Fast Eddie

It is a beautiful morning.

The sun is rising over the Whispering Forest and the cows are quietly grazing by the Drum-Drum Tree. 

Tranquility is evident in the golden light of dawn. 

It is a reaffirming contrast to the ‘faster faster’ hustle of yesterday. 

The old man likes Fast Eddie. 

Fast Eddie creates the impression of ‘getting things done’. 

Hurry hurry, faster faster.

It is an easy trap to fall into, to equate the illusion of haste with competence. 

But Haz and I choose to disagree. 

For us, Competence is a function of flow. 

We are working with the steers in the yard, Haz and I, giving them their second blackleg vaccine and drenching them for intestinal parasites. 

We do them one at a time, seamlessly but slow with barely a word spoken except to reassure each beast as it steps into the crush. 

The old man is watching. 

He is not impressed with our progress, but things are going smoothly with little stress to us and every attention to our duty of care to the calves. 

We have three quarters of the herd done when Fast Eddie turns up to help. 

“NOW they’ll see how it’s done,” the old man mutters. “Fast Eddie is here.”

In between the cursing and the whacking and the mishaps, it takes us twice as long to do the rest of the herd, and everyone is frustrated and covered in shit. 

Operations are a series of events performed in sequence. 

The truly competent know: 

A state of flow trumps turbulence, every time. 


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