On Purpose

“Don’t outsource your mission.” These words could be from a military unit commander or the fire department chain of command, but instead they were issued by the local gym owner as a mandate as we seek our purpose in this life. The workout was set up as a fundraiser/dedication to …

Calibrated In A Time Of Chaos

“Wherever You Are, Be There” -This, as as seen on a bumper sticker on the back of a hybrid, while its disheveled driver swerved erratically as he talked on his phone and angrily jabbed a cigarette towards the front windshield. Wherever it was he was, it wasn’t here. It must …

Figures

Dark, cold and crazy. Three words to describe standing in front of the auto shop, dropping off the car at o’dark thirty and preparing to run in to work. It’s one thing to do a couple miles on a trail in the middle of the day, another to be on …

From The Foundation Up

One thing about dangling over the precipice and staring down: you can achieve some real clarity in moments while your brain is scrambling to find a way to survive the fall. I don’t really have the inclination to hang off of a rock cliff to develop direction, so I tend …

Heads Up

“STOP STARING AT THE FLOOR, ULI! HEADS UP!” This, shouted at the gym as I attempted some weird squat-thrust-back-jerk-heaving maneuver. After years of attendance here, you’d think I know better, but….you’d be, well, wrong. If you lift weights while looking at the mats, you betray form and risk injury. Pretty …

Language, Please

“If Only I’d….” There’s an old British adage out there, apparently, that says something like “tomorrow will never be as good as yesterday was.” If that is NOT a British adage, then it should be. That way of looking at life has defined the Lamenter for time immortal, and costs …

And I Ain’t Got Wings…

On one side of the kitchen table, a Lieutenant and the ladder truck driver play backgammon. Over in the recliners the Captain and two other firefighters are engrossed in a show with a marble-mouthed gold miner up in Alaska. There’s a firefighter holed up in the office likely watching shows …

Go With The Grain

“I just want to help” Every firefighter, every service member among us, has uttered those words at one time or another. So when she told me she was moving to a new house, my first reaction was to try and help, but we weren’t there anymore. Firemen are often said …

To Be Alive, Again

“I feel like I just came alive.”  Those were the first words spoken as our young patient was brought back from dancing perilously close to death from an overdose. These were followed up, somewhat amusingly, by: “Am I in the Matrix?”, and the ensuing confused fury that can often result …

Hi There, Been Awhile

This is the first essay I’ve written for Half Past Awesome in far too long. I walked away from the concept because I’d lost my own way and direction. Writing is a passion that allows me to convey the trainwreck of words in my brain slightly more lucidly, and having …