Sunday, July 18, 2010

Lack Of Appreciation

I've been watching the construction work going on in front of my house this past week. We are getting new sidewalks that have ADA ramps and new paving for our streets. Despite the noise and the stench which made working difficult, I'm feeling rather patriotic and proud about this bit of construction going on. Our little town has needed this bit of improvement for several decades. 
  New ADA compliant ramps being constructed...
gives freedom to those who need this little bit of assistance.
 Framing the walk and making sure it will be level.
 Pouring early in the morning!
 Try walking through that all day long...
 Making it nice and smooth...
 Hand finishing...
 Here they come--ready to pave!
 See the flames? That's HOT!
 Do you see the clouds of fumes, stench, and heat? 
 Just some the crew following behind the heat and the stink...
But have a sense of humor and are good natured!
 I can't think of a more unsatisfactory position 
to have that's lonely and boring than being a flag person and controlling the traffic. 
Lady--you have my deepest respect because someone needs to be on point. 

I watched the men pour our sidewalk and talked to the guys.  After watching them for several days, I realized that their jobs are not easy--hot, sweaty, back-breaking hard labor that most of us would not want to do. Every one of them are grateful to have employment. Every single last one of them are proud of their profession and endeavor to make sure the quality and standard of their product is high.

So that's why I got irked--to put it mildly--when I saw two young women about to deface our sidewalk.  The sidewalk was freshly poured and we were waiting for it to cure so we could walk on it. When I looked out the window and saw one of these two girls squattting down with the stick in her hand, poised above that fresh cement, I exploded out the front door. She jumped back like she was caught with her hand on the hot stove. I dashed back in to grab the camera and took pictures.
 The two girls ready to deface the sidewalk...and ruin that hard work.
 What she started to do...
Before they decided to jump back into their truck and drive off, I told them I was rather proud of that sidewalk...that the new sidewalk represented freedom for me and that I would defend and protect that representation of freedom from anyone who tried to destroy it. One of those girls looked at me and sneered, "What---Ever!" So I told her that the new sidewalk meant my elderly neighbor can now walk the streets safely without worry of tripping. That's "What---Ever!" 

Am I getting old? Or am I out of touch? I can't remember being faced with such obvious need to destroy something that benefits everyone....and I think I'll leave the politics alone today.

Letting Freedom Ring in America Once Again... 

PS: I'll be out of touch for a few days while I finish my summer session classes. Be good to yourselves! 


  1. I'm so proud of you! They have no right to disrespect these hardworking people or the sidewalk they created. In the last year I have learned what it feels like to have worked all of your career for something only to have it destroyed by someone else's whim. I might have gone after her with a broomstick instead of a camera!

  2. What-EVER! It's such a sad commentary on many of the younger people these days. They are so apathetic. I'm sure they didn't mean to be disreapectful. The problem is, they just didn't think. They have no sense of responsibility or shame. I think they have been numbed by too much television, computer games and "friffery" (what I call all the glam ads, fluffy actors and actresses and such that have no real substance). Instead of feeling anger at these girls, I feel saddness that they weren't taught the respect that our generation was.

  3. Great picture...even of the What Ever girls! I love it. You made me laugh. Good for you for speaking up for what's right.

  4. Yea for you! Those construction guys work very hard and to deface all their hard work is just SO WRONG! Something like your experience always causes my husband to comment (on the girls' behavior), "Don't you just know how proud their mommas must be right now?"

    I'm so glad you spoke up. Obviously they knew what they were doing was wrong or they wouldn't have jumped back like that. They smarted off to you but maybe a seed was planted and they'll think about that the next time.

    Talk to you soon!

  5. Ohh you SO did the RIGHT thing! And I really Applaud you! I am so Impressed because it is a noble thing you did. And who wants to look at a bad defaced sidewalk? Im so glad of what you told them. Ha they could of atleast said "Oh were sorry we shouldnt of done it" but no the Whatever. Thats so rampant today all of the Whatevers phone service and in stores I see rude people to the clerks, and in so many situations. You hit this nail squarely on the head!

  6. You go girl. It is hard to be brave these days, with all the crazies about. You are my hero. And those workers, I can't imagine how they do it and here I complain about a hot office!

    God Bless America.

  7. I love it when the seemingly mundane takes on a new meaning .Always wonderful to appreciate the wonder of everyday occurrences.Flag waving parades are nice, to be sure. But, I love that you found the meaning of patriotism and a feeling of pride from a cement sidewalk ! Great reminder to enjoy every moment .Thank you for sharing !
    m.e .:)

  8. When we're young we never think about what it is like to be old for we think we will be forever youthful. But time passes and we all age, some more gracefully than others. We soon learn that joints go out and need to be replaced, we realize the hazards of having to navigate uneven pavement or sidewalks while using a cane or a walker and we learn to live with blurry vision caused by cataracts. The young have no clue !!! Someday, 60 years or more from now one of them might be in a nursing home and when they complain to a young, fresh faced nurse about some grievance, they too might hear the snide retort; "What...Ever !"

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  11. Some people just feel the need to do horrible things. I teach at a secondary school and some of these folk can be found (unfortunately) at such places. It makes me sad though rather than angry - what has happened to them that they can only have fun by spoiling things for other people? How on earth have their parents brought them up to think that such things are ok? Something to do with having a chip on the shoulder about life and it's deeply sad that the kids who do this - who often you can see have a good soul somewhere in there - are heading down such a miserable path.

  12. Good for you. I wish those guys would come to our neighborhood and work on our sidewalks. They don't have ramps yet and I see lots of young couples walking with baby strollers and some wheelchairs and older folks with walkers. I would like to think that if someone was trying to deface a brand new poured sidewalk I would go out and stop them too.

    Hope your classes are going well. We are back from the beach, kitchen and dining room are finally finished today. So, tomorrow we get to start moving furniture back in. Yea.

    Talk to you soon.

  13. Just been a little while since you've blogged and thought I'd drop by to say "Hi" and say that I've missed you. :)
    Hope things calm down for you soon so you can update us on what's been happening.