Roto-Ray and Federal Q’s On POV?

It's my world and you all are just living in it.

It’s a little bit of stand-up, but a good question. When I wrote the other day about the critiquing and counter-critiquing going on with a certain news article, I thought what I said might hit a little bit of a nerve, or at least people would peek in to see what was going on. Nada. Virtually no reaction.

However, when I wrote about the Roto-Ray a few weeks ago, I got more hits than I have ever had in my history of blogging. I’m thinking by mentioning the Roto-Ray, the Federal Q, and POVs in one title, I’m going to be the high flyer of the internet.  Maybe I should invoke Lindsey Lohan’s name and I’d be a blogging God.

It is said that a good writer writes to his audience. While I consider my audience to primarily consist of enlightened fire officers, I’m beginning to realize that I am NOT writing to the people who need it most: young, impressionable firefighters who need career guidance toward a future officer (and leadership) position. I’m pretty sure, given most of the comments and all, that the people that are reading my blog already get it. I’m preaching to the proverbial choir.

Unfortunately, the things I find interesting as a 46 year old are not what interests a 22 year old, it seems.  Or anyone in society these days, either, I guess.  I mean, I was doing a hold-down-the-button scan of TV the other day and did a drive-by of the Joy Behar Show.  On it, the discussion was regarding the trashy/slutty minor daughter of a reality TV star who is posing in a bikini and whether it is wrong or not.  Is it wrong?  OF COURSE it is wrong to exploit your daughter for ratings!  What kind of morons are you people anyway?  What’s worse is that I’d bet the market share for that show was through the roof.  If this isn’t evidence that our society is going to hell in a handbasket, I don’t know what is.  And the demographic these shows are targeting is pretty obvious when the commercials are all for bail bonds, accident lawyers and payday loan sharks.

It’s no wonder a flight attendant goes nuts and tells everyone to f*&% off, grabs some brew and jumps out the emergency exit.  It’s like a majority of people just don’t get it anymore.  People are rude to total strangers and think it’s okay.  They hide behind their cute internet pseudonyms and say hateful things, make unfounded accusations, and put it out there as genuine fact.  We have politicians actually CAMPAIGNING on hate platforms as they scare the populace into thinking the end is near.  It’s no wonder everyone is stressed out, angry, abusive, and hateful; their “leaders” are setting the prime example!

I plan to continue blogging on substantial matters and hope I can persuade others to check out Firehouse Zen and even more so, to share it.  Even if you don’t share the link, share what you learned.  There’s a lot to be said for rational, intelligent discussion about differing points of view and learning in the process.  It reminds me of an interview I was listening to on NPR the other day with Governor Mike Huckabee.  When asked whether he was a conservative or a moderate, he insisted he was a conservative.  In fact, he said, he had very strong convictions about almost everything.  The difference, however, was that he was willing to listen to alternative points of view and appreciate their perspective, if at all, to help sharpen his own argument.  While I’m not hawking for Governor Huckabee, how refreshing and unusual it would be if our politicians stopped beating their war drums and listened a little while to other views and to consider them just as logically as they would consider their own stances?

Whether you read my blog regularly or not, I’m hoping you do, but thankfully, my children’s college education doesn’t rely on it.  But I would hope that you would at least share what you learn here and come back and read often, as well as to provide me with some insight as to how this information impacts you as well.  What would be greater would be if some of us actually live it.


  • Mike Morton says:

    Brother, just because the comment count doesn’t swell doesn’t mean your words aren’t reaching people. I’m glad to read what you say because sometimes you make me think about things in different terms than I’m used to, and because sometimes I need reinforcement of the things that I believe in. And I’m still learning too; I pick up ideas and thoughts from your blog and others that I try to use and to spread around.

    I don’t always reply, but maybe I should push myself to do so more often, to be a more active participant rather than just a common lurker.

  • Jeff Betz says:

    Hey Mick, I completely feel your point of view. I have a new Firefighter that I am orienting to our shift and department, so I am going to require your blog as reading for him. He is only 22 or 23, and I will surely be discussing some issues with him after he takes a look. As much as I need to keep an open mind to the younger generation, they also need to do the same to “fend off” the negative issues that overwhelm our society today.

  • truck6alpha says:

    Hey, thanks for the comments. I wasn’t fishing for compliments (but they’re always appreciated) but venting a little. As much as I appreciate the comments, it’s just that the hits give you some idea as to the subject matter that seems to interest our readers and that subject matter runs counter to what I hoped was interesting. You know, positive and constructive dialogue. Oh, well…

  • Benjamin T says:

    I don’t see the problem with having a roto-ray on your… Oh wait, thats not what I was reading about. A smart 22 year old firefighter can recognize the importance of somthing that a 46 year old would find interesting. At least somthing written for the fire service. You may not have the traffic of the sites that post video and pictures of big fires and horrific accidents, but at least there is information to be gained from more than just learning from what was on a video. You do not get personal opinions and view points from watching a video on the internet. You do however get them from reading blogs like this. This site may not be on my daily reading list, but be sure I stop by at least once or twice a week and absorb the knowledge written on these pages. I appreciate the time and effort put into these blogs.

  • mark says:

    Roto Ray’s rule……………………………..

  • truck6alpha says:


    Yes, you are correct. They do.

  • Clyde Krashcup says:

    Ten years ago, then-Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee granted clemency to Maurice Clemmons, the 37-year-old Tacoma man responsible for the killing of four Lakewood police officers as they ate breakfast in a restaurant. Clemmons had a long criminal record punctuated by violence, erratic behavior and concerns about his mental health. Huckabee commuted his lengthy prison sentence over the protests of prosecutors.

    “Huckabee was—and likely remains—a true believer in the concept of restorative justice,” wrote Joe Carter, a veteran of Huckabee’s 2008 campaign who is now web editor of the conservative magazine First Things.

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