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(Guardian)   What's the worst job you ever held as a student, the kind of job that no matter how bad things get at your job now, you can always reassure yourself that you're not doing THAT any more? Share them up here   ( theguardian.com) divider line
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160 clicks; posted to FarkUs » on 16 Jul 2014 at 10:47 AM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-07-16 09:23:58 AM  
I was working for a temp agency and got whatever crap jobs they hired us me and two other guys needing work) out for.  Day 1 was packing a 3bedroom condo into a uhaul.  The worst part of that job was carrying the upright piano down the stairs.

Day 2 was pouring asphalt sealant into the cracks of concrete seams in a parking lot.  We started at 10 pm and worked through the night until 6 am. The guys mixing the sealant wouldn't move their mixer, so we had to carry the compound in 5 gallon buckets across the huge parking lot. The stuff was heavy and by the end of the job, we had spilled a pretty good portion of it in many areas causing a mess.  When the owner showed up to inspect us in the morning, he gave us (me and the two other guys) a good cussing.

It was the worst job I had ever had to work.  I had to throw away my clothes and shoes because they had asphalt sealant all over them.
 
2014-07-16 10:13:26 AM  

SauronWasFramed: I was working for a temp agency and got whatever crap jobs they hired us me and two other guys needing work) out for.  Day 1 was packing a 3bedroom condo into a uhaul.  The worst part of that job was carrying the upright piano down the stairs.

Day 2 was pouring asphalt sealant into the cracks of concrete seams in a parking lot.  We started at 10 pm and worked through the night until 6 am. The guys mixing the sealant wouldn't move their mixer, so we had to carry the compound in 5 gallon buckets across the huge parking lot. The stuff was heavy and by the end of the job, we had spilled a pretty good portion of it in many areas causing a mess.  When the owner showed up to inspect us in the morning, he gave us (me and the two other guys) a good cussing.

It was the worst job I had ever had to work.  I had to throw away my clothes and shoes because they had asphalt sealant all over them.


Heh.  Asphalt work was also my worst.

I had a summer job which was basically to spread a proprietary coating on rich people's asphalt driveways to make them look nice.  It had no practical application and it had to be redone every 3 years or so.  So if you did one person's driveway, you were sure to do another.  Anyway, it was a extremely dirty job that resulted in getting the mix all over my body and clothes.  Once it dried it was almost impossible to get off (had to use turpentine to get off my body and my clothes were trash).

The good thing is that the job paid about $3 more than minimum wage in 1985...so there's that.
 
2014-07-16 10:13:48 AM  
Working the dirty dishes line at the school cafeteria.
 
2014-07-16 10:18:20 AM  
Bussing tables at a banquet hall was pretty awful. I left that job thinking that if I heard Kool and the Gang's "Celebrate" one more goddamn time I would go on a killing spree. "Oh, your ice cream had a hair in it? Wow. That's just the worst farking thing ever. Someone should go to jail for that. I just dropped seventy plates on my foot in the back room and I'm pretty sure my toe is broken and my boss just told me if I ever dropped another plate he'd fire me. So I guess we've all got our farking problems."

Telemarketing for various places was probably the most soul-sucking job I ever had. It's hard to describe how depressing that job was.
 
2014-07-16 10:19:41 AM  
I've worked as a Manager at Regal Cinemas for the last 9 years, all through College, and started there 3 years before that when I was in High School. Think Office Space, but in the context of a Movie Theater rather than an office building, and you get the idea. Thankfully it's only part time work on the weekends now, and I have a better full time job.
 
2014-07-16 10:21:36 AM  
I was a restaurant server at a large casino buffet. I estimate that I walk about 13 miles everyday during that job and eventually lost the feeling of a few of my toes for a few months.
 
2014-07-16 10:24:22 AM  
Not me, but a guy I used to work with had a summer job of cleaning up roadkill during the middle of summer in Missouri.
 
2014-07-16 10:25:11 AM  
Wouldn't be considered a "job" in a lot of places, but running scrap metal.  Carrying a huge discarded hot water heater up a hillside it had been thrown down for $2 worth of tin isn't fun.  Sure once in awhile you'd find a mother lode of copper or aluminum but most of the time you're hauling tin (which isn't tin, it's just what they call scrap iron) and maybe #2 prepared iron.  You make more money working, even if it's minimum wage.  But hey, it was beer money in college.
 
2014-07-16 10:25:17 AM  
Plastic recycling.  I got to smell the smell of melted plastic all day long, turning scrap styrofoam into plastic chips.

You can't get rid of that smell.
 
2014-07-16 10:30:27 AM  
I once worked at Sam's Club right between college and law school. I was the guy who put together orders for people who send their orders in to be picked up.

I used to haul hundreds of pounds of gatorade cases or whatever to be picked by businesses. It was tiring. Some days, I have to spend time in the industrial freezer piling 500 pounds of ice onto a flatbed cart for some business wearing just T-shirts and shorts, other days, I have to be in sweltering heat pulling and wrapping 1500 pounds of stuff on a pallet.
 
2014-07-16 10:33:56 AM  
I worked at a plastic bottle factory during the summers. it was like 120 degrees, just dripping sweat all eight hours. Really hammered home the fact that i did not want to do that full time for the rest of my life. Also made me appreciate hard work.
 
2014-07-16 10:56:52 AM  
I worked in the kitchen of a nursing home.  There are things that I've seen that still give me nightmares.
 
2014-07-16 10:56:58 AM  
Temping for a week at some sort of widget factory. I had protective ear coverings on which didn't block out the loud roar of the plastic extruding machine where I would have to bundle the fresh plastic off the machine into piles. Plastic, in its fresh state, is hot enough to almost burn the skin. My hands were raw and my back was sore after doing that for one day.
 
2014-07-16 11:04:09 AM  
Cleaning and repairing existing sewer lines.

Making concrete blocks. Stacking them is the worst part.

Chipping out the inside of concrete truck drums.  It's f*cking hot in there, and the fins get sharp as knives.

Your mom.
 
2014-07-16 11:09:55 AM  

justsean: I worked at a plastic bottle factory during the summers. it was like 120 degrees, just dripping sweat all eight hours. Really hammered home the fact that i did not want to do that full time for the rest of my life. Also made me appreciate hard work.


Second the factory jobs being the worst.

I worked the line at a chemical factory. Days where we made hand sanitizer or lubricants were ok; the days where we made industrial oven cleaner or diesel engine degreaser were awful.

Still, $100/day in high school isn't terrible.
 
2014-07-16 11:35:18 AM  
I spent a colder than normal winter working on the back of a trash truck....
 
2014-07-16 11:49:47 AM  
Back in the day (early 80s):  old school telemarketer.  Way before the days of offshoring all this crap, robocalling, caller ID and call blocking, no Do Not Call List, there were people like me, working 8 hours a day in a windowless room, bothering good people and reading from a script to get you to buy magazines or long distance service or some other useless crap.  Paid min wage + $1.50 for every sign up.

It sucked my self esteem completely away within a month.  I made it almost 3 months before I just quit going in.  I didn't quit, I just stopped going, ala Office Space, but without the jokes.  I'll eat 25 cent a box mac n cheese made with water only before I do that again.

Oddly, there were the two "supervisors" there who genuinely seemed to enjoy the crap.  I fear they were also serial killers.
 
2014-07-16 12:14:08 PM  
I worked a lot of retail jobs in my youth, some of which truly sucked. Probably the worst was the Home Fashions dept. at Lord & Taylor at the Water Tower in Chicago back in 1986. Two true facts from back in the day...

1) Every morning shift, 15 minutes before the doors opened and while you were busy getting the sales floor ready, they would play the national anthem. You had to stop what you were doing and stand at attention.

2) No cash registers. They believed it disturbed the "classic" ambiance of the store. So all orders had to be jotted on triplicate pads by hand, using a pen, and all had to be tallied and taxed using a calculator.

Eventually, I got a copywriting gig with Sears and said adios.
 
2014-07-16 01:23:36 PM  
Running a bottled water plant under the "supervision" of an idiot whose brother-in-law was the president of the company and whose father-in-law was the chairman of the board.  If not for those connections, this clown would have been scrubbing hubcaps at the carwash (and probably farking that up).
 
2014-07-16 01:38:34 PM  
Shucking oysters.  A lot of them  If you've ever heard of the Back Porch in Destin, Florida, you know how many I probably did in a shift.

Three perqs of the job - Nice looking waitresses for the most part, almost unending shift beers, and running into the gulf after a shift and stripping down to tighty whiteies.  Aah.

Almost any restaurant job is tough, but has its high points.

I think everyone should have to work in a restaurant for at least a year.  Good training for many aspects of life.
 
2014-07-16 01:42:22 PM  

Lando Lincoln: Bussing tables at a banquet hall was pretty awful. I left that job thinking that if I heard Kool and the Gang's "Celebrate" one more goddamn time I would go on a killing spree.


You think that's bad?  I worked in a restaurant whose entertainment was a Neil Diamond impersonator.  Five nights a week.  Five.

We had a pretty hilarious, but pathetic routine every time he sang "Sweet Caroline".  3 times a night.

Aaaauuuuugggggggghhhhhhh!!!!
 
2014-07-16 05:25:24 PM  
I had a maintenance job at a union fab shop. Basically, the foreman tried to find horrible things for me to do that weren't actually productive.

I broke up an asphalt roadway with a pickaxe and hauled it away with a wheel barrow. I painted a tin roof. In July. I shoveled slag out of the pit under an acetylene torch cutting table. I stacked up thousands of parts bins. I also got saddled with inventory duty. Outside. In January.

One time I was allowed to do an actual production task because all the other workers were too busy doing other projects to do it. Plus it sucked and it was commonly considered the worst task. I did 4 days quota in one day. The union filed a complaint about a non-union employee doing the union work and it was back to painting the roof.
 
2014-07-16 05:32:14 PM  
Worked in a factory that made foam for carpet cushioning. They would bake the stuff in giant ovens, and then wheel it out like a huge loaf of bread. We'd cut it into blocks, then set the cutter to trim the blocks into 1/2, 3/4, etc. carpet cushion.
It would build up static electricity in your body, so everything metal that you touched would zap you.
EVERYTHING.
Water fountain? *ZAP*.
Breakroom door?  *ZAP*.
Drove me nuts, I quit after a month.
 
2014-07-17 08:16:17 AM  
Good Lord, everything.  Grocery store bagger.  Grocery store cashier.  Meat and seafood department clerk.  Farm store sales clerk.  Packaging factory floor worker.  Circuit City.  WalMart.  Photo lab clerk.  Horror stories from each one.
 
2014-07-17 09:22:08 AM  
Cleaning the shiatters in the college dorms, and being on call at night in case someone puked somewhere.  At least I had keys to a lot of stuff there.

Sucked worse than trimming Christmas trees.  At least I was outside for that one.
 
2014-07-17 04:47:48 PM  
Secretary in a chemical plant located on the grounds of a paper mill in Panama City.

Never.  Again.
 
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