I hope you all have a strong cup of regulah this morning. It's cold outside, I didn't sleep real well last night and this morning we learn of the official end of an era.
In case you've been living under a rock lately I'll just fill you in that the D.C. FEMS are not a new team to join that Lingerie Bowl league, although I wish it was. It's what Fire Chief Ken Ellerbe of the former District of Columbia Fire Department has decided, in his infinite and omniscient wisdom, that the citizens of D.C. want to see their fire and EMS department called. Now, originally Ellerbe said that the name change was going to better reflect the entire role of the DCFD and that is was about both missions, fire and EMS. Now it is evidently about what the people really want to see and hear about their fire and EMS department. Where he got this information from I have no idea. And furthermore I sincerely doubt any of the residents of DC really give a crap. Now, I know what you're going to say. "Kenny," you'd say, "if the citizens don't really care in the first place then what's the big deal?" "Who cares what the department's called?" Well, that argument does hold some water but here's my problem with it. You're making a change under false pretenses. You're making a change becuase it's, "what the people want!" Or because, "It better reflects what the department's overall role is." I say, if those are the only two reasons you are making a change, and one that sounds really, really dumb, and you are going to incur monetary encumberences in this time of econmoic downturn and budget crises, then you're an idiot. And probably an idiot who has political aspirations past the fire department. Oops. Was that my outside voice?
To make this whole thing worse there is collateral damage being done to our brothers and sisters in DCFD, er, DCFEMS. I'm not sure if they're on a quarter master system or if they have to pay out of pocket for uniforms and the like but according to my morning copy of The Secret List from FirefighterCloseCalls.com, it is going to cost members between $300 and $400 in new FEMS logo emblazzoned clothing. Any member caught wearing the old DCFD logo will be subject to disciplinary action. I'm seeing a lot of write-up's in the future just on principle. I'd take one happily, gotta tell 'ya. Not to mention that I'm sure they have to repaint all the rigs, change letterhead and a hundred toher things. So what's that going to cost? Maybe it doesn't matter since they're in DC. Maybe the DCFEMS can just raise their debt ceiling and do stuff without regard to budgets. Seems to work in the rest of the town, right?
This whole ridiculous thing goes back to the post I made a little while back I called, "Does It Really Matter? Really?". If you haven't read the post it is still available below. In it I talk about silly stuff that evidently Chiefs and such think is really, really important that really, really has no bearing on our job and our performance at all. Like changing the name of your organiztion to FEMS. Usually these things are done under the guise of better customer service, or representing the people you serve better or other such silliness. I dunno. As I state in that post, I just think that when people call 911 they want us to show up on a timely manner and perform our jobs well and professionally. They could really care less about what we are wearing our what our rigs say. But to change the name of a proud organization with a rich history to something that sounds so, well, silly under the premise that it's what the people want? How about addressing issues that really matter, where they really matter.
My regulah's cold. I'm gettin' off 'da Tailboard to go freshen it up some.