On uniforms and firearms:
I’m working over the summer for Environment Waikato, or the Waikato Regional Council, as they re-re-branded back to (de-branded?) recently. I’m part of a research team looking into peat soil shrinkage. Normally, I read a lot of reports on peat, but part of my job involves going out and doing field work on farms. Nitrogen analysis and the like. I don’t really do the science, I just dig the holes for the others to do science in.
I was talking to my group’s manager/boss (who is pretty great) about gear to wear for field work. This was the conversation:
Bossman: So, we’ll have to sort you out with some steel capped boots for when you are on the field. It’s H&S regulation. And maybe an EW uniform shirt, too. …or not, perhaps…
Me: Oh, yeah, I’ve heard that you have a map with farms labelled on it that you just don’t go to while wearing a council uniform.
Bossman: Yeah, some of those farmers get pretty angry at the council being on their property. They usually calm down when they find out that you are doing soil analysis, but some don’t get around to asking, they just grab their rifles.
Bossman: No, it’s usually okay. In the ten years I’ve worked here, there’s only been, what, three times that someone’s actually been hit by a farmer firing at them.
Bossman: It’s fine! No one has actually been shot dead before.
Me, from that point till now: 0.o