found drama

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dream.20051208: construction

by Rob Friesel

I’m a laborer on a construction job. It’s a 20-ish story structure of some kind. At this point, we’re finishing up the erection of the metalwork framing (which we’ve managed to do pretty quickly) — and for whatever reasons we’re supposed to put the flooring in from the top down. (So the floor for the 20th, then the 19th, etc.) On this particular morning though a new foreman has been assigned out of nowhere. It’s not so much that he’s replacing the original foreman — more like he’s been added as his superior. (Like when the Emperor and Vader show up at Death Star II.)

The crew is getting ready and we’re talking amongst ourselves while the two new foremans get their story straight.

And so the first thing that the new foreman does is he comes over and congratulates this one particular guy on finishing up the city’s second-tallest antenna in two days. Which is nice but the antenna is supposed to be wired into the building – – so it’s useless until we finish it. Then he says a few lines about how he wants us to spend more time talking to each other – – communicating! – – instead of the nuts and bolts fabrication that we’re technically paid to be doing.

To his credit, he is quite safety conscious and enforces the use of these safety harnesses. So once we get ourselves up to to the 20th (with its half-finished floor), we all strap in and grab on to these tethered hooks that are secured to the metalworks – – so if we fall, we won’t plummet to our deaths. Except that once we get up there, the new foreman starts joking around with everyone. He has us painting the metalwork – – not sealing it with anti-corossives or anything like that – – just plain old whitewash. So we’re trying to paint and he’s telling these awful, predictable jokes. And then one of them is actually funny enough that one of the guys laughs hard enough that he falls. Luckily he’s tethered in but he takes out a bunch of the rest of us and we all go falling, waiting for the tether to go taut.

About Rob Friesel

Software engineer by day, science fiction writer by night. Author of The PhantomJS Cookbook and a short story in Please Do Not Remove. View all posts by Rob Friesel →

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