Saturday, 23 April 2011

Paris and I ~ 'Little Guys Lament'

iPhone Photo Chronicles
~ Little Guys Lament ~

Between Little Guys, originally uploaded by Paris Set Me Free.

Let's hear it for the little guy today. Those who pick up the litter in the trains once they've stopped and everyone's got off; those who change street lightbulbs and clean the glass globe which protects them; those who paint the railings at your local railway station.

There are so many 'little' jobs without which our society wouldn't be what it is today. Somebody had to lay those rails and sleepers with who knows how much expertise and experience. Someone else had to stick that "ne descendez pas sur les voies" notice to the wrong side of the platform and paint that yellow line. Not to mention the gravel grabbers and transporters.

And then there's the railings guy. How often do we look at the railings which protect us from breaking our necks when falling down the gaping hole called a stairway which takes us under the tracks from one platform to another? Never? Well there's a little guy who's job it is to paint these things. I would have thought they would have come prepainted these days but maybe not. Or perhaps he's redoing them after years of heat and platform life and the paint's started peeling.

Would you notice if they weren't done? Do you notice that they are? These are valid questions, I feel, when someone's life literally revolves around them.

Good job, little guy! Good job you have a job. I like your pristine white railings. They make our stations a bright and pleasant place to be. You're doing a valuable job. Every little imperceptible degradation of our environment leads to others and before you know it the cumulative effect is oppresive and menacing. I'm glad you are doing it.

And when I say 'little' guy, how condescending is that, you may be saying. Let me put things straight. For a start, I wish I had a body like his. And secondly, part of me will forever envy people who have found a stable job they don't mind too much, maybe even get some real satisfaction from, and are able to stick with. Who says that isn't happiness?

© 2011
Sab Will / Paris Set Me Free - Contact me directly for photo tours, interviews, exhibitions, etc.

1 comment:

Rob said...

I believe we begin to take notice of their work fro areas of neglect. We trek through our urban areas happily when things are pristine never giving it a second thought. But when in areas of neglect, we think somebody should do something.

Kudos for shedding light on their noble task of making our urban centers visually pretty.

Kudos to the "little guy" and his real work. More noble than most paper pushing jobs.

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