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As I have said in other posts besides firefighting I am a huge sports fan. If you asked my wife she would refer to herself as a sports widow. Lets just breakdown my next few days. Today I am watching a lot of college football (as is most of america) with my real interest today in the LSU vs Auburn game, also at 1pm the Craftsman Truck Series Race from Martinsville Va, 7pm the Washington Capitals will take on the Thrashers plus more football, at 9 the UFC 121 prelim fights come on Spike, and at 10 UFC 121 is live on PPV. The onto sunday where its the NFL, and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Race from Martinsville Va. It will finally cap off on Monday with Monday Night Football, and then a get a few days break until Wednesday when the Capitals play again.

As you can see I am kinda into sports. I think one of the biggest reasons I am into sports is the rivalry aspect. Two teams that do not like each other battling it out for supremacy. There is teamwork, drama, precision, composure, and athleticism. In fact it is a lot like a well oiled fire company. Lets face it even if it is friendly we still have somewhat of a rivalry with our fellow fire companies.

I know I for one do not want them to perform better, or beat me into my area. I also want to maintain the reputation that my company is better than any of the other companies.

So the rivalry in firefighting motivates me in the same way it motivates athletes. I want to be better at forcible entry so I took a class from Captain Robert Morris FDNY Rescue 1, A mixed martial artist wants to be better at kickboxing then he would seek out Mark Delegrotte, or Duke Rufus. Athletes travel all over the country to get better, I go to FDIC (Indy), Firehouse EXPO (Baltimore), NFA (Emmitsburg), etc.

Now there are rules to rivalries, that must be maintained to keep it friendly. First off respect has to be given. If your rival gives you an assignment then you do it, no freelancing, no skirting of task, you do that assignment and do it with a smile. If they beat you into your district dead to rights then you concede defeat, however if you are both coming head to head and you are both making the turn onto the fire block at the same time whoever’s district it is gets the fire (although you can give them a friendly reminder that they should sleep with their socks on). No fighting on scene, this sounds like a no brainer but how many times have you seen it or read about it? There is a time and a place to argue, and even fist fight be a professional and discuss it later when the house is not on fire. Finally remember that we are all on the same team, sure you want to be the ones who got to force the door, vent the roof, or put the fire out but as long as it’s all toward the end goal of service delivery for the customer.

Do you have a rival who motivates you? What are your thoughts on the rivalry theory? Share your thoughts in the comments section, and of course spread the word about the blog!

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