Long ago whilst playing the same sort of games in the military we had an "unofficial" rule at work: should anything happen while on an exercise or deployment - be it diving, blowing stuff up, the range or whatever - you didn't call the parents/girlfriend/wife etc. while things were in progress. If you got hurt in minor stuff you took care of talking with them yourself, if you had series hospital stuff at least they'd wait til you were stable, and if heaven forbid it was really bad then the whole system would take over. Mind you this was before the days of cell phones, digital cameras and everything else being attached to every person in the world, instant Internet communications and all the other joys of modern technology. It wasn't in an attempt to be mean, hold back on info or any of that; more that while in the middle of dealing with a serious situation we really didn't want our minds distracted by home worrying about us or pestering for info. Yes, I know that it's not necessarily the best method, but it worked at the time.
For good or bad, it certainly doesn't work that way anymore. Not only do we have the media showing up on calls at the drop of a hat, but with the prevalence of information technology the fact we have a situation going on somewhere is pretty much common knowledge before I even get on scene. Which means that my wife is often aware from the news that I'm on a call before I even get home.
A little bit she left out though is another information source - a good friend of ours who is a dispatcher with my department. For the past couple of years it's usually just funny stuff "Sean's going to be late, he just stopped a car." or when she'll send us a message at home when I'm about to get called out for something. But, with today's call as an example, she's also been able to let my wife know when a call seems to be a bit more serious, due to the number of people out there, or if we ask for certain resources or whatever. And which also means that should something happen to me and she was working I know she would very quickly let my wife know what was up.
It's definitely a change in procedures for me to get used to - years of holding information close is instead transmitted before I ever even get done with the call. But it's also nice to know that she has something besides a half-written news blurb to let her know when I'm in the middle of stuff, and has a way to get some word of what's going on if my day turns long.
Just a few ramblings from a confused guy. Former military, former cop. Husband. Father. Student. Role playing gamer, on intermittent weeks. Avid reader. Internet addict. Small "l" libertarian. Too many others to mention. The views and opinions expressed herein are my own, and do not reflect those of any official agency or government or species. Names have been changed to protect the guilty; God protects the innocent as a matter of course.
“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
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
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As with so many things, frequent and easy communications is a double edged sword. It takes away the angst of wait, but if your sources aren't perfect, can put on new levels of worry, for nothing.
All that said, I know for a fact that I would lose all communication with my family if I lost my cell phone and computer access. I just don't remember phone numbers like I used to anymore.
Damned handy technology....
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