See all those 29s? That's a good number for me. 29. 2+9=11. Eleven has always been my star-born lucky number. I was born on 11-11-44. That makes 4 and 8 lucky numbers as well. But not as lucky as 11. Take today's date for instance: 7-9-65. 7+9=71. 7+1=8. Should be a good day, not a great one. In fact, I did make some money today, although at an annoying price. A typical 8 day.
Classes at Washington Square, New York University don't start for another week, and I need money for rent and food and other basics. So I agreed to work with my father for a few days. I have not worked with him in his electrical business as much this year as in the past. Not my choice or my fault. This summer he did not contract the volume of business that has been his staple work diet.
Work with my father started when I was eleven years old (there's that number again). Every Saturday from May to October I carted wire, metal boxes, drills, and anything else a small and willing boy could manage. I began each day with the unloading: I stretched into the dark interior of my father's Chevy panel truck, pulled out the boxes and coils of armored cable that my father had carefully loaded the night before, and struggled with them like a willing donkey across rough-graded dirt to the construction site. After
that came any task my father wanted. " Hank, hold this wire bang on the floor with a hammer here when I call you from below nail this box on to that stud and make sure the bottom is as high as your hammer." He paid me three dollars a day. Hardest three dollars I ever earned in my life. Coils of steel cable can be damned heavy when they weigh nearly as much as you do.