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File This Under Jobs We Could Never Do.

Our friends at the LA Downtown News have always done a bang-up job of covering new development in the neighborhood. But this week they offer us a glimpse into the more personal side of development - a real human interest story. We see the buildings go up, but do any of us stop to think of the daily life of crane operators? No, we do not. Nor could we, since we suffer from a debilitating fear of heights. So lucky for us, the Downtown News gives us a day in the life of a crane operator at LA Live. What do we learn? Cranes are high, there's nowhere to pee, and things can go so very very wrong:

In the disaster category, communication can break down ("You could tear a guy in half"). Winches can fail ("You could crush a guy"). Or, at the hands of a lesser operator, poor loading can equal total failure, causing the jib and counterjib to "fold up like origami." The blessedly rare, usually weather-related, worst-case scenario? The steel tower twists, and the beast comes crashing down.We'll just enjoy the view from down here, thanks.