My Experiences

Assembly Line


I am an assembly-line worker. We assemble chicken pot pies.

I am not a pie-maker. I am a small part of a large process. I do not pour chicken and green peas into the stainless steel vortex so they may churn round and round. People far to my left do that.

I do not stamp the pale flap of dough on top. People far to my left do that. Whap. Whap. Whap down the line.

People against my left elbow push the crust into rustic shapes like humans make. One finger of the right hand pushes dough against two fingers of the left hand. Pokepokepokepokepoke. I have heard stories that the first joint begins to hurt much sooner than you’d think. Pokepokepoke.

I do not bake the pies. People to my right do that.

I load six pies onto one tray and twelve trays onto one rack and push infinite racks until a horn blows. I am always in motion. I do not stop or allow one drip of sweat to touch a single pie as I push the racks.

I am a single cog in a clean machine.


3 thoughts on “Assembly Line

  1. Mary A Hoyt says:

    Thank you for doing a thankless job. I, for one, appreciate your efforts and am glad to know that such an overqualified individual is moving all this delicious pot pies down the line and out the door! You should get get a pay raise with the title of Expeditor. Thanks again!


  2. That’s life, buddy. I read your stuff and it’s a way to look at reality. Ideally if there were no borders, physical or mental or national, we would just be free to do what we want. Even the fact that we have to work 8 hours a day is an outdated concept. Only a few people have to do 24h shifts, such as emergency services and those who want to earn more can do more, those who need to earn the minimum just do what the ‘machine’ requires.

    Without these borders, you could rotate your cog positions and then at the end of it, you can call yourself a pie maker since you know all the steps. To keep people in line by limiting their skill set is just slavery. That’s what we all are. Just slaves. Even in my medical field. We are all separated and are not allowed to do others’ jobs. Why not? I know how to do simple surgeries. Who says I can’t? An organization that was started by one doctor to get money from other doctors to give them another piece of paper that says that that doctor is ‘licensed’. Then we keep paying them to keep us from doing our jobs properly, because they make all the regulations. To protect the patients? Or to protect the doctors?

    Or to just earn money and keep us having that enslaved mentality? Just working to live from paycheck to paycheck.


    • Yeop, my hope is that someday, your insights may affect broader areas of the medical field – and that fields of research may become more interconnected. That would allow “the machine” to use more of what we are as human beings, and would likely allow us to solve a lot of the perennial problems that have proven resistant to linear approaches.

      Certainly we are all part of the machine, doctors and CEOs and burger-flippers alike. Unless we choose to go live in the woods.

      And in that case, we’re still subject to social hierarchy. In which case as an individual human, we may or may not come out on top of a pack of wolves.

      I find the machine itself to be fascinating. Systems aren’t bad, they just aren’t human. Society doesn’t have to grind our souls up and spit us back out as commodities, we just tend to think that’s the only way a system can be efficient. If more of us pay attention to how being human actually works, we can design systems that work with our humanity.


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