Friday, January 9, 2009

The Jobs That Have Got Me Here

My first job was of course babysitting. I was 14 living at home in Michigan and would watch kids in my spare time after school and on weekends. I would NEVER leave my kids with a 14 year old, I had no idea what I was doing, I ended up getting let go from most of the jobs I worked because I could not tolerate the spoiled brats and their spoiled brat ways. When a two year old has the run of the house nothing good can come of that. The last straw was when this princess of torture stared me right in the eye when her mothers back was turned and dumped her bowl of cheerio’s on the floor, she giggled and then said “you there, you pick all those up now!” I had a VERY hard time resisting the urge to make her pick them all up with her little baby teeth. I knew I was not cut out for this kind of job.

My second job was at Kmart, I was still living at home in Michigan but I was now 16 official working age and I could leave babysitting behind me FOREVER. Now I moved into the realm of on your feet all day mindlessly scanning in items people were trying to buy. It was not a fun job but the benefits of the beautiful crush I had were great. Greg was a stock boy he was a year older than me and I could spend all day watching his dimpled smile. He was the reason I stayed so long and he was the reason that I cannot see a green ford without thinking about dimples.

My third job was working at Shoney’s as a waitress and glorious be I found a way to make a lot of money that and that I was good at it. The multitasking, she schmoozing, the sucking up, god I had all this down pat and I could get paid for it. Hallelujah I am a natural. Although my naturalness was a shining beacon there were drawbacks. I remember my most mortifying day when I was serving a 12 person table full of the Amish drinks and I dropped the entire tray splashing EVERYONE with water, tea, coffee, and cola. That was not one of my most shining moments.

Moving up in the world I quit Shoney’s and got a job across the street at the more upper class establishment Olive Garden. I made so much money here and it was super convenient because I could transfer this job to wherever I decided to go when I went away to college. I learned so much at this job including all about alcohol and how to say Merlot.

After graduating high school I had decided to go to the Art Institute in Pittsburgh and had a hard time convincing my parents that this was a great idea. We sat down and devised a strategy that I would spend the summer working my ass off saving every penny and that in the fall I would continue working and go to the community college to gather as many gen ed classes as I could before I left to join the winter quarter. I choose to get a landscaping job because I could be outside, there were long hours, and it paid well. I almost quit my first day when my coworkers convinced me to drink soda all day instead of lemon water that they were drinking. But I managed to stay primarily because my father made a bet that I would quit within a week, I really hate when someone tells me that I can’t do something, I am really stubborn that way. I worked from 7am – 4pm and then went straight to my waitressing job for the 6pm-11pm shift. That summer was the worst of my life but I did manage to save a few thousand dollars, get in the best shape ever, and reassure my parents that this girl was determined to go to Pittsburgh.

I moved to Pittsburgh in January and transferred to the Olive Garden in Greentree PA. There was more drama at this place then an entire season of 90210, I would come home every day not because the job was taxing but because the rumor mill kept everyone in such a high state of anxiety. I ended up dating two men there, finding two sets of roommates there, created a war between one half of the wait staff and the other, and get transferred to another restaurant to end the war. It was all a huge ugly mess.

For a little extra money I took on the job from hell. I became a telemarketer selling magazines. I have never met more rude people in my life who would give me the worst attitude. I became so anxious that I would just chant in my head every call the operating system made that the person on the other line would just hang up on me. The most interesting calls I got were: one woman was pissed because she was having sex, UH don’t answer the phone then you idiot, one person wanted my number so she could call me at home while I was having dinner, as if there is anything in my fridge right now to eat, I am in college we eat on the run. It was such a horrible job in which I cried in the bathroom almost every day during my 5 minute break. One day I was lying in bed watching the clock knowing that I had to leave to get to work and then I rolled over and went back to sleep. Not showing up is a pretty good indication that you fucking can’t take it anymore and you quit.

Transferring to the Olive Garden in Bethal Park PA because the evil war was a great decision, it was in a better neighbourhood with better clientele which meant more tips for me. I dated a few men here, the Italian man who was ok but I did fall in love with his amazing family, to bad I could not just date the family. Then there was the Australian singer, sigh he was dumb as a brick but had a voice like butter. I ended up getting fired from this job because they would not let me have Christmas off, I was going home to Michigan to visit my family, sorry Olive Garden no one gets between me and my family.

I worked at Red Lobster in Bethal Park PA right across the street from the Olive Garden I quit. This was the restaurant that I got to wear the tacky fish shirt and go home smelling like lobster every night, not exactly my favourite scent. At least the neighbourhood cats liked it. I worked here with what would be 9 years later my future husband, he was a cook and I was a waitress, I never spoke to him. He remembers me but I don’t remember him. I worked here for a little under two years and quit because again they would not give me time off for Christmas.

I needed a job and my roommate was a Flight Attendant at the Pittsburgh airport, I applied and got the job. The training was brutal, it was a 4 week unpaid course on all kinds of emergency skills, planes, airport codes, it was the most interesting four weeks of my life. Being a flight attendant let me see a lot of the US from the air, I was a bit shocked at the promiscuousness of the flight crew some of whom were married. The most embarrassing moment on the plane was when the pilots called for a specific flight attendant to bring them coffee, the flight attendant they requested was busy so I took in their coffee, they were both naked in their seats waiting for the flight attendant to SERVICE their needs, I don’t think I ever ran from a room faster in my entire life. We were all embarrassed; I think they will think twice about stripping down again.

While I was a stewardess on one of my off weekends I met and fell in love with Mr. Sun. He was an amazing gifted artist who I worked with and ended up sleeping with. I quit being a flight attendant when I was given the opportunity to go to New York and work with Jack Welsh at GE Capital with Mr. Sun and his team. I learned a lot working with him over the next year but when the relationship ended so did my employment, the moral of this story DO NOT SLEEP WITH THE BOSS.

Mr. Sun gave me skills, confidence and the contacts to start my own company. I was successful for a year an a half, a year and a half of making my own schedule having a hard time balancing my free time with things I had to get done for clients and working on my nocturnal habits. And then everything came to a screeching halt when the first plane hit the tower. September 11th had hit and advertising in Pittsburgh came to a screeching halt. As my bank account got lower and lower I decided it was time to give up my company and continue with some other goals. I enrolled back in school to get my Bachelors Degree.

I was sick of waiting on people in the restaurant and in the air so I decided to try something new, I became a delivery driver for Pizza Outlet. This was the BEST JOB EVER IN THE ENTIRE WORLD. Not only did I drive around and listen to music all day, I did not have some sleazy boss hanging over my shoulder telling me what to do all the time, I could pick up my friends and they could ride with me for a few hours gossiping, or I could spend all my time on the phone only stopping to drop off a pie or pick up a new one. I worked here for a little more than two years. I ended up getting fired because of my family again. This time I had to pick up my Uncle because he got stuck in Philly. He had been working as a trucker and got frustrated he had quit. I really don’t think he was thinking clearly, there he was with little money; all his stuff, and no where close to Michigan. I drove and picked him up and then brought him back to Michigan, I was gone all weekend and when I got back I found out I was fired for calling off.

Since I was almost done with school I just picked up some odds and ends jobs at the Art Institute to tide me over financially until I got my degree and to pay for the next phase in the plan to get away from Pittsburgh and get a job.

I had decided to move to LA and for the first two months here I was staying at a friends place free of charge and I reasoned that because of the stress of the past few years I deserved some time off. I worked out, I saw the free sites, I got a great tan, I played on the beach everyday and I LIVED on credit. Once all the cards were maxed out I got a job around the corner at the Cheesecake Factory. While working there nights I looked for a real job during the day. I found one at Ad2 and attempted for a while to keep both jobs, working at the web job during the week and the waitressing job during the weekends. Needless to say that lasted a month and one sunny day I woke up to get ready for my shift at the restaurant and looked at my boyfriend at the time, now my husband, still cozy in bed, I realized that Tylenol just was not going to do anything for my raging hangover so I climbed back in. Basically I said bye-bye to getting out of credit card debt.

Working at Ad2 was ok about 1 day out of the month I actually enjoyed going to work. Those were the days that either they had nothing for me to do and I could surf the web all day long OR they were the days that I could spend doing a design for a new website of a new CD. The rest of the time I was tearing apart good design and bastardizing it into something that I was never proud of because the client thought he knew better than the experts. I left for more money and more opportunity.

From there I got a job at iMedia, a start-up company that was willing to give me a substantial raise for doing less work. Here I encountered the most unprofessional working environment in the ENTIRE WORLD and I will forever regret my 6 months working at that horrible company. My job here ended with the PSYCHOTIC CEO screaming at me in front of the whole office and me fleeing in horror at the 6 headed fire breathing monster who was not making any sense. I never stepped foot back in that building.

I was very particular about choosing my next job and when I found MRM Worldwide I knew I had found a home. Getting the job was not easy, I could tell midway through the interview that I desperately wanted the job and that the boss was only mildly interested in me. I got the job because I am cocky I told them I could do anything, that I would prove I could do whatever they needed and that he would be crazy not to give me the chance to prove that I was the best person for the position. He gave me that chance and I have spent the last three years here. Now the office is closing and I am going to be out of work looking for something new. Maybe I will just take my severance and my unemployment and milk it for a while.

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