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Working On A Drilling Rig

A dear friend who has spent years working the fields brought this back with him. Thinking he should put it out there, but he didn’t know how. He’s concerned that these lessons aren’t being taught to the young crews and that accidents are gonna happen if they don’t smarten up. It’s a dangerous work area. I wish we knew the author, but he’s every roughneck, really. I gave this a clean up, corrected spelling, etc. Take from it what you can. Enjoy.

“To my drilling buddies and to those of you who may have kids, grandkids, nephews, etc. who think that they might want to work on the rigs,….. this is something worth sharing with them before they make that move…

Nice work by whomever the mystery writer is for this piece. Too bad this wouldn’t fly anymore. To anyone working on a drilling rig of any age, but geared to the younger employees, here’s some advice. These are things they didn’t teach you in high school or from your parents growing up, but you definitely need.”

Today’s feel good, politically correct teachings have created a generation with no concept of reality or how this fantasy set them up for failure in the real world.

Fact 1: Life is not fair — get used to it

Fact 2: The rig does not care about your self-esteem. The industry will expect you to accomplish some things BEFORE you feel good about yourself.

Fact 3: You will not make $170,000 a year right out of roughneck school (which we don’t have). You won’t be Rig Manager with a truck, phone, & a shack until you earn both. Stay off drugs, follow the rules, learn your job, do your hardest and you will get there. Nothing kills a career faster than a drug problem or attitude problem.

Fact 4: If you think your teacher was tough, wait till you meet your Driller or better yet the Rig Manger. Remember EVERYONE has a boss even in management.

Fact 5: Cleaning the shitter is not beneath your dignity. The OLDER generation of the petroleum personal had a different word: they called it opportunity.

Fact 6: If you fuck up, it’s your fault…not your fellow employees, Drilling company, Oil company or even your parents fault so don’t whine about your mistakes or point fingers, learn from them. If you got yelled at it is most likely you endangered your life or somebody else’s. Even at its worst getting yelled at is usually an indicator you are not doing your job up to standards, use this sign to your benefit.

Fact 7: Before you were born, your parents weren’t as boring as they are now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about how cool you thought you were. So before you save the rain forest from parasites of the older generation, try cleaning and delousing the closet in your room at home and keeping your room tidy in camp.

Fact 8: Your school may have done away with winners & losers, but life HAS NOT. In some schools they have abolished failing grades and they’ll give you as MANY TIMES as you want to get the right answer. This doesn’t bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in the real life or at a work site.

Fact 9: The Driller is not your Mom. The Rig Manger is not your Dad. The Engineer is not your favorite Uncle Joe. Very few of us care about your emotional well-being. That is the way work is. Very few employers are interested in helping you find yourself. Do that on your own time.

Fact 10: Television was NOT real life. In real life people actually have to leave the change shack to go do some actual work.

Fact 11: The company is actually paying you money…you are not doing us a favor by just being here gracing us with your presence.

Fact 12: Word of caution, before complaining about how hard something is to do to your leaders remember that they actually worked your position and it was ten times harder 30 years ago. You will without a doubt be met with indifference. Those are not just stories to embarrass you.

Fact 13: You are not a child anymore. Just because you didn’t use something does not mean you can’t put it where it belongs. It doesn’t matter what. Just do your part and worry about yourself.

Fact 14: A rig is run by a chain of command……communication will not work in the corporate world, either. Get your group hugs elsewhere and start looking for leadership at bottom levels first. If your driller doesn’t know or if he feels it’s important he will pass the information forward.

Fact 15: The easy way is not always the best way. If you were told to do something the hard way, there is more then likely a reason for it.


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