Thursday, January 05, 2006

Sago tragedy and some personal reflection

There are days when I don't like my day job. Hell, there are days when I downright despise it. But after watching the Sago mine tragedy unfold, I've decided that I need to be a little more thankful for the direction my life has taken up to this point. I have a decent job in a department full of good people, and I don't have much chance of dying at my desk or going home covered in dirt. After some thought, it has occurred to me that I've got just about the best job there is.

Of course, even if I wasn't doing what I do, I still wouldn't be working in a coal mine. I'm claustrophobic as hell, and just mentally putting myself into a coal mine gives me sweaty palms. I've been saying now for a couple of days that I'd rather scrub sidewalks with a toothbrush than work in a coal mine.

That being said, my heart goes out to those families. My standard of living (and the fact that electricity in Pennsylvania is cheap and coal-driven) is enabled by the hard work and dedication of people like the Sago 13, and I hope that this incident will drive an effort to make things safer for the people who do that thankless job.

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