It May Not be Right, But it’s the Way It Is

PIE 2019 was winding down. The exhibit hall was closed and the exhibitors were packing up. The shipping crates were being trucked in from a holding area off site. I wandered through the hall, taking care not to trip over pieces of exhibits and boxes littering the aisles.

I then heard a familiar voice raising the proverbial heck. I friend of mine was complaining to anyone who would listen that his crate had yet to be returned to his booth. He had complained to the shipping company and then in no uncertain terms to the staff at the door where the crates were coming in.

I went back to the shippers and was told that this was routine, and that it all depended on the luck of the draw. The crates were returned in the order they were loaded onto trucks in the holding area. There were three trucks, and only one truck at a time could fit into the exhibit hall’s loading dock.

Although this was explained to my friend, it didn’t serve to calm him down. I left and went to the bar. He ran me down in the bar ranting and raving. I left my adult beverage and went back down to see if there was anything I could do.

When I got there, his crate was sitting at the entry door, the last one off the last truck.

I asked the union shop steward when it was going to be delivered to his booth. “As soon as it is handed over to me.”

At that moment it all became clear. Never, NEVER, upset the shop steward if you want to change how things are happening.

In situations like this they have absolute control. And there is nothing NOTHING you can do about it, except maybe make matters worse.


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