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cousins have invaded my house. At 6 and 3, they add just a bit of excitement
think of a subject to do a industrial security presentation on by Monday
Three Times A Lady.
hamburger & fries.
to take a shower as I am headed to see a movie in about an
21: Preparing for Jessie to move home.
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"To really love a woman to understand her
youve got to know what's deep inside, hear every thought, see every
dream and give her wings when she wants to fly..." (Bryan Adams, Have
you ever really loved a woman?)
Since early Thursday morning, I've been telling folks how big of a dumb ass
I am... Way too many people are agreeing with my observation.
Shortly after midnight Thursday morning, we were dispatched to a fire at
an old, abandoned grain storage facility. There was heavy fire showing when
we arrived but we had a chance to contain the fire to one wing of the structure.
Alongside the fire building were five doors made of sheet metal and wood.
They were about four feet wide by 12 feet tall and offered the only access
we had to the building. Originally, these doors slid along the walls of the
building on metal rails but time had locked most of them in place.
When sliding the doors on their rails didn't work, another firefighter and
I tried to pull one free from the building. The door was stubborn and remained
in place. I grabbed a pike pole (a long pole with a hook on the end used
for pulling down ceilings) and tried another door. I hooked the door near
the top and pulled. With our previous failure to pull down a door fresh on
my brain, I didn't expect my efforts to be successful. I was wrong. The door
came down... right on top of me.
Luckily, I wasn't directly under the door. I didn't fall down but stumbled
back a few steps into the arms of another firefighter. He assured me that
I was alright and, with my mission completed, we moved on.
Except that everything looked a little funny -- sort of out of focus.
I stopped in my tracks and pulled my safety goggles off of my face and up
onto my helmet. I then took off my prescription glasses to discover my problem:
one lense was missing. I swapped out my regular specs with a pair I usually
wear while firefighting and went back to work.
We had the fire extinguished in about an hour or so. After mopping up and
reloading our equipment, I solicited the help of about six dozen firefighters
to help me look for the missing lense. We searched for the better part of
five or ten minutes before someone asked, "you said you were wearing your
goggles?" When I said, "yes," he shined his flashlight at my face and said,
"I found it."
The lense had fallen off into the frame of the safety goggles and remained
there through the rest of the fire. It never dawned on me to look in my goggles.
I had thanked the guys for their help and announced to the group that I had
to be the dumbest son of a bitch in all of the world.
I guess all that matters is that the fire was put out, nobody was hurt and
I found my lense. Of course, more than three days later... I'm still feeling
like a mental midget.
A memory just popped into my head out of the blue the other day and left
me sitting there sad for a moment. I'm not sure what brought it on, but it
made enough impact for me to have thought about it several times since then.
On the last day of my trip
to Washington, D.C. last year,
and I went off on our own while our group was visiting the Air and Space
Museum. We were both taking an aviation class that semester and it was
interesting to be able to understand both the history of the event some of
those planes were a part of... but also the history of the planes themselves.
Shortly before it was time to rejoin our group, we sat down on a bench on
the upper level. We didn't say much at all. We just sort of sat there and
I can remember a few moments where I needed to use that hand for something
like scratching my head or moving one of our packages, but I put that stuff
off. It was the last day of our trip and I figured that she would go weird
on me again when we got home. I wanted to savor the moment. I guess I was
successful. Here it is nine months later and I can still remember it
I haven't seen
Alex in two months. I believe that's the
longest we've gone without seeing each other since we met. Do I miss her?
Hmmm. The jury is still out on that one.
She was an oddball from the time we returned from Washington until we left
school. I didn't get to see her on graduation day because of other commitments.
I called her the week of her birthday (in late May) and she called me after
my fireworks display July 4th. Other than those two phone calls, communication
has been limited to a couple of e-mails...
Date: Tue, 03 Jul 2001 05:25:25 -0500
From: Thomas Fletcher <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Hey, am I ever gonna see you again?
From : "alex"
To : email@example.com
Subject : Re: Question
Date : Tue, 03 Jul 2001 17:20:17
Maybe it was the e-mail that
inspired her July 4th phone call.
(Part of me wishes she called
because she remembered being at my house
last year for Independence
Day. Of course, that's the unrealistic part of me.) I'm
living without her. She's living without me. I guess that should say it