The Blank

I wonder why more people don’t infiltrate the offshore oil community for film substance. It should be second to making movies about war. I arrived on this rig Monday morning. Everyone faced a horrific nightmare:

This is a semi submersible rig in over 4000 feet of water. The rig is staffed with the company men, geologists, drillers, tool pushers, roustabouts, roughnecks, third party inspectors, painters, service hands (that’s me!), medics, dispatchers, cleaning people, cooks, and other people. After sitting through a few meetings upon arrival, I ran down to my room to relieve my heavy bladder of its burden. Just before doing my business, I noticed the toilet was full of someone else’s business. I overlooked the grossness and attempted to flush it and move on with my life. No success. I ran back upstairs and alerted Mr. Boxes. “Yeah, sometimes that will happen. Try the bathroom in the women’s change room. Those have a tendency to break less.” I ran back downstairs to the change room only to find that those restrooms were also out of order. I asked a cleaning lady where I could find a functioning commode. “Fifth floor”. Dear readers, for a day and a half, this rig had a single functioning toilet for approximately 155 people on board to share.

The last time I was on this rig (one month ago), I was with my dearest mentor, Lynn. Since then, Lynn has taken a leave of absence from Whataberger and will be gone for 3 months. This happened a few weeks ago, and I was too depressed to post about it. I fear that I will grow tired and miserable of the Whataberger life too. Until then, I’ll be kickin it in the Gulf on various rigs.

Let us now introduce a new segment of the blog. It’s called Fortunately, Unfortunately..A series of events in a typical day….

Fortunately, We had minimal work to do today and I slept until 12 pm.

Unfortunately: I had a disturbing dream. Food. I seriously was dreaming that I ate myself into oblivion. I dreamed about sausage links, beans, candy, cereal, spaghetti, meatballs, hambergers. Instead of feeling happy when I woke up, I felt gross.

Fortunately: Eat exclusively salad and fish. This is a nicer rig and has a variety of foods, including a lavish salad bar. I vowed to myself to eat nothing but fish, chickens, eggs and salad for the remainder of my trip.

Unfortunately Everyone sits in the galley for too long.This is a nicer rig and has a variety of foods. After I have eaten my modest meal of fish, salad and hard boiled egg. I then grazed and eat an additional bowl of ice cream, bowl of baked beans, and roll of bread. Not as gross as my nightmare, but still not ideal.

Fortunately. I finally got over myself and went to the gym. I don’t like going to gyms because I get bored on the tread mill and sharing a gym space in tight quarters can be awkward. I’m not trying to lift 10 lb weights while a jacked roustabout inevitably watches. Fortunately, no one was in there.

Unfortunately. I watched BET while running.

This is my “Breakout Job”. It is progressing with mixed feelings. Since it is my break out job, I am effectively the supervisor on the job and am supposed to do everything and tell everyone what to do. I am the “boss.” However, since I am not broken out yet, I can not be the supervisor or “boss”. In this Catch 22, I find myself watching while Mr.Boxes acts as the “boss”, but then tells me it is my break out job and I need to be the “boss.” It is confusing and frustrating.

 There is a third party inspector here to witness the whole job. He works with a partner. Let’s call them “Ren and Stimpy”. Ren is a young guy who used to work for Whataberger. Unlike most third party inspectors, he’s pretty cool and most of his questions arise from curiosity and not accusation. Ren also plays dominos with us while we are hanging out on the rig.

“We better lock this up. This would make a nice home for someone.”-Mr. Boxes, on the wireline unit outside on the rig

“Yeah, squatters living in the unit.”-Me

“Those buggers will roll up on a boat, climb up here and take everything we own.”-Mr. Boxes.

Last Saturday, I went to work for a few hours. On my way home, I stopped at PetsMart and acquired this:

This is my new fish. His name is Bettatron 2.0.

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