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Friday, September 09, 2005 :::

Anniversary #2

I celebrated another anniversary this month, too. As of September, I have worked at my current job for four and a half years, making it the longest job I’ve ever had. My work history seems a little spotty now that I look back on it:

First job: BEST Products (formerly Labelle’s), a department store.
Title: Electronics Specialist
Having just turned 16, I got my first job at Best, where they hired me for $4.25 an hour with the understanding that they were in Chapter 11 and that there would “absolutely not be any chance for a raise.” I worked there 16 months before the whole operation collapsed, but not before I got caught by a customer while I was hiding in a giant wardrobe to avoid working. Another good hiding spot was the hanging sleeping bags display. If you couldn’t find me there, I was most likely at the computer display playing solitaire.

Second job: Paperweight, a sub-garage-sale-quality gift store at the mall for 14 year-old trend whore girls.
Title: None/Troll-doll Salesman
For $4.50 an hour I was expected to care that pre-teen girls were stealing sparkly glitter pens and novelty condoms. A year and a half later, I was forced to quit rather than be fired after being accused of stealing a suncatcher for my gramma’s birthday. I still have the receipt that proves my innocence, but they suggested that I made up a fake receipt (which was entirely possible since their cash register was little more than a printing calculator attached to the top of a shoebox) and I was not afforded the benefit of the doubt. I never even got the suncatcher back, so my gramma went giftless that year.

Third job: Adventures in Video
Title: Assistant Manager
Best job ever. Regularly worked alone watching movies all day long and cataloging pornography. I worked there for four and a half years, eventually earning $6.00 an hour, which somehow put me through college. I never officially quit the job, I just told my manager to “take me off the schedule for a few weeks” after I scored my first post-collegiate job, which is probably why I still have recurring nightmares about being put back on the schedule. I never got closure.

Fourth job: The Quikpages
Title: Web Designer
Worst job ever. Built websites that were sold to confused and exploited small business owners via telemarketing. It was like a sweatshop for entry level web coders. I lasted a year and a half before I was eventually fired for making a “subversive” website that I distributed across the company, but it was the first job I ever had that paid benefits. And $12 an hour.

Fifth Job:
Title: Web Designer
I started making real money at a dotcom that burned through cash like it was coal on a steam engine. It was a really cool job with lots of fancy dotcom benefits. Best perk: free fountain soda. I was in Mountain Dew heaven. Lasted 20 months before the dotcom bubble burst and techies went down the tubes. Having an inside view of its spectacular nosedive was mesmerizing and almost made it worth getting laid off.

Sixth Job: MLT
Title: Web Designer
Good solid job working on travel booking websites, but I quit within four months for a better opportunity, and then a few months later they eliminated my position, so I guess I dodged that bullet.

Seventh Job: Current Job
Title: Web Designer
My current job has officially outlasted the previous record holder: Adventures in Video. Of course it’s not the same type of cake walk as working alone in a video store, but I’m all grown up now, so my current job suits my skills well and provides lots of cool opportunities, so I consider myself very lucky.

So I’ve been laid off twice, fired once, forced to quit, and just phased out. Not so good.

::: posted by dan at 1:05 PM :: [ link ] :: (12) comments Social Bookmark Button

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12 previous comments:

Happy Anniversary Dan. If I had your profile, I might be tempted to buy you a little something for your mantle. Or at least take up a collection for it.


By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:19 PM  

And you still owe me big bucks for not staying at MLT for six months, denying me of my recruiting bonus. You're so selfish. Geesh.

By Anonymous Soona, at 1:59 PM  

Don’t forget to mention your stint with Geckler Companies sticking swatches of wrapping paper into catalogs from home, seemingly the easiest job one could have but turning out to be the most labor intensive. We were gonna save up for a big screen T.V.

By Blogger Kristina, at 2:49 PM  

Yeah, thanks for recruiting me into the living hell that was The Quikpages. Jerk.

By Blogger brent, at 2:53 PM  

Happy anniversary,
Happy anniversary,
Happy anniversary,
Haaaaaaaaappy anniversary!

You have to think positive about your past dismissals. One of my favourite lines is "I've been fired from better jobs than you'll ever have!"

By Blogger fizzy a.k.a. fifi, at 3:53 PM  

I laughed so hard at the hiding in a wardrobe to avoid working. You truely are a genius, aren't you.

By Blogger lynne, at 7:23 PM  

Favorite place to hide at work: The warehouse at Levits, took naps in the upper inventory shelves that held damaged sofas. Along with 15 other employees. Wonder why they are no longer?

Longest Job stint: 7 years in hell

Lamest "I did not steal anything" firing: Guy I worked with at Sears convinced me to ring up a $50 jacket for $5. I called security after he walked away to inform them because he wouldn't stop hounding or threatening me. They fired me anyway.

Best job ever: still waiting

That's so funny I thought your first job was at Adventures.

By Blogger Colleen, at 9:11 PM  

There used to be a Labelles in Sioux Falls, which turned into a BEST. Wierd...

By Blogger Aliecat, at 11:31 PM  

BEST was always BEST in the Los Angeles area, where I was raised. My sister and I used to save up our money to buy all kinds of cool adult stuff to play with (and inevitably wreck or lose) at BEST - Electronic Cash Registers that printed receipts, Trampolenes, fake diamond jewelry, electronics, etc.

I used to work at Norstroms starting at age 13 and there was a ladies lounge area outside of the bathroom next to the "Brass Plum" (aka, the junior's department - what is it supposed to mean?). You could sit on overstuffed couches and smoke cigarettes - they even had ashtrays. I used to spend at least a quarter of my shift hiding in there, smoking and reading the paper without my nametag on. And they paid me $5.25 per hour, even way back then, which I cashed every other week at Guest Services for store credit because I got an additional discount on top of my employee one if I did that. Great Job.

By Blogger stsundown, at 6:00 AM  

I laughed so hard at this post...mostly because I relate...I never shoved movies behind the wrong cases and I didin't appreciate the accusation...I swear,and even if I did it was because that rotten "Gary" purposely gave me a size youth medium mr.movies uniform shirt just to watch me try to shovel my XL body into it..."this is my playpen and these are my toys...If you want to play with them you need to do it my way." best quote from a former boss.

I also worked at county seat outlet did you know that? I got wrote up for wearing my Cindy Brady t-shirt to work one day...I guess the dress code was nubbed sweaters and acid washed overall's.I was not too upset about the write up though because in my mind I had it coming for the massive amounts of demin I shoved under the clothes racks rather than putting them away.I think they thought we had a serious theft problem when really the 12 hundred missing jeans were balled up throughout the store due to my laziness.

By Blogger Stacy, at 5:07 PM  

I LOVED your subversive website.... sooooooooo funny.

By Blogger cmhl, at 9:23 AM  

This line:

"Paperweight, a sub-garage-sale-quality gift store at the mall for 14 year-old trend whore girls"

...made me laugh so hard that I almost shot pepperoni out my nose from my lunch. And now my coworkers are looking at me funny.


By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:16 AM  

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