The Importance of Tools

Blog 2139 – 08.24.2021

The Importance of Tools

In our effort to make ourselves think that we are superior to the animals and thereby attempt to justify our mistreatment of them, man has long said that our ability to use tools is what sets us above and apart from the animals. Scientists, specifically anthropologists have since learned that many other animals besides man make use of tools, rudimentary perhaps but still tools.

I made the comment to a fellow worker the other day that many companies see their workers as merely tools to accomplish the task of making profits for the company and stake holders. Sadly even those who set no more value on their people than that have not learned how important it is to take care of your tools.

My dad taught me how to use tools from the time I was a small boy and the importance of keeping up with and taking care of one’s tools. My mother, brother, and I thought he was a bit obsessed with tools. If you borrowed my dad’s hammer you had better put it back exactly where it was or you would have wished to Heaven that you had after facing a tirade from dad on the importance of taking care of tools.

I recall spending many a Saturday with my dad combing through local flea markets looking for good bargains on tools. And years later after I moved away from Chattanooga, Tennessee, my home town and where Mom and Dad spent all but a couple of years of their lives, after moving their two young boys to Detroit, Michigan briefly in their early nineteen- fifties. When we made visits home by car dad would always send me back home to Houston, Texas with a trunk load of different tools, saying, “You never know when one of these might come in handle.” And with few exceptions they have and often. I cannot tell you how many times I have been working on a project and remembered that dad had given me just the right tool to make that job easier and saved a trip to the hardware store or auto parts store to buy the tool that I needed because I already had it, thanks to my tool obsessed dad. “Take care of your tools, Son, and they will take care of you” I can still hear him say.

Workers, other people, children and animals are more than tools but should be taken care of and prized nonetheless. Wise men have long known that the secret to amassing great wealth and power is to have many people working for you to make you so and have therefore rewarded their best and most loyal workers with bonuses and and a share in the profits that their hands helped produce.

I have had a long working career in which I have held many jobs and worked for a large number of different companies. I marvel at how companies that used to spend lots of time on training and mentoring turn very important parts of their businesses these days over to new and inexperienced employees thinking that someone can just walk in off the street and do jobs that people took years to learn to do correctly and efficiently. Time was when big successful business owners would even start their children out in entry level positions at the company so they could learn the business from the ground up. And when they were made Vice Presidents they knew every job from sweeper up and were most valuable tools themselves.

I hope we all come to see everyone, even those we wrongly consider lesser, and especially the beasts and the children as more than tools, but till we do let us at least care for them and maintain them well for they make our lives far richer than they would otherwise be.

Your friend and fellow traveler,

David White

Bless The Beasts And The Children

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