Good Start, Bad Ending

October 31st, 2009

Today is Halloween and I am looking forward to having a good time. I am going to one party and then I will probably go to a second one with a guy I work with, finally I am going to hopefully go to a bar.

Last night the fire department was very busy running from call to call. I listened to a lot of it last night, and I was up this morning. It was a nice day. It is a Saturday. I was thinking about going to Moscow Fire for a pancake feed, but it was late enough in the morning and with the Vandal Homecoming parade gearing up I didn’t want to get stuck in tons of traffic.

Chia called me and we talked for a little while. I am happy he called me. I was getting concerned that he was mad at me for some reason. In the early afternoon I went to the store to get some M&Ms; for the party tonight. They were packed so I figured the guys would be busy tonight.

As it was getting close to time to go to Mike’s place for the beer tasting Halloween party, I got a call from BKoe. Some of the guys were at My Office. I came down and had some water with them. CBass and Kuhrt were there as well.

I left as it was getting close to six. I went home and got my costume put on. I go to Mike’s and Heidi was there. Kuhrt showed up later. I got some food and gave them my M&Ms.; I sat at the table and everyone was talking and we were also watching the Cougs play Notre Dame. The Cougs lost.

I was there until around nine o’clock. Then I drove to Dan’s house. I did some trick or treating there. I looked around at Dan’s set up and we talked for about half an hour.

I texted Togs and then went over to meet up with him. We talked by the road for a while and got a couple photos. I went into the backyard of the house party when I overheard a guy calling me a faggot. Sort of caught me off guard. He knows I am gay, but I would not have thought that you felt that way about me.

This is why I hate it when I know that people know. Because I think about what they think about me. When I don’t know, then I don’t have those thoughts and I don’t get preoccupied. It is just so much easier to be in the dark.

So, after that I just wanted to leave. I wanted to confront him a little bit as well, but with him having been drinking and being at the party, I didn’t want to get into it. The wind had been taken out of my sails for the night. I decided not to hit the bar and just drove home.

Overheard at a Party

October 31st, 2009

This is a letter that I wrote to someone who I use to work with…

[Censored] had invited me to his place tonight to hang out for a while on Halloween. When I was ready to come over he had gone to your place up the hill. Him and I chatting outside on the street for a while. Then he went inside and to the back yard. I made my way there too. I was standing near the back door for a while. Then I started to make way over to the fire.

As I was walking up there I saw [censored], he was chatting with a girl and you. Some sort of joke was being made and the word faggot was being used pretty liberally. I was not offended by that at all. That didn’t even bother me.

But what I heard you say heavily disappointed me. Enough so that I decided not to say hello to you and I chose to leave and go home.

In reference to the word faggot you said “Just like the A-shift crew leader”. I am not sure if you go around outing me to people, but that is purely disrespectful, that is not your place to do that.

But for me what was so disappointing is that I thought there was some level of respect, even if only on a professional level. Clearly it appears there is no respect at all.

If he had known I was there and was making the joke to mess with me, I would have been fine with it. I was not upset about the word faggot being thrown around in a general way.

But what disappointed me is that I was being degraded in a specific way. The person doing it had no idea I was standing right there, due to the fact it is Halloween and I was in a full costume. I am happy to know what he really thinks, because at least I know where I stand with him. I hate being around people who are fake.

Anyway, I wasn’t quite sure if I should confront him on the spot or just walk away. I figured in the party setting and with the alcohol being used I should deal with it later. Plus, I don’t know if the person who I was meeting up with knows about me or not, but if I had confronted him right there he would have known for sure.

Dissmore’s is Packed

October 31st, 2009

So I am at Dissmores and it is packed. Last night the fire department ran like crazy due to this being Halloween weekend. It was pretty crazy, and with what Dissmores looks like there could be more tonight.

As I was getting ready to get in line I caught a glimpse of a guy in front of me. He had perfect skin. He had dark hair that was well groomed. I like blondes better, but it looked good on him. He was ten-six-seven. The hard part was to not get caught trying to check him out at the check out.

Den Cleaning

October 30th, 2009

I found out my heater is going to run me about twenty-five hundred bucks. That is going to take a pinch out of my budget.

Today was room cleaning day, and I went to town on it. My den was way over due for a cleaning. I had a lot of stuff that needed shredding and to be cleaned up. I would say I made a hug dent with about four hours of work, but I have a way to go. I still have to go through a couple more things. I need to organize my stuff a little better. I have a couple more stacks of things to run through. But it feels good to walk into my den now.

I went to the fire department and got my timecard completed and turned in. This is the last A-shift of the month. We have to turn our timecards in on the final working day.

In the evening I spent watching some TV and just relaxing. I tired to go to bed around midnight, but it was so busy on the scanner after a tiny bit of trying I gave up for a while longer.

What is the Purpose of Daily Activities

October 29th, 2009

On a high level, what is the point of life? Why do we live a life and do activities? Why do we have things like movies and TV shows to entertain us? Do we live to participate in those sources of entertainment or is the entertainment something for us to do while we wait for our real purpose?

We are suppose to find a woman someday and get married. Have a couple kids. Keep the cycle going. But why? What happens if you don’t? I have grown up believing that, but what if I don’t get married and have kids? Am I going to live a less fulfilling life? Will I have failed in my life-purpose? I wonder these things, because chances are I will not find a woman to marry. I will probably not have a kid. I think about that from time to time. I think about what it would take for me to find someone who would be willing to have my kid. I don’t know if I could do that or afford that. But I think having my own son is something I would like at some point. I grew up thinking about how I would raise my kid. I thought about the kinds of ways I would reward and punish. How I would teach and learn with the kid. I feel like I am going to miss out.

But if I hadn’t spent most of my life believing that it is what every normal person in the world does, I probably wouldn’t think about these things at all.

But this goes back to what is the point of my existence? I enjoy firefighting and policing. But at some point have I seen it all? Is it time for me to move on to something else? I have wanted to be a judge and lawyer. Should I leave Pullman and my life here in order to start a new life?

There was an article about men who are millionaires in their thirties. I wonder if I had focused my life to being a really rich person if I could be a millionaire. I think about their life. What do they do in the evening? How do they spend their free time? Do they do fun things? What do they find to be fun?

Sometimes I think of life like a game where I get to do it one way, then next time I play I will try something different. But then I realize that this is a one-shot deal. There is no resetting the game board. I have to do it all in this one life. Or I have to choose to do one thing and do it well. But realize that I will not be able to do other things.

In some ways, going back to what I said before, now that I have done the firefighting and cop work, being a coroner and radio show host. Now that I have that experience it is time to find something to do that I can do for the next couple decades. One thing that holds people down is the unwillingness to move and be mobile. When you plant roots you cannot be quick and agile.

So, that is a brief rambling of things that flow through my head. That is the high-level view. I am not sure how many pages I would have to go through in order to fully articulate my thoughts.

That said, yesterday was a pretty dead day. I didn’t get out of bed until noon. I went down stairs to find it was cold. I took a look, and it appears my furnace was having some issues. So I called Parrish. He had me do a couple things and nothing worked. So he sent someone out to the house. After working on the system for about forty minutes he told me the furnace was shot and I need to get a new one.

That sucks. That is all I need is to have to purchase a major item like that while being jobless.

Movie Night

October 28th, 2009

I got a call today from one of the people I applied with for a computer programming job. I talked to him on the phone for a while. It seems like this would be a pretty good job to have. The pay is good and it is totally work from home. It would be a forty hour a week kind of job. Let’s hope this turns out well.

This evening I had was showing the movie Red Dawn. I invited several people over, but only a couple were able to make it.

I made some chili-phily to serve during the movie. Victor and Richards both came over. Blake wasn’t able to get here until late into the movie. Brandon came down and watched the movie as well.

It had been a while since I last watched the movie. It is a pretty decent movie over all.

Triple Layer at Colfax Fire

October 27th, 2009

I spent a lot of the day working on my music collection. I have been working on trying to standardize my collection. I am getting all the album names, song names, band names, genres, and what not. It took a long time to go through all the songs. Then I also standardized the naming convention. It is something I have wanted to do for a long time. But with the purchase of my Durango that stores music on the radio, I wanted to make these updates. The system uses the band name, album name, and genre to list songs. So I wanted things done correct.

I got a long way through but some songs were messed up and the tags were not being saved or they were not reading correctly. So I had to go through all the songs on the radio and see what ones were not displaying correctly. Then I had to use a program to run through those and fix them. Then I had to re-enter the data. It really was a big under taking. But now that I am done, it feels so good. Now my car has my whole music collection so I can listen to my favorites on the road without having to switch CDs.

I went to the Fire Station in Colfax for fire training. We were doing some work with the dump tanks and drafting. We also were working with the new hose loads. They are trying out the triple-layer loads.

With my foot in the walking boot I didn’t do much of anything except for watch. The people are new with the triple layer loads so one person who pulled it allowed a lot of the hose to just drop to the ground and got it sort of tangled up.

When we went to reload the hose there were some other issues involved. They are still new at it, so getting it set up and ready to pull aboard it was slow going. I helped make that go faster.

Unemployment Orientation

October 26th, 2009

This morning I had to report to a unemployment orientation training session. It is mandatory for everyone on unemployment. It took a little under three hours. But I suppose, without having a full-time job, this is something that I can find the time to do.

This evening I had training with the fire department. It was ventilation training. but due to the bad weather we were going to keep it short and sweet.

I just supervised because my foot is in the walking boot. It was a short two hour training session.

Another Pullman Case

October 25th, 2009

I heard my scanner talking about an echo response for a person who was down. So I updated the on call coroner to give her a heads up. I also told her I was available to assist if she wanted it. It took a while from the time the ambulance cleared to when we were called in to the scene.

It was interesting due to the recent history and long term history of the person. Nothing was pointing directly to the cause, but there were a couple things told to us by neighbors that we needed to look into.

When we were done on the scene we went to the funeral home. I waited until I was asked to look at things before doing anything. The investigation took about five hours of the day. I didn’t get to watch football like I had planned, but that is okay.

Movie Night with C-Shift

October 24th, 2009

Brandon and I met up for lunch today at the Mongolian Fire. He was going to go to Moscow to looking for a hat for his costume. I tagged along. We went to Goodwill and WalMart. Finally we found it at Tri-State. After dinner we went to Loco Grinz for dinner.

I pulled a newspaper out of the Bumblebee when I noticed it had a front page article that showed Turpin, Christensen, and Wedam on it. I wanted to scan it in to the computer so I went to the fire station and got it scanned. Turpin was covering for someone at station one so I showed him. I went to the kitchen and the guys were

The guys there wanted to get a movie and asked if I would go to the store to get one. I picked one up from Safeway. Richards, Young, and Caessens all watched the movie. They wanted me to get a scary movie. After the movie the Young and Richards went on an EMS call. Caessens and I stuck around chatting about fires and the differences between Pullman and Shelton. I left around midnight.

Gave Marv a Ride

October 23rd, 2009

I went to the fire station today. It has been a while since I was last there because of being over in Seattle. The chief saw me and said something about my lack of shaving. But I showed him my boot and then he understood that I was pretty unavailable to do much of anything until I get it off.

Within a little bit of being there we got a call from a Palouse EMS worker. He needed a ride back from the hospital. We no longer send rescue. So when someone is needed in the back they have to send one of their people. But then we have a situation where someone needed to drive down to pick them up, or we need to give the a ride ourselves. It will be interesting to see how that works out.

Heading Back to Pullman

October 22nd, 2009

After spending days resting and not doing much of anything I headed back to Pullman. I first went to my doctor appointment. I got a note saying I could go back to work starting on November Twelfth. I was also told I only need to wear the boot when I find it necessary for the pain.

I went to Colfax and I arrived a couple hours before the coroner’s training. The training itself was a typical length of time. We covered several cases and got the schedule coverage taken care of.

When I was getting ready to leave I stopped by the front office. Dan asked how I was doing. I was chatting with him about that. Then he asked if I was the on-call coroner. I told him I wasn’t. He said they deputies are out looking for a possible suicidal person. I went to the office to let Pete know. Then I went back to the front office.

Before long the pager was going off for the suicide. Pete and I went to the scene. It was a shotgun death. Those can be pretty damaging. We went to the funeral home and continued our investigation. But the time I got home it was nearly three in the morning. It was a long day when it was all set and done.

Eagles Interview

October 21st, 2009

This afternoon I was meeting with the people from the Eagles to be interviewed. If after the interview, I pass, then I need to get set up to go through initiation. I am not over excited about joining the Eagles. But I did it to help Bill during their membership drive. There is no Eagles in Pullman. So I would have to go to Moscow to visit one here. There is one in Colfax, but from what I have seen so far, the people who go there are the same ones I deal with at the jail.

Now I need to set up the initiation with the aerie over in Moscow.

Signed up for Jeff Dunham

October 20th, 2009

This afternoon while enjoying my afternoon “training” trio of Emergency, The Rockford File, and Quincy, I got an e-mail saying new events had been added to the sign up site. I looked and saw the Jeff Dunham show on there. I quickly signed up for it! I am going to be working the Jeff Dunham show. I am happy about that.

Bowling Alley Bill

October 19th, 2009

I was going to play poker with Eric today. It has been a very long time since I have been over at his place to play cards. But he ended up cancelling the game. That ended any plans I had on the night.

But my mom wanted me to go to watch Bill bowl tonight. We went to the Eagles for dinner. I gave my mom a ride home and then drove up to Skyway to the bowling alley.

I watched Bill’s games. Both last week and this week he has been bowling better than his average by a lot of pins. He did very well.

An Day of Movies

October 18th, 2009

Watching TV all day long during recovery can get old, but I kept looking for movies I had not seen. There was one that had started about ten minutes before I turned it on. The movie is called Backdraft. I know, don’t say it, how can a fireman take seventeen years to watch that movie? But I don’t know. I never got around to it. Finally it was on cable and I was going to see it uncut and unedited.

Of course being Hollywood there were some inaccuracies with how we really do things, but at the same time the message of the movie was pretty strong. I really had no idea what the movie was about. I didn’t know it was about a couple brothers who are firemen and they are dealing with an arsonist. I am happy that I watched it. It actually had some pretty powerful scenes.

Ryan and I chatted online about Ref Seventy-One. He is posting a couple articles online. One was supposed to be unbiased. He asked me to read it to see if I thought it was free of any slants. He said he was going to write one that will show his support of gay civil unions. I told him he was a hater of all gays. I told him that it was not nice to support that. Right now the guys can tell their boyfriend “you know I would love to marry you, but we can’t”. Really he doesn’t want to get married, but he has the law to fall back on to be able to pretend that he wants to get married. With R-Seventy-One, now he will not have that protection. Now gays will all get as miserable as married couples. What a big jerk. He was laughing.

I watched a second movie at the end of the night that was based on a true story. It was called Bully. It is about a high school guy who abuses his best friend making him do homosexual acts. he also was raping some women. One girl wanted to kill the bully. Then others got in on it. Finally they lured him to a rock pit. One guy stabbed him. Then his best friend slashed him and stabbed him multiple times. Other guys helped out beating him, stabbing him, and finally one guy bashed in his head with a bat. They threw his body in a pond. It wasn’t long before they were discovered and all arrested. Several are serving life sentences in jail. The movie took the side of the killers. They did make the guy out to be bad and almost deserving of death. The movie itself was very graphic with its sex scenes. It seemed like half of the movie was spent surrounded with sexual images including the guys in the movie being shirtless all the time.

Double Win for the Boys

October 17th, 2009

Today is the first day I really got out and about. I went to Skyline High School to watch one of the boys play in his football game. They ended up winning the game. There is one thing that I found to be pretty gay. They have rules in the football where if a team is up by twenty-five points the kick off doesn’t happen anymore. The team that is losing gets the ball on the fifty-yard-line and the winning team gets the ball on the twenty-yard-line after every turn over. If a team wins by thirty-two points the head coach is suspended for the following game. They also go to a running clock in the fourth quarter. How does that help the kids learn how to win and lose with respect? Another sign of the wussification of America’s men.

I went home and watched some TV. Then I went to Matt’s new house. He lives near my mom’s place. I got a chance to chat with him for about twenty minutes. I am going to have to go over for a longer visit. It was great to see Matt. He is one of my oldest friends. He lives a good life with his family. He is a very good man. He is the only person from my high school class who I have come out to. I came out to him back on the trip to the second Cougar Rose Bowl this decade.

I went to the other football game back at Skyline. He won his game too. We all went out to dinner after the game. Then to Jon’s where the boys, one of their friends, and I played some Madden Ought-Seven. We did a mini-tournament. I was knocked out in the first round.

It was a nice afternoon and evening with family and friends.

Recovering Day Four

October 16th, 2009

This is the first day I ventured outside of the house. I didn’t do a lot, but I wanted to have some time to get outside. This was in the first time I went outside since my surgery. I went for a short drive, but that was about it. I chose to keep myself in bed most of the day, but by the evening I spent time downstairs at the house watching TV.

This last week I have spent so much time watching TV, I don’t know how people can do this all the time. There is so much out there to do that I wasn’t doing because I was trying to allow myself lots of time to work on recovery.

Recovering Day Three

October 15th, 2009

I was pretty much not recovering as much as I am trying to give my ankle rest time. I want to give it all sorts of time to try to heal up nicely. I was working on moving my ankle around as my doctor advised me to do to reduce the amount of scarring that can cause future problem.

I had another afternoon of watching Emergency!, The Rockford Files, and Quincy. I could have gone out and about today, but I decided to just relax around the house.

Recovering Day Two

October 14th, 2009

The day was filled with laying on my back watching TV and making sure my column for the Daily News was completed. I talked to Ryan for a while about the softball game from Sunday. I have taken less meds and I hope to cut them out all together in the next day or so.

Recovering Day One

October 13th, 2009

The day after surgery has gone fine so far. I have not felt bad at all. I have been taking the prescribed meds and watching TV while keeping my ankle elevated. I am tired and I start to fall asleep while watching TV then I wake up for a while and this starts over. I stayed in my room all day aside from getting some water and other such things.

Ankle Worked on Again

October 12th, 2009

I got up this morning and met up with Jeremy to head to the airport to fly to Seattle. We met up just after four in the morning. The taxi got us to the airport, but as it turned out, Alaska’s booths were not open. So I had to get in line and wait until five when they opened. I was the first in line, so that was nice, but they let all the first-class people go first. Jeremy was flying first class, so I was giving him a bit of a hard time.

We got through security really fast because it was five in the morning and there were not a lot of people there. Jeremy and I sat there waiting for our chance to get onto the plane. Because he was first class he got on first. As I walked past him I joked that he should have a good time up there, I was going “back there” and pointed to coach.

I was in my window seat. I put on my sunglasses and I pretty much planned on sleeping. Though I got decent sleep last night, I was still tired. While waiting to actually fall asleep I was this guy walk on the plane. He had incredible eyes. They were blue and he was a blond. His jaw line was very nice. He was one of those guys you swear you have seen somewhere else. He was ten-six-seven, and I couldn’t help to wish he was sitting next to me. But, it was not to be. I wish I could have met him and talked with him, I just wanted to know more.

The flight took just over two hours and I slept for most of those. I was getting a little restless because I had surgery today and I wanted to get it over with.

After I got off the plane I met up with Jeremy again. He got off the plane way before me. But it did give me another chance to check out the ten-six-seven. I am guessing he is in his mid-twenties. I just wish I would have had a seat next to him. I wanted to have a reason to say hello to him.

As Jeremy were going to baggage claim I saw the guy was going in the same direction as us. He got on the same tram car as we got on. Because of where I was seated the guy was standing, it allowed more time for sight-seeing.

Jeremy got to the baggage claim and got our luggage. We walked outside together and he wished me well with my surgery and worked his way to get home. I was waiting for Bill. I was wishing my ten-six-seven was out there waiting too, it could have been my chance to say hi, but I didn’t see him.

Bill showed up and we took off. But he made a bad turn and ended up going right past the terminal again. As we were passing the terminal I saw the ten-six-seven walk over to a car that was picking him up. So he had been in the area and I missed him. Darn it anyway!

We went to the house and I got the suitcase out of the truck. I was getting my room ready for me for tonight after the surgery. I was probably going to be hating life, because I tend to after surgery.

I got a phone call from the doctor’s office. They asked if I could come in early because the doctor was ahead of schedule. I said I would. I got into the office and got the paperwork completed and I was called into the backroom.

I got in my gown, I got an IV and my vitals taken. It took two tries to get the IV going. The doctor came into the room and explained what he was going to do.

I was taken into the operating room. I layed down on the table. They started to do what they needed to do. The nurse gave me some oxygen. She said take some deep breaths. I figured out shortly after the first couple breaths what was going on. She wanted to get my oxygen level up so they could intubate me. I could feel a little bit of a stinging sensation in my IV. I thought she was putting some pressure on it on accident. She said I would probably feel a little bit of a stanging sensation. All of a sudden I could tell I was getting put under. There was no warning, it was happening. I didn’t try to fight it, I just closed my eyes.

All of a sudden I was sitting in recovery. I was getting woken up with a popscicle. I didn’t feel too bad. I was very cold and they gave me a warm blanket. I was getting more awake. Rather than letting myself sleep, I sort of fought it and before I knew it I was mostly awake. I didn’t feel great, but I didn’t feel bad. I had some graham crackers and apple juice. It was good. Then they gave me some oxycodone. After about an hour I was being let out. I had been given the instructions for what to do. Compared to last time this was nothing. I didn’t feel bad on the trip home and I was waking up easily.

I got home and went to my bedroom. For the rest of the evening I watched TV, drank apple juice, ate graham crackers, and took meds. I didn’t feel that bad at all. I would fall asleep for about five minutes or less and then get back up to watch more TV. I was making sure my ankle stayed elevated.

Coming in Second Place, Twice

October 11th, 2009

Because of our play yesterday we are still in the winners bracket going into play today. I went to get some food this morning, but I think I had more than I should have. My stomach was hurting. My ankle was hurting pretty bad too. Even with walking around it wasn’t getting a lot better. I walked to the gas station to get some water and pop, then back to the hotel room.

We got to our game location. We won the first game meaning we only had to win two more games for the whole thing. But we ran into the semi-finals. The team was from Chicago. I was put on the bench for the game because of my ankle. I was brought it in late in the game for a pinch hit and I got a solid single, but we were not able to keep the lead. We had a one run lead going into the final game and lost it quickly.

So then we were in the losers bracket. If we won our next losers game we would face the team that just put us in the losers bracket.

I was put back in as a regular player. My ankle was feeling well. I was hitting the ball very well. We batted around in each of the first two innings. We continued to hit the ball okay and kept the lead from wire to wire.

We went to the championship game against the team from Chicago. We could not hit the ball well against them. They hit it well against us. They would get the lucky bounces on both offense and defense. We just could not keep pace and they went on to beat us. We got second place in the tournament and we got tee-shirts.

When we got home I walked to the restaurant in the hotel for dinner. The others went out on the town, but with surgery tomorrow and the need to get up early, I chose to go to bed early.

I watched The Simpsons and Family Guy while waiting to hear from Ryan about the IM’s championship game. We were playing Kelly’s team for the competitive league champion. It sounds like we were missing our star outfielder and we put an infielder into the outfield. I am not sure how I would have done it differently, but we ended up losing the game, but we scored around twenty runs over five innings.

So today both of my teams ended up in Second Place.

I turned off the TV and drifted off to sleep.

Final Ought-Nine Softball Tournament

October 10th, 2009

I came down to San Diego to play in a softball tournament. I am playing with a group of guys I don’t know. I was looking forward to just going out there and doing my thing. I am going to let me play do the talking. I started out hitting number eight. But my hitting was doing very well. I was hitting six of seven with a ROE in the first two games. Before I knew it I was batting second. I knew my hitting would speak for itself.

We started one and one in the round robin play. We were seeded in the lower-C bracket. We went out and played well. The first game we won pretty convincingly. The second bracket game of the night, our fourth overall game was a lot different.

We battled back and forth. It was close. I was hitting the ball well through the game. Before I knew it we went into extra innings. I was playing first base. In one extra inning they had no outs with two guys on and the score was tied. Our right fielder made an incredible shoe-string catch. The runners had been going and we had a chance to double them up. The throw to me was bad and it bounced on the ground past me. But the catcher got it and went to second base for a double-play. We got one more out and went into another extra inning. We had a total of three extra innings. In the final one we scored and we held them from scoring. I had the final ball hit towards me. I charged the high bouncing ball. I caught it off my chest and ran it to first for the final out and the victory.

We went to Red Robin for dinner. We were out there for a while. It was a great celebration. Our victory was big.

Flying to San Diego

October 9th, 2009

I got up this morning and drove to Renton. I was on the road around eight in the morning and I was trying to make good time getting to Renton. When I got to Renton I had enough time to get my luggage to Bill’s truck and get a ride to the air port. I was going to San Diego for a softball tournament.

I got through security and waited to board the plane. I had about an hour to wait. Then I got on the plane. The flight down was just over two hours. Once at San Diego I got washed up and then had some dinner before getting a taxi to get to the hotel. I didn’t want to wait around until I could get a ride from someone on the team.

At the hotel I got my luggage put into the room. Then I went for a walk down the road. It went about half a mile and found a Subway. I got a sandwich and a pop at a nearby gas station. I went back to the room to eat it and I watched TV for the rest of the evening. I was excited about playing softball this weekend.

In the IM Championships!!!

October 8th, 2009

Victor and I were going to respond to calls today. There really wasn’t a lot going on. I was getting some things taken care of on the computer and around the house. I had to get my shirts folded and put away. I also had to take the motorhome to the storage place and bring the Bumblebee back. Before that got going we got a call for EMS. Victor and I went to the station but we were cancelled. So I went home and got the motorhome. I drove it to get the Bumblebee. Then I got some lunch and deposited a couple checks. I went to the worksource office but they were closed for the lunch hour.

I saw a sign while I was there. It said that you were not to leave your kids unattended in the car. I thought that it was strange such a sign was needed there, but then again… Anyway, I went to the fire station for training at one.

It was on the air cart. We pulled it out and took a look at it and the air lines that went with it. It was a short training, but it was good to go over it again.

I went home and started to think about playoffs. We had two games tonight. I also had a telephone job interview. That started at four. I got the phone call and spent about thirty minutes answering some questions. If I am good enough I will come in for another interview.

I went to the field and met up with the others from the team. People started to show up and I was getting the line up set. We had fourteen guys there. One was hurt so I didn’t worry about playing him. But we needed to win so I only batted eleven. I hit the ball well, as did the team. Our defense was very good. We went on to win and go to the Semi-finals. We were playing a team that had been using an illegal bat. Once they were called on it, in the previous game, they couldn’t hardly score. It turned out we shut them out. We scored nine runs. We didn’t hit the ball as well as I would have hoped, but we won. Ryan said it best, this is the most worried I have felt in a shut out. We never had a big enough lead that put me at ease. Not until we scored the ninth run and the other team no longer had a chance to win because of the eight-run limit. They were done. We had a couple guys on with no outs. So we were poised to score some more.

Ryan and I went to Rancho Viejo for dinner. We ate and talked softball. We set the line up for the championship game on Sunday. We also talked about finances. Ryan told me he advised his bosses that we was planning on resigning in November.

With us playing in the championship game on Sunday, I will miss it. I am going to be in San Diego playing softball in a tournament down there. We are also playing Kelly’s team. It was a game we have been wanting to have for a long time. Our team, defensively, is as good as his team, but hitting, we need to bring our sticks. We have a lot of pretty-good hitters. We need them to do their really good hitting on Sunday.

I got home and started to pack for my trip to San Diego. I was going to have to be out the door around eight in the morning. I wanted to wash my uniform so it was clean for the start of the tournament. I didn’t get to bed until nearly midnight.

Second CPR Class

October 7th, 2009

I was teaching CPR tonight for Avalon. It was the second group that I was doing. The first game, yesterday, was great to work with. I was hoping today’s class would be as good. It wasn’t quite as good, but it wasn’t bad.

I got to the station around three in the afternoon. I got the classroom set up and then I edited the department website.

The class got there and we got underway. I was pushing to be done by seven, because that is when some of them were supposed to leave. There had been a scheduling change, that wasn’t passed long to them.

After the class I got the stuff from the class cleaned up and put away. I then got some ice cream from Reiber. After the class I went home and watched some TV and relaxed. It was a quiet night for me.

Another IM Softball Playoff Game

October 6th, 2009

I got up and went in to the fire station to teach CPR to a group from Avalon. It was a great class. We had a lot of fun. It seemed like I was hitting on all cylinders. It was a lot of fun.

After the class I went to Moscow to get my vent for the motorhome. I went to the roof and worked on resealing the vent and then put the cover on it. I did that until it was close to the time to get ready for the softball game.

This evening we were playing in a softball game without Ryan. We had twelve guys there. I hit everyone. We were playing against a team that could hit. We had some of our better players there tonight. We had a four to three run lead then we let up eight runs. It was sort of deflating. Then we scored a goose egg. The next inning we held them scoreless and then scored eight of our own, including about four after two outs had been recorded.

We went into the sixth inning needing to score two runs to win. We were down by one run. We quickly got guys on base and scored one. Then Peter hit one down the line scoring the game winning run from third base. We are going to the quarter finals.

I got home and watched a new episode of NCIS with Brandon. I stayed up sort of late just lounging.

First Round IM Win

October 5th, 2009

Victor and I responded on calls for a while this morning and into the afternoon. We had a couple runs.

I was excited for the softball playoffs. Tonight was the first game. I went to the Rec Center to get Bruce’s eligibility form turned in and then to the field. Ryan met me there. I was pitching. We were playing very well. Our hitting was good. We scored fifteen runs, only having one inning without a single run scored.

With the first round win out of the way, Ryan came over and hung out for a while. We watched Saw IV. He left and then I realized that I was going to have to get up early to teach a CPR class.

Oral Board Interviews

October 4th, 2009

Today the big plan was to run the oral boards for the reserves who are applying to be firefighters. We have around eleven people to interview. Each one was given a half hour time slot.

It is helpful to sit in on the oral boards because I get to see things from the other side. I can see how different people interview and how the panel looks at them. I can see what things are good and bad. I can see how I should work to answer the questions. It was a great experience.

I think when it was done, my position was the voice of the weak. I looked for the positives in what they said and their possible future for the department. I tried to bring up the positives in order to make those points shine and hope that I could convince the other, including myself, the candidate would be a good fit. I think when it was done the panel did a good job in the decisions we made.

When that was done I went home and watched some TV before going to the sheriff’s office to write up my MIP arrest on Friday. I was pretty tired and when I got home I went to bed.

Full Day Testing and Training

October 3rd, 2009

This morning I got to the fire station. We were doing the physical tests for the paramedic list and for the reserves. That took several hours in all. We had a lot of people go through the test. Unfortunately, the physical agility test knocked a couple people out of the running. Our test is not overly hard, but from what I have heard from some people who have done other tests, they say ours is harder than others.

When the tests were done I went to pick up the recruitment signs that were placed around the city. I got those delivered to the fire station. I went to Safeway to get some garlic bread and then to the Deuce to start dinner. I was making some broccoli and chick fettuccine Alfredo with garlic bread. It was good stuff. I could have used more sauce, however.

When dinner was done we worked on radio operations and SOPs. We used photos that the Lt gathered to practice doing the arrival reports. Then he would ask us what we would do next. We talked about the decisions that people made and how they were good decisions or why we might decide to think about other options.

When the training was done we had to fill some air bottles on Rescue. We started to get some calls. We didn’t get slammed, but we did have about three calls on the night. One came in around three in the morning. That sucked.

Hitting the Road with Cooper

October 2nd, 2009

This afternoon I was responding on fire calls with Victor. We went to do some work of cleaning up around an hydrant on Derby street. As we were finishing up we got called to an EMS call. En route to that we got diverted to a HazMat call on Campus. We set up command and then passed it along to the ambulance that came in. We made entry and assessed the problem. It was minor. EH&S; from WSU came to clean it up. We cleared and went back to the station.

I was going to go to a Pre-Law get together on campus, but I then got brought back on a car accident. By the time that was done it was so late I decided to start to get ready for working tonight with Cooper at the SO.

I met up with Cooper around five-thirty pm. We went to Clarkston on follow-up. After Clarkston we went to Pullman and met up with some of the other local cops. We had some dinner and talked shop. We left and hit the road.

I really liked working with Cooper. It was great to see him in action. Sometimes we would stop someone and he would ask me why we were stopping them. I told him what the reason was. It was good to have him quiz me along the way. I was doing good with his questions.

We made contact with a couple really drunk students. After I worked with one of them we were concerned for the safety of the person and called for EMS evaluation. Later we saw two students walking in the middle of the road. We made contact with them as well.

I didn’t write any tickets tonight. I did get one criminal cite. I worked until about three in the morning. I was on my way home when he got called to a rollover accident. I missed out on that by fifteen minutes. But it was okay, because I had to be up early in the morning.

I Hate the Waiting

October 1st, 2009

I was down at station one. Turpin saw me and walked up to me and said “we need to talk.” I always hate that kind of thing, because you don’t know what it is. So the rest of the day I had to stew on what he wanted to talk about.

Chia and I went to Tam’s Place for some breakfast. It was nice to get out and chat with him for a while. We left and I took my motorhome to Moscow to get a new vent for it. They were out. I did get some food at WinCo as I wanted to.

I went to the station a while later and Victor and I went painting a couple hydrants and cleaning up some shrubbery around them. We got the rescue back and washed up before being done with it.

I went in to talk with Turpin. I was nervous about the conversation because it is never a good thing when someone says “we need to talk.”

The gist of the conversation is some of the reserves think that I am not playing well with them and I need to work on that, but I wasn’t told what the exact problem was or examples of things I have done wrong. I am being asked to change but not being told what to change.

There is a perception that I am on an ivory tower. Also that I micro-manage. I don’t like being thought of as someone who does either of those things. I hate the idea of being a micro-manager. Turpin gave me some ideas, in general, of what I can do. More or less he said that I will have to let some guys fail at their attempt to complete a task so they can see that it doesn’t work. I wouldn’t let someone fail in a critical situation, but in the daily routine things. It is the way they learn. I am taking from that point that people think that I am giving out tasks and telling them how to fulfill the task rather then letting them do it their way. Point taken.

That is also what might make people feel that I am believe that I am better than them. I have seen some people have a chip on their shoulder over me. The sounds conceded, but it is true. I am not sure where that is coming from. I never have pretended to be better than the other guys or to hate them, but for some reason, that is the feeling some guys have. It is possible that a couple people have fed it to others. But the issue is one I have to deal with. I have to make sure people don’t feel that one. I really don’t want people to feel that way about me. I would like to get along with my co-workers. I just hope that can be done.

Parts of me though feels like if someone has a problem with me that should deal with me man to man. They shouldn’t go to the chief and tell him. That is not using the chain-of-command. That is not dealing with the issue. That is causing more problems and drama. Well, there is nothing I can do about that. I just need to be who I am and keep doing a good job. Maybe over time people will get to know me and they will be willing to accept me for who I am.