“One of the problems with how the human brain functions is its need for a coherent narrative.” – Hurt Machine by Reed Farrel Coleman
Working this yard is not challenging. Hardly any traffic. None after 6 pm or on the weekends. Easy Peasy.
But, there are a few absolutes and rules we must enforce as well as adhere to.
Primary is keeping accurate and complete records.
Full names spelled correctly of all who enter.
So a week ago this unfamiliar guy pulls up to the gate driving a delivery truck.
I ask for his name and he replies in a strong and heavy Spanish accent I barely understand. Rolled rs and stuff. So I ask him to spell it and he replies that he cannot.
So I’m thinking I’ve got a jerk on my hands who wants to give me a hard time for whatever reason. It happens.
Can’t spell your name? Ok. Show me some ID and I’ll get it from that.
Well, he goes all ballistic on me, digs his driver’s license out and jabs it at me.
I’m thinking this guy is a very strange whack job as I copy the name. And, he’s starting to really piss me off. Somehow, I keep my cool and finish logging him in. He drives through in a huff.
Yesterday he showed up again. Pleasant. Nice. Smiling. Cooperative.
We talked. Nice conversation. He’s really a nice guy. Turns out he really could not spell his name in English. He could speak it though with a strong accent. He learned to speak English on the streets of Chicago.
He was only embarrassed and frustrated that he could not recite the English Alphabet.
First time I’ve ever run into that.
We are now buds.
You never know.
“How human it is to see a thing as something else” – Underworld by Don DeLillo