|Photo courtesy of the 728 website.|
Most experienced electricians, young or old, generally avoid working with 4/0 if possible. It's a monster beast of a cable, weighing in at about a pound a foot. Wrapping a hundred foot piece of it will make any man sweat, let alone someone like me who barely weighs more than the coil of copper to begin with.
But today, I craved it.
I had a string of disappointments lasting about a week long, and yesterday's was the final straw. I won't get into the details of what happened, but by the end of the day, I was feeling dejected. And suddenly, I was re-living all those rejections and disappointments not only of the past week, but of my entire professional career. The assholes who didn't think I knew anything. All those times I've been accused of being hired because of my looks. All those times I've been denied work because of them. The kind looking man who ran the crew for a big show, telling me that I'd never make it in g/e because I'd never be "one of the guys." The scruffy looking old timer who'd tell me the same thing a few years later. All those times I've been called "lazy" and "useless" despite giving them my all...
All those voices and more just came flooding back at once; those memories filling my head like a bad song you can't stop humming.
You hear shit like that enough times and you start to wonder if it's true. You wonder if it's possible for all those people to be wrong. You start to wonder what the fuck you're doing in this town. You start to wonder what'll happen if you don't make it. You start to ask yourself why are you fighting so hard. Is it worth it? Are they right? Am I strong enough? What if I'm not? What will become of me?
It was feeling angry and confused and disappointed all at the same time. I was feeling all those things and more towards the people I was working with. At the situation. At no one in particular. At myself.
Honestly, I didn't know what I was feeling anymore. I know I just felt shitty.
I woke up this morning with those thoughts and voices still swirling around in my head. I was re-living every heart chrushing moment of it all. Again and again.
It's days like these I hope I get called for a 4/0 job.
Where it's no one but you and miles of cable that need to be wrapped. No need to pay attention to where your Gaffer is on the set. Or chasing around video village with a stinger. No making small talk with other departments. No sitting still in a corner while you wait for the next set up.
Best of all, you don't have to think. Once you get the hang of it, wrapping a piece of cable is nothing but a fluid, rhythmic motion. You pull with one hand as the other guides it into a neat coil. The only thing you need to concentrate on is how fast you're going and the size of your loops, and you're usually going at such a speed that nothing else but that occupies your mind. Meanwhile, with every length of cable you pull; every loop you make; every finished coil you tie up,* comes with a bead of sweat and somehow, all those bad thoughts that are swimming around in your head slowly ooze out of your pores. And all that anger and frustration you felt just hours ago evaporates with it.
And after a long day of nothing but cable, you go home tired as hell, but in a good way. All your aggressions have been worked out. You feel more at peace somehow. And the best thing is, negative thoughts no longer occupy your mind because all you can think about now is how badly you want a shower and start the next day fresh and clean...
Oh, how I long for a 4/0 job right now...
* That's usually as far as I'll go with it by myself.