“No, just stand here. A carter will push past, you just drop the can in the right bin.”
Victor remained both stupefied and flabberghasted.
“But, how will I know which bin?”
“Don’t be daft man, this is the public line! You read the address printed on the roll inside.”
The entire process seemed beyond him. He just couldn’t fathom that any of this was actually done by hand.
“But, aren’t the ends engraved with the split codes? Don’t the cylinders slide into junctions and get routed forward? Why would we need to do this by hand? Shouldn’t the system be auto-”
A hand clamped over his mouth.
“Let me tell you about Ryan. Ryan had this swell idea, and shared it with the guys. He suggested… Outsourcing.”
Victor wanted to finish his own thought, but the hushed whisper with which the last word had been hissed served to caution him. Victor waited for the punchline, though it seemed that he would have to ask for it.
“Well, what then?”
“Ryan had his arms broken by the Union, that’s what. Now shut it and sort.”