The Weekly Rant with Gary Patella

Thoughts and ideas on various grievances that are relevant to everyday life.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

On Scaffolding

Scaffolding is defined as a temporary structure on the outside of a building, made of wooden planks and metal poles, used by workers while building, repairing, or cleaning the building. Nowadays, this definition does not seem suitable. The main reason being that the word "temporary" should probably be removed. It may be that, once upon a time, scaffolding was something that remained only temporarily. But with today's poor work ethic, lack of accountability, and lack of caring, scaffolding has become quite permanent in many locations.

The appearance of scaffolding is always an eyesore. It covers up the architecture of the building, which is often impressive, and greets the eyes with a pile of blue painted boards resting atop some rusty metal poles. In fact, the only decent thing to say about scaffolding is that it can sometimes serve as a temporary umbrella to protect people from either the harsh sun or precipitation. But this minor attribute is greatly outweighed by the negatives. Personally, I'd rather get wet sometimes and walk down clear streets.

Besides the aesthetic atrocity, there is a negative practical implication-- the sidewalk becomes congested. The sidewalk is suddenly divided into two lanes, and one can only cross over at certain intervals. It's hard enough walking behind slow-paced idiots on a clear sidewalk (see my third rant http://garysweeklyrant.blogspot.com/2006/06/how-to-walk-guide-for-morons.html#links). Now with the scaffolding serving as an impediment, it is even harder to maneuver around these people.

The few that were actually intelligent enough in their youth to learn how to walk now have to suffer. We have to scope out the openings, spot the next one coming up, and then patiently wait for a half hour to pass while the moron in front of us moves ten feet. At last we get to the opening, cross over, move quickly for about ten paces, and then wait behind the mental midget on the other side. This practice used to be semi-bearable when it was only for the distance of one block (one long, slow, tedious block). But now with scaffolding popping up everywhere, and remaining there indefinitely, weaving in and out of metal bars has become the norm.

So if you're using scaffolding to clean a building, then clean the damn thing already! If you're using it to fix a building, fix it already! I'm sick and tired of seeing some horrendous monstrosity composed of boards and poles on every other block. And I'm even more fed up with the physical constraints these structures have on walking around slow pokes. Scaffolding was created to do certain jobs, not to become a permanent display.

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