With that said, there has been occasions where I’ve been forced to “pull THE book”.
I’m not talking about the SOP / SOG book (Standard Operating Procedures / Guidelines). I’m not even talking about the Holy Bible.
I’m talking about “THE” Book. The “MUST HAVE” book for every Company Officer. I’m Talking about Effective Company Command (1973 by James O. Page Borden Publishing Company).
I’ve had this book since my first week on the job.
While assigned to Ladder Company #2 on A-shift, my Captain, Ronnie Renick; had me read it almost daily.
Actually, we would set the aerial and the Captain would have me climb to the tip and read it to him through the intercom system (leaning back into a locked belt with both hands on the book while the Lt. rotated the turntable 360 degrees). We spent quite a bit of time on a certain page and paragraph and before long, I could recite it from memory. I can do that still today!
I would guess that every company assigned to me has seen and read “the book” at one point or another.
I’ve even had a few firefighters who have been assigned to memorize that same paragraph that I was assigned to many years ago.
A lot of you may remember Randy Armbrister or “Rookie Randy”, as I called him; from right here on the pages of Ironfiremen.com. Randy was the last Firefighter whom I assigned to memorize the paragraph.
After a year here at Lucky #13, “Rookie Randy” rotated out to Station #5 and I now have a more “seasoned” crew. (Read WTF! Rookie Randy Leaving Lucky #13 by clicking HERE) . You wouldn’t think I’d have to pull the book anymore but you’d also be surprised.
Folks are starting to dress accordingly too…. shorts, sun dresses and yes… even bathing suits can be found throughout our neighborhoods!
This situation can place even the most seasoned Company Officer in a difficult position.
I guess the easiest way to explain it to ya is to just share the paragraph that I’m talking about. It’s paragraph 4 and comes from page 121. It reads as follows…..
“A drive through most any community is likely to present an occasional view of feminine charms. It is not the intent of this book to discourage the pleasure generally associated with such a view. However, it should be recognized that one of the factors which sets professionals apart from nonprofessionals is emotional restraint. A fire company which is viewed hooting, hollering, whistling or staring transfixed at an attractive female is likely to be categorized as a band of sex-depraved barbarians. On the other hand, a reasonably quick glance (maybe even accompanied by a collective smile) will assure their viewing public that their firemen are normal, red- blooded American males.”
See what I mean? How many times have you caught your members “hooting, hollering, whistling or staring transfixed” at an attractive female (or male) ??….LMAO !!
Anyway, it’s that time of year again so you may want to freshen up the boy’s memories with page 121. I also thought you may enjoy a good laugh on this beautiful Saturday. We’re on duty and working the middle day of our cycle. Thursday was a wild one so I hope things calm down a little today… Saturday night in the hood …. we’ll see.
You can read about the time I had to “pull the book” on Rookie Randy in the link below… it’s actually a decent post and includes some of the work we did with him involving wearing his SCBA (Self Contained Breathing Apparatus).
Stay SAFE and in House!