The Police Test
Michael Ubaldi, November 18, 2004.
Tonight was a long night — but a good one. My civil service commission oversaw a testing company deliver the city's entry-level police examination. We'd conducted an entry-level exam for the fire department in August ourselves, with good results. The firefighter's test involved ninety-odd participants in the city's community center; it was crowded. For the police examination, our chosen site was a nearby Catholic church's gymnasium, holding the nearly two hundred attendees comfortably.
When all participants were seated, before the testing company took over, I made a few announcements to the group without a microphone — it was the first time I'd talked in front of over one hundred fifty people in a while, and quite a wonderful thrill it was.
The fire fellows this summer were a talkative, goofy bunch, maybe a little ornery; out of season or simple temperament, our prospective police officers tonight were polite, attentive and quiet. I handed out packets describing a required agility test that participants take at a local community college to each fellow — or girl, there were about ten — as they walked out the door after completing the test. Down to the man, each thanked me and bid the few of us authorities standing by the door goodnight. A few addressed me as "sir," and at least one of those gentlemen was active duty military.
A fine group, a slice of my generation worth a little pride.
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