Monday, June 26, 2017

My Job, An Outside Graduation, part 7 of 7

This is a continued explanation of our setup for the outside graduation.  We have finished the rain plan setup in the school's gymnasium, the broken lens has been repaired and now it is time to begin setting up the outside location.  Jim gives instructions to everyone and the work begins.

"Chop chop."
Howard begins assembling the cameras.

Doug ponders as he looks for the perfect place for his camera to get the best shot.  

Jim guessed, "Nine out of ten Dougs will think the best camera shot will be in the cool under the shade tree."

Doug corrected, "Ten out of nine Dougs will agree."

Even though we are outside, taping the cables down is still mandatory.

In addition, we use landscaping staples on cables that are going across the grass.

Dustin and Ron modeling the staples

Doug using the landscaping staples.

A snake in the grass with staples.
Jim will take the power cable and connect it to the breaker box which is located in the basement of the oldest building on campus.  It appears it might have been built during the dark ages.  Since Jim is afraid of monsters, always has been scared and runs to his big sister to protect him, I volunteered to go with him way, way, way back in the basement.  He is lucky I am such a good sister.

I will also be available to help him if he sticks a screwdriver into a live wire and is shocked and can't get free.  My job will be to save his life by kicking him loose with my rubber soled shoes.  The chance that I might get to kick Jim as hard as possible is definitely worth hiking deep into the bowels of the basement.

"Jim," I asked while waiting in the dust, "When will I get to kick you?"

"Sorry, not today.  We provided a special connector that fits our truck and it was installed by an electrician into the breaker panel.  It is completely safe."  Jim cheerfully assured me.

Sigh. "Jim, it looks like you are poking your hand into a socket."

"I know what I am doing."  He assured me.

I believe him. Oh well. He probably would have kicked me back anyway.

"Now I am connecting an ethernet cable so we can stream everything to the internet for the world to see."

Who cares about the world?  Look at this place. My short attention span waned and I became distracted by everything around me. What a bunch of junk everywhere.  What could all this stuff be?  When was the last time anyone dusted?  I began to snoop.

Jim is hard to see since he is dressed in black but he is in the back of the picture.
I am sure these wires are not to be touched.  I didn't realize buildings built during the dark ages had electricity.  If they had electricity during the dark ages, would it still be dark? 

 A dusty chandelier sitting in a buggy with a coil of wire beside a box of arrows behind a broken chair.  Really!



Jim yelled back to me over his shoulder, "Follow the cable", as he continued walking.

Finally, I can see the light at the end of the mile long tunnel.  I will live!  He should not have run off and left me back there.  It was mean.  I am telling Mom.

Meanwhile, back outside...the weather is getting hot.  I help Doug cool down by fanning him.  It is in my job description.

Howard spies a cloud forming on the horizon.  He is concerned and checks the weather on his cell phone.  It says there will not be any rain.

Now he is wondering if he should believe the weatherman.  When was a weatherman ever right?

I wonder...
The graduation begins.

Dustin on Camera 1

Howard on camera 2

Ron on camera 3
You have to take my word this is Doug in the picture.  Everyone else wanted under the shade tree too.

Doug on camera 4
Jim, the boss, is inside the air-conditioned truck drinking coffee and directing cameras.

The air conditioner on the wall behind him shows the temperature in the truck to be 68 degrees! What an easy job.

Alright, alright, I will admit Jim works harder than all of us put together and I have also made fun of everyone while telling my story.  They were all good sports especially when I stuck a flashing camera in their faces while they were trying to load a jeep late at night in the pouring rain.  It was a fatiguing, but successful season.  There was much, much more to everything than what I shared.  After each show, Jim still had to edit, copy, mass produce, ship, pay bills...on and on.  He fell asleep mid-sentence one night while sitting on the lobby floor waiting for a show to end.  I let him rest.  How he kept from dropping his coffee cup while snoring is amazing.  

Everything did not go perfect, it never does:  equipment broke, rain fell, we were locked out, showtimes suddenly changed (and no one told us).  Disasters are normal.  Dustin caught a terrible stomach virus and everyone shared his workload without being asked.  Even though he was so sick he could hardly hold his head up, he did not stop working.  Clocking out and leaving never entered his mind;  family never clocks out.  The crew is family.

I found Dustin a throw-up trash can...just in case, then flashed the camera in his eyes.
"Congratulations, you have reached Jim at the crisis management hotline. We are now opened 24 hours and on weekends. How may I help you?"

Yes, that is how he answers his business phone.  Everyone knows him and is not surprised. Telemarketers panic and hang up.

Jim began his business years ago with nothing, absolutely nothing.  He bought all the equipment used and rebuilt it.  This company, his life, his passion was built from the ground up with his sweat.  Every one of his many crew members appreciates working for him because he is fair, honest and an honorable Christian man.  He hired my sons when they were young and could not get other jobs due to a lack of experience.  He was patient with their immaturity and taught them excellent business skills.  The work experience they gained was added to their resumes and it has opened many doors.  He showed them a true work ethic with his patience and kindness.  Whenever possible, he also mentors many others, not just my sons.

How does he do so much?  Well, coffee helps.  Lots and lots of coffee.

What is his driving force?  He loves the Lord and it shows in his love for others.  That is what drives him.

My little brother, Jim.
Love ya, bro.  Now get back on that phone and make sure tomorrow's work is lined up.

My Job, An Introduction, Part 1 of 7

My Job, An Introduction, Part 2 of 7

My Job, An Introduction, Part 3 of 7

My Job, A Typical Day, Part 4 of 7

My Job, Just in Case it Rains, Part 5 of 7

My Job, Ocular Surgery, Part 6 of 7

My Job, An Outside Graduation, Part 7 of 7


  1. Sibling relationships LOL You and Jim must truly get along well or you wouldn't have lasted all these years working together....If you are your mom's favorite, telling on your brother will work in your favor....if he's the favorite, you'll get coal for Christmas! (something to ponder)

    1. Jim is Mom's favorite since he can repair anything broken. If you ask him, he will say our older sister and I are the favorites. Of course, you knew we would not agree. Oh, and don't ask Mom which one is her favorite, she will say we all irritate her and she likes the dogs the best.

  2. What a blessing to have such a brother like your brother Jim !
    (I know, because I have such a wonderful sister.) All of those characteristics you describe are so desirable: Open-mindedness, patience, friendliness and helpfulness make a person amiable.
    So he MUST be a lovable person!
    But now something quite different: Where are the spiders you wrote about? I miss "horror pictures!. Most spiders are completely harmless and even very useful as they kill and eat flies, mosquitos and other annoying pests flying around. You must not love spiders, but there is no reason to be afraid of them.

    1. I do not like spiders; however, as long as they are OUTside and I am INside, I am quite happy.
      And yes, my brother is a blessing.

  3. Very interesting and a lovely tribute to your brother.

  4. Thank you for sharing. These are jobs I know nothing about but it's been interesting finding about this "behind the scenes"