Thursday, March 03, 2005


My buddy George amazes me. Most of the time, we can read each other's minds and other times, its sheer polar opposites. Mostly, its communication in a state of confusion. I remember a time back when we were still firefighters - He was the on-duty shift commander and I was the Lieut. on the ladder truck. We had a "job":

(George)"315 on Scene, 315 has command"
(dispatch)"Clear. 315 has command."
(George,AKA 315)"315 to truck 126, 1020 and OIC" (whats your eta and who is the officer in charge?)
(Me- AKA 360) "126,315 - 2 minutes. 360 is OIC"
"Clear. Need you to catch a hydrant and supply Engine 1"
"Thats clear. Wilco."
(1 minute passes)
"315 to 360 - Disregard my last. Get your crew ready - you are assigned RIT"
RIT is Rapid Intervention Team. My favorite job on a fireground because the whole point is if there is a major problem i.e. someone trapped inside, you are the badass team that is assigned to fix it.

I give my crew the "thumbs-up" and they high-five each other as they gear up.
"360, 315 - Thats clear. 126 has RIT."

(2nd minute and we are pulling on scene)

"126 on location."
"315 to 360 - Standby."
"126 standing by."

1 minute later

"315,360 - report to sector 3 for overhaul" (this means: the fire is out - you don't get to do shit except clean up the shit another crew got to tear up.)
"360,315 - What the Fuck? Over."

Don't loose faith in your 911 system just yet - this confusion is typical - but we always got the job done - which is the important part.

Why do I give this account? Because its a typical conversation between myself and George.

Last night at 1830 we were offered 4 tickets and backstage passes to the Alan Jackson concert at the HOUSTON RODEO which is undeniably the largest(two week long) event in Houston all year. Subsequently we had the following exchange:

(George) "What do you think? You wanna go?"
(Me) "Yeah, why not."
"What do we do with the extra tix?"
"I dunno - start calling people."

(10 minutes go by)

(George) "Kim and Christy are going with us."
"Okay - thats fine. When are we leaving?"
"I'll be over in 10."

(Five minutes go by)

(George) "Change of plans - Jackie and Julie are coming with us."
"I'm on my way"

(nuther 10 go by)

(George) "Alright, change again... Remember the 19 year olds from the other night? They are coming with us instead....."

"360 to 315, What the fuck? Over."