A well known carpenter/contractor here in these woods, many years ago employed a young, wet-behind-the-ears kid who I’ve probably noted in my prolific pages too many times. Well, what can l say? We’ve been best buddies for a very long time, since we were both wet behind the ears.
For libel reasons, I won’t name the contractor who Charlie worked for, but suffice it to say, he was a character. He was tough . He “rode herd”, so to speak. He would bark angry instructions, whether understandable to his men or not.
The construction trade is learned at a moderate pace. Necessarily so. There are myriad details to absorb. A certain task might require specific positioning of the body, for example, to execute properly.
One day, on a roofing job, Charlie wasn’t picking up on a certain technique. Working on a precarious roof pitch is disorienting to a kid, especially when one false move means a twenty foot fall to the ground.
Charlie’s boss was becoming a bit exasperated by the way Charlie was working against himself, given his position on the roof. The bossman’s homespun verbiage was agitatedly delivered thus : By Jesus boy, get your ass behind ya.”
As though Charlie wasn’t sufficiently bewildered by his boss’s lame instructions, exactly what was he to do with this most recent volley? Charlie’s ass was, in fact, behind him. It always had been. The instruction was not at all helpful !
Perhaps it was so, only in that Charlie’s suspicions were further confirmed… he was working for a knucklehead.