Friday, October 9, 2009

Doswell Man Frozen in Indecision Following Confusing Orders from Boss 1st Day on New Job

Flat Iron Road resident Freddy Tyler sat behind the wheel of the Whiting-Turner pickup truck behind the porta-johns, paralyzed in fear for forgetting exactly what he was supposed to drive back to the tool room to get on his first day on the job at the Rocketts Landing annex construction site in Richmond’s east end.

“I think I was supposed to go get twelve 5/16”x 20” track bolts, with flat washers and stop nuts,” said the newby Tyler, his voice shaking in nervous exhaustion, “but then again he might have said twenty 5/16”x12” track bolts, and it might have been lock nuts instead of stop nuts, I can’t remember. Jeez.”

Tyler says he can’t ask again what the supervisor wanted, because he already repeated it twice, and he was so upset at the time that the order went straight out of his head the minute he said he understood and got behind the wheel of the truck. “I already looked like an idiot this morning,” Tyler claims, “when the guys sent me on a nonsense hunt for a nonexistent tool called an electric squeegee. It was my hazing, I guess, and they had me running all over the site looking for that damn squeegee. They all got a good laugh at my expense on that one.”

The boss, a burly, loud man named Gene something, said that fun time was over and it was time to get back to work before giving Tyler the task of driving back to the tool storage crib and get the needed bolts to shore up some concrete forms. “We’re forming the concrete walls for the new parking deck, and these bolts are supposed to attach the 2x4 bracing to the forming material – and now that I think about it, did he also say he wanted wrenches and a drill motor? My God I suck at this – why did I ever take this job? What the hell is countersunk head, or Philips-head? Fine-thread or coarse-thread? This is a language all its freakin’ own.”

Tyler says while he is tempted to punch out and just go home for the rest of his life he is currently unsure what his next move might be. “I could wreck the truck and fake an injury or something,” he whines, “or buck up and admit I have no idea what he wants. Cripes, what am I even doing here? I was an accountant at my old job, I don’t know jack about construction.”