By Brian Williams, Anchor and managing editor
The timing was perfect. I was looking for an excuse to at least duck out of the building for ten minutes on a beautiful summer day, when I heard the call come in over the fire scanner: a basement fire at TGI Friday's at 50th and 7th, a block away from our building. So I went.
I arrived before much of the apparatus -- and because of the nature of the alarm, the FDNY rolled a lot of it: Engine 23, the Engine/Ladder combination 54 & 4 ("The Pride of Midtown"), the Battalion 9 Chief, and 21 Ladder from the nearby Hell's Kitchen neighborhood.
It turned out to be a stubborn, smoldering fire beneath the sidewalk grate outside the adjacent Tad's Steaks -- more of a social get-together for members of the various firehouses. Engine 54 connected to the nearest hydrant when they rolled up on the scene, and they ended up charging a booster line (sending water from the truck to the hose) and hitting the fire with water for a few minutes to douse it.
It sure beat what I'd been planning to do at that hour: return phone calls. I pronounced the scene secure and went back to 30 Rock, ready for the next one. Some things just get in your blood.
IT'S ABOUT TIME...
Those of a certain age will remember the old pink "WHILE YOU WERE OUT" telephone message slips. They included the sole option of "MR. __— called."
The thinking, back in the Mad Men age, was, I suppose, that you'd never get a call of any consequence in the workplace from a woman. Happily, we've come a long way -- with a few exceptions.
One notable exception: the MEN AT WORK roadside warning signs that are still out there. This will tell you what they are doing about it in Atlanta. Progress.
With that...we're off to work on the broadcast for tonight.
One story to call to your attention: it's our final story tonight, about a great woman, and her story is beyond inspiring.
I hope you can join us.