In the workshops, the workers generally have a rather fierce sense of humour. And the main target is the young apprentices and trainees. And preferably those who are just starting out in the trade, who know absolutely nothing or very little about it. You can then make them believe improbable things. That’s the story I’m going to tell you tonight!
A few years ago, there was a very young apprentice in my company. One day, he came to us in the polishing workshop looking a little embarrassed. We asked him what was wrong and he explained that he was sorry because he had just done his first soldering job and had been a little heavy-handed with the torch. Otherwise, the metal and the solder joints are black and the spit wasn’t enough to remove everything. The pre-polishing that was done is only an old memory!
My colleague and I look at each other and I say: “It’s not a big deal, you have to start sometime. Next time you’ll be more careful. But if you want shiny welds, you should polish your weld. That way, even with the heat, it will stay much cleaner The young apprentice then looks at me and says: “Polishing my solder? Is that possible? My colleague said, “Yes, it’s not very easy to do, but we’ll show you and you’ll see the result will be really different! For the time being, you are going to prepare your own mats and collect those of your colleagues in the workshop. That way, they too will have clean and shiny welds. Then come back and see us.”
So J* goes back down to the jewellery workshop and we phone the workshop manager to tell him to give all the strawberries to the apprentice. I run into the head of the workshop and briefly explain the story to him and he hilariously replies: “With pleasure, we’ll give him lots of straw to polish!
Half an hour later, our apprentice comes back with his box of mulch. To explain, a straw is a very small piece of metal which usually measures about 1×1 mm… So polishing strawberries is already an impossible task!
He sits next to me, I take the biggest straw in the box and I give it a little stamp to make it shine. And our apprentice says to me, “Oh yes, that’s better. I understand now.” I explain to him that we have a lot of work to do and that he’ll have to do it like a big boy because polishing strawberries is a task reserved for apprentices. So he settles down and starts trying to polish and within half a second he says, “Damn, he jumped! I’ve lost it.” My colleague then tells him that he’ll have to be patient and try again.
He stayed with us for almost two hours trying to polish his strawberries. Until the workshop manager arrived and asked him what the hell he was doing with the polishing machines. And he had this memorable answer: “Well, chief, I polish my strawberries so that my welds will be shiny!
And at that moment, under the distressed look of the workshop manager, my colleague and I burst out laughing! Yes, we are definitely jokers in the workshops. And that day, we were very proud of ourselves!
See you soon!