By The Bucket Full

One summer I was working with a High School boy.  He was sharp and quick witted, but only worked with us during the summer while school was out.

One day some carpenters were razzing us about not yet having the power on in the building.  My apprentice said; “You better treat us nice, or we can leave and leave you without any power at all.  You will have to go find a piece of wire somewhere and see if there is any electricity left in it.  You could probably use that to run your saw.”

I suggested that they get a bucket and drain the electricity into it in order to carry it into the building for use.  Later on I found that to be a standard joke.  If someone says they have been shocked by wire that was (supposed to be) de-energized, you tell them it was probably because there was a little power left in the wire.

Another job I was sent to work on was on a house where people of both genders lived, but where none of them were married.  This was in the ‘60s and such things just weren’t done in those days.

The housekeeper was a lady that was employed as a school teacher during the day, but was the live-in house keeper by night.  At one point one of the men in the house told me as he was leaving, that the housekeeper would be over about 4 P.M.  This caused me some nervousness because I wasn’t sure what type of person she would be.  In any case I wanted to be out of there before 4 P.M.

I was standing on a ladder installing an outside fixture and working as rapidly (and nervously) as I knew how.  I was in such a hurry that my pliers slipped and banged me on my front teeth.  It gave me a fat lip.

When I got done I went around the house picking up scraps of wire casing and other leavings, trying to clean up after myself as quickly as possible.

I was back by the bedrooms, bent over, picking up some scrap.  When I straightened up there was someone standing and looking at me, not saying a word.  I yelled out loud before I realized I was looking at a full-length mirror on one of the bedroom doors.

It took ten years off of my life.

However, I think it might have put a charge in my bucket.