Sunday, December 28, 2008

SPEED Gives ‘Wrecked’ a Second Season

This show, by far, is my favorite show on televison right now. I'm psyched that it will be back for a second season. I think O'Hare is an AWESOME operation and sees some pretty cool incidents.

SPEED Gives ‘Wrecked’ a Second Season
Written by: Erik Arneson 12/15/2008 - 04:43 PM

For a tow operator there is no "clock out and go home" time, it is always
on, 24-7.

After a strong first season, culminating with a Thanksgiving Day marathon,
Bill, Joey and Marci Gratzianna and the rest of the gang from Chicago’s O’Hare
Towing & Recovery will be back on SPEED in 2009, as the network announced it
is picking up the popular prime time series Wrecked for a second season.


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

NYPD Pizza

I vaguely remember reading about this establishment in the NY Daily News a while ago, at the time it was only one resturant in Florida, I believe and battaling NYPD over the name.

My suprise when I was going downtown to check out the new Metro Rail station in Austin that I noticed this, kind of tucked away behind the convention center and large hotel. I'm not sure if it was in business or closed, or opening soon. Tints too dark to see through.

I know some Police Officer's have family who make awesome pies, but I can't see the connection between people who have never even been to NYC and pizza?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

3 Years Ago Today, I Was A Firefighter

How life can change so quickly.

Three years ago today, I graduated from the Westchester Career Firefighters Academy Class 03-05, my certificate of completion was presented to me by the Commisioner Of The Department Of Emergency Services, Anthony Sutton. I was proud and humbled to recieve the "Instructors Award" for my enthusiasm and spirit. Most importantly, I had finally acheived the dream of becoming a Hartsdale Firefighter. My goal was to become a firefighter, learn, and slowly work my way up the ranks, like most new probies do.

For the first year, things were exciting. I was learning a ton, salary was great for someone my age, I was going to be getting married, had our first apartment that we owned. I remember my first time driving Engine 170, my first time operating TL-15. Everything was going great until January 27, 2007, when everything changed forever when I was severly injured on department property due to construction negligence.

Although I physically and emotionally suffered tremendously during the time, I fought to recover as quickly as possible to get back on the job.But no matter what I did, obstacles were purposely thrown in my way. Many of you know the story, and I have it well documented for further publication, so I won't get into it here. After all the stuff my family and I were put through, I put it in perspective now.

While the same old Hartsdale dictator, politics and people continue to rule the department with greed and corupption because that's all they have in their lives, I look at my "new" life here in Texas. I have a wife whom I love, two new puppies, a new house, a great job, and I live in an awesome city. My lifestyle down here I definetly wouldn't be able to afford up north. I wouldn't go back to Hartsdale FD if someone was to pay me a million dollars. I feel sorry for the younger guys who have to work in that retirment home. I pray each day for their safety and well being, and hope their climbing the ranks will actually change Hartsdale. Time shall tell wheter they are corrupted and beaten down by the "elders" when they reach that point.

Unlike working at Hartsdale, I actually EARN my living, and make an impact in peoples lives each day. I don't sit around all day, months sometimes, waiting for "the next big one", if there is even one. Because, for me, "the next one" is always there after you clear the ED. I can go home and say that person is alive because of my partner and I. Not once did I say that while working for Hartsdale.

Maybe Hartsdale wasn't the place for me in the grand scheme of things. But I deserved and earned that job, and it was taken unfairly from me, and no one is held accountable for it. They even made it so I could not transfer to another department. They lost a TON of talent when they lost me. That still, and always will, irk me.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

30 Degrees

When I left my house this morning, it was 30 degrees out.

When we moved down here, I was hoping to escape the cold!! It was actually warmer in NY today then here in Round Rock!

Still, I don't have to worry about clearing my driveway and car of snow....all I've got to worry about is the already crazy Texas drivers with ice thrown into the equasion!!!! I'm hoping for no precip!

Friday, December 12, 2008

8 Years

Bruce Granville, 55, of Hartsdale, died tragically on Tuesday, December 12, 2000. He was born on January 31, 1945 in Brooklyn to Harold and Doris Granville. He was raised and educated in Rye. Mr. Granville was a retired police officer with the Village of Ardsley. During and after his retirement he owned and operated Granville Police Products in Hartsdale, a business he ran for over 30 years. On October 22, 1977 Bruce married Susan Cabot in Scarsdale. He was an avid fisherman, hunter and had a great affinity for Harley Davidson Motor Cycles. Most of all, he took care of his family. He was an exceptional father who had a gentle spirit and was very kind. Survivors including his beloved wife Susan are two loving children Seth and Danielle. Bruce is the beloved son-in-law of Rosalind Cabot. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated Saturday at 10 AM at St. Barnabas Episcopal Church, Revolutionary Rd., Ardsley. Visiting will be Thursday and Friday 2-4 and 7-9 pm, Edwards-Dowdle Funeral Home. Memorials to the Westchester Coalition for the Hungry & Homeless, 48 Mamaroneck Avenue, White Plains, NY 10601 or The Rosebud Sioux Indian Tribe, PO Box 430, Rosebud, SD 57570, att: Jim Wike. EDWARDS-DOWDLE FUNERAL HOME, INC. 64 Ashford Ave. (Saw Mill Exit 17) Dobbs Ferry (914)693-3330

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Williams County EMS New Paint Scheme

My hometown EMS agency has changed their paint scheme....right after I started liking their old paint scheme after thinking it was outdated! However, the new design is awesome.

(All photos by me)

New Williamson County, TX EMS Medic Unit
2009 Ford F-350/MedTec Type I (Refurbished/remounted box)

Williamson County EMS Medic Unit in old paint scheme

2008 Ford F-350/Wheeled Coach

Extreme Trains

As many know, I'm a big fan of trains, mostly commuter.

I discovered this new show, "Extreme Trains", on the History Channel that goes behind the scenes of railroads.

The episodes I've seen are the one that profiles the Amtrak Acela train and route, and a Union Pacific freight train as it travels from Los Angeles to Fort Worth, TX.

For any train fans out there, this show is a MUST!

Friday, November 28, 2008


I'm noticing all these "Black Friday" sales starting earlier and earlier each year.....some stores are even opening at 3AM!!

While there are some bargains to be had, it's a little ridiculous to have to get up at 3AM to get them. It's also not fair to the store employees, who have to get up so early on the day after a major holiday and deal with the madness that come along with these sales.

But, I guess opening the stores earlier results in more sales, technically, which must make the books look good.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

So, I'm On Facebook

I used to think that Facebook was just for college kids, and never thought I would join.

Well, after hearing more and more cool things about Facebook recently from my friends, I decided to join.

I couldn't believe how many of my friends were on Facebook, and this now makes it easier then ever for me to stay connected.

This is like the internet's local "Pub".

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Interesting Episode Of "Prototype This"

Tonight at 10PM EST on the Discovery Channel (and repeating at 2AM):

Prototype This! Robotic Firefighter Assistant The team attempts to build a hi-tech Pyro Pack to help firemen see in burning buildings and a robotic fireman to carry gear up flights of stairs and a victim back down.

Will also repeat this weekend and on the Science Channel.
Sound interesting, and I'm looking foward to watching!!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

In Memory Of Lt. Thomas Salvatore II, Empress EMS

As I refelect back on what's happened in Novembers past, I always remember "Tommy Sal".

It's been almost 9 years since his passing. Tommy was a street Paramedic Supervisor for Empress EMS. I worked with him during the early years of my EMS career, back when I was an EMT.

Tommy was alway laid back, friendly, approachable, and a great teacher. I remeber his love for his Supervisor's Tahoe, no matter how much it gave him problems! He always had a great spirit despite the valiant battle with Lupus and the health problems it caused him.

I remember the last time I saw Tommy, it was on a ventilator at Sound Shore Medical Center's ICU, and then at the funeral home across the street from city center.Tommy died of complications from Lupus disease.

His death was a tremendous loss for the Empress EMS family, his own family, fiance, and friends, not to mention the EMS community as a whole.

There's a whole new generation at Empress EMS now who probaly have a whole new set of supervisors. I come from when the old Empress was ending, and the "new" Empress was beginning to emerge. I remember "306 on the back", but there was nothing like hearing "301" on the air.

I reflect on a lot of the EMS lessons he taught me, and to this day remember the wide variety of calls we did together. Tommy's fellow supervisors have gone on to new careers now, but were just as awesome as him. I didn't realize it at the time, but it really was an era. I think about it, especially with all my fellow alumni who are active members of this forum.

Remember 301.

Thomas A. Salvatore III died on November 26, 1999 at the age of 33. He was born
in New Rochelle on January 30, 1966, the son of Thomas A. and Janet Longo
Salvatore. He graduated from New Rochelle High School and is a veteran of the
United States Navy. He was a Paramedic Supervisor with the Empress Ambulance.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

My Photos:

Don't forget, you can view all my photos that I take over at my photo site,

Original Carvel Finally Closes

As detailed in a previous blog entry, the original Carvel has shut down in Hartsdale, and will be demolised in a few weeks to make room for a new(and yet another) japanese steakhouse, according to a banner outside the store.

Also, the closing was mentioned on last week's "Saturday Night Live Weekend Update". It's cool it made it to such a iconic show!!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

"Jimmy Boy" Arena: 3 Years

Today marks 3 years since "Jimmy Boy" left this world, leaving our hearts scarred but teaching us many lessons.

Jimmy Boy's spirit is still in my heart, and he was an unbelievable child. And, to this day, his parents work tirelessly while Jimmy Boy looks down from above to turn their tragedy into hope and courage for many other families.

Thoughts and prayers are with the Arena family on this difficult day.

Friday, August 08, 2008

x635: A New Begining

Yes, I've moved to Austin, TX.

To those who are just finding out about this, I was trying to keep it on the down low for a while for personal reasons and hope many of you will understand.

Kris and I are very happy in our new hometown, it's a great place to live and raise a family, and is insanely affordable. Austin is definetly not like the Texas stereotype!! Austin is a very beautiful, vibrant, friendly community with plenty of things to do and see. It is so much more relaxed then Westchester. And no more snow!!!

Although their are certain things I will miss a lot, like my many friends, I'm excited about this new chapter in my life, especially after what I've been through over the past few years.

My email remains the same, If you want my new cell phone number, please email me.

Don't worry about EMTBravo....I started it in Boston and will continue to administrate from here in Austin and have an excellent NY based staff.

The only things is, my photos from the area will be limited, as I can't afford to make too many trips back and forth. But I hope when I come back, that I can get as many photos as possible of the things that have changed and new deliveries, and some of you would be willing to help me with that.

Seth G.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Call 911!

There's a new show on the Investigation Discovery Channel (ID) called "Call 911".

It's very reminiscent of the old "Rescue 911", except it's major focus is on those who are the true first responders.....the men and women who make sure the right people get to the right place at the right time....dispatchers.

Tivo it or make sure you catch an's an awesome show.

Friday, August 01, 2008

YouTube On Tivo

You can now watch any and all YouTube videos right on your TV if you have a Tivo device. All the viral videos, everything, right there from the comfort of your own couch.

That's in addition to the thousands of movies and TV episodes you can download from Amazon Unbox, and Music Videos from MusicChoice.

Tivo rocks!! (and keeps getting better!)

Saturday, July 26, 2008

The Dark Knight

Last night, Kristen and I went to see the latest installment in the Batman series, "The Dark Knight".

The movie was awesome. Heath Ledger's performance as the Joker made the movie for me, especially considering it was one of the last roles he'd ever play. He was completly in character, unbelievably scary, portraying the Joker as a psychotic mass murder. His peformance was chilling. Christian Bale also plays a great Batman, and the rest of the movie had that typical "Batman cool", even if it didn't have the "Wham" "Pow" sequences.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Volunteering: As American As Apple Pie

I'll be the first to admit that I have some issues with volunteer firefighters and EMT's. I think that their training and fitness levels need to be held to the same level as those who hold the role as career. They also need to be held to the same disciplinary standards as well. And, when they continuously can't get to an emergency in a timely fashion, they need to admit they need help and put pride aside.

However, volunteering is one of the purest forms of being a Patriot. This country was built on people who volunteered to make their country better. Nowadays, we're seeing less and less of that as peoples priorites and focus have shifted.

The volunteer fire and EMS service remains one of the strongest remenants of true community service. Sure, there may be people who do it for self-serving reason, but those people are in the minority. In a volunteer department, you'll find people of all age ranges, from all different backgrounds. I find one of the best parts of the volunteer fire and EMS service is that it introduces young people to community service, and is often the foundation of a solid career path.

Although some volunteer agencies may play up the social club aspect, it's also a great support system for members during times of hardship. Volunteer FF's are usually there for one another regardless, sometimes even more so then the career side.

How many people in your community are actually INVOLVED, actively, continuously, in the improvement of the commununity. Whether you volunteer for your local ambulance corps, or for Habitat For Humanity, it's my feeling that everyone should be obligated to give back to the community and those less fortunate then us.

Monday, July 07, 2008


The "Discovery Home" network has changed it's format, now called "Planet Green". All programing is related to sustainability, and how we can make a smaller impact on our enviroment.

In May 2004, Greensurg, Kansas was struck by an "enhanced" F-5 tornado, one of the largest ever recorded. It wiped out the entire town of 600 people. Homes, schools, Main Street, utilities, everything demolished. Except the Town's resolve.

The town was a typical midwest farming town, struggling to get by before it was wiped out. Living in "FEMville", a village of temporary trailers provided by FEMA, many residents remained with what little they had left and vowed to rebuild Greensburg.

But they took this tragedy and viewed it as a clean slate for the town. They were going to rebuild the entire town. But, it would be "green". With help from international "green" experts, this show will document Greensburg's efforts to become an example to the world that green living is more then just a term.

This 13 episode series, produced by an actor that's using his power to make us more eco-concious, Leonardo DiCaprio, airs Sunday night on Planet Green, formerly Discovery Home. I highly reccomend you tune in, it puts things in check and gives inspiration. From tragedy comes a clean slate, and I'm confident that this series, and this town, will open a lot of minds.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Hartsdale's New Engine 170

Well, I FINALLY found some photos of the new Engine 170, and it looks AWESOME! I really like the in-cab turnout gear storage, and the high visiblity front bumper. It's clear this engine was thought out and designed with the needs of the way Hartsdale operates. I give props for being able to fit a TON of equipment on it, including a CAFS (props for that) AND keep a low hosebed!!!

Hartsdale, NY Engine 1702007 Spartan Gladiator Extreme Duty/4 Guys Fire Apparatus

Station: Hartsdale Station 1, S. Central Ave & W. Hartsdale Ave ("4 Corners")


(More Photos At That Link)

Congrats to HFD, and best of luck!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

We Are Marshall

I just finished watching "We Are Marshall", recently released to premium cable after a theater run earlier this year.

EXCELLENT movie! It details the tragedy that Marshall University's football team suffered after a charter plane carrying almost the entire team, coaches, fans, and supporters crashed just short of a West Virginia runway, killing all 75 aboard.

The story documents the tragedy, and how Marshall University rebuilt it's football program after this devastating loss. The story is fascinating.

What I found to be the best part of the movie is that they used real footage. Some people who were involved in this whole ordeal had cameos in the movie. And at the end, they showed the actual person side by side with the actor playing that character.

Add this movie to your list!

High Visibilty Makes It To The Crown Vic

First time I've seen high-visiblity striping on a Crown Vic Police Interceptor. It really makes the car stand out.

Kudos to this agency for this progressive move!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Regional EMS EMT-RPS Benevolent Fund Needs Our Help

Monday April 14th, a Regional EMS ambulance was involved in a horrific
motor vehicle accident in West Nyack, NY. The driver is expected to make a full
recovery. However, the passenger was very seriously hurt. She sustained multiple
traumatic injuries and had to air lifted to Westchester Medical Center, where in
surgery they had to amputate her right arm. She is still in the ICU where her
other injuries still require attention. She is only 21 years old.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

A Really Loud Bumper

A while back, I shot this bumper of an engine. I must say, I really like it and it really makes the apparatus stand out in traffic. Much better then traditional chrome, and I feel this adds to the safety of responding apparatus. And, it's a cost-efficient addition to safety.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Don't miss Disturbed on FX tomorrow night!

For anyone who's a huge fan of the band Disturbed, such as myself:
(From the Disturbed email list)
Don't miss Disturbed on FX tomorrow night!
Tune in to FX on your cable
system this Saturday night the 12th at 11pm (all time zones) to see an edited
version of Operation Myspace - the show Disturbed recently played in Kuwait and
broadcast live on Myspace. The show will feature Disturbed's performance of
"Down With The Sickness."
Don't miss it!
Get the new album cover for
The cover was released this morning to people on the mobile
list first, but now we're sending to everyone. The cover for Disturbed's new
album was created by famed comic illustrator David Finch, and is available as a
high-res image by clicking here. Check it out!
Get your limited edition of
the new album!
Make sure to pre-order your limited edition of their upcoming
album 'Indestructible' by clicking here.
Pre-order your copy here today
before supplies run out. This is your chance to get the best package of
Disturbed's highly anticipated new album 'Indestructible.'
And make sure to
sign up to the mobile list on if you haven't already. Everyone on
that list will get to see the album cover for 'Indestructible' first!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Risk Takers: Phoenix FD On Discovery HD Theatre

For anyone who has access to the Discovery HD Theatre channel, they have a great show that's filmed in HD called "Risk Takers".

Previous episodes I've seen have featured the Coast Guard and Loggers. With beautiful HD photography, this 51 minute shows takes a comprehensive look at inherently dangerous jobs.

Yesterday, I saw an episode that featured Phoenix FD Engine 25 and Engine 725. The camera crew rode along for a 24 hour shift. During this shift, they caught two structure fires, and numerous medical calls and car accidents.

I feel they did an excellent job of explaining why firefighting is so dangerous, and why firefighters do what they do. They also showcased Phoenix FD's extreme customer service. They showed the crew going to Wal-Mart in the middle of the night, after overhaul, to get one of the standed occupants a robe. For the other fire, they did SALVAGE- just like in the textbook- and provided the family with boxes and bags, and helped them collect what remained of their possesions.

The captain featured has many near-death experiences in his 25 year career, including a two story fall, and getting hit by a car driven by a drunk driver at 70MPH while unloading the stretcher from the back of the ambulance- his partner was killed, and he walked away.

They also showcased some of the technology used by Phoenix FD, like CAFS and GPS routing and aerial satellite views of structures, which was really impressive.

Another neat thing they showed is Phoenix FD has a "Family Day", every Sunday, where the working crew's families can come to the firehouse for dinner.

I did feel some portions of the show were redundant, at least for me on my level, but I really enjoyed it.

Friday, March 21, 2008

My Yonkers Code 3 Engine 306

I just got a very nice suprise gift (early from the Easter Bunny). Code 3's latest release, Yonkers Engine 306, the 2004 American Lafrance Eagle, and it is BEAUTIFUL!!! Very highly detailed, and I'm proud to add it to my collection. Goes great with the Mack CF Engine 306 released a few years ago.

Special thanks to the late Deputy Chief Chris Kiernan (Car 4), Yonkers Chief William Fitzpatrick, Commissioner Anthony Pagano, Joe Pinto and John Dunkel at Code 3 for making this model happen!

Here are some shots of mine. All photos by me. Sorry for the quality, for some reason I can't seem to shoot the minature apparatus inside, lol:

Thursday, March 20, 2008

President Bush's Draft Plan

While listening to Sirius Satellite Radio, the "Raw Dog" live stand up comedy channel, I heard a really funny theory by a comedian. I forget his name, I want to say Lewis Black though.

As some may know, I feel "President" Bush and other political leaders are making the gap between the poor and rich bigger every day. Soon, they're won't be a middle class, IMO.

Anyways, with the 5th Anniversary of the War In Iraq, some group is always floating the "Draft!" scare tatic around.

As this comedian noted, it's in President Bush's plan to make a gap between the rich and the poor.....that way, the Army can advertise ""Need three square meals a day and a bed to sleep in, JOIN THE ARMY!!" No need for a draft when you have desperate poor people!

I thought that was a pretty funny observation-credit to the comedian who came up with that.

Banks Charge You More To Be Poor!

I think banks take advantage of the poor, and reward the rich.

Here's why.

When you overdraft because you don't have sufficient funds, they bang you with these ridiculous fees that are sometimes significantly higher then the overdraft was. You're already in a hole, and they're making it even harder for you to get out! Or, if your account falls below a certain limit, they charge your for that as well! They call you, or email you, and say that they're "concerned" about your "lack of funds", and that your account is in jeporady of being closed. YEAH, you're not the only one whose concerned about my "Lack Of Funds". Ugh!

And credit card companies- charge you higher APR's because your credit score is lower?

However, if you're rich, banks practically GIVE you more money. They reward you with points, lower interest rates, etc.

It's just not right. This is another reason why the poor are getting poorer and the rich are getting richer.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Hartsdale Fire District New Engine 170 Spy Shots

Here are some spy shots of Hartsdale FD's new Engine 170, that are on the dealer's page

It looks awesome! I was so looking foward to working and driving on this rig!
(Photo by Firehouse ApparatusAnd Equipment Inc)

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Chips, Candy, Or A Camera?

Well, it's official. You can now buy ANYTHING via a vending machine. Here's one I noticed selling Canon Digital Cameras, Apple Ipods, Microsft Zunes, etc while passing through a major airport recently.

Cool concept, and they do have somewhat of a captive audience in the airport...who are likely to make a purchase like that for their vacation or travel.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Holmes On Holmes

On my cable system, one of the few channels they carry beyond the "standard" cable channels is Discovery Home Network. This channel focuses on all things related to your home.

On Discovery Home, the carry a show called "Holmes On Homes" . It's a show that originates in Canada, where it airs on the Canada cable channel "Home And Gardens", where it is the highest rated show on the network.

It features this AWESOME general contractor, who goes in and fixes up houses for homeowners that have been victimized by shady or negligent contractors.

Mike, seems like an awesome and down-to-earth guy. He is knowlegable about all things home, and he puts all the problems encountered in an easy-to-understand manner. He makes the show very enjoyable and very educational to watch.

If you have Discovery Home, I highly reccomend checking it out or Tivo'ing it.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Changing The Look...

I've changed the look of my blog, amonst some other newly added features and changed lingo. I also plan on starting to "blog" more often again, I know the blog has been relatively dormant for a while, but that's going to be keep checking back!

A Gas Station Without Gas

There is a Sunoco gas station on Central Ave, just north of West Hartdale Ave that I've been a customer of for a while.

A few months ago, every couple of days they'd run out of gas, then the pumps would break and be down for a couple of months. Several months ago, they replaced the pumps with brand new one. However, the pump are installed and ready to go-yet they still aren't turned on.

This gas station has a 24 hour Sunoco Mart, which tends to do great business, especially during the overnight hours. However, you ask the clerk when the gas is coming back, and he just shrugs-like he didn't even know they sold gas.

They can't even sell cigarettes anymore, a penalty of selling to minors. However, their overnight liquor and "other" sales to shady characters, some of which make the place a regular hangout, makes me wonder how and why they are staying in business.

The station is kept clean, at least. I just wished it had GAS!!!!

A Golden Oppurtunity At Hartsdale's 4 Corners

Just south of the intersection of Central Ave and West Hartsdale Ave (4 Corners) in Hartsdale, lies a golden real estate oppurtunity- and an oppurtunity for a desperately needed retail establishment.

We all know from my previous blog posts that Barnes and Noble is vacant, and Carvel (next door) will be closing. Well, now Carvel's neighbor, Domain, which is a high end furniture store, is going out of business.

Combined, and with appropriate traffic managment upgrades, this would be THE perfect spot for a Super Stop and Shop. The residents of Greenburgh, and Hartsdale, don't have a modern supermarket.

We have A&P and Pathmark on Central Avenue and Knollwood Rd, both of which are cramped, crowded, dirty, and obsolete.Central Avenue needs a full service, modern supermarket, and the Super Stop And Shop concept would fit perfectly in that location.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Rockstar Energy Mayhem Festival!!!

The most anticipated summer music tour of my life has been announced....the Rockstar Energy Mayhem Festival!!

The headliners are two of my favorite bands and vocalists.......Disturbed featuring David Draiman and Slipknot featuring Corey Taylor on the main stage. Both will have NEW music from their NEW albums coming out in the spring! (which I'm also stoked about)

Among some of the other bands that are on the bill are Sevendust and Five Finger Death Punch, which I also really, really like.

I'm not sure which venue I'm going to go see it at when tickets go on sale, but I am stoked about it!

There Will Be Blood

Yesterday, Kris and I went to see the feature film, "There Will Be Blood" at the Regal Cinemas at Cortlandt Town Center.

First, I haven't been to the movie theater at Cortlant Town Center since it openened in the late 90's. We usually frequent the Cinema De Lux at City Center in White Plains. While I love the seating at White Plains, I find everything else about Regal at Cortlandt Town Center to be better. It's cleaner, the pre-fim "entertainement" is much higher quality, and most importantly, they pop the popcorn fresh.

OK, enough about the theatre. The movie, "There Will Be Blood", was awesome. Two thumbs up from me, and I highly reccomend seeing it while it's on the big screen. It's a story about an evil man, Daniel Plainview (played by Daniel Day-Lewis who gives an awesome performance playing the character-some of the best acting I've ever seen). who starts out as a silver miner who works his way up to an "oilman", prospecting and drilling for oil in the early days of the industry.

The cinematography was awesome, and scenery visually stunning. The story brilliant, and the way the whole movie it put together just captivates you. I loved the way the story was told, and the way the charecters were portrayed. I wasn't completly satisfied by the ending, but that's just because I wanted more. An epic classic. A quality films that gives me faith in the movie industry-there are still some great films out there.

I don't want to give to much away, so GO SEE IT! In the meantime, watch the trailer here:

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

A Mack-Lafrance?

With the recent Chapter 11 filing of American LaFrance, I pondered what the future could be for one of the largest fire apparatus manufacturers in the nation.

Then I though about Mack. They are a financially healthy unit of Volvo Trucks, and I feel if they got back into the fire apparatus market, they'd make a killing off the name alone...provided they could keep up the quality.

Mack could use American Lafrance's infastracture, including their brand new factory, and combine two legacies in fire apparatus to make for a potentially very powerful fire apparatus chasis and body manufaturing company.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

F/S: Virgin America Credit JFK To LAX OR SFO

I currently have an unused credit on Virgin America in the amount of $360.00

Virgin America is a very stylish new carrier that flies from JFK to Los Angeles International Or San Francisco International. If you're looking to take a buffing trip to either of these cool buffing cities, this is a GREAT deal! I was planning on a trip this February to LA but can't go due to financial reasons.

Check out the airline here:

Make me an offer: EMAIL

NOTE: You will have to provide me with your name and address, and flights for me to book the travel, since the credit is currently in my name. I accept payment only via PayPal (you can pay via Credit or Debit card, E-Check, or Paypal through that method)

Monday, January 28, 2008

One Year

Today marks one year since I was seriously injured while at work on Hartsdale Fire District property.

I'm very lucky to say that I've recovered from my injuries, and have been cleared by both my personal doctors as well as my department's doctors to return to work full duty as a Firefighter.

It's been quite a year, and I give special thanks to my wife Kristen for getting me through it. She is my rock. This year has also given me the oppurtunities to see many people's true colors, and I really pity those people who've intentionally have tried and tried to kick me while I was down. But my spirit remains as strong as ever, and those people remain as miserable and pathetic as ever.

I am still as proud as ever to be a Firefighter with the Hartsdale Fire District, my dream job that I waited numerous years for. I've been employed there for over two years now. I can't wait until I get the letter telling me to return to work, something I have been waiting for for over 6 months. I love my job, and I love serving my community, and hopefully I'll be back soon behind the wheel of TL-15!!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Breaking Bad

Last night, Kris and I caught the premiere episode of "Breaking Bad", a new drama series on AMC. Yes, AMC, AKA American Movie Classics. This show has nothing to do with American movie classics, so I don't know why it's on AMC, but I digress.

The series centers around a character named Walter White (Bryan Cranston, the dad from ("Malcolm in the Middle"). He is a high school chemistry teacher who lives in Albequque, New Mexico. He has a handicapped son, a pregnat wife, and works on the side at a car wash.

During the first episode, he is diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. Worried about supporting his family, he teams up with a former student and steals supplies from the High School chemistry lab to make "perfect" crystal meth.

I don't want to spoil the episode, so I wont give away too much. I highly recommend checking this show's something fresh and new amongst the midst of the writers strike, and it will leave you wanting more.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

"Firefighters 'feel the heat' in new training facility


"Firefighters 'feel the heat' in new training facility
Richard Liebson • The Journal News • January 17, 2008

VALHALLA - Firefighters are only as good as their training and for local
departments, the training just got a little better.Westchester County yesterday
unveiled its new live burn room, which allows first responders to practice under
the most realistic conditions possible. The $22,000 burn room, where fires
fueled by hay and wood are set for training exercises, is on the fourth floor of
the Department of Emergency Service's six-story training tower."You don't have
to go far to see that our downtowns are growing and that high-rise buildings are
going up," County Executive Andrew Spano said during a training demonstration
involving the Fairview, Hartsdale, New Rochelle and White Plains fire
departments. "Firefighting in these buildings is very different than what we're
used to, and it's critical that we provide firefighters with the best training
possible for the new challenges they face

Yet another training oppurtunity I missed out on, as I am still unable to return to work despite being cleared by doctors months ago. Another story for another day, just makes me frusterated to keep missing great training oppurtunities. I can't wait to train in this new simulator, though. It would have been great if it were there during probie school. This is definetly a great asset, especially with buildings getting taller and taller. It also test's firefighter's ability to fight fire on a different level (excuse the pun) and their endurance to set up and fight the fire.

Hartsdale Fire Chief Walter Schoonmaker agreed, saying the drill demonstrates
"how well the different fire departments can work together. The burn room is
great because it creates a more realistic training atmosphere. With a real fire
going in there, the guys feel the kind of heat they'll face doing an interior

Departments do work well together, it doesn't take a burn room to demonstrate that. Guys who are at the level to use this simulator understand the heat they'll face, I feel this simulator is more geared towards the logistics of fighting a high-rise fire, rather then to have the "feel the heat". I feel that some of the Chiefs who are involved with this drill should be learning and training on ICS as it relates to high rise fires, as well as other logistical concerns. Not only is this an oppurtunity for firefighters, but for leaders as well to see how they deploy and sharpen their leadership skills.


Monday, January 14, 2008

Snow: What A Rip Off!

So yesterday, weather forecasters and everyone else were in a frenzy over "the first big snowstorm of 2008.

As I went to bed around 10PM last night, it was raining pretty hard. I was expecting, and excited, to wake up and see snow on the ground and the flakes still falling.

What do I wake up to? Another boring January day, no snow, not even on the ground, courtesy of global warming.

Seasons-what seasons? Seems like each year that line gets more and more vague.

Friday, January 11, 2008

A Manitex Based Heavy Rescue?

Now here's an impressive vehicle that I'm suprised hasn't made it's way onto the USAR circuit yet. This vehicle seems very versatile, and with some compartmentation (including modular units), this could make a great support vehicle for a USAR team.

I wonder if the Manitex folks could partner with a fire apparatus firm to market this as a USAR unit?

2007 Sterling Acterra Mercedes Diesel/Manitex 38124 SHL
Photo by me