No Hazard Pay!


We had a rough week, those of us on the second levels at our warehouse. We

felt the heat and we also had some different ‘flying objects’ to contend with!

I was wearing a box on my head on Tuesday, after 3 roofing crews, that were

over 4 inches long got air gunned through the metal corrugated roof, and

whizzed past my head!

My friend, Amy, (who is the coworker and owner of Spirit and Lokie, horses)

called her manager, Chris. Chris walked around down below me, until she found

one of these screws, that had not fallen into stacked products. She took the item

to Mark J. who is in charge of maintenance and repair, since he is ‘supervising’

our outside roof contractors.

I decided to think about which dress to wear to my niece’s wedding. “I will be

driving up to Cleveland on Friday,” I would reflect.

“I wonder what I can find in Mom’s closet, that she will feel comfortable in.

She doesn’t like sleeveless or short sleeved clothing. We will be under a tent,

but can sit outside it, to catch a breeze.”

I also wondered, “Will Mom get nostalgic, since we will be at her and Dad’s

cottage, where Libby has been living for over six months? Will she want to

go to neighbors’ homes, saying ‘hello’ and giving her famous hugs?”

These thoughts got my mind off the overwhelmingly loud, zapping sounds

that the nail guns through the metal did to ‘jar my senses’ back to reality.

Later, “I don’t have too many hours until I get off work…”

Here is that fallacy of not having many hours: I was at work on Monday and

Thursday for 11 hours, Tuesday and Wednesday for 10 hours, so we were’ let

off early’ today. They don’t want to have to pay us many overtime hours.

I was getting hot, so I stopped, took my box off my head, went down the metal

grated steps to the first floor. This area I work in is called, “The Bomb Shelter.”

It is all enclosed and encased in concrete blocks. I asked my good friend, Mark

C., who was emptying broken bottle of anti-freeze into a large container, through

a funnel, if he was getting sleepy from the fumes. He said, “No, but I am leaving

this area, as soon as I do this last container, since I just got ‘dinged’ by a series

of concrete pieces! They must be trying to drill holes through the cement walls

up there!” He proceeded to show me 4 pieces that were chips the size of large

pretzel sticks. They were about one inch wide and four inches long.

I joked with him that I was going to stop by my grandsons’ house and ask if

they still had their hard hats, which they still call, “Bob the Builder” hats!

I came back with my water bottle, refilled and a long white paper towel

that I had gotten wet, in the drinking fountain. I had this wrapped around

my neck, saying that the box on my head was ‘not conducive’ to cooling off!

Mark C. left, the maintenance supervisor, Mark, came in and asked if I had

actually been ‘hit’ by any of the flying screws, and unfortunately for me, I had


As I later went to lunch, I stopped in my immediate supervisor’s office and

gave an ‘oral report.’ I asked her if she had already heard that there were nails

or screws coming through the ceiling and flying closely by us. I also told her

there were at least ten new holes in the ceiling. She said to go on to lunch and

if I felt more comfortable, wear the box. She thought the nails or screws would

be ‘less frequent,’ since Mark J. had contacted the company and the roofing

men were told to ‘be more careful.’

Wednesday, a man from the roofing company showed up, in the aerosol room.

No one but someone in receiving who was stocking and myself were up there.

He advised both of us, seriously without any apology given for Tuesday’s


“When you hear drilling, don’t look up!”

I stood there, with a little bit of a puzzled look on my face. I tried to

change this to my ‘stern teacher’ or ‘angry mother’ look. I waited for

awhile, then turned around, put my box back on my head and said

not a word.

When he came back on Thursday, he caught Mark C., who had not reported

to his supervisor or anyone that he had chosen to vacate what he considered

a dangerous area.

I asked him if he had shown Mark J. the cement chips that he still had lined

up on his ‘desk.’ He said he felt that my report and Chris’ turning in the one

screw that was found that had not landed in amongst pallets where numerous

ones could be seen, looking through the grated metal second floor.

I later told Charlene that Mark C. still had the chips from there, she immediately

told Mark J. her boss. Charlene hurried from the breakroom, where we had

just watched one of the episodes of “Bold and the Beautiful.”

I am sure that there are worse case scenarios to work disasters. I know that when

my oldest daughter went to a church ‘work camp’ they were nailing a sheet metal

roof onto a recreational building in the Appalachian Mountains. She got a slice

through her hand, wearing  a so-called ‘work glove.’ She had to have stitches, I

received a call from the hospital where she had been taken. She wore a plastic

bag over it, the next day, while jumping into a running stream, waterfall and

a pond they visited, with some local children. She did not feel that it was a

very big deal, so I have decided that my episode isn’t such a big deal, either.

Just had to tell you, I was not too keen on working this week.

No extra ‘hazard pay!’


For second breaks, all week long, since our building hit 100 degrees inside…

We got popsicles from the company!


Well worth the dangerous situations, huh?!

Tell me a few of your ‘worst nightmare’ jobs, please!


About reocochran

I am experiencing crazy and hapless adventures in dating that may interest people over fifty. I am now approaching 62 later this year and enjoy taking photographs, incorporating stories or poetry on my blog. I have many old posts which are informative and written like essays. I have several love stories collected from family and friends. Even strangers spill their stories, since I am a grown version of the girl next door. I have been trying to live a healthy lifestyle with better food selections and active hiking and walking. I have written four children's books and illustrated them. They are not published but a battered women's shelter used one about neglect and abuse for their children's program and a 4H group used my "Kissing a Bunny is like saying a Prayer" as a coloring book. Please comment or respond so I may get a chance to know you. Sincerely, Robin

41 responses »

    • You better duck and run, my friend! Hey, how is the baseball world? Hope summer is starting out cool and fun for you, my retired friend! Gotta get going, up to my Mom’s for the weekend… Go Tribe! Smiles, Robin

      • Hee, hee, hee! There are times when I just can’t stop myself. Four-inch roofing crews just created such a funny image in my head. Little gnomes running around working on the roof! 😀

        Go Tribe, indeed! (Except, you know, I’m a Twins fan. For all the good that ever does me. 🙂 ) You guys are 11-6 in June and only two-and-a-half games out of first place! Tigers seem to be falling a bit, so if you can beat the Royals, look out… here come the Indians!!

      • I agree, the idea of those cute little gnomes with little hammers and screws, would be funny and also, less scary! Now, I can go visit you, back and refreshed although I have to use what is called the Express Computer until one that is longer becomes available!

  1. I have a nightmare or two of toxic co-workers (their actions and attitudes), but I think the worst experience was when I was in high school, and got a job at a fast food restaurant. I thought I would be handing out – um – fast food, and clearing off tables. The first day on the job, I was handed the toilet cleaning materials and was asked to clean the bathrooms. I didn’t go back the second day.

    • Oh, not a pretty job for a teenager! Yuck!
      I think it is a shame that you have to daily endure toxic co-workers. I think negativism in the work place is quite contagious. Which kind of ruins your day, even when things are going well. So sorry about any and all bad things at work, April. Also, hoping you will get some R & R this weekend! Smiles, Robin

  2. Somebody somewhere in the company hierachy looked at some chart and declared for all below: It will be cheaper to pay for the hospital bill for the one injured than the time lost to clear the area of potential danger! And so it came to be that poor Robin had to work with a box on her head.

    That is lousy, my friend, no apology, no concern, no nothing from the bosses.

    I hope you and your mom enjoy the wedding!

    • Thanks, Mark! Loved how you analyzed this and came up for the ‘why?’ this was done!
      Love that you were sympathetic to me, poor little old sweaty me, with a box on my head!
      Sorry that I didn’t get to answer this before leaving, seems like a long time. A weekend without blogging! Hope you had a great weekend and thanks for the sweet wishes for Mom and my time together! Smiles, Robin

    • Thank you for this comment, Dan! I am noticing it stuck in here, so sorry for not commenting before I left this weekend! Thank you for your kind wishes and concern about the nails penetrating and falling through the roof!
      I almost went a whole different direction, starting with “The sky is falling, Henny Penny!” Thanks for being here, I am glad to see a ‘new face!’ Smiles, Robin

  3. I used to do a morning news/entertainment show on radio. One night at a work function (meeting fans, letting them buy us drinks ha!), my co anchor threatened to punch me in the face for “making him look bad” in front of our fans. By which I mean, I was funnier. I think I would rather dodge flying screws than be threatened with GBH by an egomaniacal radio personality… 😀 *but seriously folks…* Sorry about your lack of hazard pay, Robin! Over here, Health and Safety laws are insane. It wouldn’t have happened.

    • I am laughing but I should not be! I am sympathetic to you, you adorable and much more funny newscaster! I am wishing it would have been television, you would become famous and I could say, “I knew her when…” I agree that egomaniacal radio personality was not a good guy to work with, wow! Actually threatening you! Not nice, MH! Thanks for sharing! I wrote a post about a radio and newscaster, who I went on a match. com date with. He sounds exactly like this guy! I am not sure what I called that ancient post, MH! or I would send you off to read it. Maybe I will find out, just a minute and I will do a “p.s.” Hugs, Robin

  4. Aw…I hate that you have to wear a box on your head, Robin. My worst experience was in college. I worked for one day with a computer start up guy who had terrible gas. It was me and him and each time he released gas, he looked at me a grinned….we were in a very small room. I left for lunch and never returned. 🙂 Happy Weekend!

    • Oh, how I hate when someone is not aware of common courtesy and doesn’t get up to pass gas, or better yet, use the bathroom!
      I am not sure why but my company feels that the roofing people are the ones who are ‘wrong’ in this situation, not giving us a choice to leave the area while orders need to be filled. Thanks for your funny, awkward and short lived ‘bad’ job experience you shared, Jill!
      Hope you had a happy weekend, too! Smiles, Robin

    • They were told not to drill with the air guns so deeply. We heard a few but did not see as many flying around. I guess this is the way it goes… Thanks for asking!

  5. I think a hard hat might be safer!!! Thank goodness no one was hurt….and it should have at least been fudgsicles instead if Popsicles!!!!:-) ❤️

    • Fudgsicles are awesome, Tracy! Thank you for your great suggestion and wondering why they didn’t offer us any goggles. I repeated the silly comment by the roofer “Don’t look up.” to the maintenance supervisor, who called the company. They will try not to drill the screws so deeply that they go through the metal roof! That was it, Tracy!

  6. So they don’t have OH& S over there? Occupational Health & Safety? They are so big on it here, this would not have been allowed at all. I hope you and mum enjoyed the wedding, sorry I have been slow in commenting. x

    • We have OSHA here, too! I am just a ‘complainer’ and a ‘whiner’ but never would want to lose my job, so won’t be a ‘whistle blower!’ We don’t have a union, but the way my bosses are, they think it is the roofing company that would be the one to have to pay; if anyone gets hurt while they are doing this. They did say they would not drill so deeply, Jen! Thanks for the sweet comment about my Mom and me! We had a ‘blast!’ As we left for the wedding, to pick up my oldest daughter and her 2 boys, Mom said, “We will only stay an hour or two at the reception!” After 6 hours, I wanted to go home and she was still having fun, talking to people. Thanks so much for this, never worry about timing. I am always a ‘day late and a dollar short!”

  7. give an anonymous call to ohsa and and let them know what is going on. this is crazy and highly illegal and very, very unsafe for all of you. you need a military helmet and full flack jacket to enter the zone and even then it is unsafe. and the heat is a whole other can of worms. seriously, that is so dangerous, robin and i know you know that. please be safe and enjoy the wedding. )

    • I am sure that it will be okay now that they are not over my head. They were told to not drill so deeply into the metal roofing. Thanks for all the warnings and extra special concern showed, Beth!! Smiles and hugs!

    • We have fans. But as I like to tell people, “Open an oven, feel that hot air rushing at you? Well, does it make you feel any better?”
      I am sure that my oldest daughter who works with a company with a union, they get to sit down, get ice chips, sometimes have Gatorade and other kinds of fluids free, we are happy enough with the popsicles. Just had to laugh at this!

  8. Why are they making you work under those conditions? Ugh. I hope you enjoy your weekend, m’dear. By the way, it was 109 here yesterday outside, but our air conditioning is working :).

    • 109 degrees out is horribly hot! We have known when we got hired, that there is not air conditioning. I cried, since I started in June, 2008, every day for weeks! Just wore down my nerves, too! Now, I am used to the heat and try to imagine people in mines and other much more dangerous or worse working conditions. We are not as bad as sweat shops, we get two 15 minute breaks and a 1/2 hour lunch in air conditioned break room… Thanks for the comments! Glad you have air conditioning, Luanne!

      • Ugh, you poor thing. It sounds awful!!! I will never complain about the heat in Phoenix again (well, maybe just complain less) after hearing that!

  9. The hazards of my job, currently, are going in to homes where there may be weapons, meth labs, drug addicts, uncontrolled and angry dogs. It’s happened often enough to be leary. But, knock on wood and the good Lord willing, I’ve not been hurt yet. Though one poodle did bite me and left a bruise.

    • I think that your working conditions are terrible, Colleen! I had home visits for my special needs preschoolers where I had questionable circumstances along with my child advocate years when my own kids and a client were endangered. I will keep you in my prayers, Collleen! I am thankful for your strength and faith to keep you helping others in such dangerous situations!

      • Thank you Robin, I don’t want to imply that “all” of my home visits are like that. But those dangers are there. And I do appreciate your kind thoughts and prayers. One can never have too many of those. 🙂

    • Thanks for your feeling sympathy and very much for the prayers. We are not so much in danger, now that the roof is almost finished and if I had been in another area, where I wasn’t so close to the ceiling, I would not have been so worried! Take care, Robin

  10. I am surprised your company did not require you to wear protective eye-wear during the roof construction. That would have made sense since it is natural to look up when you hear or feel something falling from overhead.

    My worst job from a safety perspective was right out of high school driving a laundry truck for a chain of hospitals. This was before anyone had ever heard of blood-borne pathogens. Almost daily there were canvas bags of laundry from the surgical wards in which blood had soaked through. No one ever mentioned anything to me about protective clothing or equipment. I didn’t stay on that job for long. It was nasty. – Mike

  11. Oh, Mike! Yes, you should have worn rubber gloves and protective gear, to not be around those blood soaked canvas bags.
    Glad you didn’t stay at that job too long, since it was quite dangerous for your health! I hope you will have no more close calls such as those! It is hard, since I have worked in a few different settings but the child advocate for the battered women’s shelter in Lancaster, Ohio was far more dangerous than this job! Thanks for the concern, Mike! Smiles, Robin

  12. oh my gosh Robin, that sounds awful! no air conditioning? And the comment by that 1 guy where he told you just don’t look up? I would have been tempted to say, “just be more careful!” Sounds like OSHA is just as effective as our United Nations are! Not very. Although I know that when I had Pep Boys look at my car, and it was really hot outside, they said there was no air conditioning for the workers either. So, I guess it’s not uncommon. But I don’t do well with heat, so I couldn’t even do what you’re doing. Wow. You and the other people did the right thing by complaining about the “flying objects”. You have to do that. You probably saved lives. You never know. I can’t believe they didn’t just ask the people in the “flying nails room” to just go home for the day until the roofers finished. I think that’s the problem today. Everybody’s just concerned with the bottom line and keeping expenses down. And not worrying about anything else. That is so ugly. I’m glad that you have the good attitude that you do. And that it gets you through. I think I’d be so mad I’d have to organize a union, and then I’d probably get fired before it even happened.

  13. Robin, I hope you can find a less hazardous job!! Yikes! Your bosses sound like crazy people having you continue to work under those unsafe conditions. At least get a hard hat! A box wouldn’t do much good against metal. Hard hats are mandatory in construction environments. I feel for you, Robin, and I hope you and your coworkers don’t get injured or heat stroke or something. Hugs, Brenda

  14. Ok, following Jesus doesn’t mean you have to literally get nailed, lol. If you stop posting, should I worry? : )

    • I am so sorry, your comments went into my moderation area and I rarely take the time to ‘bail’ everyone out of there! Smiles, Robin I found several of my friends in there, thanks to wordpress being overzealous!

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