Seasonal Work, Year-Round Jerk

, , , , , , | Working | June 17, 2021

For my sins, sometimes I have done seasonal work for Royal Mail. The first time was the most eventful. Several of us were assigned to push heavy trolleys called Yorks. These can weigh up to a quarter of a ton. For someone who had applied for seasonal work, one such coworker didn’t seem very hardworking or focused.

One evening, I was pushing a York cheerfully along. (I was cheerful. The York wasn’t, due to being an inanimate object.) Suddenly, I felt a pain in my foot. Recoiling in shock, I turned to see [Coworker] reversing his own York from where he had just hit me, before pushing past me at high speed.

Coworker: “Sorry!”

Apparently annoyed that I did not tell him, “That’s all right,” within about three seconds, he shouted again.

Coworker: “I said I was sorry!”

And then, he disappeared elsewhere in the building.

People pushing things weighing half a ton are trained to keep two metres’ distance from the person in front for reasons which are blindingly obvious. They are also not supposed to move such things fast enough to risk wheelies, as the damage caused by one landing on you is even greater than the damage caused by one being driven into you.

Once I had time to assess what had happened, I concluded that I could walk normally with a bit of care. I delivered my cargo and then went to speak to a manager. The coworker arrived before I had finished reporting the issue and immediately started yelling.

Coworker: “I told you I was sorry! Are you trying to start something?”

Apparently, he didn’t realize that it is possible to see the need to report a careless accident without thinking that the culprit was malicious. When he started advancing toward me with his arms flung wide, I was rapidly bundled away before things escalated. A few minutes later, I was seen by a first aider, who expressed amazement that my foot hadn’t been broken.

In due course, I was informed that the culprit had been escorted off the site by four burly postmen and informed that if he showed his face there again the police would be called. There were concerns that he might try to track me down, but thankfully, nothing happened.

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