Freefall 3721 - 3730 (D)
Freefall 3721

Sqid in the maintenance shop

Mr. De Morel used to be a good boss. When money started getting tight, he changed.
He believes the way through this
is to cut every expense that he can. It's a bit like dying of thirst with a full canteen because the water
might be needed later.
What you needed was someone who knew the station and knew where cuts could be made.
We had a guy like that. He
got cut.

Color by George Peterson.

Freefall 3722

Sqid in the maintenance shop

When things got tight, we did our part. We took a step down to our hourly rate. When something important broke, people stayed until it got fixed, even without being paid overtime.
We hustled. We scrounged and found small jobs we could do. The station became profitable again. And Mr. De Morel says the situation isn't stable enough to go back to the way things were.
There is nothing so permanent as a temporary government program, but a “temporary pay cut until things get better” comes close.

Color by George Peterson.

Freefall 3723

Sqid in the maintenance shop

What would it take to get you guys and Mr. De Morel on the same side again?
Restoration of pay. Restoration of overtime. And get more workers. We're barely able to keep two units functional.
I thought
this station
had three independent units.
We don't have enough people to maintain three units. Unit One has been effectively abandoned in place.
That doesn't sound good.
It's not all bad. It definitely solved our spare parts problem for a while.

Color by George Peterson.

Freefall 3724

Sqid in the maintenance shop

One last question. Would a life support failure benefit Mr. De Morel?
I don't see how. He has to breathe like the rest of us. It would also bring inspectors out here.
Then everything would have to be brought up to code. It would force Mr. De Morel to loosen up those purse strings.
There are things here that aren't
up to code?
His living quarters temperature is stuck at 30°C. It doesn't have hot water. And the toilet's broken. We lack manpower, more important systems have to be fixed first.
Remind me never to get on the maintenance crew's bad side.

Color by George Peterson.

Freefall 3725

Sqid in the maintenance shop

It's very unlikely we will have a life support failure. Each unit has two loops. That's four life support systems.
With two units, you have two reactors. If one reactor is out for maintenance, the other reactor becomes a single point for failure.
Sorry. I'm just realizing how far
my engineer has gotten into my head without me knowing it.

Color by George Peterson.

Freefall 3726

Sqid in the maintenance shop

We do have a reactor out for maintenance. Should the other reactor go down, we have three emergency reactors.
They're fission reactors, which is as simple as it gets to generate power. You have two pieces of metal. You pull them apart and they get hot.
How long will they last?
Each reactor can provide lifeboat power for five years. When you're out as far as we are, you have to plan on rescues taking a while.

Color by George Peterson.

Freefall 3727

Provisional Title: Sqid in the maintenance shop

This is a tricky situation, Helix. Mr. De Morel wants to pay as few workers as little as possible. He's running a business and wants to make a profit.
Mr. Hillman wants the workers to be paid well and have enough of them to perform the work with the capacity for time off. Wealth is being generated. The conflict is over how it should be distributed.
How do we solve this?
I don't know yet. All I know
is that any solution must include a chunk of that wealth coming to us.
Freefall 3728

Provisional Title: Sqid in the maintenance shop

Management and labor are
more interested in fighting than adapting to a new situation. The station is getting run down. Mr. De Morel thinks a life support failure will benefit him. Am I forgetting anything?
You wanted to talk to Florence about the bomb factory robots building a spaceship.
Florence. Who is
way back in the maintenance shop. Where we just were.
More walking
will make your muscles strong after microgravity.
You gave me a good reminder, you're looking out for my health and yet somehow I'm still annoyed with you.
Freefall 3729

Provisional Title: Sqid in the maintenance shop

You're back.
Freefall 3730

Provisional Title: Sqid in the maintenance shop

I want to talk to Florence!
She's not here. She went to the spa.
Then let me go! You shouldn't be squishing me with the door like this!
You're right.
This door is an airtight barrier and
I might be damaging the seal.
Freefall 3730a

Guest Issue

Today's guests, either appearing in whole or in part, are from: The Whiteboard, Recursion, S.S.D.D., Carry On, Vexxarr, and Swords and Sausages

Telephone booth stuffing was stupid when people did it in the sixties. Teleportation booth stuffing takes that stupid to a whole new level!
We need to get everyone separated and put back together again. Roger?
I know, I know.
I'll go get the spatulas.
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