Monday, August 20, 2012

My Observation About Telephone Poles

Let me tell  you about telephone poles.

Oh, I know, I know.  I can see it now.   All you schmoes are now saying,

"Oh no, how much sun did the Captain get that he's starting to philosophize about telephone poles"

but I'm about to prove you doubting Thomases wrong.

First take a look at these couple of pictures and see if you can see where the telephone poles are ( you may have to magnify them).

Now keep in mind these are just two photos.  In my travels through the west I notice that telephone poles are put and placed in a very direct manner.  Whoever put them in didn't care what terrain had to be traversed.  The lines ran the way the bird flies - in the most direct manner.

This means the telephone poles were placed and installed on the highest mountains, the deepest valleys, across the driest lands which leads me to opine...


I mean, you would get to hike and climb the most awesome and breath-taking terrain and GET PAID FOR IT.  Oh sure, I'm sure it was very physically demanding, but if you look at telephone lines and where they go, you have to get a little jealous of the employees of the telephone company that were paid to put those in.

Sturgis/Black Hills riders can appreciate this, as I first noticed this when entering the Spearfish  Canyon.  NOt only do telephone wires go across the canyon, a swathe of trees were cut out right up the side of the mountain to make way for more telephone poles.  Well who got the joy of climbing Spearfish Peak to do that!?

Now that I'm not working maybe I should look into employment at some of the western telephone companies to do repair work.

This concludes my Super Awesome Philosophical Observation (TM) of telephone poles.


Anonymous said...

Q: Who was Alexander Graham Polinski?

A: The first telephone Pole.

Jack Amok said...

Y'know, in the grand scheme of things, being a lineman working on power transmittion in Washington State wouldn't be a bad job, as far as adventure and excitement go anyway.

Not only do you get to occasionally work in some remote locations of stunning beauty (dragging electricty through the North Cascades to the city of Seattle, for example), but you get to do it surrounded by high voltage that can kill you if you're careless!

Plus, a big storm hits and your job goes into crisis mode, with pressure and challenges, battling terrain, weather, physics... with millions of people greateful for your work when the lights go back on.

Certainly could be worse jobs for a man to have.

Anonymous said...

I am a land surveyor and have surveyed for many utility corridors. I have surveyed for electric lines in 4 states. The work is actually awesome when you are out in the boonies. Very rough going = stunning views.

If you know the history of surveying (you probably don't know much but I bet you would enjoy learing about it), there is great pleasure in walking in the footsteps of our forefathers, both literally and figuratively.

We call that monument located in South Dakota '3 surveyors and another guy'. Lincoln, Washington and Jefferson all had surveying in their background. The only difference between them and me is they realized that surveying doesn't pay.

WeedNemesis said...

Small correction those are electric lines. Though they trim the trees along them every few years.

KurtP said...

No to burst your bubble, but those are power poles.

If you do get a job working on them you'll start as an apprentice doing all the chitwork available. Then they'll send you to school to learn how to climb those 120' poles so you can do it in the middle of a blizzard until you get whatever that needs fixing- fixed.

Been there, done that still have the boots.

craig said...

Thomas Jefferson is to blame. He developed the US Land Survey. Everything west of the Mississippi is laid out in a grids based on the meridians. Townships are 6 miles by 6 miles, then Sections are 1 mile by 1 mile(640 acres). Sections are split up into 4 160 acre parcels which are typical homesteads. The 160 acre homesteads are divided into 4 - 40 acre parcels. So when you hear farmer Joe yell "Ma - I'm going to plow the back 40". You now know what he meant!
The telephone poles are running the section lines...
This concludes my lesson for today.
Cliff Claven.

JC said...

From memory there is an episode of Dirty Jobs where Mike Rowe goes out with a crew to replace telephone poles or somefink.

They cut down a tree, one of the crew lets go of a chainsaw and everyone has a good laugh. What a great show.

Anonymous said...

If it was the thirties, guys probably would have felt lucky to have any sort of job. If it were the forties, they probably would have felt self-conscious about not being in uniform. If it were the fifties they probably I got nothing.

Mike James

Anonymous said...

It's hard work but the bad news isn't that, it's getting a phone call at 3:02 AM to get your ass down to the depot because some weather event has destroyed hundreds of poles and cross bars and , obtw you and your crew will be on-duty 'til they are fixed, 24/7.

One more thing, the weather still sucks and if you are working in a populated area annoying people will ask you when they are getting power back and what took you so long. You are not allowed to shoot a couple as an example.

Anonymous said...

I have a picture of Mexican Hat I took in '97 from approximately the same spot. The place seems endless, doesn't it?