The boss stepped into the room with the short, quick steps of a fat-legged
man. “I wrote Murray and Ready I wanted two men this morning. You got your
work slips?” George reached into his pocket and produced the slips and handed
them to the boss. “It wasn’t Murray and Ready’s fault. Says right here on the
slip that you was to be here for work this morning.”
George looked down at his feet. “Bus driver give us a bum steer,” he said.“We hadda walk ten miles. Says we was here when we wasn’t. We couldn’t get
no rides in the morning.”
The boss squinted his eyes. “Well, I had to send out the grain teams short
two buckers. Won’t do any good to go out now till after dinner.” He pulled his
time book out of his pocket and opened it where a pencil was stuck between the
leaves. George scowled meaningfully at Lennie, and Lennie nodded to show
that he understood. The boss licked his pencil. “What’s your name?”
“And what’s yours?”
George said, “His name’s Lennie Small.”
The names were entered in the book. “Le’s see, this is the twentieth, noon the
twentieth.” He closed the book. “Where you boys been working?”
“Up around Weed,” said George.
“You, too?” to Lennie.
“Yeah, him too,” said George.