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The Life of Josh

Computer Engineer, Security Consultant, and Tech Nerd.

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Fire/Rescue/EMS

Interview about Google Glass

Tonight I did an interview about Google Glass as it relates to Firefighting and EMS;

https://plus.google.com/+JoshuaLevitskyFF/posts/a2sjaPdYHqb

I think it went well. I had the questions ahead of time and had my notes up on my screen but at the beginning of the video I was stupidly staring at my image in the bottom right corner of my screen which resulted in my eyes looking closed. I caught on and soon you see my eyes more. I think I did pretty well. There was one point I meant to make but somehow it didn’t get said. For Firefighter use of a variant of Google Glass I forgot to say that there needs to be a way to handle swiping. I was thinking if there was a switch you could move that with your gloved hand. Aside from that I think it went well…

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Tunnel to Towers 2010

Last year I did the 5k run/walk from Brooklyn to Ground Zero in full firefighter turnout gear. It was more of a walk than a run in all that gear. It was exhausting, but when you get to the end you realize walking for this charity is so very worthwhile. We lost a lot of good people on 9/11. We lose more good people every day who worked at the pile trying to save people, and then for a long while after trying to respect the remains of those who died. 

If you want to give to a good cause please click this link:  http://bit.ly/aExWQZ

Thanks for listening and if you will be there for the 2010 run/walk let me know if you need someone to walk with. I don’t know yet if I’ll do it in full turnout gear, but if there were other firefighters who wanted to then I would consider it. Just don’t expect a lot of running from me 🙂

NCFD Clam Bake 2010

Today was the annual clam bake for my Fire Department. This is a yearly event for only the members of the department. With all that’s been going on with Brandon having an infection and surgery I wasn’t sure if I should go, but in the end I was glad I did. Today began at 0900 at the Fire House. What was supposed to be 2 hours of preparation only took a little over an hour so we had some time to relax before the guys came for the clam bake. It is always a little weird seeing clams and shrimp. I still have never had either one in my life, and today wasn’t going to be the day I’d try one. The guys really seemed to like them, and the king crab legs, I think it was, but I grew up kosher so sea food and pork really have no interest for me. Probably good because I eat enough things already that will lead to an early death.

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Tunnel to Towers Run/Walk 2009

So this year I decided to finally do the Tunnel to Towers Run/Walk. Every year I glance at it on TV but I don’t tend to watch any 9/11 stuff for very long because it still bothers me. Still I always thought it would be healthy to do something positive to get my mind of of the bad stuff.

If you click the link above you can sponsor me and give money to good causes. I signed up as a walking Firefighter so the 3.1 miles shouldn’t be hard at all for me physically. Next year maybe I’ll be able to sign up as a running Firefighter, but this year I’m just not there yet. If you are like me and you find September to be a painful time then maybe this year at least go down to see the events because obviously sitting and doing nothing but stay away from 9/11 stuff hasn’t helped even 8 years later so why not try something new?

Passed my Firefighter I written exam

So I found out today that I got 82% on my Firefighter I written exam. I’m pretty happy just to get anything over a 70% since passing is passing no matter what score you get. The highest known score so far is 87% so 82% isn’t that bad. In May I still have my practical exam so I’m still a little nervous but it is great to have most of the class behind me.

Firefighter I – Ladders

Last night in Firefighter I class we worked with ladders. The 12′ straight, 14′-28′ extension, and 20′-35′ extension ladders as well as the Bergen County Fire Academy arial ladder on their truck. The truck is from I think the 1970’s and is a classic looking truck. Really nice, but I imagine completely unsafe for actual response outside of school. It has the open cab in the back so you sit on a bench in the open, and has only a metal bar as a door to that space. Still even if it isn’t the safest thing for anything more than school I really like old trucks like this.

If you don’t know what it looks like to climb up a ladder like the one on the truck at the academy, you basically just look up as you go, and just focus on your destination. It looks a little scary but on the ladder it really isn’t bad at all. I had to climb about halfway up and then hook a clip on a belt to a rung on the ladder. Once clipped on to the ladder you have to let go and lean back to show you trust the ladder and belt. Then you unhook from the ladder and go to the top. Once at the window that’s where it gets hard. You have to swing one leg out over the side of the ladder and in to the window. That one part is hardest for me and I think the source of my back pain today. At first I kept smacking my leg in to the rail on the ladder, but then I finally got the hang of it. Wasn’t bad at all in the end. Instructor Sulcov made the whole thing very easy and was an excellent teacher last night. Last night’s class was really good and the instructors all were great.

Next week is CBRNE class. That’s Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosive incidents. Basically the same as the BNICE class I took in New York after 9/11. BNICE was Biological, Nuclear, Incendiary, Chemical, and Explosive incidents. I had to take that when I was on Hatzolah ambulance in New York City. That class was kind of a joke. The training I had in Israel was much better than that class. It’s probably better now. I was in one of the first versions of the class I think. CBRNE is going to be two evenings and a full day so it has a lot of stuff in it.

 

Critical Incident Stress Management

In Firefighter I school we had Critical Incident Stress Management class. It’s about how to cope with bad stuff that you see on the job. There were three folks that taught the class. All three were Firefighters, but one was a Pastor, and another was going to school to become one. They are part of Project Phoenix which is a group that helps Fire / Rescue / EMS / PD cope in Northern NJ with really bad incidents. They could be bad because of size, like 9/11, or they could be bad because of the nature of the call, like if a child is killed.

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Davy Crockett for President

At Fair Lawn Rescue the other night, someone mentioned an Abraham Lincoln quote when we were talking about the $700 Billion bailout of the financial industry. I wanted to look up that quote but found a few more that were appropriate, and show just how much the United States has drifted from its roots, and of course I think about the pointless war in Iraq, and how President non-Elect Bush has lied to us. The quote he was referring to turned out to be from Davy Crockett, but it was still very fitting.

“Remember that a government big enough to give you everything you want is also big enough to take away everything you have.” ~Davy Crockett

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Drove Rescue 1

Last night I drove Rescue 1 for the first time. Brian Shore took Travis, Goof, Bubbie, Sergei, and me out to Memorial Park to drive around the parking lot. Aside from almost clipping the Chief of Police’s car, almost jumping a curb, and many bounces over speed bumps, we all did pretty well I think. After we got some dinner and hung out at Rescue until I was asked to come home because apparently my cat Kodee has become a menace. Time to drug him up with Clomicalm again… argh…