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Mining buffoonery

16 July 2012, 09:44

Names of persons concerned are changed.

Jan was an underground boilermaker. Most people he knows or knows him tend to give him a wide berth. You see, the reason is quite simple: Jan has a R20 complex. Anybody who passes are asked to lend him R20. Many do but others tend to change their paths for a more roundabout route should Jan be spied. Jan would do anything for R20. And he hated working overtime. One day there was a breakdown on one of the cages and the boilermakers had become extinct due to evolution, I assume. Poor Jan was cornered on his way to the change house. The shaft manager asked him about the cage repairs and Jan mentioned that it was not his section and he was on his way out. Knowing Jan for some time the manager produced R20 like in magic. Jan grabbed the note, spun around and made for the shaft. Nowhere in recorded history did Jan ever return a single R20 note as his end of the loan.     

One day the shaft and production was standing due to maintenance. Jan and myself was working on the lowest level. I was checking a pump panel and Jan was replacing bolts on the shaft emergency conveyance compartment. This was nothing other than a 200 litre oil drum  suspended from the spillage winch cable. That was the day that someone higher up developed gippoguts, did their thing in a bucket and chucked the contents down the shaft. Poor Jan was hit with the full force of diarrhoea . I heard a scream of rage and request to be hoisted to the next station. Jan climbed out of the drum shaking with rage. His hair, overall, tools and everything else was plastered with an unbelievable amount of human excrement. When the first cage arrived to hoist the shift to surface all got out after Jan got in. Jan went to lay a complaint at the managers office. The manager had been informed earlier. On entering the office the  manager demanded that Jan not come too near, handed him R20 and told him to go wash then go home. Evolutionary forces made Jan extinct within a few seconds   

Jan loved a well kept lawn. In passing one would see him on his haunches, scissors in hand, trimming the grass, all to the exact same length. One Saturday morning I  am sent to the lowest level to sort out a faulty pump. On arrival I see Jan placing explosives into his tool bag. This explosive has a high content of nitrates and acts as A perfect growth medium for plants especially grass. Anfax, if I remember correctly.     

The mining community has an Azanian type of telephone system. This simply means that the latest news is posted over the fence to the next subscriber. Who sends it to the next one. So was Jan’s death made known to the community:  He was stabbed to death. Jan was an OK, sort of chap.    

While making off the end of a power cable I am called, by one of the workers, to check the telephone. Still with the sharp cable knife in my hand I approach the telephone where a fitter,Piet is trying to phone surface. Piet turns around, sees the knife in my hand and goes completely out of his mind, running, ranting and raving.Piet was addicted to stuff and pot. He later told me he was stabbed with a knife and has a phobia for knives.
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