at the corner deli, a guy with a reflective vest is loading up on snacks. i ask, and sure enough, he's gearing up for an all-night 14 hour shift working construction on route 18.
"stay in school", he says, with a look that conveys the fatigue, long, cold hours, and hard work.
"i'm done with school", i say. "i've got the cushy job, teaching, but i'm sick of it." (feeling like a spoiled brat, complaining...)
in the parking lot i pass him on my way out to the car. he's in a huge truck. as i walk by, he asks "do your students act up in class?"
"yeah." i guess he realized we have something in common.
"i'm over 60 men, and they don't behave either. they don't give me any respect."
wow. i just don't find that suprising at all. but it would suck majorly to have to be in charge of them. the guy looks really tired, lines under his eyes.
"do you hate your job?" i ask.
"yeah, i do.... what do you think is wrong with young people today?"
uhhh..."i think once people stopped believing in god, nothing matters anymore."
"yeah, they need to start going to church again."
"well, i don't go to church, but i believe in god. it means that things happen for a reason, there is a reason for everything."
as i walk away, he calls after me, "say a prayer for me."
i turn and face him. "i will."
"my name is timmie."
"ok timmie. good night."
i walk slowly back to my car. i vow to say a prayer for all the timmies trapped in soul-destroying jobs, but especially this one.