Monday, July 7, 2014

Another Kind of Justice (July 15, 1980)


 It's what I get for stealing, I guess-- though a few hours in a hospital seems stretching justice a bit. For what? A lens filter? Somehow when I was unpacking boxes at work it wound up in my pocket. The boss looked suspicious, pushing through the packing material as if he might find it there. I wondered how to get rid of it. Getting caught would mean my job. And though he moved back to the corner near his desk, I knew he was checking the purchase order to see again how many came in. The camera turned its untrusting eye towards me, winking its red light almost in jest.
 I excused myself and went to the men's room where I stuffed the thing in my sock. Not that they wouldn't find it, but it made me feel better without its lump in my pocket.
 "Mr. Sullivan," the boss said later. "Pick up your things and come with me."
 Defeated, I followed, my head bent, knowing my job was lost. But he passed right by the security office and led me down to the other end of the building, where he informed me of his plans.
 "I need someone I can trust," he said. "You're a good worker and can unload this truck without the usual bull I get from my people."
 Two hours later, as I pulled on a pallet jack, removing pallets load with cases of motor oil, disaster struck. The first pallet came down the warped mental plate from the truck, but with the second my foot slipped and two tons rolled over it, trapping my toes in the bed.
 "Get it off!" I yelled. The pain wasn't terribly great. But I heard the crack of toes breaking and the shattering of the lens filter in my sock.
 "Where did you get these scratches frokm?" the doctor asked at the hospital, after taping up my broken toes.

 "I scraped it on the dock," I said, though by his frown I could see he didn't believe me.

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