Godbey: Work ethic is not always apparent 

Published 2:30 pm Tuesday, August 1, 2023

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By Jack Godbey


I can thank my parents for the work ethic that I have. When I was growing up, all the kids had chores with me included. I was the baby of the family and had no problem using that to my advantage to try to get out of work. However, it rarely worked out the way I wanted.

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There were those jobs that the entire family had to do such as going to the garden to dig potatoes. There was no debate about that. You want to eat you dig. Although I seem to remember throwing more potatoes at my sibling’s head than putting in the bucket.  When the green beans were ready for picking, I instantly tried to sneak away. However, it was no use. I was always captured and forced to take my place in the green bean breaking assembly line that occurred on our front porch every summer. I recall one year I just couldn’t help myself and I snuck my rubber toy snake into the green bean bucket. When my mother reached down for more beans, she instead pulled the lifelike toy snake out and she let out a scream and green beans went everywhere. I thought it was hilarious. Not sure why I didn’t get my butt blistered for that one.

While I thought those chores were the worlds worst, it would be a few more years until I found out what real work was by hauling hay and cutting tobacco. Now that is hard work.

Being taught the value of work has continually helped me in adult life. However, it’s also clear by looking at the people we have worked with over the years that not everyone has been taught the value of hard work. We all have those few co-workers that are less than desirable. For example, at every job site there’s always a kit kat. That’s the guy that always seems to be on a break. Then there’s the butter knives. They are the ones that are not the sharpest tool in the shed by any means. Every work site has motion lights. They are the workers that do absolutely nothing until somebody walks by and then they pretend they have been working the entire time.

Then there are those that I call E.T., because they talk about going home as soon as they arrive at work. We also have the lanterns. You know these guys. They are not very bright and have to be carried by everyone around them. Some of the worst co-workers are the deck chairs. They are fine when everything is going well but the minute a little pressure is applied, they fold and breakdown. It seems that I have worked with more than my share of Easter eggs. These are the workers that no one is ever able to find. We see them arrive at work but are never seen again until quitting time.

We have the commodes that always seem to be in the bathroom, and we have the chihuahuas who bark orders like they’re the boss although they aren’t.  We have the sun setters that think their mere presence is enough and my favorite are the foodies. They are more concerned about what everyone is having for lunch than any actual work. We have the shoulder trolls that continually look over your shoulder and we have the colonoscopy crew that spend their time up the boss’s butt.

So, no matter if you have co-workers that seem like family or if you have co-workers that continually eat your lunch. You might as well accept it as they are unlikely to change.