Friday, April 21, 2006

Tai Chi in the Shop at 7 AM

Supposing Garth hadn't just found a steady job in his own field based right here in Arcola; supposing I actually wanted a job: wouldn't this be fun? Picture this: a dozen guys in their blue coveralls and steel-toed boots, setting aside their coffee cups and gathering on an open piece of the shop floor. Each finds a spot, arms-length apart from the others. All eyes are on me. (Of course. I'm the only female in the shop.)

Heels together, toes apart. Breathe deeply from the belly. Relax, let your arms hang with the elbows away from the body, palms to the rear. Imagine a helium balloon is lifting you by a string from the crown of your head . . .

I figure I could sell it as an injury reduction program. Trucking in the oilfields is hard on a body. Those trucks run in every kind of weather, long hours. The work alternates between sitting jolting along in the truck, and hurrying to haul those heavy hoses over whatever uneven muck or frozen clay you come to, and standing around waiting in the wind or rain or sun, and hauling hoses again, and jolting along in the truck. Now, if those truck drivers had a little Tai Chi routine that they studied with me, once a week at 7 a.m. in the shop, then they could practice it while they're waiting around on those well leases, and keep those muscles warm and limber for the work.

So I could probably get some Occupational Health funding for a pilot project, don't you think? And if it showed good results, then the trucking companies might pick up the tab, to keep their Worker's Comp. premiums down. I could do Nankivell's shop one morning, and Spearing's the next, and so on around the region.

The companies might not want to pay much, but I figure I could do quite nicely with a tip jar.

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