Things were simple then – before electronic cash registers,
a bill of sale, blue ballpoint description of goods,
and tax inclusive price.
The rules said all workers were entitled to :
wet weather gear – coat and leggings
New. Every 12 months. Safety. Thus spoke the Union
Once a year, almost all arrived with bill of sale
went to work with old equipment and home,
to a new lawnmower,
or dollar equivalent from the hardware store.
The contract ended unhappily – not renewed.
The administration officer stated politely
gear less than 12 months old was workplace property –
could be used for casuals and short-term employees …
“sorry, but could you …”
I asked him : “should I bring my lawnmower as well?”
No comment about sarcasm
or intrinsic unlikelihood of ownership.
No observation of small mindedness
or recitation of employment conditions
dignified and gentle he said, “I’d be really grateful.”