How many of you know how to weld? When I worked for Champion Paper Company, toward the end, I was the senior employee in our plant and the only remaining machine adjuster, because they wanted to eliminate the job classification, giving those tasks to the maintenance department. We filed a grievance against that because it was a union-negotiated position, and it turned out that they couldn't eliminate the position but they could reduce it, so they laid all of the machine adjusters off, or moved them to other positions, except for me. Concerned that they would insist on removing the position after our contract was up, I wanted to prepare myself to move into the maintenance department if I had to, although I preferred being a machine adjuster. I had also learned through one of the janitors, who acted as my personal spy since he had sole access to the administrative offices at night, they didn't want me to move into the maintenance department, probably because I had repeatedly refused a promotion to shift supervisor and was sometimes a thorn in their side as the chief shop steward for our union. The written plan, as my spy found out, was that they were going to give me the alternative of accepting a promotion or being laid off. A promotion to shift supervisor wouldn't have been the end of the world, but it would involve a reduction in my take-home pay and elimination of my job security, as they could fire shift supervisors at will, or transfer me to another state. Since I worked the graveyard shift and we didn't have any maintenance employees on duty during that shift, I already knew how to do everything they did except for welding. So, I enrolled in a welding course at a community college and practiced my welding at night, welding together every scrap of metal in the metal scrap bin, given that I had access to the maintenance shop during my shift since we didn't have a graveyard maintenance crew. Then I completed their intermediate and advanced courses. I was looking forward to springing that on them when the time came but, as it turned out, they closed the whole plant (and their entire bag division) before our contract ran out. Every now and then, I think about getting a welding machine. I don't know how hard it would be to pick it up again because I didn't have an easy time learning how to weld smoothly and effectively.