“What is a lineman?
What is a lineman? What does a lineman do?
Before meeting my husband, I’ll admit that I didn’t have
much knowledge on what line work was or what it meant to be a lineman. Growing up, I knew that some of my friends had linemen dads, but all I’d really gathered was that there were periods of time that their dads were away from home, uncertain of why or how long.
Now I know these things to my very core.
Merriam-Webster says a lineman is : “one who sets up or repairs electric wire communication or power lines”.. but if you know one, personally, it’s clear that they are so much more.
Linemen are the men who risk their lives daily to ensure that our families have the power that we need to function on a day to day basis. They’re the men who drive toward the eye of the storm, at a moment’s notice, to restore communities who have lost far beyond their electrical lines.
But what is a lineman, really?
A lineman is passionate.
Having been around my husband and his friends, so often a group of multiple linemen, I’ve learned that linemen are truly passionate about their work. I’ve heard it said a million times, “You’ll either love it or hate it.. but if you love it, it’s who you are. It’s a lifestyle.” Line work is in their blood. Even during downtime, they’re anxious to discuss ongoing projects with fellow linemen. And if you pass a previous project on your Sunday evening drive? They’ll be sure to let you know that they “built those lines”.
A lineman is dedicated.
These men are fiercely committed to their work. One misstep in their daily work could interfere with several hours in an entire community. That same misstep could also occur at the cost of someone’s life. Linemen are dedicated to getting the job done correctly at every step. They’re driven to complete the work in front of them, no matter the condition of the weather, the
heat index, or the number of hours already put in. Linework is no 9-5 and one mistake may be the only mistake.
A lineman is fearless.
They’re also the first to hit the ground running when Mother Nature has unleashed all that she’s capable of. “The wind blew, **** flew, and out came the line crew.” If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard that one come out of a grinning face.. Linemen are some of the first in line to lend a helping hand when disaster strikes - eager to help put communities back together, repairing all electrical damage in a storm’s path, no matter how long it takes. These men willingly kiss their families goodbye, drive straight into disaster, and they don’t go home until the work is done.
A lineman is both physically and mentally strong.
Working on the line means heavy gear, thick cables and lines, and climbing poles. This isn’t a career path for the weak of...
ANYTHING. The mental capacity that it takes to look death in the eye, day in and day out, holding that ridiculously high voltage in your hands? I don’t have it. These men do and it courses adrenaline through their veins. More often than not my husband comes home with clothes still soaked in sweat from the day, salt lines peeking through the shirt’s color. Meeting him at the door each evening, I’m greeted by the kind of muscle that can’t be found in a gym. These men are truly workhorses.
Though they do restore power and keep us all in the light, a lineman is so much more than a job title.
Most importantly, to me, my lineman is loved.”