HOBOKEN, NEW JERSEY—Explaining how it was one of the major downsides of his job, local dock worker Edie O’Connor told reporters Monday that he feels unfair pressure to be an ornery tough guy. “Everyone sees my gruff, muscular appearance and they immediately assume that I’m some big bully when that couldn’t be further from the truth,” said O’Connor, outfitted in dungarees and a knit cap, bemoaning the way society expects him to act pugnacious just because he loads up shipping vessels for a living. “If they actually took a moment to look past my soot-covered exterior, they’d see that, inside, I’m a big ol’ softie—I mean, heck, my favorite thing to do at the end of the day is draw a bath and read some poetry. I mean, sure, maybe I bring it upon myself by grunting too much and smoking three packs a day, but still, I wish people would learn not to judge a book by its cover.” After getting too worked up about the way people judge him, an angry O’Connor let his anger out by bashing in the head of a fellow longshoreman who was speaking out of line.
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