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(YouTube)   CSB Sunday Morning: High school jobs   ( divider line
    More: CSB, Eagle Eye News, High school, Lakes Community High, Community High School, The College Dropout, College, Pre-medical, Duration  
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1824 clicks; posted to Main » on 19 Mar 2017 at 9:00 AM (22 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2017-03-18 04:17:55 PM  
When I was a kid, I was quite industrious.  I started mowing lawns and doing odd jobs in the neighborhood when I was about 12.  But once I got toward driving age, it became apparent to me that I would have to have a regular income to cover gas and insurance.  I worked at a T-Shirt shop in the tourist district for a summer, then as a strolling singer on "Italian Night" at one of the swanky hotels... as a telemarketer on school nights.  It sucked.  But it paid my expenses.

What job or jobs did you have in high school?  Why did you get a job - what sweet bauble did you buy?  Tell us your stories here.

And get off my lawn.
2017-03-18 04:33:38 PM  
Grocery bagger at Kroger then burger flipper and drive thru attendant at burger King and finally sales at structure.
2017-03-18 04:40:30 PM  
My first high school was washing dishes at a busy suburban steakhouse. Got lots of leftovers (from the kitchen, not the used plates) and an occasional under-the-table beer. Sure, I was 15, but this was 198(mumble mumble). The job itself, though, sucked because...hey, it was washing dishes.

That lasted about six months when I got a much better (and less strenuous) job at a bowling alley as a general "do this, kid". I did everything from spraying the shoes to mopping the bathrooms to running the lane polisher machine to making nachos at the snack bar to fetching drinks for the regulars (again, it was the '80s). It was a great job, with lots of perks (free bowling) and some learning experiences that shall remain unwritten for obvious reasons (have I mentioned this was the '80s?).

A few years ago, while visiting the town I grew up in, I swing by the old place ... and it is now a CostCo. You truly never can go back again.
2017-03-18 04:49:22 PM  
I installed and repaired "monuments" (tombstones) in graveyards.  I know every field and family cemetery within 50 miles of my hometown.
2017-03-18 04:53:21 PM  
Once upon a time, I had a job working an antiques dealer. Mostly larger pieces, like furniture, but he had quite the lucrative trade in antique firearms. I swept up the shop, kept my hands off the goods, and paid fetch and carry for folks, as well as help prepare pieces for shipping. It was NOT exactly the most exciting of jobs.

But, the guy I worked for closed shop for 4 months out of the year. He would take a little vacation every year, and to Afghanistan of all places, at least at the start of his trip, and at the end. He was doing an amazing trade in forgeries, with his stops in Afghanistan. He started his vacations by dropping off the guns he wanted copied, and the smiths that he chose copied the guns, down to the nicks on the stocks and discolorations in the blueing. Then, he'd come back to the US, with a crate full of copies of his originals, along with the originals, and then he would sit and wait all season for collectors to come in, and then rook them mercilessly.

The whole thing cost an arm and a leg, and I suspect he'd have made out fairly well just on the honest arms, without all the rigamarole of shipping guns INTO and OUT of Afghanistan in the middle to late 80s. I can only imagine the bribes that he put out there, not to mention the cost of the copies themselves, which apparently kept the smiths he was working with a good chunk of their seasonal work, but I think that he enjoyed just rooking people.

He never did anything like that with any of the furniture or smaller pieces, and he was hardly the picture of a dashing criminal, and more of a sort of nebbish shopkeep, sort of fussy and exacting, but there was always a bit of electricity in the air when someone came in looking at the guns. He could have saved himself a lot of time and effort, and done very well, but he loved to rook a special class of collector, and you could almost always tell if he'd deliver the real arm or one of his fakes by how they interacted. He always sold the originals, and to a carefully selected buyer, but you were THAT jackass who was looking for "just an investment" or "some like really old guns, dude" chances are you went home with a beautiful fake.

I learned a LOT in the summer I worked for him. Not just with cleaning supplies and restoration techniques, but about human nature. And the art of the con. I wound up getting a job at a restaurant in the fall, and didn't go back to the shop, because the pay was tiny, and instead I wound up learning a trade, but I always thank that fussy little man for teaching me a bit about the grift, and what to watch out for. And in fairness, some of those lessons HAVE paid off in running restaurants, and how to spot and avoid certain brands of cheats and jackasses.
2017-03-18 04:58:45 PM  
My first job in high school was for a travel agency. I think I was paid five bucks an hour placing address stickers on travel brochures. That was the only thing I  did
2017-03-18 05:02:33 PM  
I started working long before high school. First by mowing lawns and washing neighbor's cars starting at about seven or eight years old. When I was twelve I went to work for my dad, who was a general contractor. He believed in hard work and I wasn't given easy tasks. I recall one job early on where I was standing on top of a scaffold holding the end of a 12x12 beam on my back so my father could screw the brackets into place. He passed away when I was fourteen and I stopped working for about six months.

Shortly after turning fifteen I got a job at the local pet store. You had to be sixteen to work in Tennessee unless your parents signed a waiver, but with my mom being a widow raising two boys, we needed the money. I would go in every morning before school, arriving at 4:30am, to clean out the dog kennels and feed the animals. To this day I can remember the smell of bleach and dog shiat that would be carried in the cloud of steam when I sprayed out the kennel trays.

Once I turned sixteen, I was able to get a regular after-school job and worked a series of retail jobs until I graduated. I don't think I went more than a week between the age of fifteen and thirty without having at least one job. Then I took a year off, which was nice.
2017-03-18 05:05:30 PM  
Most summers in high school, starting about 9th grade, I hauled hay.  This was tough work, sun up, to sun down, but you made 50-60 dollars a day in late 70's money, tax free, which was just pretty good money considering you didn't ever have time to spend it.  The benefit was that when football started, even as a freshman, people would underestimate your strength,  and you could manhandle most people your size.

/during the school years, on weekends, I would unload feed trucks
//manual labor always paid better
///and labor laws didn't mess with us
2017-03-18 05:07:59 PM  
I was a janitor. For my high school. It was a private Catholic school, but if you were poor, you could work off part of the tuition by shadowing the janitor. I had to clean out bathrooms, tampon/pad cans, and mop the floors. I was locked in lockers repeatedly. I cleaned period blood off countless toilets, shiat off countless toilets, and semen off more windows than you can imagine.

I have a barely veiled contempt for anyone who hasn't cleaned up someone else's shiat. That includes most Republicans and almost all Democrats these days. If I strike you as rude, it's because I don't think you've ever had to chip away at dried poop with a putty knife and I don't think your opinion matters.
2017-03-18 05:09:26 PM  
I worked in in industry that exploded and died within 2 decades - the video store.

Long afternoons with nothing to do except watch movies (evenings and weekends were another story - constant action). The company policy, however, was that we couldn't watch (at the store) anything rated even as high as PG.

Since ratings didn't begin until the 60's, the classics were all fair game.  I got an education in old movies of Hollywood's golden era.

It was *really* interesting when Lawrence of Arabia was remastered and letterboxed - the first wide release that was. I got real good at explaining how the video wasn't broken, that they were actually seeing more of the picture, not less; but there were always people who didn't want to hear it and insist i give them one that wasn't broken.

I would like to be able to go back and smack dumbass teen me upside the head.  One really *hot* woman used to come in during the early afternoon, usually when I worked alone. She came in one day - wearing a bikini and a towel wrapped around her waist. She asked me for a movie recommendation and leaned into me and pointed out a movie she really really liked.

It was called "Choose Me"

I got the hint! I tried to think of a movie that would show her I understood and was interested.  How to let her know that student me was interested in adult woman her?

I suggested "The Graduate"

I never saw her again.
2017-03-18 05:33:41 PM  
I started as a kid by mowing lawns and dressing as a Boy Scout and going around collecting empty pop bottles from people. I also shop-lifted porn magazines from various stores and I had quite a stash, and I'd charge the local kids as much coin as they had to let them peruse them.

When I got a bit older I had a paper route and even won a 10 speed bike in a special draw for the carriers.

When I was 15 I got a job in a factory making high quality leather belts. You had to be 16 for insurance but I just lied. I ended up working there every summer until I graduated high school.
2017-03-18 05:35:23 PM  
In high school, I was very good at avoiding real work while still getting paid.  Most jobs revolved around sports, mainly for our local recreation department as a scorekeeper, umpire, field maintenance worker, etc.  Fun, easy money.

One of my assignments was as a scorekeeper for a men's basketball league in which the games were held at the high school gymnasium.  I was given a scorebook, an air horn, and one of those manual scoreboards where you flipped over the numbers while it sat on the scorer's table.  Except my dad was the head basketball coach at the high school and I knew where he kept his keys.  So we turned it up a notch.  It started innocently enough when we used the main scoreboard.  Then got daring and used the PA system, trying to sound like longtime Richfield Coliseum PA announcer Howie Chizek (Craig Eeeehlo for tha-reeeeee).  Pretty soon, my buddy started bringing in his cassette player and we would play music over the PA during timeouts and make announcements like at the Coliseum (Mel Rose and Tavern of Richfield, located just off of Route 303...).  Eventually, we gave almost every player in the league a nickname and used those in our PA announcements (basket by Mr. Jing-a-Ling, foul is on number 44 Grape Ape, that's his first, team's 3rd, Mr. Jing-a-Ling at the line shooting one - always in Howie Chizek voice...).  This became our demise.  "Mr. Decrepit" complained to my boss because he had brought his kid to the game and after the game the kid asked him what decrepit meant and why we called him that (dude had the 80s combover with gray tube sock combo look).  Thus the era of pro style "basketball as entertainment" in the local men's league ended immediately.  I finished the year still in place as the scorekeeper with a scorebook, air horn, and manual scoreboard.
2017-03-18 06:28:40 PM  

hubiestubert: Once upon a time, I had a job working an antiques dealer.

I like this story, you told it before and it caught my imagination then too. It has all the elements that make us come back to touch on it again and again throughout life. It's a facade of a "normal world" and underneath a wholly different world and yet one we can relate at least somewhat, and see real evidence of how things aren't  what they appear on the surface.

I have to think that at least part of his motivation was that, in Afghanistan, he was a "big guy". He'd keep these forgers in business, throw bribe dollars around (if you've ever done that it can be a bit intoxicating), and he got to be a bit of a James Bond sort of character...or perhaps more of a Clark Kent really.
2017-03-18 06:58:45 PM  
The usual babysitting jobs. Hated it. I had a regular couple I sat for. I think they worked nights. Husband comes home and drives me home. As I'm getting out of the car, he gives me an extra 5 bucks (a huge sum in the 70's) and asks that I not say what time he got home to his wife. I was so confused. This seemed so wrong, but I wasn't sure why. I was a very immature 13 year old. When the wife asked what time her husband came home, I told her the truth. Because I knew that lying was wrong. I didn't know what bribing was, or what you would say to an adult attempting to bribe you, because adults are never wrong Sir or Ma'am. Funny thing, if he'd said nothing I wouldn't really have know what time he came home. The kids were in bed and I had fallen asleep. They didn't ask me back.

Summer between HS and college I was a door to door canvasser selling blow in the wall foam insulation. Well, getting leads for a real salesmen to sell the insulation. Driving around the Central Valley in summer, walking through hot dusty neighborhoods knocking on doors. Drinking beer. Smoking something that was not just pot and driving home.

Then it was: cafeteria worker, office worker, book store worker, pizza delivery, waitress, pool hall worker (excellent job!), bookings worker for renting the dorms out in summer, girl scout camp counselor (you haven't lived till you've staggered back drunk from the bars in Sheboygan, WI to your campsite on your night off), and very brief factory drill press operator. Should have stayed at that job.
2017-03-18 07:06:22 PM  
I was a janitor at a 24 hour truck stop for about five years, beginning in the summer following my sophomore year in high school.  Just a fantastic job for a kid.  While I did encounter quite a bit of what LSherm saw, I was basically unsupervised for eight hour stretches over all three shifts.  We lived so close to the place I could hear the intercom in my room on calm summer overnights.  I can still hear Barb Sowles' voice crystal clear:  "Maintenance front desk, please.  Maintenance.  Front desk."   Employees were forbidden from playing video games but I gained an addiction to Asteroids.  Holy cow, did I love that game.  I had to clean hotel rooms and could not have been happier to find a "Miss Gay Kentucky 1980" sash one morning.   Rick Springfield even stopped by the restaurant one time after a Summerfest gig.  Taught me all kinds of life lessons and I felt like a millionaire even though I made $3.15 an hour.  What a great job.

Gone now and it still hurts a little every time I drive by.
2017-03-18 07:14:35 PM  
When I was in high school I lived with a priest. He wasn't THAT kind of priest (I think he was carrying on an affair with a woman, due to the fact that more than once I came down in the morning and found two empty glasses and one of them had lipstick on them).

He had me and three or four of the neighborhood boys cut the grass on the vacant lots around town. This was the ghetto, so there were a lot of vacant lots. Can't tell you how many empty 40-ounce bottles and empty syringes we would find when we walked the lots before we cut them.

Later on I got a job in the produce department of a grocery store. My main thing was produce, but since it was a small store I learned how to do pretty much everything, stock shelves, cut meat, run a floor scrubber. The store was like 8 miles away and I'd ride my bike there and back 3 or 4 nights a week and every Saturday morning. I couldn't ride a bike three blocks now.
2017-03-18 07:44:48 PM  
I started work before high school.  Around 10 or 11, a good friend and I made money mowing laws and washing cars on the weekends.  It was decent money for us and I was still getting an allowance.

When I was 15, mom and dad sat me down.  There would be no more allowance.  I was old enough to work.

Mom drove me to Burger King and I filled out an application.  Burger King hired me.  I had my first real job!

I was issued a green shirt and a blue visor and showed up for my first day.  They took me in the back where there was a tiny 11" television and a VCR.  They put on tapes titled, "Burger King University."  I Googled around to see if there were any stills of this or if they had made it to YouTube.  Unfortunately not.  The vidoes were every bit as awful as you'd expect an early 1980s fast food video to be.

What really stuck out was that every manager was a middle-aged white guy and every employee was a minority.  It stuck out in 1987, which should tell you something.

The restaurant was a sh*thole.  Dirty, roaches in the back closets, and it smelled like cigarette smoke.  Back then it was legal to smoke inside and every manager and assistant manager chainsmoked.  The manager's office was a little 20 square foot room that was six feet from where the burger station was.  We had tiny gold-colored aluminum ashtrays on the tables.  I had to empty and clean them.

We screwed around with the food, though we did not serve the "experiments" to customers.  Random things would be tossed into the deep fryer just to see what would happen.  There was a Domino's in the same stripmall, and we'd smuggle out burgers and fries to trade for similarly stolen pizzas.

One of my favorite wprkplace incidents happened here.  I wasn't working that morning, but the morning crew was cleaning and getting ready to open around 8AM for a 9AM opening.  A couple of people came up and knocked on the locked door.  It wasn't going to open for another hour, but one of my chucklehead co-workers opened the door anyway.

A gun was presented.  The morning crew was herded into the walk-in refrigerator, locked inside, then the robbers made off with everything in the manager's office.

Nobody had noticed that the Burger King hadn't opened until 10AM or so.  Someone called the district manager who drove over with the keys and let everyone out of the refrigerator.  Nobody was hurt.  But the managers never kept the books, so nobody knew how much money was stolen.

Also, one of the assistant managers was memorable.  He was an active member of a local Crip gang.  He'd show up to work wearing the appropriate bandanas and the rest of the outfit.  Then he would change into the green polo shirt and blue visor we all wore.  He was a decent guy, I liked him and we got along really well.  When things got slow, he would teach me and a few others how to correctly throw gang signs.

Though Burger King sucked and I eventually left.  Do not eat at Burger King.  I haven't set foot in one for 30 years.  Neither should you.

Shortly after I quit, I got a job at the local movie theater.  Now, this was a good job.  I got two of my friends hired and stayed there until the week before I left for college.  But that place is a story for another day.
2017-03-18 07:58:15 PM  
I got my first job after my freshman year of high school.  Waiter at an old folks home. It was an odd job in some ways, but a lot of it was routine.  It did force me to grow up a bit and come face to face with the realities of old age and death.

I was 16 the first time I found one of the residents dead in their room (part of the job was room service for those who didn't wish to use the dining room), in total, over the three years I worked there, I found two people that way. The first one messed me up for a while, it was jarring to see the nurses handle it like it was just another day. For them it was, I guess.

By the time I left I had served seven people the last meal they ever ate (which is tragic, given the quality of the food), and attended a dozen or so funerals. It helped form my opinions on doctor assisted suicide (all for it), the importance of living wills (get one now), and that assholes do in fact end up living sad lives in the end.
2017-03-18 08:04:22 PM  
I had many.  My favorite was being a polo flagger.  What's a polo flagger, you say?  For $20 a game you could stand at an end of a polo field, judging if very serious, very rich, very English-second-language polo players made a goal.

that poor girl had the job of lining up at the correct angle to see when a polo player whacked a 1 pound hard plastic polo ball going at 100+mph between the two goal posts - which extend infinitely into the sky.  Keeping in mind this is with a dozen $100,000+ horses are barreling at you and the ball hitter, jockeying for control and position.

Also, keep in mind to even play polo you need a minimum of 3 horses, averaging 5-6, ideally 9+ horses each worth at least $30,0000, but more likely $70,000, with high end at $150k+.

I was 15 years old, being a judge if these very angry Argentinians hit a ball between the uprights, even if it was 40+ feet above where the top of the poles ended.  You grow a backbone quick, or you're fired. I lasted 3 more years before I went to college.  Games were every Sunday for 2 hours.  Easy money if you could return the curse words back to the players - they respected you then.
2017-03-18 08:09:20 PM  
I think I was in 6th grade or so when I started working, the classic afternoon paper route.  However this was in the East Bay (SF) where the hills go straight up & then back down and because my manager was an idiot straight back up the hill I already did & then back down a different side of the hill.  It didn't hit me until many years later why my thighs were the size of tree trunks & I could leg press 800# with ease...but I digress...

High school, paper route long gone, did a lot of yard work for various neighbors (including cutting up trees with a chain saw in jr high (unsupervised of course - apparently CPS wasn't a thing back then), sold subscriptions for a different afternoon paper door to door (that sucked but the stoners that I worked with gave me a very different sort of education), worked at a 'wallpapers R us' kind of store - came in useful while rehabbing houses later in life, always busy & doing some sort of work somewhere.

The best though was technically not during high school (as you had to have graduated to be hired) but it was there at the school.  That summer after graduation & for 2-3 years during college I worked for the school district as a janitor/groundskeeper at the HS (& any other place in the district that needed that kind of help).  Lots of disgusting stuff like Lsherm mentioned but also a lot of opportunities to learn too, setting tile, painting, roofing, etc.  Also lots of standing out in the CA summer sun with a weedeater cutting the grass on the hills where the tractor couldn't get to.  Thankfully Walkmans had just arrived on the scene & my first paycheck went to getting one, lots of AC/DC that summer.

Anyway I told you all of that to be able to tell you about Fast Eddie.  Fast Eddie was a guy (named Eddie strangely enough) who had worked for the school district since gold was discovered up in the hills or so it seemed.  He was probably 60ish (counting time until he had the years to retire at max pension), bald, BIG beer belly, smelled & wasn't very bright - so of course he thought he was God's gift to women/teenage girls (typical Farker but older I suppose).  Several times every day he would completely creep out whichever member of the female half of the species happened to pass near him, never noticing that he creeped them out, nor even thinking that he didn't score points for that inevitable clashing of nude bodies together that he thought was just around the corner.  As mentioned, Eddie wasn't too bright & the biggest thorn in his backside was all these farking college kids that Jim (the boss) always stuck him with every summer (we had all been given a lecture on Eddie by Jim & were asked to try to keep him out of trouble if wasn't).  If Eddie was going to do something dumb, we'd warn him & he'd do it anyway just to prove us wrong & him right...sadly it never worked in his favor.  Not once, not twice but THREE times one summer he managed to paint himself into a corner (some of the school rooms had painted concrete rather than tile).  Now most people seeing that would think that he found a good way to take a few hours off....nope, good old Fast Eddie would eventually notice what he'd done & then walk across the wet paint to get out of there.  More than once while we were cutting down the hill grass (& tossing it into the truck that he'd park on the field/playground near us with him 'driving'), he'd doze off & the truck would slowly drive away & either go flying down one of those really steep hills or smash into/take out a section of fence surrounding the school.  All our fault of course according to him, Jim I think had to file a workman's comp claim for eye strain after rolling them too hard.  The man was a walking menace to himself & it really was amazing that he made it to his 60s.

Then there was THE day.  We had all been sent to one of the local elementary schools to do yard work & some much needed tree trimming.  Prior to this day I had only seen what was to come only happen in cartoons & if you had asked me that morning about it I would have bet my summer's earnings on Eddie 'not' being that stupid.  Anyway there we were, a few of us 'stupid college boys' & Eddie looking at these three trees that needed trimmed way back as the branches were rubbing on the building in a wind & some of the bigger ones were causing damage.  Eddie deemed that he was the only one competent enough to run the chain saw while climbing a tree, none of us felt like arguing that point for some reason - self preservation probably as, safety gear? What's that?  (he may have had hearing protection but nothing else, no ropes, no helmet, no chaps to stop the blade if there's kickback (oh yeah, a couple of years before I started working he sliced the top layer of skin off one leg just that I said, a menace (mainly to himself though))).  So up he went into the tree, starting near the top, leaning way out & one handed cutting off the branches for us to gather up down below.  Slowly making his way down the tree (Jim arrived during this to see how things were going) he finally reached the big lower branch that was rubbing against the building (about 15' in the air).  Pausing in his arbor assault he looked it over, decided that he couldn't manage that big branch one handed like he did the others & proceeded to sit on the branch so that he could use both hands to work the chain saw (see where this is going yet?). Completely oblivious (or deliberately ignoring) to those damned college kids screaming, yelling, waving their arms, throwing pine cones at him, etc he got to work. Yep, the stupid farker managed to cut himself out of the tree by cutting the branch between himself & the trunk.  The branch came down, Eddie came down, the chain saw came down (amazingly missing him) & Jim almost threw up (probably imagining the paperwork that was narrowly avoided).

That was the last I ever saw of Eddie as school was about to start up again & the following year I was busy with ROTC things & never made it back to the district.  I'd like to think that he lived a nice long time in his not so quite voluntary retirement, but with Eddie you just couldn't be sure....
2017-03-18 08:15:24 PM  
Mom was convinced I had to have at least one job at all times, or else my Dad would be soo very disappointed in me. Didn't really buy Mom's line but I wanted money anyway. The list is long and undistinguished. Lots of weird odd jobs.

I was on call for the church for when they needed people to set up the Hall with folding chairs and tables or take them down, often had me working 4-6 PM and 11 PM - 1 AM on Fri. and Sat. nights. Get drunk/stoned in between, ride a bike home 4 miles afterwards. If that wasn't up, I could work Sat. eve assembling parts of the Sunday LATimes for about 4 hours. A friend's Dad ran a small manufacturing company for awhile and so could get piece work assembly now and then, that was a good gig because friends could sit around listening to music for a few hours after school and if you had quick hands you could make three or four times more than minimum wage. And it was easy to come and go from that between other jobs, nice to have friends. That was ages 13-15.

Getting older, did dishwasher at various restaurants which acquainted me with the habits of waitresses, good and bad for a young lad. The ones on the make would bring me beer a few times before they asked me into the cold room. Why the cold room I just don't know, but kinky. When you're slogging through hundreds and hundreds of plates of half-eaten baked potatoes and half chewed grizzle from a steak joint, and that full carafe of house wine with the plastic wrap seal still in place comes back, well it's hot back there and thirsty work. That was the worst time of my life for driving home drunk.

For about six months I had a gig with a cleaning service that would go to various offices at night, mop their coffee room, clean their toilets and vacuum the carpets with nice long grooming lines so that it looked like it had been cleaned. Got extra work on the weekends doing final spruce up of new construction in a ritzy development. Was always better cleaning up somewhere else other than home. That business broke up due to a divorce.

One strange job was remodeling a Newburys Department store. Basically, got hired to build new display islands, plywood based, peg board verticles, painted, plastic molded edgings. A friend hired on as well. Worked that for a while but then the boss and his old Navy buddy the alcoholic maintenance guy started getting rude about my friend, calling him a worthless lazy Mexican, which was odd because I knew he was getting more done than me, and he was Guatemalan. Anyway, one day they fired him, and as they were in turn praising me and offering me a raise I had a few choice words for them as I quit. Felt real good.

Also had two electrical assembly jobs wielding a soldering iron, filling boards. This was long before PCs. It's a nice skill to have ahead of the world getting electrical, fixed many a stereo system by just replacing an obviously blown capacitor but the old eyes can't do that anymore and electronics aren't as simple.

Add in quite a few fairly short term gigs through temp agencies, lots of warehouse work which could involve anything from feeding the cardboard baler to hauling things about with a pallet jack to stacking boxes in semis. Loading a semi-trailer, climbing up and stacking boxes on a sunny day when it's over 90 degrees outside is unpleasant work. Those trailers aren't in the shade. One weird week was spent at a cosmetics company opening boxes of samplers and throwing the little glass bottles into waste barrels so that the bottles broke, the point being that the promotion was over and things had to be destroyed. It was a ridiculous way to do it but I was being paid. Also walked out with one of the cases to sell at the local flea market and make over $200 in a morning, which was more than a weeks pay. It was the great crime of my youth but in my defense, the stupidity of how they had me break up those samples wore at me. Then there was about 3 weeks working night shift at international Playtex on the line stuffing freshly made boxes of tampons into larger cardboard boxes. Had to wear a hair net. The older ladies on the line teased a 16 year old boy rather mercilessly, and not about the hair net.

Saved lots of money, bought a car, got to go to the occasional concert (so much cheaper back then), and paid my own way through college (worked  full time during 2 years community college and similarly eclectic mix of jobs through university).

And the experience taught me to not make my kids do the same, I paid their way through school. They only had to work for fun money.
2017-03-18 08:16:50 PM  
I think the way jobs end is sometimes more interesting.

The end of one dishwashing gig was epic. The U-shaped bay where we washed dishes had a tile floor but it had these wooden platforms or mats because of all the water that always spilled about. Conveyer dishwasher on one side, dishes, bus tubs of dishes etc come in from the bottom of the U, soaking sinks opposite the dishwashing machine. They wooden mats would get very grungy so had to be periodically cleaned. I was in one Sunday early to do that and other things. We hauled these heavy 2 x 4 foot wooden slat mats out into the enclosed bay that held the dumpsters, door to the back of the restaurant, large tall rolling door to the outside, moved the dumpsters into the parking lot first. Hosed the mats down and then I was told to take a push broom and brush them down with a strong bleach solution. Fine, lovely work. The floor drain was partially clogged with some some paper or something so water was backing up. Lots of bleach, semi closed space, rather nasty. Stepped away for some reason, probably to breath and hit the head, got back and one of the managers had been stepping in to supervise and told one of the bus boys to get some ammonia for some reason and pour some of that on the slats. I got back just as it was happening. Nooooooooo. I grabbed the half empty gallon jug of ammonia and shoved them both out of the bay just as a cloud was forming. I pushed the button to fully open the bay door and shut the door into the restaurant shouting something about dumbfarks as I went around to another door to see this cloud of gas billow out of the trash bay and drift across the parking lot (mostly empty) and continue to drift out over the adjacent freeway. Waited about 20 minutes, hurried in to fully clear the drain and hosed everything off then I quit. Didn't like being part of sending a cloud of mustard gas out into the world.
2017-03-18 08:19:01 PM  
I had a few restaurant jobs in HS but my first makes for a good story.

I was 14 and was hired to wait tables at a small-town restaurant called The Kentucky Lady. Business was never brisk and the owner was a grouchy drunk.

One night I decided to go out with my friends instead of work, and of course I got fired. Three days later the restaurant burned down, and as a weirdo punk chick in rural Mid-MO, my name and recent firing made me a suspect for arson. I was never formally questioned but for awhile I was the scapegoat.

Investigations proved that the owner set the fire for insurance purposes, so he got nothing and maybe served time, can't remember.

Sometimes we keep repeating lies to where we start believing them...many years later I see the guy at a dive bar and when he saw me, yelled:

He and his buddies chased us out of the bar but we were faster and escaped.
2017-03-18 08:29:48 PM  
Started playing sax in a rock 'n roll band as a sophomore in high school, 1960.  Couldn't believe that people were paying me to have a good time.  Gradually realized they weren't paying me all that much.  Went into the navy at 17.
2017-03-18 08:31:01 PM  
I managed to have some rather interesting jobs.... I was a Pallbearer for nun funerals. Basically, all you had to do was dress up in a suit & carry out of the church, to the hearse - down to the cemetery and over to the grave. Quick $50 - we called it a Cash n' Carry.

I was also a Bank Robber. One of the local banks did training for the tellers in how to handle a robbery, what to look for, what to try and remember for the Police after the event - and they did various role-play scenarios. So yes, I LARPed as a robber. I even did one with a pair of panty hose over my head for the lulz.

The rest of the time was working on a farm doing hay mostly, gawd I hated the hay loft on a hot summer day with no air moving.
2017-03-18 08:46:28 PM  
Wow, I neglected one, blocked it out really. From 12 - 15 I used to umpire little league baseball games. $5 for behind the plate, $3 for in the field. Worst of all my jobs with the amount of abuse heaped on you by little Johnny's Mom when you called little Johnny out on strikes.  Had a few fathers be nasty but was physically assaulted by two mothers. Doing two games on a Sat. was pretty exhausting.
2017-03-18 09:15:29 PM  
My mother was the secretary to a big-shot lawyer in Detroit, and worked on the 25th floor of the Fisher Building -- a glorious piece of architecture that, despite what Detroit's been through, remains, tall and proud and beautiful.

In the summers between all high school years, I would go to work with mom.
Year 1:  I was the copy girl, Xeroxing tons o' stuff.  (Scanning wasn't a thing in the late 70s)
Year 2:  They let me answer the phones in the schwanky reception area in the lobby.
Year 3:  I got to type up and learn about briefs and pleadings and depositions.

It was a great education, good income, an amazing experience, and I thought I was the luckiest high schooler alive. I didn't understand until later that I was at that awkward "too old for a sitter, too young to leave home alone" age, and my mother managed to find a win/win.

/Fisher Bldg. Rules
2017-03-18 10:24:05 PM  

hubiestubert: Once upon a time, I had a job working an antiques dealer. Mostly larger pieces, like furniture, but he had quite the lucrative trade in antique firearms. I swept up the shop, kept my hands off the goods, and paid fetch and carry for folks, as well as help prepare pieces for shipping. It was NOT exactly the most exciting of jobs.

But, the guy I worked for closed shop for 4 months out of the year. He would take a little vacation every year, and to Afghanistan of all places, at least at the start of his trip, and at the end. He was doing an amazing trade in forgeries, with his stops in Afghanistan. He started his vacations by dropping off the guns he wanted copied, and the smiths that he chose copied the guns, down to the nicks on the stocks and discolorations in the blueing. Then, he'd come back to the US, with a crate full of copies of his originals, along with the originals, and then he would sit and wait all season for collectors to come in, and then rook them mercilessly.

The whole thing cost an arm and a leg, and I suspect he'd have made out fairly well just on the honest arms, without all the rigamarole of shipping guns INTO and OUT of Afghanistan in the middle to late 80s. I can only imagine the bribes that he put out there, not to mention the cost of the copies themselves, which apparently kept the smiths he was working with a good chunk of their seasonal work, but I think that he enjoyed just rooking people.

He never did anything like that with any of the furniture or smaller pieces, and he was hardly the picture of a dashing criminal, and more of a sort of nebbish shopkeep, sort of fussy and exacting, but there was always a bit of electricity in the air when someone came in looking at the guns. He could have saved himself a lot of time and effort, and done very well, but he loved to rook a special class of collector, and you could almost always tell if he'd deliver the real arm or one of his fakes by how they interacted. He always sold the originals, and ...

And this is why the Sunday CSB threads are a weekly ritual for me. I love this story, and all the dang stories.
2017-03-18 10:51:27 PM  
My first job (other than delivering newspapers and yard work/snow shoveling for the neighbors) was at McDonald's. They had me cleaning the lobby for awhile. They did finally put me on register and I was good at it.

But one day, while in the manager's office counting my drawer I was standing next to the open safe. I don't know what made me do it, but I reached over and snagged a roll of quarters and stuck it in my pocket. I mean, hey, $10.

The next day I come into work and they take me aside. Apparently they notice that the safe is $10 short, or something. I would learn later that you count the safe every day, maybe even multiple times a day. Once they noticed it was short they looked at the video and saw me swipe the roll of quarters.

Probably one of the dumbest crimes I've ever committed.
2017-03-18 11:13:33 PM  
I worked at Pistol Pete's Pizza in Albuquerque. It was a ripoff of Peter Piper Pizza which was a ripoff of Showbiz Pizza which was a ripoff of Chuck E Cheese. Actually, I think Showbiz was sprung from a separation of owners from Chuck E Cheese.

It was a fun job for a teenager. We had a pizza buffet and we served beer. I couldn't serve it, of course, and since I didn't drink in high school I was never the type to sneak beers on my break or anything. But our assistant manager was a girl named Jozelle, I think. She was sneaky good at acting cool. By that I mean that we thought she was pretty cool, but looking back on it I'm guessing she was trying to make us think that about her.

She had weird lips, which is kind of my fetish. They weren't grotesque or overly weird, they just had a slight misshapen quality to them. And she had a kind of limp. She'd tell us stories of her black boyfriend and we were in awe.

I got my friend a job there. I didn't know it at the time, but he smoked pot. I know this because we got together for a few months a couple years after high school and it all started to make sense. Jozelle had him mix a new batch of pizza sauce. We used one of those heavy duty trash cans on wheels. You empty dozens of cans tomato sauce and paste, dump in a couple pounds of Italian seasoning, salt, garlic, or whatever and a gallon or so of oil. Then you'd stir it with what looked like a boat oar. You had to go slow at first because  the paste was thick. Then as you got it mixed up it became much smoother.

My friend poured all the ingredients into the trash can and started stirring. But he went full speed right away and the trash can tipped over. I was pissed because he was so stupid. But Jozelle had a little smirk on her face like she thought it was cute that he was so stupid. I was secretly jealous although I never showed it.

That would be a theme with me and him. I could see through his obvious ploys, and stupidity and the girls ate it up. I had a chance to bang his girlfriend, but I was too nice and I called him and said, "Hey, Angela called me after you guys left my house and she wants me to come hang out with her. She couldn't stop talking about how handsome I am."

So he comes up with a plan for me to pick him up, go to her house and then I'd sneak in her bedroom window and after we started making out he'd appear at the window and bust us. But when we got there I told her that I brought my friend along and told her the plan. So he shows up at the window and she already knows what's up. We're not making out so he can't bust us.

We still hung out with her for awhile and I was playing "Mr. Counselor" as my friend said that night. I was thinking that they're BF/GF and they should work out their problems. Now, I think I should have just kept quiet, gone alone and saw where the night took us. The worst thing is, they ended up f*cking while I slept on the floor.

2017-03-18 11:20:06 PM  
Started off as a paper boy and did numerous odd jobs until I got a gig at the grocery store. All the free booze and cigarettes we could steal...

But one of more favorite stories is when our manager took the trash out one day. You see we worked in the bottle room (our state did deposit on bottle and cans so people would bring them back to the store. We would separate and crush them). Anyway we had a fondness for making "works" bombs out of the bottles that didn't have a deposit on them. Basically you would dump some toilet bowl cleaner in the bottle, add some aluminum foil and toss it. The foil reacted with the cleaner and would produce gas and the bottle would explode. We used the "Works" brand of cleaner hence the name.

Anyway we would make them and set them in the garbage cart to take out behind the dumpster and blow them up. It would take a bit for the reaction so we had the timing down. But out manager happened to come back just after we hid the bottle in the garbage and said she was going to take the trash out for us ( I can't remember why) Anyway being all of 16 we were too dumb to say anything so we just let her go. She must have taken her sweet time because a few minutes later she comes storming back covered in bits of trash all sorts of pissed off asking what the hell was in the cart. We played dumb and said there was a funny looking bottle we tossed in there that came back from a customer and there must have been something in it. Luckily she took that as a good enough explanation and went to clean herself up.

But man did that scare the bejesus out of us. We were damn lucky that it could have been much worse. so being the smart kids that we were...we started using dry ice (from the meat department) and water for our future ones. We stopped that practice after had a mishap with a monster one that blew up in the back room. It was so loud you could hear it in the parking lot. Someone we got away with that one too.

We also used to huff nitrous out of the whipped cream cans on top of the dairy cooler...
2017-03-18 11:23:14 PM  
I got a summer job as a library page when I was 15, which was cool because I was the only 15 year old with any money. I did the bathrooms at Six Flags the next summer, sold shoes at Just For Feet (remember that company that blew up and went away) Then worked at that giant arcade... Gameworks I think it was called?

After everything, I'm now a used book seller. I wound up very close to where I began.
2017-03-18 11:42:43 PM  
So my time at Pistol Pete's ended similarly to that of McDonald's.

We sold 14" pizzas for $4.25. $4.50 if you wanted it to go. We charged a quarter for the box. It was actually quite the life lesson. We weren't charging a quarter for the box, we were discounting a quarter if you just ate the pizza in the restaurant on a plate that we could wash. In no way can I imagine that it was less than a quarter to bus the table and clean the dish, but ok. Plus if they're sitting in the place they'll probably buy some drinks, especially beer or wine.

I was promoted to asst. manager when our manager quit because they wouldn't give him the night off to be there for the birth of his child. That's pretty messed up, if you asked me. It probably set the tone for what was about to happen. Jozelle (see previous post) ended up quitting and we got a new manager named Sugar. She was a southern wild child. Maybe I'll make another post about her, but let's keep it here before I go off on another tangent. I already forgot to mention how my friend spilling the sauce meant that he started tracking oil all over the restaurant.

So we'd take the pizza order over the phone and write it down on a slip. The slip would get put up in the kitchen and the pizza(s) would get made. Then the customer would show up to pick up the pizza and often they'd just come to the takeout window that opened up to the sidewalk along the restaurant.

This meant that they could give a jack shiat about what I did with the register. So I would take their money, push "no sale" on the register and get their change. I'd keep count of how many pizzas I did this with. It was not every pizza, just enough. I think I usually had a dollar amount in mind. Then at the end of the night I'd multiply the number of pizzas I did this with by $4, take that much out and pocket it and let the drawer be over. First mistake.

As time went on I became a little more brazen. I was pulling the money as the night went on. I would use it to pay an employee a little $10 bonus to take the trash out after dark, which we were not supposed to do because it was a bad neighborhood. But it made us look better if there weren't garbage bags by the back door when the owners came in the next morning. One time I even gave a kid $25 to take a box of cheese to the other store in my car. I said, fill up my car (which was probably about $12 at the time) and keep the rest, plus he was still on the clock.

My second mistake was not understanding food and labor cost. When there's a spike in food cost and you don't find people walking out with food and a spike in labor cost, but you know who's working at all time, and also you notice that your $700 Thursday has been a $600 Thursday for the past couple of weeks, you know something's up.

One night as I'm closing up the owners walk in looking very sleepy and grumpy. I couldn't understand why they were there, but I greeted them happily. I still had no idea, even with a couple hundred dollars in my apron pocket. The wife started counting the drawers and the husband asked me to join him in the office. I follow him back to the office and he asks me to close the door behind me.

As soon as I close the door he's right on me with his hand around my neck. He's screaming at me, "ARE YOU STEALING FROM US!?!?! I KNOW YOU'RE STEALING FROM US!!! WHAT'S IN YOUR POCKET RIGHT NOW!?!"

I was scared shiatless. Looking back, if I could go back in time I would have handled it totally differently (and even more wrong, morally). I admitted to it and pulled the money out of my apron and handed it to him. The jig was up. It was over. I was fired. He asked how much I stole and I made up a number, something like $500.

Well, it wasn't over. First off, I had one of those pullout stereos that you could just take the whole stereo out of your dash and bring it with you. I kept in under the counter near the register. They saw that and figured, correctly, that maybe I had more in my car. So we went out to my car and they took my subwoofers. Two Cerwin-Vega 12" woofers, which were the style at the time. They said they would give them back to me when I paid them back. OK fine...I paid about $175 for the stereo, but I got the speakers for free from a friend.

Nope, wasn't over. They called my mom. Why didn't I just leave? Why would I give them my mom's phone number? I don't know. I was a stupid kid, I guess. Or maybe it was because they could just call the phone number in my records because it was my home phone. It was the only phone we had those days. So they followed me home to talk to my mother to explain that I was going to have to pay them back. My mom asked me if I had any of the money in the house and I did. I had like $200 in my bedroom. So I had to give them that, too.

I don't think I ever paid them back the rest of the money. I know for a fact that they weren't ever going to give me my stereo back. Funny thing is, talking to some of the employees, I guess they basically had a storage unit full of stuff they took from thieving employees. I rationalized it away, but I regret it now, knowing what I know about running a business.
2017-03-18 11:46:58 PM  
I worked at another pizza place in Albuquerque called Nunzio's. I am so pissed that they're not in business anymore because they had the best pizza.

Our manager was a very large woman, I can't remember her name. Sally, or Sara or something. Nice enough, but hardened sort of like the security supervisor on the show "Superstore". Kind of looked like her, but much bigger. Oh wait, now I remember her name was Shelly.

We had an assistant manager named Felicia. She was a really cool black woman. She loved working with us teenage boys. She'd talk about how she liked to suck her boyfriend's dick. But she said it so matter-of-factly. Like she wasn't just talking about giving blowjobs, she was teaching us about sex. She said, "Yeah, if I don't feel like I'm ready for sex, like I'm not wet, I'll go down on him and after I've been sucking his dick it starts to turn me on and then I'm ready for sex."

She was awesome. She must be like 50 years old, but if I could have one more conversation with her today I think it would be enjoyable.
2017-03-18 11:54:22 PM  
I've always had fun telling the story of my first job.  When I was 15, I worked in a mobile home park cleaning lots and doing cleanup and yard work around the main complex.

The only reason I remember this job as affectionately as I do was due to a middle-aged woman who used to lay out in the sun completely nude.  The fence surrounding her property was only a four-foot fence and the empty lots and areas next to her trailer were as well kept as I could keep them.

She was gorgeous and I have no idea if she knew I was there or even cared.

I never said a word to her.
2017-03-18 11:59:36 PM  
So back at Pistol Pete's they had two stores. The one I worked at was on Louisiana Blvd, which was known as "The Danger Zone" by ABQ police. There was a lot of crime and gang activity. The weird thing is that it wasn't even the most dangerous area of the city. The other Pistol Pete's location was on West Central Ave in true gang territory.

Occasionally I would work at the other store, because before I was busted stealing from them I was one of their best workers. While over at the other store I met a girl named Erica. Oh, she was so cute. Latina girl with a cute face and a nice body. She'd laugh at my jokes, which was saying something because I was a lot more shy and less rambunctious then.

So I asked her on a date. She said yes and I offered to drive her home so we could make the plans. I drove her home, she lived just off W. Central on like 64th St or something. I provided a link to google maps, just so you could get an idea of where it was. Let me tell was the "hood". Everything was rundown. It was gang territory, welfare territory.

I had dreams of grandeur of me whisking her away from all the sadness and giving her a good life. Come on, give me a break. I was a kid and at the time I was a romantic. So we agreed to go to a movie or dinner or something. We set up the day and time and whatever.

The date came and I was getting ready. I took a shower, shaved, put on some cologne, put on my best clothes. She was supposed to call me to tell me it was time to pick her up. She never called. I'm not sure I ever saw her again. If I did, I certainly didn't get an explanation or apology. Knowing me, even if I saw her I would have been too timid to confront her or ask her about it.

/sorry, there's no sad button
//so vote funny
///the saddest people are often the funniest
2017-03-19 12:23:33 AM  
Bookstores. As a total bookworm with few expenses, that sweet, sweet 30% discount (and 40% the week after Thanksgiving!) took a good chunk of my paychecks overall.

I was 16. Everyone else was in their 20s and up, and it was a whole new world.

We'd close up and eat dessert at the restaurant next door and banter like real grownups; I got to read an English major dude's unpublished novel about a pig who had a mad love affair with a human woman and eventually (the pig, not the woman) walked into the ocean when she left him; somehow earned a stalker entomologist (Lepidoptrist? Lepidoptrist) who endlessly read My Ántonia whenever he was in the store (thankfully, my name is not Ántonia. That would've been too creepy, and the accent over that A has always driven me nuts); and witnessed a gang fight consisting of two scrawny guys cussing venomously while throwing books around (assholes).

I drew illustrated signs for the sections, talked deep, teenaged philosophy with philosophy majors, kept a straight face when my neighbor came in and bought a 'how to have great sex' book, and learned to ten-key ISBN numbers like a pro. It was a job of wonders.
2017-03-19 12:36:33 AM  
The assorted stories about people at McD & BK reminded me that I too worked for McDonald's way back when...sort of.

It must have been the summer of my junior/senior year when I went to work for a friend's dad who was an electrician.  He however was a very specialized electrician as his entire business seemed to be fixing whatever machine wasn't working for any of the McDonald's on the east side of SF Bay.  From San Jose up to say Crockett, if a machine wasn't working right, off we'd go to fix it.  My job was mainly to be a gopher for Gary, running out to the van to get whatever tool/fitting was needed (occasionally to just sit in the van & make sure that things didn't walk off - like the 16yo, 150# younger version of me was sooo intimidating....sigh) but also to climb around under/behind the machine in question to make sure that it was unplugged so that we could work on it.

Have you ever seen the floor in the kitchen of a McD's?  Even in the well run, nice & clean ones the floor under the fryers is a mess.  The less said about the badly run stores the better.... (the worst was in Oakland where there was literally a 1/2" or so of coagulated grease/oil/dirt under the fryer - I just threw away those clothes once I got home from there....nasty, simply nasty).

But, as with many of the other jobs of that time period, looking back it was a really good learning experience.  Lots of experience wiring things together, using voltmeters to figure out what/where the problem was, & other electrical type of stuff that came in useful later on in life.
2017-03-19 03:18:33 AM  
Between HS graduation and first year of college I registered at a temp agency who the sent me to a greeting card and calendar factory. I worked in quality control, going through pallets full (tens of thousands) of printed photos and cards. Most of the time we were sorting out printing errors like bubbles in the ink. But sometimes they would give us a pallet full of greeting cards where the presses would leave a faint trace of ink on the left (blank) side of the card. With paper towels and good ol' H2O, we would gently scrub that ink trace off of EVERY. DAMNED. CARD.

They also kept it about 62 degrees and 75% humidity in there, so we had to work with sweaters on.
2017-03-19 03:39:56 AM  
Time to offer a CSB for the old Man. He was in HS in the early 40s. In 1943 he got a job at the local paper mill doing something war related. I only know part of the story but the paper mill did something to help fill artillery shells. Regardless, it was a job, all this coming on the heels of the depression. Anyway, he got to work 10 hour shifts after school, 3PM to 1AM five nights a week plus half day on Saturday. They actually let workers quit a bit before ! AM to catch the last street car. As it was told to me, he had that job for about two years and was thrilled to have it. Back then it was about having meat more often  rather than just beans and rice. His parents each worked two jobs and he was largely raised by an aunt. Regardless, they used to let teenagers work long hours.And teens are actually pretty good workers when motivated.
2017-03-19 04:26:48 AM  
Oh my, where to start? My aunt has a greeting card company that she had just started at the time. I think I was 11. Every two or three months I'd spend the day with her and my uncle (my mom's brother) at their little house in Berkeley and spend several hours bagging the cards for orders. This involved counting 10 cards and 10 matching envelopes and putting them into a plastic sleeve. I think I got 10 cents per finished pack.

My dad was a lawyer in a partnership with their own little law library, and once a quarter I'd update the case law books with the latest precedents. All the bindings could be opened up and the pages removed and replaced with the new ones. There was a checklist with the replacement pages that told you which pages had to be replaced in which volumes. He paid me $6/hour for it. Some of his friends wanted me to do the same for them, but I declined because it was just too damn boring.

Babysat for three families on my block for years, which was fun - play with the kids until bedtime, then do my homework and watch TV until the parents got home. Score $8-10 per night for my troubles, and usually pizza for dinner, too.

Things got serious when I decided I wanted a car, which my parents financed for me, but I had to pay them back. Plus insurance and gas money, which wasn't easy when minimum wage was $3.35. I worked 4 hours at a drive-up photo booth every afternoon after school. Again, plenty of time to do my homework between customers, and there was a generic hamburger stand next door where I could get $.25 hamburgers for my 15-minute break. That was 1983. Did that for about 18 months before the chain went belly-up.

I also worked in snack bars at Marine World/Africa USA when it was still in Redwood Shores. Sometimes nachos and soft-serve ice cream (I could draw six ice creams at one time, which drew appreciative gasps of admiration from the customers), sometimes in the kitchen of the main restaurant, making burgers, fries, and chicken strips.

I also stocked shelves and worked the photo department at a Long's Drugs, which is now a CVS. Photo was great. I'd get tips for changing watch batteries and commissions on some of the merchandise. Caught a woman trying to steal a 15" CRT TV once - she tried to walk out of the store with the TV between her legs under her dress (yes, she was large). The best part was when they sent us all out to gather the shopping carts  at the end of the evening. A couple of us always had to "go deep", meaning all the way to the other end of the strip mall, which was a little over 500 yards long. We always had around 10 minutes for the run, so if we sprinted, there would be time to pass around the fifth of whatever spirit someone had smuggled out in their sock. Never got caught, fortunately.

That's about it for the high school jobs. College was something else altogether.

/College was something else
2017-03-19 05:34:41 AM  
Full serve gas station attendant (I'm old)
Grocery store cashier / bagger / deli
Ditch digger for the phone company
2017-03-19 08:06:48 AM  

vernonFL: Full serve gas station attendant (I'm old)
Grocery store cashier / bagger / deli
Ditch digger for the phone company

My first job was at a place called Dunbar's, and I was stockboy, bagger, and I pumped gas, checked the oil and fluids, and washed windows.

The pumps were positively ancient, and every night I had to take the meter readings from the bastiches.

Still kind of miss the change from winter to summer gas.
2017-03-19 09:02:46 AM  
Behind the bleachers, her name was Melissa.
2017-03-19 09:11:03 AM  

LarryDan43: Behind the bleachers, her name was Melissa.

Not that kind of job, Larry.
2017-03-19 09:13:02 AM  
We lived so far out in the boonies (google Atoka, OK) that the only summer work I could get was mowing our lawn as well as the relatives who lived within push lawnmower distance (about 2 miles).  Then there was hay bailing as well as cutting and splitting lots of wood that we either took into town or when needed we loaded up the big truck and went with my uncle into Dallas. The years that there was lots of rain in the spring me and my brother picked blackberries and sand plums. Little old ladies from town would come out and buy what we picked.
2017-03-19 09:15:59 AM  
Navy S.E.A.L. first responder sniper pilot pimp, with some modeling work on the side.
2017-03-19 09:16:15 AM  
When I was 11 years old, I became fascinated with what at the time was called Top 40 radio.  I desperately wanted to be a disc jockey (DJ), and I created my own fake radio station in our basement.  (As I was to learn in later years, a good percentage of the disc jockeys on the air in those days did that when they were young.) I spent a lot of time listening to the radio and calling the Top 40 stations' request lines to talk to the DJ's.  A lot of them viewed me as a pest, but there were a few who saw something of themselves in me and took me under their wing.
I desperately wanted to work at a radio station, but my voice didn't change until I was halfway through the 9th grade, and even then I sounded awful.  But, just as I entered the 10th grade and was about to turn 15, an older buddy I had been bugging at a low-powered local Top 40 station convinced their program director to hire me to run the "board" on Sunday mornings when the programming consisted of religious tapes and public affairs shows (back then, mandated as part of a weekly commitment by the FCC so that stations could prove they were serving the public interest and not just pummeling youngsters' ears with foul rock and roll music).  The one constraint their program director gave me:  I was never to open the microphone and speak on the air.  Everything was on tape, and my job was just to push the buttons.  I was paid the minimum wage at the time:  $1.60 an hour.  My father agreed to get up early on Sunday mornings and drive me to work so that I could start at 6 AM.  The station was what in the industry was known as a "little tea-kettle" - with a power allocation of 1000 watts in the daytime and 250 watts at night, when you could barely hear it across town.
After four months of that, a competing station in town--which had a country-music format--offered me the vast sum of $2 an hour to work on Sunday mornings, and they let me play records and talk on the air from 10 to 11 AM on Sunday mornings.  Now, I was a REAL DJ, albeit one playing Conway Twitty and Loretta Lynn records.  A few months later, the first Top 40 station where I worked decided I had matured enough to be a DJ there on weekends, so I went back, but for some reason I can't recall continued to do occasional shifts at the country station, too.
By the time I was a senior in high school, I got a part-time job at the city's #1 Top 40 station, which had a strong signal that covered a couple of states and was considered "big time."  Their program director at the time was one of those DJ's I had bugged with phone calls back when I was about 12, and he always had a soft spot in his heart for me.
I deeply regret how immature I was in those days, and I think back with such fondness about most of the people I met (well, there were a few assholes, too).  Many of the people I worked with have gone on to huge success in the industry and have become real stars on the air, and I've stayed in touch with some of them.  And that program director who hired me when I was a senior in high school is now the CEO of a major media corporation.  I'll never forget the kindness and support they showed me during my young days, and I do hope they forgive me for being an occasional jerk.
I kept working those part-time DJ jobs until I was halfway through college, but by then I had other interests, and I realized that--despite my desire to be a really great DJ--I was never going to be one.  So I moved on to other pursuits.  But I still remember those days with great fondness, and my best lifetime friend comes from that era in my life.
As I was typing this, I realized this means I am closing in on 45 years during which I've always been working in one job or another.  Perhaps that explains why I now feel so tired as I near 60 years of age...
2017-03-19 09:19:45 AM  
Me and my best friend slung pizzas at the local Pizza Hut.

One Sunday it was a bit slow and we get an order that was a cheese pizza. However, the print out said "+GP +GP +GP +GP +GP" (extra green peppers x 5)

Instead of weighing it out, we took the entire bin of green peppers and dumped it on there. We are talking almost an inch thick of diced green peppers.

Customer actually called back and instead of complaining he praised our store for making him the best damn pizza he had ever had.

/didn't get a raise.
2017-03-19 09:28:18 AM  
At 16, I worked at Krystal's. I probably gained 10 pounds over the course of a summer, because those little burgers were DELICIOUS.  I was a cook, which was apparently out of the realm of normal, being a 16 year old white girl. I didn't care, though, because I was having fun joking around with all the guys.

Then new management came, and I got relegated to the walkup window. 🙄 I hated working the window, and I hated ringing up people. I am not a "people person" at all when it comes to that.

We had a new shift manager named Troy that was an absolute creeper. He backed me into the walkip window bay one time trying to ask me out. He was at LEAST 10 years older than me, and I was completely skeeved out. He made some comment like "wouldn't you like to date a man with a nice car and a good job?" To which I replied "wouldn't you like to never learn what my fist feels like on your face, since I'm only 16?" He freaked out and walked away.

One Saturday I forgot my visor. By then we had a new manager named Marge, and she was a salty old see-you-next-Tuesday. Everyone hated her and she hated everyone. She told me that since I didn't have my uniform on, I had to go home. I was 10 minutes into my shift and half already made a bucket of onions and counted a drawer. Three shifts with no pay, she said.  I clocked out and calmly called my parents to come get me.

Two days later, my friend who worked next door at Bojangles said he asked about me. Marge told him I had been fired for having a short drawer. i asked my dad to take me up there to quit. I walked in 5 minutes before my next shift, and threw my uniform on the floor in the office. She looked at me, and I said "my drawer was never off, not by one penny. If you repeat that lie again, my parents will contact their lawyer." (My parents were poor, we didn't even know a lawyer, much less retain one.) She stammered, and said "oh, I must have confused you with another girl." I was so mad by this point that I was shaking so she probably thought I was going to hit her, because I was twice her size. I just spun around and walked out.

Only job I've ever quit on "bad terms".
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