My first job for the Adelaide City Council was on the road gang. A couple of weeks work jack-hammering. We met at the Works Depot, jumped on the back of a truck, around eight to ten blokes headed by a leading hand and dispersed to all parts of the city. Our bit of road repair was a tiny side street in which a small collection of single-fronted cottages nestled together.
When the jack-hammers were going there was no chance of conversation but in between my fellow labourers (mainly migrants) were somewhat limited in the topics they discussed. Sex was the most popular although often emphasised as jig-a-jig and didn’t move beyond who was getting it and how often. A queer looking Chinese-Greek didn’t seem to be get it so I assumed he’d never had it and the other Australian fellow was so spaced out on grass that he scarcely would’ve known Arthur from Martha if he cared. If he had a brain it was fucked and his work productivity was low. He spent far more time leaning on his shovel than lifting it.