My wife gave me a book for Christmas, called Pride and Ownership by Cheif Rick Lasky. I found it to be a very quick and easy read. It is full of wisdom and information. It will really make you think about your career. It will change the way that you look at some of the people who work in your station, and will make you think about the way that other people see you.
I've worked with some of the people that Cheif Lasky mentions, and I'll admit I've been that person at times. I've had a bad attitude and been down on some of my brothers and sisters. I have found that some of the people in this field are professional landscapers, roofers, builders, or real estate agents. What we are losing is, professional firefighters.
I agree with Chief Lasky, "This is the greatest profession, in the world. And, that if you do not beleive that, then you need to gort out."
If anyone else has read this book, I'd like to know what you think? If you haven't read it, I would recommend it.
I'll have to get myself a copy. I know exactly what you're talking about. On my job we have quite a few brothers and sisters who seem to have just stumbled across firefighting. So many that don't have any pride or heart. No desire to be what we in the Boston area call a "good jake". The real problem is that books like this tend to preach to the chior so to speak. The guy on in my department who is focusing on getting his masters in whatever or the other fella spending all of his energy on trying to get himself a cushy job with the union will never read this book, nor will they have any idea what I'm talking about when I try to explain it to them. They'll just call me a whacker and go about thier business. Meanwhile I have to depend on them to drag my ass out if I get into trouble. It's getting to be a really serious problem.
I worked for Chief Lasky when he was the chief of the Cour d' alene Fire Dept. in North Idaho, been to one of his classes that he put on after he went to Lewisville Fire Dept. he came back to North Idaho and brought Batt. Chief John Salka from the 18th Batt. FDNY to teach FIRST IN LAST OUT and to give us a fire officers prospective of 9-11. these two men are some of the bes speakers I have ever heard.
I had the opportunity to see him in person a couple of months ago. I went home and immediately ordered the book. This should be required reading for every guy coming out of drill school. I'm sure you all see the same "mutts" I do every day. Some of them can't even be shamed into showing some pride in their job.
For instance, we were training today (RAT training) and my partner quit training and sat down after one pitiful evolution because he was tired and the ladder bailout was "bruising his arm." This same guy actually shed literal tears in the Chief's office a few months ago because we tried to get him out on the bay floors training with us "when it wasn't scheduled time to train!" (Guess what unit he rides when I do the manpower?) I'm thinking of taking Lasky's suggestion and picking up some Wal-Mart applications for this chump. Some guys just don't belong on the truck, but then - I am finding that there are those that can be mentored into becoming true brothers. Lasky really revived my faith in this concept.