Quality Control

8:00 am

Park car. Swipe security card. Put on gloves, mask, suit. Time on line 8:00. Watch the parade.

Yellow. Yellow. Yellow. Goldenrod. Yellow.

Wait, Pete thought. That's not right.

He quickly pulled the off-colored Twonkie from the conveyor belt and added it to his report. 

REASON FOR SCRAP: Discolored snack cake. SOLUTION: Maintenance check on Oven

He sighed and threw it away. To anyone else being a Quality Assurance Technician at a snack food manufacturer would be a dream job. It paid decent. You got free samples. There was no union. Supervisors left you alone for the most part.

But to Pete it was hell. 9 long months of hell. Pete didn't want to watch snack cakes one after another. He wanted to play guitar. He'd always wanted to play guitar. Instead he made excuses.

No time. No money. No venue.

It didn't help that Pete's “office” was small. Secluded with white sterile walls, his room stood apart from the rest of the plant and best of all had no windows and only one door. It was the perfect place for people to come, hide out, and complain about their jobs. Pete inevitably became their sounding board, their psychiatrist, their Quality Control.

When word spread there was a good guy in QA who listened, folks came out of the wood work to see the guru.

There was Ralph from Packaging with his incessant need to talk about his rash. Darlene from Logistics and the tales of her dating just about man in the place. Jim Dean from Maintenance and his drug binges.

No topic was taboo.