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Worst non-journo job you've ever had

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by 3_Octave_Fart, Aug 21, 2014.

  1. 3_Octave_Fart

    3_Octave_Fart Well-Known Member

    Let's hear them, members and moderators.
    Fart's? I was ever briefly a roughneck on an oil rig.
    Nearly lost a finger.
    Nearly got decapitated.
    Got a burn on me leg the size of a nickel from caustic soda.
    Taught me about the value of hard toil- and to buckle down in school.
  2. Steak Snabler

    Steak Snabler Well-Known Member

    Worked 6 weeks as a pipe insulator's helper (AKA, "ground man") at an Exxon refinery the summer after my second year of college (1993), making $7/hour.

    Basically, I spent all day gathering and tying up U-shaped halves of chalk pipe insulation and other supplies in rope and passing them up to the insulators in the pipe rack 25 feet off the ground. Two or three times a day, one of the insulators would drop his screwdriver or keyhole saw (or buck knife, as some of the insulators used to cut through the insulation) and nearly hit me in the arm or the head.

    I remember staring out in the wide-open areas of the refinery as rain clouds drifted across the sky, hoping to God it would start raining so I could go home. Got fed up and quit when they made us work Fourth of July after a series of rainouts, and spent the rest of the summer driving the parts truck at a Chevy dealership for $4.25/hour.

    My dad, both my brothers and several uncles and cousins have worked in refinery construction their entire lives, generally earning pretty nice livings. I only needed to do it for 6 weeks to know I didn't want to do it ever again, regardless of the pay.
  3. cranberry

    cranberry Well-Known Member

    One summer I took a job as a security guard at a telephone company building across the street from the bar I used to frequent, figuring I could basically close the bar, walk across the street and sit/sleep at a desk the rest of the night and still have the daylight hours to hang out. But it was boring and I lasted about two weeks. My friends made fun of my goofy security guard uniform.
  4. da man

    da man Well-Known Member

    I stocked shelves at a 24-hour K-Mart from 11 p.m.-7 a.m., worked the same shift at a convenience store (after having previously worked in a small un-air-conditioned booth out at the gas pumps during a sweltering Southeastern summer), and briefly worked as a telemarketer trying to convince people they had won something when all they had "won" was a chance to buy something from us. I lasted about three weeks in that one and didn't sell a single thing, mostly because I was so embarrassed to be doing it that my pitch wasn't terribly convincing.
  5. KJIM

    KJIM Well-Known Member

    Y camp. Mentioned this previously last time we did this thread.
  6. bumpy mcgee

    bumpy mcgee Well-Known Member

    During that magical two weeks between regular school and summer school, I worked in a box factory. We assembled endcap display boxes for 3M, then stocked the boxes with various goods. I was in charge of the packing bubble wrap, unfolded cardboard shipping boxes and putting the final cover box on top of the display. Slowest moving two weeks of my life.
  7. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    I lasted one day in telemarketing, trying to sell water purification systems. Just dreadful. Also bagged groceries and waited tables at a mediocre sports bar.

    Most random job was for a couple weeks between semesters in college I worked for Columbia House, the CD/cassette club of the 1980s/early 90s (remember??). When people would fill out those little cards to become members, me and a bunch of other people would code them for processing. I learned that America is full of dumbasses. People would send in lists of stuff they wanted (and stuff Columbia didn't have) instead of filling out the cards, write illegibly, send in cards chewed by the dog, you name it. And a lot of people would send cash, which wasn't the smartest thing in a room full of college kids trying to make a few extra bucks.
  8. Snack bar at a waterpark when I was 14. No air conditioning. Some guys got fired for sneaking free fountain drinks in their own cups. Owners also paid less than federal minimum wage.

    Close second was working in a salmon cannery on Kodiak Island.
  9. GoochMan

    GoochMan Active Member

    Security at a nightclub in southeast DC, late 1990's. Before the ballpark and other changes came to the town.
    Not the smartest job I ever took.
    I think the last straw was when I saw the drummer pull a 9mm out of his gear to threaten a patron who was taunting him. No real sense in losing out on grad school due to a stray bullet from someone else's beef.
  10. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    Wasn't mopping cum-splotched floors of the quarter booths the porn shop in Iowa City, and wasn't the construction gig in which I helped widen a street bridge, and wasn't dishwashing gig I walked out of mid-shift when the owner wouldn't let me watch McGwire try to tie Maris's record, and wasn't the cold-calling gig in which I morphed into Costanza for a few frenzied moments.

    I'd go with the data entry gig. That shit gets old fast.
  11. Hank_Scorpio

    Hank_Scorpio Active Member

    It wasn't telemarketing, but I lasted about the same amount of time at a telephone survey job. Basically we'd call people who did business with a company and ask several questions about their experience.

    It was mind numbing. Time went excruciatingly slow.
  12. schiezainc

    schiezainc Well-Known Member

    For three months, I worked in the "Winner's Circle" at Dave & Busters. If you've never been, the "Winner's Circle" is where all the asshats that spend $100 on credits to play skeeball and whatnot redeem the tickets they won for about $3 of merchandise.
    I lasted all of three months, making about $7 per hour, and it felt like 10 years.
    For one thing, the noise in that place was insane. You could barely ever hear yourself think, especially not when it was crowded, and when you could hear, you were forced to listen to the room's giant winnable juke box (For the low-low cost of 325,000 tickets!) which was tuned to my state's only "hip hop" station and played the same six songs every hour.
    It was so noisy that in the back of the house employee-only area, there was a giant (And I mean GIANT) medicine cabinet stuffed to the brim with any and ever type of headache/migraine pill you can imagine.
    The only reason this job isn't the worst I've ever had in my life is because I never technically worked a day for the Kirby vacuum selling company that "hired" me when I was in college. I answered a classified ad in the newspaper (remember those?) offering up to $500 a week and, like an idiot, went to hear them out despite not being given any actual details on what the job entailed. I sat in a three-hour gathering where they essentially made it seem like you could make millions selling vacuums and left confident I could do it. Then I got home, did a quick google search of this company, saw what was posted and came to my senses.
    Still, I'd rather work a year for either of those companies than ever work for my true worst job ever but that job doesn't meet the qualifications of this thread because it was a journo job.
    Worked for an online "news" site for 10 weeks, 2 days, 1 hour and 18 minutes before I lost it completely, walked out and never returned.
    I'd rather suck off every member of two NFL teams that just played to three overtime periods in the middle of the hottest day of the year BEFORE they've showered than ever work at this shit hole again.
    That job wrecked me so bad I was out of work on medical leave due to depression for two months and swore off ever going back into journalism again.
    It's been a year and a half and I still have nightmares of that gig.
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