Just like the comic says… Happy Thanksgiving and stay safe.
Last week Jakes and Frequent Flyers attended the NH Emergency Services Conference as a vendor. The show was at the Grand Hotel right next to the outlets in North Conway, New Hampshire. I was expecting to have more space than we did. Essentially the vendors were placed down one of the hallways across from the larger conference room and all the tables went up against the wall. The tables were crammed in so there wasn’t any space for me to draw which I think hurt my weekend.
The people were nice, the other vendors were eager to make connections and staff genuinely wanted to show to go well. Not to say there weren’t any problems or common sense issues but I think they wanted this thing to work. I didn’t sell enough to cover costs, so that’s a bit of a problem. There was only one other vendor actually selling things so I thought I’d do okay. Also I positioned my table near the coffee and breakfast at the end of the hall except at 0915 hours, it all went away and there wasn’t any reason for people to walk down my way. Regardless, I made some good connections, have a few good comic ideas for both strips and was able to hand out a lot of stickers.
The conclusion from this event is that I will likely not return in I have to pay. In fact, I’m not totally sold that EMS and Fire conferences are worth it. I thought pushing an EMS and a Fire comic as well as having prints, posters and original art of EMS/fire related subjects would be a draw with this particular crowd but it seems that in New Hampshire, that is not the case. I think instead I’ll show at a couple comic cons and compare. The con season in my area doesn’t fire up until late spring so I have time to get my stuff together.
So here’s the dilly yo! EMS1.com brought me on as contributor and so, now I create a weekly comic strip called Frequent Flyers. Basically, it’s a spin-off/crossover from Jakes Comic. Everyone works in the same community so look for cameos going on in both strips.
The strips will get posted on my Jakes Comic Facebook page. FYI, Jakes is still gonna happen every week… Holy cannoli! Anyway, it’s big news for me and I’m looking forward to doing this. Golf claps are appreciated. Thanks for the continued support!
Here’s the new website: http://frequentflyerscomic.com
Here’s the link over at EMS1.com:http://www.ems1.com/columnists/frequent-flyers
When you’re running all night, learn to get sleep WHENEVER and WHEREVER possible.
Unfortunately I have not learned how to do this yet…
It’s no secret that I’m a little bit of a gamer but honestly I stopped playing Grand Theft Auto a while back cause, basically, there was so much to do in the open world environment. The same goes for Skyrim and World of Warcraft. If I kept playing those games the way I was, I would never have the time to make a comic and that is part of the reason for the “on-again, off-again” relationship I’ve had with Jakes over the last few years. Now, I fill my gaming in with a little Mario Kart, perhaps a 30 minute block of Skyrim here or there and a few lives of Candy Crush and that’s it. Doesn’t mean that I don’t want to try these mods out for GTA 5 though. Here are some videos from Typical Gamer on YouTube. Sorry for him, he’s sorta stupid and annoying, but the mods are cool.
A friend of mine asked me to draw him… How do you say no to a Chaplain. This was easy cause he’s so involved with a variety of super good causes locally and in other surrounding communities, I wasn’t even thinking “no” was an option. It’s truly an honor to have drawn him and give a little bit back to someone who gives so much.
10. Make friends. Sometimes this happens well before the fire. Think about all the other times you bump into brothers and sisters in the fire service… Other mutual aid incidents, classes, fundraising events, hiring processes, just out at the local watering hole.
9. Eagerly accept your task. Sitting on a 2 1/2” outside or being assigned R.I.T. while everyone goes in is not glamorous and will likely get your photo in the newspaper (which leads you to buy dinner for the crew) but it’s an essential role that needs to be filled. The IC needs to see that even in “less fun” roles, you are focused, eager and engaged in you assigned fire ground operation.
8. Never hang out at rehab. You’re sweaty, tired, dehydrated but here’s the deal… Most of us only get a few fires each year so why are we gonna hang out at rehab? Send a crew member to get water for each of you while you stand or take a knee near the IC or Operations Officer.
7. Be focused. Look at the building, talk about where the fire is, what is happening, pre-plan exits, read the smoke. The IC and Ops Officer can hear you and they want crews they can trust and have some idea of what is happening.
6. Always be 100% ready. That means dressed in full turnouts, hood, helmet, gloves, SCBA on, mask at the ready, tool in hand. When you’re given an assignment, Incident Command and/or Ops wants you to go to work now, not 5 minutes later while you figure out how to get the hood out of your inner coat pocket and dress properly.
5. Be firefighter fit. If you are only good for 5 minutes on air while doing work and completely spent after your first bottle, everyone can see that. They will see you stumbling, moving without a sense of urgency and most likely, your crew won’t complete the task you were assigned. The IC needs things done and he/she needs your crew to finish it when possible so the other 500 tasks can be assigned to the next available crews.
4. Help the interior crews from the outside without getting in the way. Hump hose at the door, pull kinks, remove debris from the hose and entry point. This will put you front and center for the IC or Ops Officer to see that you want to be involved.
3. Position your crew very near Incident Command or if possible, next to the Operations Officer. When they need a crew, they don’t want to look far. Being by their side almost ensures assignments get to your crew first.
2. Have an aggressive officer who is good at being political with Incident Command. It’s who you know and your officer has likely been around long enough to know some faces, know some names and get you some work.
1. Develop and maintain a good reputation. A good individual reputation is something you can control 100% but the reputation of your respective department is important too. Whenever you and your members wear a department shirt, uniform or PPE, they have the opportunity to help and/or hurt the department’s reputation.
When I am called to duty, God,
wherever flames may rage,
give me strength to save a life,
whatever be its age.
Help me embrace a little child
before it is too late,
or save an older person from
the horror of that fate.
Enable me to be alert,
and hear the weakest shout,
quickly and efficiently
to put the fire out.
I want to fill my calling,
to give the best in me,
to guard my friend and neighbor,
and protect his property.
And if according to Your will
I must answer death’s call,
bless with your protecting hand,
my family one and all.
– Author Unknown
Originating from the Boston area in the early days of the fire service, a firefighter would use a key that was in the shape of a “J” to open fire alarm boxes allowing them to tap out a signal to the fire alarm office. This complicated telegraph-style system was the only means of communication from the fire ground in those days. The honorable position of a firefighter receiving this assignment and the shape of the key he carried earned him the title of “Jake”. Over the years the position has evolved but the nickname stuck. Today it’s commonly used across the United States whenever speaking about a firefighter.