The Great Exodus that is occurring amongst the ranks of the wildland firefighting population is on a catastrophic trajectory because of what it will mean for wildfire response moving into the future.
When the pandemic hit in 2020, it flipped everything sideways for the fire community and most things were uncertain except for one; fires would still happen, and firefighters would have to respond. At the time, I was in a secondary fire position which didn’t require me to take an assignment but with the position I … Continue reading The 40 Year Old Fill-In
The time finally came in 2019 when they both seemed to have retired fully. It looked to be a great next chapter for Bruce and Kathleen, then all hell broke loose.
Duty There is a sense of purpose behind this work. Choosing a career in public service is about contributing to something bigger than yourself; it is actively prioritizing the needs of others above your own. Along with the selfless nature of the job, another component is discomfort. More often times than not you’ll be drenched … Continue reading Duty, Respect, Integrity.
This furlough is all fun and games until wildfires start kicking up and communities are insufficiently protected because firefighters are stuck waiting for human resources to process their paperwork.
The Moonlight Fire, California When you spend your life hiking around steep hillsides, digging in the dirt and sleeping on the ground while surrounded by a sea of other people all doing the same thing it’s easy to forget that the general public doesn’t understand the reality which wildland firefighters live in. As the effects … Continue reading Wildfire 101
Many, many, moons ago while working as a server in a restaurant I noticed something about the working world, which I’ve found to be a constant truth no matter the line of work I have transitioned to. My epiphany came about like this: As several other servers and I were feverishly rolling silverware in the … Continue reading Working Truths
There’s seems to be this one certain subject that is sooooo complex and convoluted, and at times contentious, that essentially no one wants to touch it with a ten-foot-pole. Each time someone even grazes the topic people get hot under the collar and so, folks keep their distance as if it were a hornet’s nest. I’m … Continue reading Ten-Foot-Pole
There are those days, those days when simply being alive is exhausting. Where you find yourself having a serious internal debate about expending the energy to brush your teeth, let alone doing anything physically active. Yes, it’s one of those days where a movie marathon on the couch seems like the best idea of your … Continue reading Donkey Run
Happy Spring! Here's a re-posting of Fire Culture to get you into gear for the upcoming fire season. First of all, don’t be that guy. Don’t be last to lineout in the morning; get back to the rigs from a store stop, water up, suit up in your jump gear, get up the hill, or … Continue reading Fire Culture