People sometimes ask me what I do for a living. I always lie.
I tell them I’m a carpenter.
I tell them I’m a retired sea captain.
I tell them I’m a rodeo clown.
That’s the one they never believe.
Oppidanus Security Company, has guards at every construction site from Milton to Woodstock, from Elmira to Brantford. It’s our bread and butter, two shifts a day, four till midnight and midnight till eight. And a roving guard making the rounds visiting every site, every shift. Weekends too. A day shift added across the board. That’s seventy employees right there, more with terminations, attrition, holidays… a revolving door of students, immigrants, retired factory workers, anyone willing to work minimum wage and “non-traditional” hours. Show up. You have a job.
You have to have a heartbeat and pass a police check to get a job with OSC.
There are still occasional problems. I listen to the radio chatter. Suburbanites wandering through. Teenagers looking for a place to party or make out. When I was a kid, we did the same thing. I remember getting my hands on Heather Carr’s sweater muffins back in the day.
But theft is way down. That’s the important thing.
It’s an easy sell to builders as their insurance premiums go down, likely goes down more than their cost of hiring OSC to sit around for them.
“Insurance is a scam”, I say. But so is security.
People sometimes ask me where I’m from. I always lie.
I tell them I was born in Lebanon. My parents were overland hippies.
I tell them I’m from Tuvalu. It’s sinking. Most of my family relocated to New Zealand but we came here.
I tell them that the planet is lopsided and places don’t really exist.
I tell them that I got hit on the head on a Kibbutz in Israel by an unripe avocado after a helicopter warship on it’s way to the boarder with Lebanon flew by overhead at treetop level causing the trees to shake. I can’t remember.