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‘This Thing’
A Captain of Construction Discusses the Unbuilding of America: Cascadia, 1/1/22
© 2022 James LaFond
The Silverback Hoodrat and the Captain of Carpenters sit at the breakfast table drinking coffee in preparation for snow shoveling on house and barn roofs. This man is totally fearless of heights, twirls tools while skipping in snow boots across a snowy roof peak…
“What ever happened to a kick your ass cold? It’s not allowed anymore. Everything has to be the plague—The Winter of Death!
“Of course, at the job, we have thousands of men. This thing is such a cluster-fuck, such a massive overrun—we throw out more materials than you need to build a house just in my section alone every day! Build a ramp with good timber, use it for a week, then saw it up and chuck it all in the dumpster!
“These morons decided to build a tent over the work area without a frame—can’t be done, bro, won’t work. They get two rolls of this plastic reinforced tarp, 9,000 dollars a roll, takes twelve men to roll this shit out...and, well, the tent people told you it can’t be done, I told you it won’t work, the safety guy wont even let you use exterior anchor points—now all that shit is getting shredded up and tossed in the dumpster.
“Bro, the tweakers, the homeless animals, they are so industrious that they are scaling the job site, of this massive building, stealing our trash and then repelling down to the ground like commandos. You couldn’t make this shit up. You cannot park on the street—its a war zone bro.
“Every carpenter they bring me is some foreigner, middle easterner, some guy from Haiti, or Jamaica, a Mexican at best—these guys all come with minimal skills, a very high opinion of themselves, are incapable of doing just about anything—including cleaning up their work area—and I get to baby sit them.
“This job is already a trillion dollars in—over a trillion dollars and its going to take years. I might be working on this tower of death until I’m an old man...building ladders for guys who won’t use them because the ladders the worthless laborers left laying around got stolen by the tweaker scum!
“The entire job revolves around the self-esteem and identity of this bizarre cast of characters. This beautiful stacked bitch here [shows model-quality construction worker babe on smartphone] is a total psychobitch and just gets her way. She’s like, ‘Oh, what are you doing this weekend?’
“I’m like, ‘Nothing with you! I’m happily married. Every other guy on the jobsite is trying to get in your pants—go out with them!’
“The bosses are obsessed with vaϲϲinating the workforce. Well, everybody that wanted it, that wanted to fallow the science like a religion rather than question the science as if it was science—they all got it. The bosses bring me in and they want to know what we can do to get more of the work force vaϲϲinated and I don’t know what to tell them.
“They set up a clinic, a tent, that said ‘No photography or videoing allowed.’ Fuck ‘um. What are they going to do—I carry a hammer for a reason! They had Seattle Seahawks and Cheerleaders there to roll out this vaϲϲination thing. That’s kind of amazing if you ask me, that these National Felon League negroes who fought against this shit, and were forced to get vaxxed, that now they’re on point selling this shit.
“In the meantime, they give Juan off for two weeks so he can go bring meth and weed across the border and they give me this Jamaican guy who can’t frame a slab and needs help putting his own equipment cabinet together. This guy tells me, ‘I work better alone.’
“I said, ‘Bro, look around you. You don’t build a seventy-story building alone. This takes hundreds and even thousands of men. You need to figure out where you can fit in, learn the trade, and then you can say you had a hand in building this thing.’
“None of these guys maintain their tools. They saw right through nails and screws and then want to use my equipment… “No!”
“You just can’t talk to anybody on the job site. They all have their mind on something other than building this massive monstrosity of a boondoggle. Over a trillion already!
“Now, they are talking about one Global Union. [Holds up a Union letter.] The FBI broke the Local for corruption and now the Union is supposed to be one global thing?
“I suppose this thing will eventually get built. Maybe it will be a giant housing project for all of these people the government is bringing into the country with no job skills and no work ethic? After I’m gone, I don’t know who will even be able to build the ladders for these so-called ‘builders’ to employ in the process of breaking their tools and filling dumpsters full of perfectly good materials.”
I opted for coffee without booze in it before going up on the snowy roofs with a shovel in hand behind this wizard of the hammer.
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NC     Mar 31, 2022

Fantastic, let it burn and maybe if my genes are strong enough 1 of my offspring will survive and reproduce.
Details Matter     Apr 7, 2022

"This thing is such a cluster-fuck, such a massive overrun—we throw out more materials than you need to build a house just in my section alone every day!"

So I guess the thing being built is not a house? What is it? Where is it? What company hires construction workers who do not do any work at all? Is it a government project? What?

It reads like fiction, and there's no context.
James     May 16, 2022

This is what the man said over coffee written down by me after surviving the shoveling. I asked him not a single question. When a man lets me live with him I do not pry into his business. I try and be a good listener. This nets me gifts of real spoken thoughts from real people, gifts I do not dissect or investigate unless it is an activity that I am an expert at, which is to say sports combat or criminal aggression. Also, I try only to write novels and avoid non fiction other than observations and scenes of people doing and saying.

However, if I were interested in investigative journalism, my answering these detailed questions you suggest would result in a man supporting a family losing his job and maybe even being blacklisted from his trade. He gave me a similar series of monologues the year before, which I used for writing Dollar Joe, in which I use him as a character and place him in a much smaller worksite with the entire crew consisting of the men he talked about working with the most.

It reads like fiction because real life is what good fiction is based on.

There is no context so that my friend does not get fired. Am i supposed to ruin him to satisfy your curiosity?
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