Work outside your job description

My husband works in a lab developing products for companies who use a white clay called kaolin to coat paper. That’s the best I can describe it. He’s been there 26 years and I still don’t understand what he does.

Our end of the day discussions are like those between many couples, “How was your day? Anything interesting happen?” Yesterday when I got home and called out while I put my stuff down, David’s response from the den was unusual.

“I got bitten by a snake.”

In addition to all the controls required for product development, safety is an important part of daily operations in the labs. I am betting there are no protocols for reptile removal.

Yesterday a lab staffer who Does. Not. Like. Snakes. saw the resident black snake sunning itself at the lab’s back door. David was summoned. He¬†grew up identifying snakes and picking up the harmless ones so he has the skill set to catch a black snake.

He had to reach around a shrub and he didn’t get his hand quite as close to the snake’s head as he would have preferred. The snake made its unhappiness clear by reaching around and biting him just past his index finger. The bites will probably require a tetanus shot but they look no worse than scratches he has gotten in the garden.

David’s lab mate who Does. Not. Like. Snakes. can rest assured that the next time a snake is enjoying the sun at the lab’s back door (and there will be others, the lab has woods on two side of the building), it won’t be the one that was captured yesterday. That snake took a 15 mile ride out to the country inside a bucket with a tight-fitting lid with holes punched in it for fresh air. Lab Snake was released in our yard. Hopefully it will live out its life reducing our mouse population.

I can’t wait to get home tonight and ask how David’s day was.

About Katherine Helms Cummings

During the day I am a social and environmental activist whose professional work has been in the nonprofit world for the last 12 years. Most nights and weekends I am an artisan making accessories with upcycled cashmere and woven textiles. My handmade items are available at The Sassy Gal http://thesassygal.org
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2 Responses to Work outside your job description

  1. Elaine Crawford says:

    Good Boss

  2. Marian Wingo says:

    That was rich and made me smile…