We were out for dinner on Saturday.  A fund raising event with a pig roast at the church.  We were at a table of eight people, where I knew no one.

The woman next to me noticed my Iron Ring and asked about my Engineering background.  Apparently her husband (deceased) had been an Engineer.  Another couple also commented that as I had the ring, I was an Engineer.   This is a Canadian thing because no where else in the world do Engineers wear Iron Rings.

In theory I should not be wearing the ring any more because last year I stopped paying my dues to the Association of Professional Engineers of Ontario.

I am no longer a registered Professional Engineer.  But I still wear the ring.  I have been wearing the ring for 48 years and even after the MBA degree and a career that seldom required an Engineering background, I always thought of myself as an Engineer.  Granted I also think of myself as a pretty good Model Shipwright and a sire of great children.

The reason for this blog tonight is because we were in the process of clearing out files in the basement, and I came across the plasticized card with the Obligation Ritual from my Iron Ring ceremony from 1971.  I will not go into details, but the obligation that we all had to swear to, while holding onto a rusty iron chain in a room where the doors were locked by the chain, is kind of…. emotional.  The Obligation was written by Rudyard Kipling for Canadian Engineers.

Over the years I had hoped that one of my kids would become an Engineer because, as a relative, I could attend the Ritual with them and give them the ring.  Did not happen but giving that up I hoped for one of my nephews and then my grandchildren might take the honored profession.  Did not happen…  but there is always a faint hope in the next generation.

I am an Engineer…