“You get your ass in the truck right now! You can kiss your hours’ goodbye for today, and if you ever speak to me like that again you will be off my crew faster than you can blink, do you hear me?”
“What did you say?”
“Now get in damn the truck!”
Spring had sprung, and I left my job at the children’s home. I am not a graveyard shift type person. The more significant issue was that I got into a disagreement with management. I refused to sign some policy paperwork about what I could and couldn’t say when counseling the kids. It was a religious organization that ran this facility. So, we parted ways. I was now working for the county taking men out of jail to fulfill their community service hours.
I drove a big Suburban and ran a crew of 6-8 men. We reshingled community centers and churches. City park lawns were mowed, and home maintenance projects for the elderly were completed. Sporting arenas were cleaned. We painted fire department doors and city curbs. We also maintained firewalls in forested areas which bring us to the conversation as mentioned above with one of my guys.
We were in the middle of nowhere clearing some tree breaks. We had a couple little backhoes and a massive wood chipper, shovels, and safety gear. It was hot! I was running water back and forth with the truck as the guys were working their assigned posts. One smart ass decided to tell me he felt like putting me in the wood chipper and calling it a day.
The above conversation ensued…
Luckily the rest of the guys had my back and started telling ‘smart ass’ that was a dumb thing to say, and if he laid a finger on me, it’d be the last thing he’d do.
“Enough! Everyone back to work, except you ‘smart ass’. Your day is done!”
Off he went to the truck. The guys went back to their work assignments, and we finished our day. When I got back to the office, I put in a report on ‘smart ass’ but continued to take him out with my crew. He was stupid, not dangerous.
When the job ended that fall, we did not receive an additional grant to continue running the program so that job had run its course and ended. I needed to find another job and in a quick hurry.
I took a job bartending in a biker bar on the weekends, and during the week I drove a 92 passenger school bus. I maintained these two jobs through the rest of my college years.
My first night of bartending was a nightmare! I was sure I would be fired.