going to do the next hour and the next several days?" Max was a man who had worked himself up through the ranks and had never paid that much attention to all the details. When a piece of equipment went down, he sent a couple people to the job site, and they worked on it until it was repaired. If a permanent repair was not possible, the equipment was placed in a temporary state of repair, awaiting a more convenient down time. I had even heard the term temporary-permanent used in the months since I arrived. I was standing to the right of the general foreman's desk and immediately saw signs of frustration deepening the lines of stress that inhabited his face. He froze for a second, lifted his head, and his eyes met mine. Also, this time, there was a noticeable hint of combativeness in his voice. "Look, Ben!" The general foreman said, again tossing his pen on the desk. "Come Monday morning, I'm going to shut this son of a bitch down; I'm going to put every man I've got on it; and do whatever the hell it takes! Then a month later, I'm going to start it back up, and we'll work our way through the mill, piece-by-piece, until we get this son of a bitch back on line!" Ha-ha. I suppose retirement is a little like that for some people. When that day comes, they will ignore all the details and do whatever it takes. But that method, the same as planning an outage, would appear to have some tripwires. If you are married and your spouse has his or her own life and you throw the two of you in the same house twenty four hours a day, I would think most people would start to have a problem, most certainly after a few days or weeks doing that. And in my case, I wouldn't be able to set up shop in one corner the living room or a bedroom and write eight to twelve hours a day. Betty would not let me do that, even if I wanted to. Already I've heard one of her comments. "All you do is sit there and work on that book!" She said. So what was I supposed to do?
Benjamin J Cox is an author, novelist, poet, speaker, writer and humorist. He has published two books, Insider Dreams, a 911 Novel and To Mama: The Long Road Home. He was born on a dirt street in a Waldron, Arkansas, graduated from the University of Tulsa with a degree in Electrical Engineering. He is married with three children, five grandchildren. He is the President of Mayes County Writers Club, the Treasurer of Pryor Creek Investment Club and President of Will Rogers Toastmasters Club. He is retired and lives with his wife in Pryor, Oklahoma. He like to run, enjoys big band dancing, Speaking before groups, and writes every day.
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