Home of Michael Perry – New York Times Bestselling Author, Humorist, Singer/Songwriter, Amateur Pig Farmer

Posts Tagged ‘firefighting’

Forty Years of Service

It was my recent honor to be present for an event in my hometown of New Auburn, Wisconsin, to honor Chief Ernie Sylvester (below, center, in shorts), retiring after 40 years of service to the village and surrounding environs. It was my privilege to serve 12 years beside the Chief and my other neighbors.

NAAFD Chief Retire


Writing Riddle

Came back to the desk to find this on my computer screen:

Pager Interrupts Writing

Can you guess what happened? Answer below (don’t be distracted by the smudges, they’re electronic and I put them there after the fact):


[Insert Jeopardy! theme here]


I was working on a manuscript when the pager went off. Switched from typing a story to typing an address.

It’s one of my favorite things in the world: transforming mid-word from writer guy to EMS/fire guy. Most meaningful privilege of my life, serving with my neighbors, even if only for a few calls per year.


World Book Night – Population 485

NAAFD Helmet

The purpose of this post is to offer my heartfelt thanks to those of you (both givers and readers) participating in World Book Night. After the word went out and givers started signing up, I quickly realized I couldn’t manage to personally thank everyone in the manner they deserved, so I hope this post will go a little way toward doing that. Notes, photos (including the Beagle’s tattoo!), and a video after the break.


Gotta Go

Today’s procrastination enabled by pager; from 1st draft to driving an ambulance in the blink of a strobe. I love EMS/fire part of my life. Privilege.


Tomorrow my honorary nephew Connor McDowell will be competing in the Firefighter Combat Challenge finals.  I don’t overdo the word “proud,” but I’m deploying it now. Well done, sir. (Live stream available at site)

Population 485 Post-its

Some old Post-its I scribbled notes on down at the fire hall when I was working on Population 485. This October will mark ten years since that book came out and the reaction to it still surprises me in the most heartwarming ways. It was an honor to write about a place I love, and to write as best I could about fire and EMS from the perspective of the end of the hose and the back of the rig. For all the good things that have come my way, serving on the New Auburn Area Fire Department remains the most meaningful thing I’ve ever been allowed to do, and I still count it a privilege to carry a pager for the local crew.

The scribbles on the yellow Post-its were made after ambulance calls (I remember both calls – one silly, one very nasty – but have no idea what the math is about). The scribbles on the blue Post-it were made as I looked around the local park during Jamboree Days, which is happening again this weekend. Hoping to sneak up there for at least part of it, we’ll see.

For the moment (more on that later) Population 485 is also the only one of my titles available in audiobook form (iTunes and Audible).