It’s the nature of the beast. When someone is riled about the faller issue and they can’t find anything intelligent to say, they always throw out the big stinking Red Herring….”Well who says your fallers are better than anyone else’s?” It’s a non-issue. It’s just that the whole discussion of creating national standards for fallers is so beyond what many of these folks can fathom, its scarey. So, they puff up and make a personal attack. Like Mellie, I tend to get cramps in my belly from laughing so hard. I have never said our fallers are the best God ever created. I have said they’ve gone the extra mile to prove they have commercial falling experience AND they’ve taken the time to complete S130 & S190 and pass the pack test at the arduous level. NONE of which is required by any agency. The fallers all agree it is necessary to raise the bar of professionalism for contract fallers on fires. Critics (usually the small hand full of fallers who have been handed the majority of the fire assignments in the past…) are crying “foul.” It’s not “Faaaaaaair….” Phouey. Pishaaa. MANY of them also don’t like the idea of a woman at the helm of a company of professional timber fallers. You know what I say? “I’m learning to play a mean hand of poker. So, pick up yer cards fellas.”
Also, I will say that there are many, many “lurkers” out there who follow the They Said conversations closely, and who jump over to Family Said to check out what’s going on. This board has an exponentially larger audience than those that choose to post. I’ve had many discussions with folks who read the posts, but who do not participate. What I’m saying here is…it’s like Nemesis said…but without the paranoia attached to it. There certainly is a broad readership. And, rather than being frightened, I urge you all to remember that They Said and Family Said provide an incredible opportunity to communicate. Sammi, you do it well all the time. The fire shelters…your suggestion for fresh professional drivers…many other excellent observations…REAL, GENUINE, no BS observations that have REAL WORLD impact. That is the true value of this venue. Don’t be afraid someone’s going to “come down” on you. If you truly stand behind what you’re saying and feel strongly about certain issues, it shouldn’t matter.
Sammi, Heli Groupie, Fire Wife, Poet, Nerd, Fire Chica, Hoosier, Dawn, Taz, Northzone5, Mellie….you all are wonderful. Your ideas, concerns, aches, and joys are real. Let the the lurkers stand in awe of your courage to discuss these things. (My word…was that a trumpet I just heard….)