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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Fire-fighter (10/05/06)

TITLE: Conversation With A Fireman
By Kenny Blade


ďYouíre welcome to think what you want, I guessÖ I am what I am. Actually I am proud of what I do. It may not be popular, but I think I do it well. I get plenty of complaints anywaysÖ so I must be doing something right.

Mind if I smoke? Loosen up, man. It was just a little occupational humor. No, I donít have anything else I want to tell you. I wasnít really all that hot on telling you anything to begin with. Look, If we are finished here, IÖ Suit yourself. I have all the time you need.

No, I donít guess I do understand your point. You act like somehow they donít want me getting involved. I always said that naivete would be the downfall for all of your type.

Yeah, I guess I am. Iím not only a racist though, Iím also a bigot. I have several other issues I quite enjoy that you seem to struggle with. You know, I think thatís the whole problem. Your kind just canít seem to embrace the fact that this is what your life is. You are who you are. Trying to gloss things over with some emotional religious experience just makes the cravings stronger and the fall harder.

You got any water? Iím a little thirsty. Guess thatís against the rules, too. Itís alright. Iíve been this long without it. Look, if you donít have anything else, I have people to tend to. Itís been great to talk to you, but itís Friday afternoon and I get pretty busy once everyone solidifies their weekend plans.

You know, Iíve been pretty accommodating, but my patience is wearing thin. I appreciate the fact that you donít like what I do. I know it eats at you that you feel like youíre losing the war. It should eat at you because to be honest you are losing. At least as far as I can see.

Thereís a reason the sports bars are standing room only and your church pews are half filled at best. You really arenít offering anything. I know you hate to hear it, but I figure if you can take the time to interrogate me the least I can do is be truthful with you. Itís not one of my string points mind you, but at times telling the truth can be quite satisfying.

Itís really pretty simple, man. I offer enjoyment. Iíll grant you itís temporary, but isnít all enjoyment. What do you offer? Guilt and shameÖ a chance to bare your soul for a moment before the next urge to indulge again. Your alters are nothing more than a daytime talk show couch. People come to you to spill their guts about things that they will do again because their conscience refuses to let them up for air until they do.

I have to hand it to you, though. Even though most of you are about as committed as a hooker is to being monogamous, there are the few like you who really believe. As ridiculous as things getÖ no matter how many of your soldiers fall on their own swordÖ you still think youíll win in the end. I find that honorable, even if it is a tad pitiful.

Look, Iíve humored you as long as I can. I have to go but itís been enlightening talking with you. Truth is, It does me good to stop occasionally and spend some time with one of you ďTrue BelieversĒ. There are so few of you that I sometimes lose track of what we are out their fighting against.

We really arenít that different you know. You stoke the flames of belief in your God with messages of hope and abstinence from all that the world offersÖ I douse them out with the knowledge that resistance is futile. Like I saidÖ we are who we are. Thatís never going to change.

Do me a favor though. Donít stop building those fires. Fighting to put them out keeps me going.

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This article has been read 916 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Pat Guy 10/12/06
A unique and creative perspective! I really, really enjoyed this satire very much. (am I right on the satire part?)

Poignant, thought provoking, and full irony - yep - I liked it a lot!
Joanne Sher 10/13/06
What an exceptionally thought-provoking look at evil. I LOVE that you only gave us his part of the story. This definitely had me thinking deeply. Perfect ending as well!
Amy Michelle Wiley 10/21/06
Oooo, very creative. Great entry!
Kathie Thomas05/09/07
Apologies for contacting you this way but we need your bio note please for the Faithwriters book "Hidden in the Hymns". Can you please contact me?