“May have been the losing side. Still not convinced it was the wrong one.”


"This report is maybe 12-years-old. Parliament buried it, and it stayed buried till River dug it up. This is what they feared she knew. And they were right to fear because there's a whole universe of folk who are gonna know it, too. They're gonna see it. Somebody has to speak for these people. You all got on this boat for different reasons, but you all come to the same place. So now I'm asking more of you than I have before. Maybe all. Sure as I know anything I know this, they will try again. Maybe on another world, maybe on this very ground swept clean. A year from now, 10, they'll swing back to the belief that they can make people . . . better. And I do not hold to that. So no more running. I aim to misbehave." ~ Captain Malcom Reynolds

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Who we are

Having enjoyed the laughs from the "psych profile" recently done by the Army on bomb techs, I will now add another - not in a humorous, but a realistic tone.

Many studies have been done over the years on just such a thing - trying to figure out "what makes us tick" as it were, how to improve training success rates and ensure career longevity & all that. This study, done by the South African Navy, comes closer than most I've seen in explaining it all.

We are a hard group to label though. I've known bomb guys who are introspective bookworms, and others who are the life of the party. Teetotalers and drunkards. Womanizers and preachers, world-class athletes & guys who bust their ass just to make the times (which are hard BTW). People you can peg in the community in a second, and others that you'd never guess. It takes all sorts.

What bomb techs do share is some definite traits. Self-discipline when it comes to the job, a desire to be the best at what they do. You have to be somewhat intelligent, and definitely have to have a love for the job. Yes, there is a bit of cockiness and self-confidence too - if you spend your day looking at live bombs designed to blow you up it kind of gives you a bit of an ego perspective when someone else wants to bitch about being swamped in the latest TPS reports...

I think the best single description I've seen of the job is "a great team of talented individuals." You have to be able to work with others, to take & give criticism, advice, and share knowledge amongst your peers, and to strive towards the common task at hand on any particular day - but when it all comes down to it, it's just you and the device face-to-face getting things done...

5 comments:

randompawses said...

Not to make light of it, because bomb disposal is as serious a business as it gets, but . . . did the study happen to mention the physical trait of possessing a pair of cast-iron balls? You EOD guys *have* to have 'em!

Joshkie said...

I have to ask this and you can kick my a** right off the blog if you feel you must, but what did you think of the Hurt Locker?

:-)

Captain Tightpants said...

Randompawses - lol no, just have to have a bit of insanity going on :D

Joshkie - I could only watch about 5 minutes of it before turning it off - a bit too much cinematic license for my taste is all. Maybe someday I can sit through the whole thing.

K. Erickson said...

One of my favorite T-Shirts of all time: Front says "Bomb Tech" Back says "If you see me running, try to keep up."

Joshkie said...

I kind of figured your answer would be something like that. I kind of just sat there being intertaned by it all.

:-)