Hotter than Taylor Swift’s squad: My supportive male colleagues
It doesn’t matter what industry you work in, it’s always nice to know people have your back no matter what. Tay Tay has her string of 6ft gangly legged super models and I’ve got my plump, toothless Gordie pipe layers. I know you're questioning the comparison, probably based upon the images below, but believe me, Taylor's “bad blood” squad of beauty have their work cut out for them to live up to these two guys.
Working in a predominately male workforce can have its downsides for obvious reasons. There are just somethings the male species can’t relate to and I often find myself having to ‘deal’ with it. I once created an ‘imaginary female colleague’, ‘Jane’ whilst my hands were near to dropping off in zero degrees and knee deep in mud and snow on site in the middle of December. I uttered the words “Feck me this is cold Jane, is this really worth it?”. Obviously, her response was “it's shite isn’t it, but you know what let’s take the rough with the smooth, summer times are bliss when we get to work outside”. My imaginary conversation was interrupted with “bloody hell Michelle, sometime today would be good!”. Point being, a little empathy from time to time would be nice, or even the opportunity to exchange a snigger or roll of the eye after observing some sort of idiocy or leud comment.
Truth is, I didn’t need Jane for that long, thank god, as I’m sure I was only one comment away from being sectioned. Talking to one’s self is not something that goes a miss on a construction site. At the very start of my engineering career I got sent to a site to assist two drainage pipe layers, providing them with line and levels to build a road. Needless to say, my inexperience was sniffed out in a millisecond. Peering down a manhole, I introduced myself to ‘the gang’ . Two Jordie faces
looked up in absolutely horror - seriously, it was as if someone had announced the imminent death of Alan Shearer. “Are you our engineer?”. There was no greater confidence boost that the expression they gave me.
Truth is fast forward two years and I know I have shared some of the funniest and heart-warming experiences with these two guys. I have literally split my sides hearing their stories and our “gossiping tea breaks”. We have gone through it all including ill-fitting tracksuit disasters (theirs not mine!). A whole new set of teeth, mistakes, surviving awful colleagues and their antics, sunburns, injuries, explosive diarrhoea (again theirs not mine), and most importantly the constant banter: “Jesus, Michelle your sweating more than a fat bird at a disco”; “She’s wrapped up tighter than a Jews wallet” and; “Wouldn’t you rather work in boots selling lipstick or something?”.
Here is where shit gets real though, these guys gave me a chance. I proved that not only could I do the job given the chance but that I could do it well. Both these guys, took me under their wing, and in an industry where blaming is rife, they would never let anyone badmouth me or my work. They even went as far as to champion me to higher management, making sure they knew “I was the best engineer” they had. Hell, these guys even got me a pay rise! If I was ever under the weather it was
detected and a thoughtful cup of tea was placed in my hand or a “get yourself back in the warmth pet, we don’t need you yet”. These small jesters mean the world, especially when you have those off days. Truth is Taylor can stick her Victoria secret clan, I’ve got my own clan.
Yeah that's right some even get my name tattooed! ;)