Job (in)security

Knot the way to do it
Knot the way to do it

Now every so often I complain about my job. No, really. I do. But then something happens to make me realise how lucky I really am. And one of those moments happened just yesterday.

I’ll set the scene. Its just after two major typhoons have torn apart the Philippines. Its wet and rainy and the residual wind occasionally rattles the windows. I’m slogging away in front of my computer on a fairly mundane task, and having a bit of a hard time concentrating. I look out of the window. And I see some rope going past. Rope with a knot in it.

This particular rope  doesn’t look very safe to me, but then again what do I know. I’m not a sailor, and this could be some kind of special frayed knot type thing which is actually very safe. Interested by now, I take a look out of the window.

Looks like a stretcher
Looks like a stretcher

Oh my. What’s that? This is the view from nine floors up. Its seems to be a makeshift structure for hauling building materials up the side of the building. Perhaps someone is having some renovation done. Or maybe its … gulp … a stretcher for hauling bodies down from an apartment. Crazy idea, that’s a bit fanciful. Well back to work for me then.

Until. After a while … (scroll down)

You can't be serious
You can't be serious

Are you serious! Well yes apparently they are. Having descended from the top floor these fearless workers have worked their way down, scraping away the typhoon detritus, and filling in the cracks in the building. Apparently I was right on both counts: it was used to convey building materials and bodies. Live ones. They don’t seem at all concerned by their predicament, laughing and joking with one another.

Unfortunately I have a knowledge of the laws of physics which makes me entirely unsuitable for this kind of job. Consider the fact that when you lean against the building, the gantry swings away from the building. Well that can’t be much fun. Lets take a closer look at the construction shall we? (scroll down)

Skyhooks are us.
Skyhooks are us.

So here we see that the whole structure is made from welded together rebar. Well OK you can’t see it properly in this bad photo, but you’ll have to take my word for it. The welded rebar forms the frame. Onto this, bamboo is lashed — with string — and the whole thing is covered by a sheet of plastic material, presumably so they can’t see the ground while they’re working and freak out. Then, and here is the kicker, the structure is hooked onto a large hook at both sides, and as far as I can see there was nothing to stop the rebar frame from coming off the hook, should a wind blow suddenly, or should the structure tip to one side.

Brave guys. I will never complain my job is boring again.

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