What it is, Pigeon Handlers?
For your reading pleasure and by request, this Friday’s entertainment For the People is about a time that I got hit on in the old oil patch down there in Gillett, Texas.
“You remember every time you’ve been hit on?” You ask with skeptiscim.
I sure do! It doesn’t happen very often and when it is an interesting affair, I tend to keep tabs.
The year was 2013 and there I was, mearly on in my first big stint in the Oil and Gas industry, trying like everyone out there to make myself a hand. I was also in the first few days of growing my very first mustache. The day was a Thursday. I remember this because we had a safety meeting that day and I was already running late. I was less worried about safety and more so that I would miss the catered lunch.
You see, this was before the bust and we were spoiled rotten. Every Thursday, we’d gather at the office for a “pumper’s meeting” and once a month this would coincide with our mandatory safety discussion. Always, some vendor hungry for business would throw dollar bills around at food service companies and offer us bribes such as fried chicken, banana pudding, and the sweetest of teas. Alas, some of my former coworkers and dear friends are, how to put this delicately…not so little around the middle. If I didn’t make it to the office soon, I would have been in danger of becoming a grown version of Oliver Twist, begging around for scraps.
I remember checking in on one of my last wells for the morning, the Harper 8H. Oh such good times at the old Harper/Dragon, but those are tales for another day. Anywho, I started driving back out of the secluded well pad and happened upon a wayward vacuum truck.
“What’s a vacuum truck?” You ask, being not from the oil patch.
I’m glad you asked. Terms like vacuum truck, H2S, and rigless consultant are all oil field terms that I conveniently described in my oilfield mystery Wham! You can get yourself a copy on Amazon.
I bet you were wondering how I was going to shamelessly sneak in some self promotion. I know, it was pretty clever. Back to the story.
Being fairly new to the gauging game and trying to be an A-Plus-Number-One employee, I stopped and had an internal discussion with myself. “Self, I just came from thatta direction and I’m pretty certain that old whistlebritches doesn’t really need to be back there.”
Before I could further investigate, old whistlebritches himself came to the same conclusion and he met me at the edge of the road. He stopped, putting his truck in park with the hissing of air and idling diesel, and stepped down out of the cab and walked over to my window. This man, his name likely repressed, strutted down the caliche road. Under his hard hat was a gloriously metal ponytail which made me, a lad who had concerns for the genetics and future of his hair, slightly jealous. As he spoke, I kid you not he sounded like a perfect blend of both Cheech and Chong.
“Hey man! That’s not where I need to be!”
Early enough in my career that I hadn’t progressed to a “not my problem” attitude, I took it upon myself to help this fellow out. “I figured. Do you know where exactly you need to be?”
“Nah man. I just know that I need to find a rig.”
I racked my brain. I recalled that there was in deed a work over rig that had just concluded operations on the Milton 16H or 17H. I can’t exactly remember, but it was the one to the right when you were facing them. Anyway, I asked if that was in fact the rig he was searching for.
“Totally! I was there working with them and I went to take a load to the SWD and now they are gone!”
Precarious, I thought to myself. Surely, this mystery should not be to hard to find out. “Hang on a minute. I think I can find it.” I grabbed my cellular telephoning device and made a call. When in doubt, ask someone who knows. Fun fact, I sent out my call for help to the very same man who requested this anecdotal tale. For security reasons, his name will remain anonymous.
After the call, I had found the answer. 2013 me knew exactly where that rig had gone. 2019 me has forgotten. So I ripped a page from my tally book and drew a map and gave the disorientated truck hauler a run down on how he could get back on his merry way.
I don’t know if it was my friendly demeanor and my willingness to help my fellow man. I don’t know if it was my dashing good lucks brought on by my new facial hair addition. All I know is that i was not mentally prepared for what came next.
“Aw man! You’re awesome bro! Did it hurt?”
I pondered for a moment. Surely, I thought, this man doesn’t mean to gift me with the oldest line in the book. I hesitated, but was determined to advance the encounter as I had places I needed to be. “Did what hurt?”
“When you fell from heaven!”
Flustered, I came up with no words. I simply rolled my window up and drove on my way.
Now, you may be saying to yourself, “That’s not really hitting on you, when you think about it.”
You know, you’re probably right. But also, I can say with honesty that the only three times I had ever had that same conversation with a fellow member of the human species, I was in fact “hitting” on them.
There are two things that occurred after this situation. One: I made an ill-advised decision to relay this encounter to all of my coworkers. They thought it was hilarious. Hilarious enough to still make requests to hear it some 6 years later. Two: I went home after work that day and shaved my mustache. 2019 Me looks back with hindsight and realizes that it was just a friendly remark and if really there was truth to the situation, I take it as a win and a boost to the self esteem. 2013 Me on the other hand thought that the ‘stache was far too powerful in the art of seduction and that the world was not ready for such blatant sex appeal.