The Best Building Stories

We’ve had a bit of a laugh and here are some of the best stories from the Live to Build promotion.

Winning Story - The Hack Job

"Long story short. I'm on the 1st floor framing up some walls and need some belts of nails for the Paslode framing gun. So I send the apprentice down to the van to get some belts of nails. Knowing that we had a lot of the longer Senco belts, I tell him that the longer Senco belts need cutting down to fit into the Paslode gun.

So after 10 minutes I'm wondering where he is? I can see him working away in the back of the van, so I yell out across the site "What the #@%**&# are you up to?" He stands up and he’s got a belt of nails in one hand and a hacksaw in the other.

The muppet was using the hacksaw to cut down the belt of nails lengthways instead of just simply ripping 10-15 nails off the end."

By Razor

Congratulations to Razor! He wins a week long, fully catered, self-drive 4x4 journey that takes him into the heart of the South Island High Country.

Finalist - The Good Samaritan

"My brother in law Terry was a bricklayer in Christchurch. He stopped every morning at a dairy in Burwood to get a ham roll for smoko. It was still dark when leaving the shop and down the road a bit he hit a cat crossing the road and so he pulled over to check it out. He saw this cat wobbling from side to side and then go up a driveway. He followed it in a little and noticed it was laying on its back twitching its legs. He thought he would do the humane thing so grabbed a spade from his falcon ute, knocked it on the head, buried it next to the garden shed and left a note and phone number for the owners apologising for the accident.

He arrived on site where his off-sider was stacking bricks and getting ready for work. His mate, Rhys said "Did you hit a cat on the way to work Terry?” and Terry said "Yes: how's that Rhys?" Rhys said “Coz there it is stuck in the roo bar on your ute”. 

Terry was astounded as he thought, bugger, I’ve killed and buried someone’s poor old cat. The boys at the Parklands Tavern had a good old laugh."

By Chris MitvcMitch

More finalists...

All Locked Up

"Finishing up on Friday night after a few beers. I locked up for the weekend and turned the power off. For some reason I stepped into the 3 level lift shafts and shut the door and couldn't open it again as there was no power and the manual emergency system didn't work.

With no cell phone coverage I tried SOS with the alarm but no one was around to hear it. I decided I’d just have to wait until my lady realised I was missing… but she thought I'd gone to the pub and wasn't too worried. Meanwhile I needed to relieve myself after the beers and I couldn't ruin the carpet so peed into one of my work boots. And since then I've been called Piss'n'Boots. The missus finally figured after 5 hours I wasn't at the pub and came out to site. She flicked the power back on so I could get out."

By Piss'n'Boots

Satisfying Smoko

"We were all sitting under a tree (myself and the apprentice) for smoko with our boss that no-one liked 'cause he was a w*****. He was half way through his pie when he stopped to tell us how awesome he was when a bird sh!t in his pie. He was so busy talking he didn't even notice and because we didn’t like him we didn't say anything. We just watched him eat the whole thing."

By Johnny Five

Running Water

"A special building client of mine who lived in our neighbourhood, a nice old lady nearing one hundred years young asked me to renovate her bathroom for her which I did. Sometime later I got a panicked phone call from her saying she has a major water leak and that she could hear water running. I said I will call in on the way home shortly and I promptly forgot.

Early next morning I got another panicked call asking if I am coming or not or do I ring a plumber? I have turned the electric cylinder off, she explained. I apologised and rushed over to her place. On my arrival I heard a hissing sound similar to water running. After dashing from room to room the sound lead me to her favourite spot at the kitchen table and down the leg of the table. To our surprise I discovered her favourite little transistor radio that had somehow moved off the 2YA station and into static. To my relief and with a big grin, she said, “Is that it?!” We laughed a lot. What a lovely lady she was and I’m sorry to say she has now passed on."

By Kerls


"I had a summer holiday job many years ago during the school summer break and worked for a local builder. The pay was pretty good and I felt like a million bucks with cash in my pocket.

We had a job to rebuild the loos in a local pub, The Lingfield (UK). And the boss asked me to demolish the old gents. Not the nicest workplace but, as I say the money was a good driver. Problem was nobody told me that the outside wall t-boned onto the back of the ladies which was still in use!

I started with the sledgehammer shifting the rubble into the skip as I went and was soon approaching the tee join. Then the unimaginable happened - the remaining bit of wall collapsed bringing with it the back wall of the ladies loo together with the old cast iron cistern…

Well the poor lady occupant was screaming in shock and all I could see was my job coming to an inauspicious end. The pub virtually emptied to check out the commotion seriously adding to the occupant’s distress. The landlords wife rescued the woman who left rather sooner than I think she expected and I got dragged into the bar expecting the worst... But got bought my first pint, a good number of pats on the back and the landlord together with the other mostly male customers declaring they had had the best laugh in years.

Celebrity status at the cost of a ladies embarrassment. I smile even now some 48 years later."

By Steve

Overnight Pest

"So we're building a big house just outside of Taupo, and it's got a handful of .600 x .600 concrete columns. We get all the rebar in and signed-off then box and brace them up ready to pour them via concrete pump the next morning.

The pour went well and after a few days we start stripping the boxing. I'm peeling a shutter off and got one hell of a fright as looking directly at me from within the concrete column is one very dead possum! It was pressed up against the shutter with a very stunned look on its face! It must have fallen into the shutter overnight and gone to sleep until we poured a few cubes in on its head!

We all thought it was funny until the engineer came to site and made us break the column down and rebuild it. Thankfully the apprentice was a big strong fella!"

By 2OB1