Thursday 20 December 2012

Free Beer

I was thinking about people and their jobs today.
Generally I just go about my day and of course at various times I come into contact with people doing their jobs. When I order my coffee, there is usually a smiling face that takes my money, pours my coffee into the paper cup just after I asked for the china cup. No one is perfect. I really can’t imagine how complex that particular job is. Every job entails a special skill set that must be learned and perfected. Most of the time I run into the people that have managed to perfect their skills and are proficient at their jobs. I can sit there and bitch about getting the wrong cup (I do), but before I walked in, someone had to anticipate my arrival and have a pot of steaming coffee ready to pour. Thanks!
Maegan and I went into Costco for a few items that don’t have Ontario PST on them. I stood looking around me at one point and marvelled at the organization that was needed to keep the shelves filled with product that is specific to the season. This stuff had to have been ordered back in June and not only did they have to guess what would be the hot seasonal items, but they needed to order enough product so that they wouldn’t run out, yet no so much that they will have a lot left over. There are some things that they run out of, usually the thing that I want, but on the whole they do pretty a pretty good job. They also need to have enough employees to keep the customers moving and happy, because an unhappy customer is a customer for another store.

There was a water main break a week ago in the city and within a very short while the city had turned off the water, drained the area, evacuated the homes that needed to be evacuated and brought in workers and machines with the skills needed to repair the water line in sub zero weather. The residents that remained in their homes had access to clean, potable water, shower facilities and were given a time line for the return to normal. Really, an amazing amount of planning had to go into dealing with the problem.
I think that Genghis Khan, Attila, Alexander, Charlemagne, Caesar, Napoleon and Hitler all knew the importance of supply lines. You had to keep the armies equipped and fed if they were to fight for you. They also knew that if you could cut the enemies supply lines you would then be victorious. Being a conqueror was one thing, but in order to keep the lands and people that you had just conquered, it was necessary to feed, house and clothe them. Probably that was more complex than defeating them in the first place.

Our modern governments do an amazing job of organizing all that we need to keep the civilization going. I suspect that television is an important pacifying agent just as Egyptian beer was to the Pharaohs. The workers were given beer three times a day and sometimes they were paid in beer. The beer back then was more nutritious, thick and sweeter that the beer of today, but I imagine there was an intoxicating aspect to the drink as well.

Like I say, the governments of today are doing a fantastic job, but I can’t help but think life would be just that much better if we were all given free beer every day.
Just a thought. 

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