Question; Do you sell wildland firefighter memorabilia?
Answer; No...I just enjoy creating it as a means of staving off sudden onset dementia, although I give it away
sometimes. For example I gave one of my limited edition challenge coins and a set of patches to every GMIHC
family in addition to Sad Sack and Darrell Fuckin' Willis. I also gave a set to a good virtual friend of the IM blog
who holds the most important title in our Republic...Citizen. I have never met him in person, but I don't think that
is all that uncommon in this day and age. And in his case...he is a very concerned citizen about what happened
to the GMIHC and why, who has done extensive analysis and his own research on the Yarnell Hill Fire Disaster
and related issues while sharing his work with me in order to help me understand what happened and why.
Anyway, here is a photo of the shadow box he had made for his set and I think it turned out AMAZING! On an
interesting side note...this same citizen had his own experience with the GMIHC when they helped to save his
home during the Doce Fire. So...he is like a lot of us who can quote the Eric Marsh Foundation motto for our
own purposes,"To Us...Its's Personal." And he began like everyone else did by asking the same question all of
us ask, "How could this have happened?"
Question; What are some other things you do to help maintain you mental acuity?
Answer; Well...sometimes I repeat random 5 word sequences of nouns to prove that I still have great cognitive
awareness, skills and that I still all here, you know...mentally. I like to stay sharp just in case anybody forces me
to undergo a snap "Fitness For Duty" psychological examination while they pull my badge and creds in the
meantime (Yes...I still have a big gold federal badge and LE creds although they are stamped "retired", but
nobody ever notices that minor detail, especially when I put my thumb over that part). Don't laugh...it happened
TWICE during my second career because they were convinced I had to be crazy to do some of the things I did.
But I aced all of the tests both times...much to my employers disappointment. All they proved is that I suffer
from a much different condition.
Question; Oh really...what condition is that?
Answer; Huge brass balls.
Question; Can you give us some examples of the word exercises you use to stay sharp and to demonstrate that
you don't have cognitive impairment, suffer from Alzheimer’s, a stroke or multiple sclerosis?
Answer; Sure thing. Here goes nuthin'..."Person, woman, man, camera, TV."
Question; Okay...now can you repeat those same words? And if you repeat them in the same sequence...you
will get extra points.
Answer; You betcha'...that's an easy thing for me to do. "Person, man, woman, TV, video." There...do you see
now how that works? I bet you couldn't do it! The first time I did...a lot of people were very surprised and said,
"That’s an unbelievable thing, very rarely do people do what you just did."
Question; Well...you can certainly count me in that group, you are absolutely AMAZING! Are you currently
working on any new projects that you can share with us?
Answer; Well...I have my new "Death Head Hotshots" line of memorabilia under Research & Development as we
speak. But...I can't give you any details on this project at this time because I am saving it for the release of
Chapter 2 of my long awaited and highly acclaimed tome about hotshots, "Betrayed By Our Fire Gods."
Question; That is certainly disappointing...but I completely understand. "Death Head Hotshots?" Oh my
goodness, that sounds positevely...morbid.
Question; Yes...you were saying?
Answer; Although I am thinking seriously about bringing the "Death Head Hotshots" Challenge Coin from the
R&D phase into the prototype production phase. And yes....hotshots being burned to death on wildfires is a
morbid subject, but it is something we all have to think about now, especially after the Yarnell Hill Fire Disaster
of 2013. I'm afraid that nothing will shock me after that catastrophic incident and historical debacle. What was
once considered to be the unthinkable...is now our reality. Sure...we lost some pretty big and important parts of
three hotshot crews in history, one during the Foundation IHC Period, one during the Militarization IHC Period,
and one during the Industrialization IHC Period. But it took the staggering and previously unimaginable loss of
the entire GMIHC (except for Sad Sack) during the Modern IHC Period to turn our world upside down and leave
us dumbfounded while that shocking incident ushered in the current period...the Denial IHC Period.
Question; I now find myself even more impressed with your mental acuity than I was before. Wow...it really
sounds like you have given this a lot of thought? Can you tell us more about these IHC historical periods? And
finally...what brought on the latest period...the Denial IHC Period.
Answer; Thank you. Yes. Yes I could...but you are going to have to read my tome for additional details on these
historical IHC time periods. There were a lot of enablers...but I lay most of the blame at the feet of two people,
Mike Dudley and Shawna Legarza.
Question; Frankly...you sound like you are still very angry about what happened to the GMIHC? Are you? And
do you have an anger management problem?
Question; Yes and YES. But I don't consider my anger management "issues" to be a problem. I prefer the
nomenclature "issues" or perhaps "condition" to describe my anger management issues and condition.
Question; Oh really? Why is that?
Question; Because it motivates me to do the right thing...even when it's the hard thing to do. Now fuck off...I've
got cats to kill and contracts to fill. (Henry Stamper, "Sometimes a Great Notion." I learned everything I knew
about being a hotshot sawyer from watching this movie in 1971, which was mostly watch out for a barber chair.
Oh...and one more thing.
Question; Yes...what else would you like to share with us?
Answer; Yes...well, a pet peeve I have had ever since the deaths of the GMIHC is my firm belief that the training
supplied and endorsed by NWCG trained the crew to die by deploying their fire shelters in an area that was
about the size of a three car garage.
Question; Oh really? And what was so terrible about that?
Answer; Well according to the U.S. Forest Service's own experts, the GMIHC needed at least 16.5 acres in which
to successfully use fire shelters to survive the FIRE conditions they faced. And those FIRE conditions included
60 foot nearly horizontal flame lengths that burned at about 2000 degrees. It would have been like laying down
in front of a giant turbo charged acetylene torch with nothing more than a Thanksgiving Day turkey roasting
and basting bag to protect you. That FIRE turned the crew's turkey tents into so much silicate dust almost
instantly. The GMIHC in effect committed suicide by deploying their fire shelters under those circumstances and
in those conditions. And any other choice they could have made at the time would have been better than the
one their training conditioned them to make under extreme stress. I believe the extreme stress of their
circumstances caused them to go from Condition Red straight to Condition Black where their brains shut down
and they converted to full autopilot as they followed their training to a predictable outcome...which just
happened to be a very terrible and extremely painful death. You fight like you train and the NWCG trained the
GMIHC to die. Gee...how many other tens of thousands of WF out there who have had the same exact training? I
had the same training beginning in 1977 as a hotshot just like every other WF in America did in the aftermath of
the Battlement Creek Fire Disaster.
Except I was from the Old WF School of fire fightin', I never believed their lies and it hasn't changed since then.
And there were several other good choices available to the GMIHC at the time. I will cover this entire subject in
some detail in my book. I really wish the NWCG would completely revamp their entire fire shelter training
program before they are directly responsible for the deaths of any more WF. And they could start by using the
concepts expressed on my first two bumper stickers. I hereby give my creative work to them to help them save
WF lives...not kill them with their deeply flawed fire shelter training. The rest of my bumper stickers not so
much. Although I did take one of them (Wildland Firefighters Do It In Duff) all the way to the "minimum order"
stage because "duff" is a good inside joke. I think a couple of them are pretty funny. But then again...I have
hardcore WF and hotshot sense of humor. So...