Confession of pest control technician
Let’s look truth in face. It happens to all of us. We never know when it will happen, but day comes and you have to make some tough decisions.
Usually it is on long flight when everyone is bored to death, or on golden sand next to turquoise waters of some southern ocean, when you nurse exotic drink in your hand.
Your neighbor will casually ask you:
“Sooooo…. What are you doing for living?”
I am not ashamed of my profession. Even if on social totem pole it is just slightly below of elementary school teacher, it is still tad above security guard… But if you will tell a person seating next to you that you are a Pest Control Technician, they will probably instinctively move away from you and will uncontrollably scratch one of their limbs… who wants it.
Yet. We, technicians live in different, cool world, unknown to most of “common” people not ordained into intricacies of this very special tribe. So, carefully choosing words and pieces of information, I bend reality… just a little bit.
When such a question asked of me, I look straight in to the eyes of person who asked it, then sloooowly look around at other people nearby and after making sure that nobody listens to us, I move closer to the ear of a neighbor and in hushed tone, I say.
“I am a contract killer”
And after meaningful pause, add, ever so quiet.
“I kill for money”
Such an answer usually ends 9 conversations out of 10. People will also instinctively move away from you, but it is completely different manner. I am sure that educated psychologist could write doctorate thesis analyzing those two reactions.
But there is always 10th person, usually young and curious. His/her eyes will immediately lit with interest, they will move closer to you, and looking at you as at a movie star, will whisper in shaking voice.
“Who do you kill?”
I’d look at them with worldly authority and answer:
“Whatever is client’s wish… supported by timely payment, but usually
German”, and after giving it few seconds of a thought, will nod and confirm – “Definitely German. They are worst adversaries. They will take a lot of your time. They will frustrate you. They will hide in places you would never expect. It is almost not worth money you are being paid for such a job”
You could tell that your companion did not expect such a turn, so you continue.
“As I said, if client wants to take care of Oriental, Asian, Sumatran it can be arranged. Heck, if price is right, I’d do Australian or even American”
“And how many at a time” - will ask your neighbor
“That depends. Who counts? It can be one, two, ten; two hundred, but they are nothing against true professional”
“So you are like John Wick? Tell me you are.”
Here you sigh, shake your head and say.
“No. I’d say we are somewhere between Lone Ranger and Ethan Hunt”
You’d see a shadow of disappointment, who cares about yesterday’s heroes compared to new ones, but still… they would ask:
“Why Lone Ranger?”
“You have to work in mask all days” – you blurt back blandly.
“And why Ethan Hunt?”
“Well. Sometimes according to schedule you have to be in 3 places at once, and when you call your superiors about that, they would tell you – This is not Mission Difficult, Victor, It is Mission Impossible”
“Then you probably drive cool cars, like Lamborghini and Mazerati?”
You sigh again and say
“Unfortunately no, we have to keep low profile, so we have these very special cars, which blend in so much that no matter what you do – when you get away from a job, nobody will ever even notice you. Police will drive by without giving it a second thought”
“What car is that? I want one” they will say.
“It is called Chevrolet POS, and you can’t buy it… they do not make them anymore, so in order to keep our low profile, we have to constantly maintain our fleet of POSes. It is more expensive that leasing brand new Lexus… but low profile is a paramount”
“What POS stands for” – they will ask
And you would wrinkle your forehead and say something like:
“Pride Of South – I think… or was it “Performance Oriented Sedan… no, I think it stands for Piece of Sssss… something”
And your conversation will continue, until you will arrive to your destination, your neighbor will walk away assured that he/she have met a person of unusual profession (and it is true), but they will never know that your adversaries, which you deal with on daily bases are Roaches: German, Australian, American, Oriental and others, ants: Acrobat, Rover, House, Carpenter and many other species. They are the ones clients pay to eliminate, and we dutifully try to wipe them out from the places they not supposed to be…. But shhhhhhh, do not tell anybody.
August 2 2020
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