Love and Violence
Now like all modern work place, we have zero tolerance for violence but that does not seem to stop bi-polar boy from acting like a jerk. I call him that because he seems to be in need of medication for the shadows of his mind play tricks on him with his interaction to the world. It’s all conspiracies. The Earth is flat! We never went tote moon. Obama is an Alien lizard. You have seen the same sort of wacky ideas on the fringe web sites you read for giggles. He believes them, one and all. She calls him Joe-Blow, a reference to a BS artist who is always on the girls, trying to get their attention. I used to get jealous cause he was always hitting on her but now I know how she feels, so I feel better! At least she knows the score about him. He is like married. He live with the same women and her kids, he pays the bills and basically does what a man is supposed to do for his women, even if they are not married. However, he flirts with all the girls and he basically hits on them as if he was looking for a date. None of my business what he does except he tends to bother her. Mostly he pisses her off. She gets feisty and in his face to tell him off back. Remember she is tiny, and I mean small. 5 foot nothing, 100 lbs tiny. He is a bigger guy near 5'10" and weights a good 220 maybe 250. For some reason he keeps bothering her, even though he really does not like her. I hear him speak, or rather over heard him as he swears under his breath at her as he walks away. "What a Bitch." I heard him say once. So one day she was doing something and he was seated. He said something and she basically told him off. So in what I have come to call "Faux Violence," basically a fake threat because I am sure he would not have resorted to violence, his eyes tightened. His fist clenched. His face went red and he started to get up. Until he glance over my way. Just as he towers over her in weight and height, I am taller and weight more than he does. You could almost see how he mind was thinking, I was right there, so there would be no chance of any real violence and she would be even more in his face, thus doubling his humiliation and there was nothing he could do about it since there would be no way any funny stuff was going to happen with me around to... to ... raise objections to his faux violence or otherwise anyone who threatens her. Not sure she noticed any of this but I did. Made me smile. I may not be in her life, but I am still making it better just by standing around.
But that is the violence, where is the love?
One of the older Italians that we work with is always against her. She is senior to him, which is where I figured was the spark point but I was wrong. Boy was I ever wrong! So, he complains that she does not do her job; she is always wandering off etc. And he complains to anyone who will listen to him including the bosses. He is always complaining about her. Well one day, he had to go to the bathroom on work time. It happens to us all, we cover for each other. When he came back 20 minutes later, he put on his jacket because he was going out for a smoke. He was speaking to another Italian about how she is never working, never doing anything, always wondering around. Errr? The irony of his complaining about her not working was lost on him for some reason. Another time, he was on one side of the conveyor and we were on the other. There was a box on his side that needed to go to my side so I said give it to me. She was further down lost in space, staring into the hemisphere. So instead of giving it to me, he tosses right in front of her. It was a light box so it would not have hurt her even if he had aimed it at her. Which he certainly did not! It just landed right in front of her and gave her a fright. This is what he wanted to do, scare her. It happens sometimes when she is inside her own head that she is in the crowd but lost. To the point where they yell her name and she is like literally jumping up. Startled by her name being called, she gets embarrassed by her own inattentiveness rather than mad at being disturbed. He accuses any man who helps her of being in love. I move her heavy boxes so I must be in love with her. I must be her boyfriend. I know where she is all the time! I don't. I only know where she is most of the time... So Friday another Italian was helping her do her work, basically lifting the heavy boxes as I would normally do, except I was assigned elsewhere so I could not do both. And this guy starts in on the Italian. Only he does his comments in, of course, Italian. Since English and French would be a dead giveaway and half the group speak Italian so most would understand him. Having work with them for years I get some of what they say. In this case, he started in on the second guy, must be in love with her etc. The very same things he was accusing me of being only, literally, the day before. In my case, it would be true but this guy? Say what? What was in his head that would make him accuse us all of being in love with her until it clicked. Who gives a girl all his attention? All his focus? But someone in love with her. And click. He had a crush on her. He was like 25 years older then she is and married with kids and grandkids and all that but he had a crush on her. That was why he was always talking about her, always saying things about her. He wanted her away from him because he was in love with her.
One last story of someone else being in love with her; another guy, much younger, was always hanging around her, always trying to talk to her, but he was getting nowhere. Might be because he smoked, and she was dead set against smokers. Could be he was simply a jerk? I don't know but she shut him out. As we were working one day he was badgering her about how old she was. She was playing but she was not answering, I was working nearby and interjected that she was nineteen and holding. Nuff said. She smiled a very happy smile because he was not going to find out her age! She also got a compliment that she looked younger than she was! He, on the other hand, had a grimace, sort of pained silence that he was not going to find out how old she was today. I already knew, she told me a while ago. She is not 19. Another time, while we were working on a truck, he walked up to talk to her, certainly not to talk to me. And he was making snide comments about my being there. I looked at him and said "We're a team." As if that explained everything about why I was always around helping her and it did because we are a team. It did the trick well enough in his mind because he left soon after. But this guy is another follower of hers; a not so secret admirer, who she tolerates. Cause he can be annoying to me. One day as he was driving out he stops and yells at me. "Tell her I love her!" I waved and kept on working. Thinking; "Boy what a jerk," until I realised that he really does love her. In a superficial, childish manner that involved a man sized crush from a little boy sized personality.
In the end, I help her, moving her heavy boxes or just standing there to give the bully a second thought. I help her, she helps me, we are a team. We may not be going out but that does not mean we cannot be partners: even if that would be too strong a connection and too formal as well.
Still I journey on.
Thanks for reading!