Saturday, May 02, 2009

Past Jobs

I got to thinking about my past jobs in years gone by, and thought I might write about what I liked and disliked about them.

1. Mowing my grandparent's lawn. When I was about 9 or 10 I started mowing the lawn for my grandparents who lived next door. It was fun because they had a riding lawnmower, but a BIG yard, and grandpa was a stickler for having it done right. The most difficult part was mowing around the apple trees at the northern end of the yard, although dealing with the lilac bushes and the well were also trouble spots.

2. Pipe moving. For two years my brothers and I moved water pipe for a local farmer. Dad would always brag about how he moved a line in about ten minutes, we were lucky if we got it done in a half hour. It was hard work, which had to be done twice a day - we were up extremely early, and worked in the late afternoon. Don't really know if there was anything I really enjoyed about it.

3. Potato Harvest. Hard to grow up where I did and not be involved in it. I was interested in all the machinery used from the field to the cellar. My dad used to be a farmer and we would often go with him the the main shop or out to the farms. Years later, potato harvest meant hard work, long days (pre-sun up to long after sundown), and dust and dirt everywhere.

4. McDonald's. About the only thing I enjoyed was that I worked with my best friend. The work was repetetive, my hours were cut down to about three a week (what was up with that), and management didn't care if anyone got hurt. The worst of it was the manager would give a pass to their favorite workers (who were often dating their family members). Welcome to the big time.

5. At call cafeteria crew. My first college job was so infrequent, it would hardly qualify. I worked as replacement staff if employees did not show up or called in sick. Most of the time I would help in the dishwashing area, but there were a couple of nights where I worked from 9 to midnight cleaning the kitchen, which was downright tiring. Thank goodness I only got called a handful of times.

6. Spring Planting. In order to raise some money for my mission, I spent two months working for a local farmer. Unlike my previous experience with farm work, I really enjoyed being outside. It wasn't the same thing everyday, one day, yeah, I had to move pipe, but another day I'd be out preparing irrigation equipment or any number of different things. Looking back, the only thing I disliked about it was that I missed out on TV, which wasn't so bad, all things considered.

7. After returning from my mission, during my second year of college, I was an administrative assistant for my choir instructor. Five hours a week, but I got to see a lot of behind the scenes work of a teacher, and partly inspired my desire to become a teacher myself. I also met a well known LDS author and often think back to that year being one of my best in college.

8. Kirby Salesman. The summer of 97 was spent in the pursuit of selling overpriced vaccum cleaners. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to have one, but sheesh, the things are expensive. I'm surprised I even managed to see any. I worked with a fun bunch of guys, and we spent a good deal of time working away from our base of operations in Pocatello - like Soda Springs and Logan. I was able to earn enough money to buy my first computer. Unfortunately, I also missed our summer party due to my other summer job

9. Demonstrator. You know, the folks at Walmart and Sam's Club who give out samples. What are you supposed to say to someone whose kid takes half of the product you prepared? Long, tedious, and boring. Then I learned that not only did the company set me up to do demos, I was also hired out to help grocery stores restock after they remodeled. I pulled a few all-nighters, and was not happy to learn that along with restocking, we were also to cut and wrap cheese and other deli items. I thought that was the responsiblity of the store's employees.

10. Suncoast Video. Great job for me, bad job for my wallet. What can I say, I'm a movie freak, and this provided a great opportunity to buy every Disney cartoon - not to mention close to a hundred and fifty video tapes. Then, when I least expected it, I fell deep into DVDs when they first came out. Good times working there, and I felt like a valued member of the staff - despite working on the day after Thanksgiving in a mall, and getting frozen out of my car. Eventually had to quit due to school obligations.

11. Hollywood Video. All right, no longer do I have to pay for the movies, just rent them for free! I worked in three separate stores, eventually getting up to shift supervisor. Lot of fun, but very little money. Prior to getting married, I worked at a Hollywood video in Las Vegas.

12. Matrixx/Convergys. Telemarketing. My first stab at it was in Provo. Part time, calling people during dinner to sell long distance phone service. It lasted three months. I went back to the company in 2001 and worked on a sattelite TV service, inbound calls this time.

13. Party Palace. Part time. Low pay. Lots of fun. I was primarily hired to work in the costume shop getting ready for Halloween, but ended up doing just about everything but arranging flowers. One of my favorite moments was being Santa Clause for a nursing home.

14. Television news photographer. Don't even ask how I fell into this one, I still have no idea. Worked for a local TV station for over a year and a half. Highlights included watching the Olympic torch as it was carried through Pocatello, and being left in charge of the Pocatello Bureau on Saturdays. Late nights though. Least fun was driving to schools for basketball games in the dead of winter, and live shots from Pocatello for the 10 o'clock news - had to drive from Pockey to Idaho Falls then back to Blackfoot.

15. Disney Store. I only worked there a month prior to getting married. Got a day's worth of Disney training, and spent a lot of my time in the stock room. Fun interview (What Disney character are you most like?) Hated having to leave that job when I moved to AZ.

16. Airline - I started out in Reservations, moved to Group Sales and am now in the Customer Relations department. I'll reserve comment (for now).

17. Animation company. I've been trying my hand at a number of responsibilities, and have enjoyed what I've done so far.