In my previous post, I introduced Frank, the utilities supervisor at the electronics plant. He did baptize me into his secret society, but we also had our fun with him.
Gruff and hardened from years of working at the plant in its former life as a textile manufacturing facility, Frank came from the school of ‘do whatever it takes to get it done’. This included fixing electrical issues with jumper wires, regardless of the voltage and jumping up a ladder to muscle a pipe fitting to stop a leak. Frank never needed no stinking permits or engineering.
His loud personality made him one of the easier targets for good-natured practical jokes. We all knew he could be gullible and his reactions made for great entertainment.
Like a lot of the guys in this South Carolina location, Frank drove a pickup truck. He loved that truck and let everyone know to keep their distance from it. It wasn’t a new truck, but at least ten years old with some bumps and bruises marking its age.
Turns out another supervisor, Bob, drove the same brand of truck as Frank. It was most likely the same model year. I’m not sure what inspired Bob to try this, but a simple try of Frank’s truck lock with Bob’s key opened the door and turned the ignition.
A new ritual was born.
Every couple of months, Frank’s truck was moved across the parking lot. Word leaked out to the rest of the plant, but it never got back to Frank.
Flustered Frank included a beet red face. I can imagine Frank hit the clouds walking around that lot looking for his truck. Probably made for interesting conversation around his dinner table on those evenings. He returned to work the next day as if nothing happened.
Frank also prided himself in having a good handle on his job, his department and his people. With a shutdown coming up in a couple of weeks, a planning meeting was held to go over the work to be accomplished.
Our electronics technician, Carroll, decided to get Frank flustered yet again. During the course of the meeting Carroll would drop a question for Frank, one at a time:
“Do you have your paint?”
“Yeah, yeah I do.”
“Do you have the brushes?”
“Do you have the thinner?”
And so on. After a while, Frank’s face became characteristically blushed and finally he blew. “Don’t you think I know how to do my job?” Bingo! The reaction we waited for. Frank never disappointed.