hindsight and raw hands

Growing up with my dad, there were two ways to know that you weren’t working hard enough: 1. if you were cold and 2. if you didn’t sleep well at night.

Well, I’m proud to say that I did work hard enough today.

How do I know?

Well, I never got cold (never mind that the theatre was a sort of an oven) and I am 99% sure that I will sleep very well tonight.

I didn’t exactly work smart enough, though.

My hands are red and raw and swollen from working without gloves.

I had gloves in my back pocket the entire four hours we were working.

Now, to be fair, I did remember that they were there most of the time. But I was switching back and forth between so many different tasks—some of which gloves would have helped, some of which gloves would have hindered—that it hardly seemed worth it to take the time to switch back and forth between gloves.

It would have been worth it.

But that’s easy to say looking back.

Also looking back I realize all the benefits of working for my dad all the time. The benefits that I never noticed at the time.

Stuff like the fact that all the muscle tone I achieved mixing concrete and digging trenches and running the chop saw goes away when I don’t consistently utilize it.

Or the idea that if I’m not spending every weekend doing manual labor that I really ought to be getting a work out some other way. Ew.

(While we’re on this subject, if anyone knows of a contractor here in town who’s interested in hiring a slightly dramatic eighteen year-old who has a pretty decent work ethic and is afraid of power tools and electricity and completely over-paying her, let me know.)

Granted, those days had—and continue to have—downsides.

Like the whole working thing.

And getting frustrated because my plans for causing enough mischief to slide the world into total chaos conflicted with my dad’s schedule for home improvement.

And the fact that I know what I’m doing whenever I have to work alongside people who definitely don’t. (By no fault of their own. Don’t hear me being rude or judgmental. Just annoyed and rather inclined to do things all on my own.)

Such is life.

I’m sure I’ll be fussing and seeing only the downsides when I’m back at home for the summer, working on projects that I don’t see the point of and that interfere with whatever nonsense I’ve dreamed up. Isn’t that the way things go?

But anyhow, I’m now going to go and make sure that I’ve met the requirements for Dad’s second condition of a good work day.


– Melissa