04 July 2007

The Value of Work, Mike Gravel and Gin and Tonic

Yesterday the Bath supply house delivered our new gas boiler. While the dude unloaded it the kids sat in the back of the van watching the lift move up and down. The delivery man was in his fifties, overweight, unshaven and rather grizzled. He looked at the kids and told them they better stay in school or they'll end up like him.

Like him...overworked, unsatisfied, bored and tired.

Yesterday a master plumber came to the house to install the new heating system. He is in his early 20s, thin, in good shape and full of spirit. While we were chatting I asked when he graduated, he told me then that he didnt go to college. He also mentioned in the course of our conversation at the monotony of putting in systems like this.

Why is it that we devalue work here in America? What makes individuals without a college education feel inferior? Here is a kid, able to buy a house, has his own business on the side, makes the prevailing wage (which here in New England is quite high) and full benefits but yet doesn't feel totally adequate. Here is a man past midlife and looks back with disdain as to what he has contributed to society.

I dont have any answers but it does scare me that folk are feeling so unfulfilled with their labor. If I were Mike Gravel I would say "end the war on drugs" (that is his answer to everything) Did anyone see the debate on PBS? End the war on drugs was his answer to almost every question, quite comical.


Last night I didn't get around to making a Manhattan, instead I made a JBWS, a friend, style Gin and Tonic. It wasnt bad, a little too sweet though before dinner - felt more like a midday drink. His recipe.

Pint glass full of ice.
Two shots of Tanqueray Gin
Fill up the rest of the glass with Tonic Water
Squeeze of Lime

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