Wednesday, September 29, 2010
From My Writer's Police Academy Notes: On Firefighters
A group of student firefighters raised the flag our first morning on the campus of Guilford Technical Community College in Greensboro, North Carolina. We were attending Lee Lofland's (The Graveyard Shift) Writer's Police Academy.
When the students placed their hands over their hearts and recited the Pledge of Allegiance, most of the attendees (who were paying attention) followed suit. It was a nice moment.
Then, one of the students broke rank and walked over to a bell. He rang it five times, pause, five times, pause and five more times.
In the days before cell phones and 9-1-1, call boxes used to be scattered throughout towns and cities across America. The communication device in the old ones was a bell. Each call box was numbered. If someone spotted a fire, and the closest call box was 762, they would ring 7-6-2 so people would know the approximate site of the fire.
5-5-5 is the code for a downed firefighter.
CR: Breathing Water by Timothy Hallinan on my Kindle.
It's all better with friends.