You can find out about my early beginnings in fire if you go back to the late 1999 theysaid archives and read forward. Yeah, right… That fall, after my 76 days of fighting fire in northern California, I came home and couldn’t NOT think about fire for more than about 2 minutes at a time. It’s the most amazing thing I’ve ever experienced, and am still experiencing. Fire and fire people changed my life that summer and I’ve been working in the fire world ever since. Original Ab and theysaid (Hickman, Old Fire Guy, Rochelle, Doug Campbell, WP, Pulaski, 6, Doorsmaurer, Dave, R5 Firecapt, Ramble, Firehorse, AZ Trailblazer, Tiny, Kelly, bcdavis, Maddog, MOC4546, Boo, Keith, LAVE, even my Nemesis, ie the so called CDF Engine Capt) and others who have become dear fire friends — they took me under their wing then.
My first motivations to understand the complex system of the fire world were for the safety of young people fighting fire and the issues (political and otherwise) of those pounding ground or leading groundpounders. I am indebted to FireWolf, Joe S, Hutch, Doug Campbell, John W., Lasagna, local FMOs and groundpounders, the fire trainers (CDF, local fire departments, FS) who taught the 5 month long class I took in spring 2000 — they and theysaid taught and mentored me along. I didn’t feel like so much of a PTSD freak when theysaiders pointed out that I’m a member of the “180 club”, made up of those who forsake perfectly good career paths to join the firefighting community. Yeah, I did that. What I do with and for fire these days is not a job or a career. You could say it’s a “calling”.
Beyond that early beginning, I don’t like to share specifics about myself or my history. I’d rather let people get to know me as my relationship with them unfolds – in person or via email and theysaid. Chances are we’ll run into each other sometime, either on purpose or because the fire world is small.
Familysaid is a good place for finding support and gaining insight… in a way it’s similar to the support theysaid offered me. Don’t let the “old Nemesis of the world” throw you off track. Pot stirrin’ paranoia… BAH.
What you have happening here is nothing less than MAGIC. Thanks to Sammi and Fire Momma for providing some solid advice and insight and humor — and to TazGirl, Nerd, FireChica, Catskilldog, Heli Groupie, Hoosier, Dawn, Poet, Artista, Fire Wife, Robbie, Oregon Jewel, et al for the antics and energy of youth and/or the open seeking to understand the fire world and their relationships in and with it.