and ordered a burger. A girl came up and bought the team a round of Jagger. There was not enough so I let someone have mine. I really don’t like Jagger. We were there until around eleven o’clock when we went to The Zuu. Russell and Jenny from Mr. Z’s casino were there celebrating their birthday’s together. There were a lot of people from Mr. Z’s there.

On the way there Joe and the girl from My Office rode in the back of my truck. At one point I looked back and saw her on top of Joe. She was really into him. I bought Russell a drink and the girl from My Office bought me a Jagger because I did not get one at My Office. So I downed it. It was nasty. I then had a couple ounces of beer to make the flavor go away. Russell got up on stage and sang I’m Too Sexy. Joe and Ben sang a country song. It was sort of gay there so we left to go to ValHalla. That was the plan anyway, but we were only there for about thirty minutes.

We got to ValHalla and Joe and the girl walked one way and said she would meet me at the bar. I went inside and found Duane. He was already there drinking like a fish. Some of his roommates were there as well. Joe and the girl showed up about three minutes later. Matt and Eric also showed up a little bit later. We were doing the Jersey Night.

Eric and Matt played their last games with My Office as a regular player. Both of them are moving away and it was a great time to get out with them one more time.

Matt Mullvain

Eric Biesen

We were at ValHalla until closing time. In the bar everyone was drinking and having a good time. I was watching some baseball on TV and chatting with everyone on the team. The girl was really drunk by this time. When we left My Office she was stumbling. So she was not any better at ValHalla. Joe got her a water. She was holding the cup and then in a friendly way poured it over some guys’ head. Joe scolded her and then decided she needed to go home.

Joe got a taxi and took her home. Put her to bed and then came back to the bar to be with us. Joe bought a round of shots for the guys on the team. While we were getting ready to do our shots one of Duane’s roommates, who was drunk, was bent over and hopping backwards into our circle. His butt was high in the air. Joe took a drink he had that was old and poured it down the guy’s backside. He got upset a little bit then Joe said you bumped my drink. We were all laughing like crazy and the guy was then cool with it. We had our shot.

ValHalla had been playing a lot of hiphop music, then they switched to some rock. That is when the place got hopping. People were on the dance floor. When they played some Journey – Don’t Stop the whole place was singing along. It was great.

Once ValHalla closed we went down to a house by Sigma Nu’s. There was an after party. It was sort of lame. They had a keg there and people were just helping themselves to the beer. A couple people were doing some beer races. The guy who bought the keg was asking people for money. He was mad because he had spend so much money that he did not have enough for rent. I wanted to tell him he needs to get some priorities. But I ignored it. We were only there for about a half hour when we decided to go to Sheryl’s house.

She was also throwing a party for Russell and Jenny. When I got there I saw Russell’s car but I could not find him at first. I found out he was on the deck passed out sort of. He had been drinking a ton and threw up a little bit, now he was just trying to stop the world from spinning. I hung out outside and spoke with Russell for a while. I was also inside and talked to a few people as well.

Duane was really drunk and passed out on their couch. We decided around four in the morning to go home. I dropped off Duane, Joe, then Matt. I finally got home my self.

Starting in the Losers Bracket

July 25th, 2006

Today is the start of our softball post-season tournament. We played against Chipman-Taylor/Gormen’s. We have beaten them before but we had to play well to do so. I started out at first base as usual. My first at bat was a long flyball to left field. They misplayed it and I ended up on second base.

The was the best I could do during the game hitting. I was doing well at first base and in one inning every play was done at first base. Then in the third inning Brian walked two guys back to back. So he had me pitch. One of the first batters hit a ball right back at me and it went off my right leg just above the ankle. It hurt pretty good. After the game the feeling was gone from the area where I got hit.

Ben also made a great play in the outfield catching a ball he had to move way back on, however, in the process he hit his head and blacked-out. He was wobbly on his legs and we ended up taking him out of the game. He said afterwards that he could not remember the game after his injury and when he realized his was on the bench he didn’t know why.

I stay after for about an hour and a half watching another game after ours. Zeppoz was playing against Coors Light.

With the loss in our game we play tomorrow at seven-thirty in the losers bracket.

My Day on Jury Duty

July 24th, 2006

I started the day in Colfax for jury duty. I have waited since I was eighteen get get called in. I was sitting in a courtroom full of people. I knew a couple people there. As the morning went on a few people were excused. I made it through the first round of cuts. But it was becoming pretty clear I would probably not be chosen. It was a civil suit against Fred Russell. With working for Pullman Fire and the coroners office I knew they would think I would be biased. In the end I was not selected. But I did have a chance to let them know that I am a philosophy major. That I can be fair and listen to arguments. That I don’t let my emotions get in the way of making logical arguments. I was not selected.

I went to the SO and got some sunglasses orders from the guys there then I went to Colfax fire for a while and talked to Jenny for about a half hour. I went to work for the remainder of the day.

The reserves had their first RIT training in the CUB today. We get access to the top three floors to do what we want. We are breaching the walls and crawling through them. We are getting a chance to do stuff we don’t always get to do. It was weird being in the CUB. I did not recognize the building very much. There were a lot of things already removed. On the main floor you could see from the CUB Aud all the way to where the little store was on the west side of the building. It looked like a parking garage on the main floor. The radio station was torn down to the floor. There was wood on the floor and the walls were bare. I did find the door that was on the studio on the fourth floor in one of the rooms up there.

We mainly worked on the third floor. We broke through the walls. I had to take my pack off to go through the wall on my stomach, but if I was able to stand I could get through the wall. Keeping in mind we only had sixteen inches of space to get through. It was really hot in the CUB, plus wearing the bunkers did not help.

The next event was to follow a hose to get your way out. At first we were told to go to the people at the end of the hose. We did that just fine, but then they said we went the wrong way. So we had to back track and get to the other end of the hose. We followed it through doors, down hallways and through a wall. But we were able to get to the end of the hose finally. It too forever it seemed like.

We had some time to rest before we had to do a drill where we got tangled up in wires. First they wold get us wrapped up in the pack and we would have to undo it. Then we had to make our way through a room full of wires. I made it through pretty well. But by this time my knees were rubbed raw.

We left and I was so sweaty. It was pretty nasty. Keith and I went to Cougar Country for dinner. While there I heard about a coroners case. I talked to Patti and I was going to go with her. I took a shower and met her at my office. We drove to Colton and spent about an hour on the scene doing our investigation. It was a natural death. I did not get to bed until after two in the morning.

Happy Birthday Ryan!

July 23rd, 2006

Today is Ryan’s birthday. I was up pretty late last night so I did not wake up until about ten this morning. I went to Ryan’s house in Spokane. I got there around one in the afternoon. It was hot inside. He showed me around the house. It is a pretty nice place. I gave him his birthday card and then we went to downtown Spokane to get some pizza.

We went to a really good pizza place. The pizza was outstanding actually. We were there for around an hour eating and talking. I had to take off to go back to Pullman because I was on call for the fire department. I made phone calls and we made plans for a dinner together. Chris and Dan were going to get some chicken. The rest of us brought side items down.

I got back to Pullman and to the fire station just before six o’clock. Dan was working on the chicken to grill it. We had BBQ chicken and potato salad. While we were eating I was thinking that if we got called out we would have BBQ sauce all over us when we got to the scene. Within seconds of me thinking that a call went out. It was to the same guy who had asked me for some money yesterday and who we went on a while back for something else.

We did not transport him and I got back to my dinner within a half hour. I helped to clean up everything and then gave everyone an ice cream bar. We then started our map test that we planned on taking. I had studied it on Saturday and I got one hundred percent on it.

After all that we still had to do rig checks. With the new guys I had them open and go through everything on Rescue. It took a couple hours to do that. We got everything done and noted. We were done a little after midnight.

Chuck and I spoke a little about Erik’s E-mail that made me really mad the other day. I was not as mad after I found out it did not go to the whole department, but only to some of the reserves. But I was still mad that he made a false accusation and his shift does the same thing that he accused me of doing. I wanted to tell him to make sure his shift is doing thing right before he lectures me on it.

I went to Mike’s to play some cards. We were only going to play until one in the morning. I have Jury Duty in the morning so I did not want to be late for it. I was playing pretty loose and had a couple of bad beats. I lost ten bucks pretty fast. I got five more dollars. I lost that a quarter till one. So it was close to quitting time. I went to my office to get stuff ready for being on Jury Duty and making sure my away messages were set up correctly. Just after I got to the office, the tones went off for a call. It took us about an hour total so I did not get to bed until after two in the morning.

Rescue Me Marathon

July 22nd, 2006

The day started only five hours after going to bed. The tones went off for an all reserve callback. I went to the station and hung out for about an hour. I was worried that the odor of alcohol from last night was still on my person. Keith said he could not smell anything. While we were there Brian and I were talking about the next A-shift crew leader. Chuck had said the first person to get their engineer status would be crew leader. That was about two days before my final test.

Brian however said that he had talked to James and I was going to be the next crew leader. But he did not get to finish what James had said when a call came in. We got ready to go. Travis did not want to go. It was going to be Keith, Brian, and I. But Brian got held back. So Keith went with me. We probably should not have gone as Keith is not allowed to go second yet. But we went. It was in Palouse. We followed the ambulance to the scene.

Keith went back to the hospital with the ambulance. I followed in rescue. We helped to clean everything up and then we took rescue back to the Deuce. Keith and I made plans to get together and watch Rescue Me that he had recorded from the season.

I went to station one and studied the NE map for a while because we are going to have a test on it on Sunday. I got the map memorized and then went to my office for a while. I also hung out at the Deuce. Chapman borought the new rescue to the station and I got an orientation on how to run it and where some of the basic things were located.

I got some pizza from Pizza Hut and waited for Keith to call. I finally got his call around eleven o’clock pm. I went to his place and we ate pizza. Then we started to watch Rescue Me. There were some really good episodes. I was there until we watched them all.

My oh My is it hot

July 21st, 2006

Today was a hot day. It hit one-hundred degrees today. I was in the office most of the day so I was feeling okay. I filled up my truck at Safeway. I went to get lunch, but their China Express never looks good. The food is always dried out and horrible. I decided to go to Dairy Queen instead.

I got the specs for Sollen Phase Two. I was asked if I thought I could get it done by September’s code complete. I thought I could. I pounded away at it for the day. I was able to get it done and checked in by around nine o’clock pm. It wasn’t all that bad. I was on fire and working hard and fast to get it done.

I did have to leave for a while for Ron’s birthday party at Zeppoz. I got him a dozen golf balls and a card for his birthday. I hung out and talked with the people there for about an hour before I got back to work.

Joe was coming into town as well. We went to the Fireside for dinner. Joe treated because of the help I give him for his website. His friend Doug came along. After dinner we went to The Sports Page to play darts and have some beer. We shared two pitchers and played darts until one in the morning. Then I went to Mike’s to play poker. We were there until five in the morning. I won about thirteen bucks in the process of playing. Today was a good day.

Engineer Testing Done

July 20th, 2006

I had my final drive with Heston today. We drove about ten blocks. He then had me go to the tower. He said I drive a little fast and that I need to slow down with it, but other than that he was good with my ability to handle the engine.

We went to the tower and pumped water for about an hour and a half. I took a hydrant. I flowed water and simulated the foam. I set up the relief valve and calculated friction loss and the whole works. I passed the test so now I am an engineer.

I went to Moscow for the All-Star softball game. While I was there I went to KFC for some dinner. I got a call from Dearth. He said that I need to wipe down the engine after fueling it up so the diesel does not collect dust. I told him I had not filled it. He said that he had accidentally sent an e-mail out about that to the department. I was livid. He assumed it was me and then the department gets an e-mail saying it was me.

For all the times he shift leaves rescue dirty and low on fuel for him to make an issue out of something that I did not do made me very angry. I called Chuck and discussed it with him. He said he would talk to James about it.

I watched the All-Star game. The guy from the Palouse Tavern team, the ten-six-seven, was there. He totally reminds me of Brandon. It is amazing to see him and just think I am looking at Brandon.

Pullman Coroners Meeting

July 19th, 2006

Patti and I met for the coroners meeting today in Pullman because it was cancelled with Pete. Patti and I went at Sella’s and had dinner then made the call schedule. I got done in time to run to the Deuce for rig checks and training. We took the guys to the training tower and did our one minute drill followed by sending them through the collapse drill.

I went back to the office after training and made up schedules for the coroners office. I need to send them to Whitcom so they know who is on call and when they are on call.

Today was really quiet at the fire department. We did get some ice cream from Cougar Country and we filled the SCBA tanks on rescue. That was about it for the fire department.

Round Robin Rounds Complete

July 18th, 2006

I found out that my softball tournament will be played next week. But I am supposed to be in Seattle. So I was debating what to say to the boss to see if I can stay. I never ended up having to ask for the time off as my phone rang early this morning. I got assigned to Jury Duty starting Monday. What luck!

I let my boss know and now I am working on redoing my schedule to go along with my new days in Seattle.

Tonight was the first day of round robin play. Our team is playing two A-League teams. We are destined to be in the B-League Bracket for the playoffs. That is fine by me. The first game we pretty much got crushed as always by Coors Light.

Game two however was a better game for us. We ended up losing due to running out of time to finish the game. We were in the middle of an inning and the umpire said “game over”. So we lost that one. But in that game I was four for four with three doubles. I was a hitting machine.

They even put on a shift, like I was a left handed hitter. When they did that I hit it back to the center field area. By my last at bat they went back to normal fielding positions, and I again went to right field.

After that game Mitz and I went to My Office. We got some dinner and talked softball for an hour or so.

An Obituary

July 18th, 2006

Frederic Arthur (Fred) Clark
Frederic Arthur (Fred) Clark, who had tired of reading obituaries noting other’s courageous battles with this or that disease, wanted it known that he lost his battle as a result of an automobile accident on June 18, 2006. True to Fred’s personal style, his final hours were spent joking with medical personnel while he whimpered, cussed, begged for narcotics and bargained with God to look over his wife and kids. He loved his family. His heart beat faster when his wife of 37 years Alice Rennie Clark entered the room and saddened a little when she left. His legacy was the good works performed by his sons, Frederic Arthur Clark III and Andrew Douglas Clark MD, PhD., along with Andy’s wife, Sara Morgan Clark. Fred’s back straightened and chest puffed out when he heard the Star Spangled Banner and his eyes teared when he heard Amazing Grace. He wouldn’t abide self important tight *censored*. Always an interested observer of politics, particularly what the process does to its participants, he was amused by politician’s outrage when we lie to them and amazed at what the voters would tolerate. His final wishes were “throw the bums out and don’t elect lawyers” (though it seems to make little difference). During his life he excelled at mediocrity. He loved to hear and tell jokes, especially short ones due to his limited attention span. He had a life long love affair with bacon, butter, cigars and bourbon. You always knew what Fred was thinking much to the dismay of his friend and family. His sons said of Fred, “he was often wrong, but never in doubt”. When his family was asked what they remembered about Fred, they fondly recalled how Fred never peed in the shower – on purpose. He died at MCV Hospital and sadly was deprived of his final wish which was to be run over by a beer truck on the way to the liquor store to buy booze for a double date to include his wife, Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter to crash an ACLU cocktail party. In lieu of flowers, Fred asks that you make a sizable purchase at your local ABC store or Virginia winery (please, nothing French – the *censored*) and get rip roaring drunk at home with someone you love or hope to make love to. Word of caution though, don’t go out in public to drink because of the alcohol related laws our elected officials have passed due to their inexplicable terror at the sight of a MADD lobbyist and overwhelming compulsion to meddle in our lives. No funeral or service is planned. However, a party will be held to celebrate Fred’s life. It will be held in Midlothian, Va. Email for more information. Fred’s ashes will be fired from his favorite cannon at a private party on the Great Wicomico River where he had a home for 25 years. Additionally, all of Fred’s friend (sic) will be asked to gather in a phone booth, to be designated in the future, to have a drink and wonder, “Fred who?”

Engineer Testing

July 17th, 2006

Today I took the written Engineer Test for the reserves. I thought it was a hydraulic test, but it had a bunch of other questions as well. I didn’t know how well I would do, but I passed it pretty easily.

We also had RIT training today. We are going to be using the CUB for the next two weeks. We get to do what we want as far as cutting and breaking things. But to do that we started with RIT training to get people on the same page.

After the training I talked to George about my knee and I wanted to make sure someone would not try to put me on light duty if it was painful to crawl. I need to see a doctor about it and see if we can figure something out and try to get it better.

I went to the deuce and helped Dan move some files. Then Dan and I talked about a bunch of engineering stuff. I asked all sorts of questions. I also reviewed the engineer packet and am trying to get ready for the final drive and pump test with Heston. We are planning on Thursday for that.

A Day of Relaxation

July 16th, 2006

I decided that I was not going to do anything at all today. I was going to sit around the house and just relax. When I finally got up I made some breakfast. I started to watch some TV. I watched a couple movies. I also decided to move my recliner from the old TV room to the living room. So that is the only real work I did.

I moved my boat back to where it goes and I went to the store to get a late lunch. But for the most part I spent time watching movies and staying inside with the AC going. It was nice.

A Day at the Science Center

July 15th, 2006

Staying up late is always a good idea when you have to get up early. Today I am going to the Palouse Discovery Science Center with the fire department to help with show off the PL. I got to the station around eight-thirty like I was supposed to. I hung out there for a bit until we loaded the PL with stuff to give away and went to the science center.

Once we got there we set up the equipment and got ready for all the people to stop by. It is a free family day. There were a lot of young kids coming through. We showed them around the PL and answered questions.

The cops were close to us and set up a pitching backstop and radared people throwing the ball. I was able to get it up to sixty miles an hour. Sometimes it would be less, so I would throw harder and I would get one mile an hour more. I was complaining because it seemed I threw hard and got one speed. I threw a lot harder and only got one mile an hour more.

We were there until four in the afternoon. It was really hot and uncomfortable. Following that I helped to get everything taken down and got the PL back in service. I decided to head to Colfax for the night. I went to the fire station and hung out with Rick who was working. I was there until close to ten in the evening. Then I went home and watched some TV before going to sleep.

Finishing my Pump Time

July 14th, 2006

I started the mid-afternoon off by helping Keith move from Orton to his new apartment. We loaded a bunch of stuff in his rig and drove to his apartment. While we were moving the stuff upstairs we were getting close to being on duty. I left to get my stuff on then we went to the Deuce.

I contacted Dearth about finishing my pump time on the engine so I can take my test to be an engineer. However, before we made it to the tower we got a call. It only took about an hour then we went to the tower. We went with the new guys to pull lines and spray water around. We were there for about an hour.

Following our time at the tower Keith and I went to get something to eat from Pizza Hut. We were planning on playing some card this evening when we were done working. We went to his apartment where some of his friends showed up. We had the pizza then Keith and I got called out on another call. It was a fire alarm. It was at the Nez Perce apartments, the same building that had a fire a few weeks ago.

After that call was complete Keith and I went to play some cards at Mike’s place. We were there until a little after two in the morning when we got a call for a small box on fire. I left up about ten bucks. Keith had won a quarter.

We did not roll on the small box on fire. James got on the radio and said the fire was stomped out and that all units were clear.

Winning in the Eighth Inning

July 13th, 2006

I have been pounding out bugs at work like crazy lately. It has been really nice to get things off my plate and completed. Chris asked if Jon would like to come back to Netupdate. I told him I did not know. That Jon would require a lot of money. After talking to Jon, I don’t think there is any way Netupdate can compete with what Jon wants.

We had our final regular season softball game today. Only ten guys showed up, but that was all we needed. It was looking bad early on. We could not get a rally going and ChipmanTaylor was scoring runs. They were up by eight when we finally decided to get something going. We scored more and more runs to finally tie it up in the bottom of the seventh inning with a two out homerun by Eric. I went to the plate having had three solid contacts that should have gone in for hits, but the outfielders made great catches to get me out. The ball just was not dropping for me today. That actually dropped me from one of the highest batting averages on the team to about sixth of seventh over all. But I was still hitting near six-hundred.

We went to the eighth inning against them and managed to get a guy on third and first with two outs. Ben hit the game winning single down the left field line. He was on fire today getting four hits in five at bats.

After the game we had jersey night. We started at My Office where we had a couple of pitchers of beer and food. Our next stop was ValHalla. We were there until closing time. We had some more beer and some rounds of shots. About four rounds total. It was a good night to hang out with the team.

Over Critical

July 12th, 2006

Something I feel like Chuck is over-critical in things he says or does as a crew leader. It feels like if you don’t do something exactly how he does it he was admonish your decision even if there is no real difference in the outcome of the action. In some cases it is more like being a micro-manager. He directs people who have been doing this job successfully for years to do things different or to do it his way. That is my rant for the day.

Case in point on the way to a call today we had to get to Colorado. The quickest route to where we were going was Monroe to Ruby to Colorado. Just after I turn on to Colorado he says “How come you went that way?” So rather than focusing on driving, parking, and getting into the scene, I am being questioned about my choice of roads. I didn’t know what he meant. I was thinking he thought I should use Howard and Garfield street to get there.

So after the call is done I ask him what he meant. He thought I should have taken Monroe to Colorado because Ruby is not a “major” road. I sort of chuckle inside because neither is Monroe. I said because Ruby was shorter than going all the way to Colorado from Monroe.

He concern was that if school was in session and it was a weekend there could have been extra foot traffic on Ruby. I then added I wasn’t going code and there were no issues with the way I went. But the bottom line is that kind of thing could have been discussed after the call, not while we are pulling up on the scene.

Now, I am really done with the rant.

I went to Mike’s today and we played some cards. We only got to play for a while before I got a call for a fire alarm, the one on Colorado that I spoke about above. Following the call I decided to go to the office, because I knew the poker game broke up when I left.

I was on the computer looking stuff up for a while. But it was getting late and I decided to go to bed. I wasn’t totally asleep when we got called out to another fire alarm. That one we went to the scene and just sat there for a while until we were cleared. That was about all that went on for calls. We did have the medical call around seven in the evening. But that really did not turn out to be much for me other than driving.

Second Place at Best

July 11th, 2006

After the softball game tonight where we lost to Zeppoz we had to hope for Palouse Tavern to lose both games tonight. That would put us a half game back. Then with a victory on Thursday we would be tied for first place. When the head-to-head record was accounted for, we would be in first place. However, Palouse Tavern lost only one game so we are now playing to stay in second place.

We did not have a good game. Only nine guys showed up for this A-League game and that sucked. In the game Matt got hit hard in the chest with a hot shot up the right side. He got a big bruise and got the wind knocked out of him. Later in the evening Joe saw him and told him he had to go see the doctor.

Russell and I were on the phone for a while and we were talking about Brian’s possible move over here. I was telling Russell my issues with it. I decided to go see Matt at work. Russell said he would come along. We went to Zeppoz, but Matt was working at Pete’s. So I went to Pete’s and he already went to the doctor.

I went to the hospital and Russell, Joe, and I talked for a couple minutes. Joe was brought back to the ER area to help Matt get checked out. We all went back to Pete’s for an hour. While there Brian called. He had been out at the bar and had some to drink. A two in the morning call is not something I want when the person on the other end is drunk and repeating the same conversation we had just a few days prior. I was getting very annoyed with him. It is that kind of thing that makes me really worried about having him come over here.

He seems to have drama and more drama. Nothing works for him and everyone has to do things for him to make things work. It is like he is helpless.

Hose Load Training

July 10th, 2006

Today our training was to learn about the hose loads on all the rigs. We are standardizing the loads so we can deploy them and reload them no matter what rig you’re on. It was a good training as we have new people on the department and some of them have never seen some of our loads before.

I was there for about an hour when a call came in for someone who fell. We stayed at training and only the ambulance went. The ambulance crew called for us to help the patient get to the ambulance.

After the call we went to station one. Chuck spent time talking to Gollnick about a car that Chuck is looking for. Tyson, VanNess and I spent time talking about PARD and WalMart. We were waiting for Chuck for a while. Finally when he was done we did some drive time with Tyson, but because it was so late we only drove for a half-hour. On the way back Chuck and I got into a discussion about issues with the union and the reserves. I talked to him about the fact that there are certain things the union does in the name of job protection that I think is not in the best interest of the city.

My biggest issue is that there are EMT’s on the department who could respond on an ambulance when things go sour, but instead they would rather ask for an ambulance in another state to come help. They absolutely refuse to allow reserves to work an ambulance. At what point do the needs of the city and people who need help outweigh the needs of the union?

I am not sure how the citizens would feel about the whole situation, but I know if any of the reserves ever tried to make this a big issue, they could pretty much say goodbye to their career as a reserve firefighter.

I personally don’t have any big issues with the union. I just wish we could be more of one team rather than two teams. Afterall I believe we are here to serve the community and help people who need help. Chuck tried to explain that the reserves are not held to a high standard like the career firefighters are. He said that reserves are not professional like the career guys. It is a huge difference that he know because he has worked on both sides.

So granting him the point and assuming that he correct about that we can do two things, we can make the reserves held to a higher standard or we can continue to allow them to be substandard in the view of the career staff.

It was interesting I was talking with the new paramedic who was a volunteer for many years. He claimed that he doesn’t have a problem with the volunteers and/or reserves. He said he does not forget where he came from. I told him that I would like to ask him that in a year to see if he has changed his mind on that.

I have seen reserve after reserve become career and they all seem to forget what it meant to be a reserve. They would all love to see the reserve program go away. I question how they can feel that way. Chuck I would argue is the same way. He is a self-hating reserve. He has been career and even since coming back to being a reserve he doesn’t seem to identify with us as much. There have been a few times, but more often than not I feel like he would rather not be one of us.

When I am with Colfax Fire I have run EMS calls from start to finish. I have done the reports, and worked with patients. I am not incompetent, but it seems that while I am a reserve I am not good enough to be an EMT. But I don’t think it is necessarily that I am not good enough. The argument is that if the city feels that they can hire someone at ten bucks an hour to do the work of a career firefighter then the city will opt to hire more reserves and not hire career guys.

I would argue that the city will hire the number of career guys necessary to run the fire department and account for the public safety of the people within the city, and then augment those number with reserves who work part-time and can help with things get busy. Who can be extra manpower who can run the third ambulance when we already have two running calls. I don’t think that would be too far fetched.

When the time comes and the city grows enough that we really need to staff three ambulances full time, then hire more career firefighters and the reserves can be the ones who man the fourth ambulance, etc. But the career firefighters believe that once you allow a reserve to run an ambulance that they city will never hire another career guy.

A day on the River

July 9th, 2006

I finally get to go out on the boat. I am worried about it starting up. But I invited Russell and Keith to come out with me. I first dropped off the laptop to the customer then I went to Safeway. We got some fuel and food then headed out. The boat at first did not turn over at all. I thought even though the battery was charged that it did not have enough juice. Then it finally started to turn over. It started quickly. We headed out and drove around for a while. We got Keith on the tube. He did really well on it. He left me throw him around a fair amount.

We went to Granite Point and Russell jumped off the cliffs a couple times. We cruised around a lot and just enjoyed the sun. The sun also caused me a pretty good sunburn on my forehead.

We left the river around five in the afternoon. I went to Dairy Queen for some dinner and ate it at the office. I went to my apartment and picked up some of my things to stay the night in Colfax. I watched TV for about an hour when I fell asleep on the couch. I was darn tired. I was woken up around one in the morning by a call from Brian. I did not answer it because I was so tired. I did get up and move to the bedroom, however.

Phil’s Retirement

July 8th, 2006

I started the day by working on the laptop some more and not getting anything completed on it. It is getting BSOD’s all the time when trying to boot into Windows XP or when trying to reinstall Windows XP. However I can install older Windows on there just fine. I am not sure of the problem. I would like to write zeros to the drive, but the stuff I have to do it consists of bootable floppies and she does not have a floppy on the laptop. Finally I ran out of things to do and I called to let her know that I failed with the equipment I have to do it.

I went to the senior center at city hall for Phil’s retirement for the fire department. He has been with us since nineteen-seventy. Some former firefighters showed up to bit Phil farewell. I took a bunch of photos and I got some of them ready for the website. He got a proclamation from Mayor Johnson declaring Phil Anderson Day in Pullman.

I was meeting up with a different Phil to help him with his wireless network in his house. I got it fixed and working. He and his wife are very happy to have it going. Then Phil and I went to the playfields for some batting practice and homerun derby. I did not hit any out. Eric however during the derby got eleven out of fifteen out. He is a hitting machine.

Just as I was done with that I played some poker over at Mike’s. We were having the tournament he wanted to do. It lasted nearly six hours and we started after eight o’clock pm. I ended up leaving in forth place. I went to get some pizza’s from Pizza Hut. I brought them back and we ate pizza and played cards. When the tournament was done we played a cash game. We were there for many more hours. Andy and I were the last ones playing. I kept planning on stopping, but I just kept going.

It was after five in the morning when we got done. I went to Colfax and got my boat ready to go. I went back to Pullman and finally got to bed around eight in the morning. We are going to meet at eleven in the morning to go boating.

Laptop Troubles

July 7th, 2006

Yesterday while playing cards Craig called up and told me about problems with the laptop computer he was working on. It was not something he had been able to fix so far. He worked on it for a while without fixing it. I told him to bring it to me and I would work on it. I spent most of the day, evening, and night working on it off and on as I would get my other work or other things done.

We had our dev meeting today and I was able to show my stuff is getting completed. The dev meeting went well and it looks like we are moving ahead on our stuff. I also sent Chris an e-mail to let him know that if we move up the date of our release of our stuff to let me know ASAP so I could change my days over there. I told him that so I could be there for code complete and code release. He said that he would prefer that I would be there the week of code complete, because code release is not as important as everything is done and there is not a lot of work to do there.

I am sort of wondering what it will be like when we switch over to OP six.oh. I think I will work out a full month over there, or close to it so I can get a lot of time there and make sure I know exactly what I am doing and make sure that there is no question that I can do the work.

Brian called up and we talked for about an hour and a half in the evening about him coming over here and living with me. He said he talked to someone who lived here while going to WSU and that person said the Pullman/Moscow area has a good music scene. After working on the laptop until about three in the morning I gave up on it for the night and went home.

Playing and Winning at Poker

July 6th, 2006

Spending the day working is never much fun, but today was not too bad. I got an issue resolved with the reports. I really hate the reporting system we built however long ago. It seems overly complicated for what it does. It took me a while to figure it out and get it going. But I did finally manage to figure something out and got it checked in.

I was thinking about making my way to Colfax tonight, but ended up not going. I got the phone call from Mike about cards. It would start at eight in the evening. I made my way over there and picked a chair. I was the first one to show up.

I won a few hands early one. I was up a fair amount of money when Mike called an all-in bet. He had more than seventeen bucks. The pot was reasonable sized as well. I thought about it for a tiny bit. I had a pair of kings (because of the board) and I was one card from the second nut flush. I called the all-in. Mike showed pocket queens. I was in the lead, and ended up winning the hand on the kings.

I ended the night up about thirty-five bucks. We stopped playing a little after midnight. I went to the fire station to make sure I could copy my pictures to the O-drive. That worked. I then headed home to go to bed.

Keith’s Drive Time

July 5th, 2006

Chuck and I spent a couple hours going over equipment in Rescue including the Lucas tools, powerunits, and generators. We talked about how to start them, and operate them. We showed them how to use the lights on Rescue.

Keith needed his drive time in Rescue as well. We had him drive for a couple hours. We took him all over the city. He was doing really well. After driving, Keith and I went to Cougar Country for dinner. We left a little after eleven o’clock PM. Within about ten minutes we got a call for someone who needed help getting up.

It was a non-transport call. Following that on the way back we heard we were getting dispatched to a possible suicide attempt. We were within one block from it. We even beat the cops by a minute. We talked to the RP when the police showed up. They took over and made entry.

When they were done we were invited inside. I started by talking to the man. He was just fine. It was pretty much unfounded. I directed Keith to get some vitals on the guy. I looked at his med bottles. Then I handed him over to Sugden. We left without incident.

That was about it for the night. It was quiet for the rest of it and I made my way to bed.

Happy 230th America!

July 4th, 2006

One of my favorite holidays, today is the Fourth of July. But unlike years past this did not seem like it was. The build-up did not seem to be there. It just sort of happened.

I started out the day with a call out to Johnson for someone who fell. Chapman and I went out there in Rescue. It was my first call to Johnson. I helped with patient care to the hospital. I was working in the back with Meow. Following the hospital trip Chapman and I washed the rig and put it away. We got our paperwork completed.

I was about to leave when Chapman came in and announced he knew what happened to the missing dumpster. Someone had pushed it over the hill. I thought we could use Rescue’s winch to pull it up the hill. I got Rescue out and operated the winch. We gently pulled it up the hill.

I went home and got ready for the Fourth of July in the park. I first got some lunch from Dairy Queen. I went to the station to eat it. The other reserves started to show up around four. I was going to drive the ambulance to the park with a couple recruits with me. But before that I was called out to drive the new Rescue to the park. It drives nice and has A/C. I was enjoying that. I got Rescue parked and helped get the flag set up on the aerial. When that was completed the full-timers and I went back to the station. I got my recruits and the ambulance and drove back up to the park.

I got the ambulance parked and started to set up the stuff for the kids to put on. We had people stopping by. I had my camera and ended up taking about two-hundred-and-seventeen photos on the day. It was mainly of firefighters and kids trying stuff out and getting in the rigs. I also got some photos from the top of the aerial.

A Sunset from the Aerial

A View of the Park

I went to the BBQ and got some food form there. I saw many people I know through out the night. CBass was giving out glow-in-the-dark bracelets. He gave me one. I saw Brian who I play poker with, and Matt from my softball team. The mayor stopped by, I saw Eunice, and Nicole from Freshman year at Stephenson. She was with her cat Diamond.

Because of lightning we lowered the ladder for a while, but closer to show time we put it back up. I got a photo before we put it all the way up.

The American Flag and Me on the Aerial

It was nearing show time. Keith, Aaron, and I went to the main field and listened to and watched Glenn play with the Kingpins on the song “Shout”. It is a tradition that he does that. The show was ready to start I was looking for a good place to sit. I got to the top of Rescue when it started, but within seconds I was told they had to leave on a call. I spent the rest of the show on the ground. It was a great show. Good music and lots of fun fireworks.

Following the show I helped to get things taken down. I was told of a patient and I was asked to take care of her. I looked at her, but there was nothing I could do. I did talk her into going to the ER however. We waited around for a little bit while the traffic died down. Then we went out Old Wawawai road to One-Ninety-Five. We came back into town via the South Bypass.

I only had one recruit with me on the way back. We stopped at the hospital. We got some new linen and picked up the backboard from the call from this morning in Johnson. But calls started to fly. I had Cy get back into the rig and we took off quickly to get to the station in case we would be needed. But as soon as we did stuff died down for the most part. I got the ambulance parked and made sure it was back in service and cleaned up.

I was ready to leave when VanNess asked if I could stay per Drew’s request to man the ambulance in case another call comes out. I stuck around, but no other calls came in. Soon Engine thirty-Two and Rescue came to station one. I helped them reload hose on the engine before I went back to the Deuce to call it a night.

Patient Care in P-Town

July 3rd, 2006

I came down for some daytime calls. One was an echo response, that turned out to be nearly nothing. We did not even help transport the person to the hospital. On the way back to the station we got called to Pioneer Square for someone who fell. I tool patient care and ended up keeping it all the way to the hospital.

I had to go back to the station to do my report on the computer but it was getting closer to the time to be on call and I needed to go home and get ready to be on call. I put my paperwork aside and went to my office. Shortly after I got there we were called out on another person who needed help. Once again we did not help transport. I was able to get home and get ready to be on call.

Chuck and Brian took Rescue out for fireworks patrol. I was supposed to be with them but a reporter from the Daily Evergreen went with them. I stayed at the station with Tyson. He worked on his maps and I worked on my paperwork. When I was done I watched some TV.

We got a call from station one about going to Cougar Country for some ice cream. Tyson and I went with the guys from the Deuce in Engine Thirty-Two. We were riding with them until Rescue was done with the fireworks patrols. While we were at Cougar Country, Sugden told me that he thought I did a good job on my HEAR report. When I first started to talk he was wondering who was on the radio. Then he figured it out. He said it was one of the better ones he heard in a long time.

Back from ice cream, we were sitting around the station when a call for a dumpster fire came in. Tyson and I got to the engine and got our stuff on as did the full-timers. Chris and I got our packs ready to go as we went to the scene code-three. We got on location with the fire extinguished by a fire extinguisher. We still put some water on the fire. It turned out that there was a very small amount of garbage in the dumpster, so there was not a lot that we had to do.

It was not long thereafter that Chuck got back with the Rescue. We all left the Deuce. But we did get called back for a victim of an assault. Once again, as was the theme of the day, we did not go to the hospital with the ambulance.

Golfing in the Hot Sun

July 2nd, 2006

Tired and all I dragged myself out of bed to get to Colfax for some golfing with Ron and the crew. We were going to start at nine-thirty in the morning. I paid and got a golf cart. We set off. My first round I had at least one shot on each hole that put me on to the fairway… the fairway of the hole next to mine, however. I shot a fifty-nine on my first nine holes. Then we did all the holes again. I improved a lot. I was hitting the ball better and getting better chip shots. It took until nearly three in the afternoon for us to finish eighteen holes.

Following golfing I got a load of clothes in the laundry and then went to Colfax fire to hang out. I watched TV with Tim and we even got an EMS call. Following that call I stayed until just after eight o’clock pm. Finally I had to get home to get my laundry going. I put a second load in the washer.

I watched the rest of Men of Honor and I also got into a two hour conversation with Brian on the phone. We talked about him moving in with me. It is one of those things that I think I would like, but I am also afraid of losing my freedom. He seems receptive to it as well. We are going to think about it more and talk about it. But there is a chance that by this time next month or the month after it that he will be living with me.

The New Recruits

July 1st, 2006

Ron called me this morning and invited me to come to his place for poker and a BBQ. It was to start at one pm. Ryan had also come to town. I needed to spray some weeds around the house. I got my weedsprayer and the mixture mixed up. I sprayed all the weeds in the area of the driveway and the gravel areas. I got cleaned up and headed to Pullman. Ryan and I met up for a little bit. He was there to remember Ryley who died one year ago today.

I went to Ron and Heathers. We watched TV and started to play some cards. The first tournament we did was a free on. We all got some chicks and played. I ended up third place. Food was nearly done when we were done with that tournament. I ate, but it was getting near six o’clock and I had to get ready to be on call.

Today is the first day our new recruits got to respond. But they are not able to go into IDLH environments as of now. I met up with them all at six o’clock pm at the Deuce to go over rig checks and a shift orientation. We started on rescue and then went to the engine. Just after we started on the engine we got toned out to a call where a guy had an accident with a circular saw. Chuck showed up and he asked who wanted to go with us. Keith was the first to raise he hand. We went code-three to Palouse.

When we entered Palouse Scott from Colfax Fire was there. He jumped up and yelled “GO TWINKIE”. I waived at him. Chuck asked who that was, and I told him it was Scott from Colfax fire. The patient was package and I returned to Pullman in Rescue. I stopped for a minute and chatted with Scott and David.

I picked up Chuck and Keith from the hospital. We made up the cot and got some gas for Rescue. After getting back to the Deuce we finished up the rig check of engine. Chuck went over all the compartments with them and talked about the equipment. It was at that time that we were supposed to be out doing some drive time and checking the city for fireworks. We were supposed to do that until ten o’clock pm. It was just about nine-forty when we got toned out to a structure fire. It turned out to be a real one. It was rather small as it was discovered early.

We had a good turn out of people. Chuck and I got our packs on and went to the scene of the fire. It was out, but I got to put some water on the hot spots. We set up the generator and lights for Dragoo for his investigation.

We got Rescue back in service and called it a night for training. I got with Ryan finally. I got some dinner and went to my office. He watched a bunch of Homestarrunner cartoons as I got the release about the fire posted online.

I took him to my apartment and he hung out for a few minute before he had to go back to Spokane. I wanted to get to bed early tonight because I am golfing tomorrow, but it turned out that Ryan was here until after two in the morning.