As the Trip Unraveled

After finishing a job late Friday, it was time to clean up and get ready for the weekend. I placed all my tools in the toolbox, threw a new bucket of pull string in the bed of my F150, and off I went. Saturday morning I was supposed to meet a potential customer to look at a job. On my way to the meeting, I glanced out my rearview mirror, only to see a mile of string following me. Visualizing the string getting wrapped around the drive shaft of someone else's vehicle, I immediately pulled over, knowing that I couldn't just leave it in the road. Then I very carefully began winding the string up, making sure not to wrap it around my hands in the event a car should come by and catch hold of it — a task that took me around 30 minutes. Luckily, it was early in the morning, and there weren't a lot of cars on the road. What's the moral of this story? Make sure the end of the pull string is secured inside the bucket before you take off.
Tim Burke
St. Charles, Mo.

So Close, Yet So Far Away

A few years ago, I was running two jobs in cities about 150 miles apart in Florida. Both projects were for an anchor retailer in shopping malls. The malls opened at 10 a.m., and I had called in for inspections at both locations. I was in the Gainesville store early (before opening), waiting for the inspector to look at the wiring installation for a cooling tower/chiller installation, when my phone rang. It was the inspector, who said he was standing inside the mall in front of a coffee and tea store. He asked if I could get him inside the anchor store. I told him to wait there, and I'd be right out. After the long hike to get outside the anchor store and then back into the mall, I looked around, but there was nobody to be found. I called the inspector back and said, “I'm here, where are you?” He responded, “Right here in front of the coffee and tea shop, where are you?” Suddenly, it occurred to me. I asked, “Are you in Tallahassee or Gainesville?” It was the Tallahassee inspector standing in front of the coffee and tea store in the other mall. After explaining the situation to him, I apologized for the blunder. I then called the Tallahassee store and had someone let him in to perform his inspection.
Tom McHaffie
Tallahassee, Fla.

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