What's The Worst Job You've Ever Had? - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 26 Old 10-03-2014, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
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What's The Worst Job You've Ever Had?

Easy answer for me. In 1982 when I was 19 years old, my uncle got me a college Summer job on a natural gas drilling rig out in Sayre, Oklahoma. N&C Drilling Rig No. 5, to be exact. He was a geologist with some inside connections. In that day and age, I was referred to as their "gopher." In modern times, I would be referred to as their "bitch."

Man, that was some grueling, filthy work, especially when "tripping pipe." We worked 12 hour shifts 7 days a week then got a week off. Most of the time I worked on the floor connecting/disconnecting pipe but other times I got the shit jobs like sitting all night by a large funnel thing dumping a 50-pound bag of walnut hulls into the drilling mud every 15 minutes or steam-cleaning the understructure of the rig. We were drilling so deep we would spend an entire 12-hour shift just pulling pipe out of the hole or putting it back in.

The only good thing about it was they fed us like kings and on my weeks off when I had to stay on site because I was homeless, one of the cooks from Texas would sell me dime bags of marijuana or Kool cigarettes laced with small pellets of hash, so I had that going for me. Most of the full-timers I worked with (from Texas or Louisiana) had it out for me when I showed up since I wasn't like them and was most likely taking a job one of their buddies could have had, but this tension was assuaged with illicit gifts of free drugs and alcohol and within a month or so I was pretty much accepted amongst the ranks aside from a Texan Redneck Driller named Dave who always hated my guts and was my boss on the weeks I worked. I always called him out on that and challenged him to fight, but he'd never go for it. He's the only person in my life I ever really hated. He was a leather-tough old bastard and probably would have beat my ass, anyway. Kinda glad he never accepted the challenge.....

He made my life Hell and even though there were times I thought I could easily and with no remorse bash his head in with the myriad tools within reach, I look back and kinda respect the guy and feel bad because he's most likely dead by now. He taught me how to get along at work with people I don't particularly care for: a valuable lesson.

The only saving grace was I knew come August I was out of there and those poor bastards had to stay. I was making over $11 an hour with a lot of overtime which was damned good money back then and those 3 months actually paid for almost an entire year's worth of school, room and board since tuition wasn't ridiculous back then.

This is what I did most of the time. Imagine doing this for 12 hours straight.


Anyway, what was the worst job you ever had?



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post #2 of 26 Old 10-03-2014, 07:50 PM
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I was a maintenance mechanic at a hazardous waste disposal plant for a couple years. Man did that suck. Had to wear thick cotton coveralls, knee high rubber boots, rain pants and coat ( the cheap bright yellow kind) , latex gloves under leather gloves, full face respirator and hood. And it was almost all outdoors. Not so bad in winter, but when it started getting warm it was all you could do to stay hydrated. It was fairly common to see guys come inside for break and pour out a cup or more of sweat from each boot. And the pay sucked. The worst part was if you didn't get your gear completely sealed, some of the chemicals we dealt with were water reactive. So it would start burning and itching from mixing with all the sweat.
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post #3 of 26 Old 10-04-2014, 08:36 AM Thread Starter
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Okay, all of a sudden my Worst Job doesn't seem nearly as bad, BigRed. The Hazmat plant doesn't sound very pleasant at all.



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post #4 of 26 Old 10-04-2014, 08:36 AM
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I'm thankful for all the cr ap jobs I had after high school. They motivated me to go to college. I had no clue how I was going to pay for college or how I was going to pass the classes, but once I got into it having those jobs in the back of my head kept me motivated.

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post #5 of 26 Old 10-04-2014, 09:00 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Savage View Post
I'm thankful for all the cr ap jobs I had after high school. They motivated me to go to college. I had no clue how I was going to pay for college or how I was going to pass the classes, but once I got into it having those jobs in the back of my head kept me motivated.
I'm lucky to be old enough I was able to pay for a lot of my college by working my way through it in the Summer: at least enough to pay for one entire semester's tuition/housing each year.

Kids can't do that nowadays. Tuition is ridiculous and there just aren't many jobs around. If I could trade being 52 for being 18 again, I wouldn't do it. I don't recall ever having any trouble actually getting any of the jobs I did back in the day. If you wanted to work, you could.



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post #6 of 26 Old 10-04-2014, 12:28 PM
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This sounds tame and lame in comparison. I canvassed 'door to door' when I was in college. It was like 250 bucks a week (a LOT for me) IF you made the minimum (which I always did, lots of folks didn't and then you got 10% of what you made - yeah, ****ed up). We got dropped off in the middle of neighborhoods we didn't know. Sometimes the ghetto. I got a knife pulled on me (not the first time). A crazy woman chased me with a bat yelling about how the government lost her boy in Vietnam. It was an awful job. No one wants someone coming to their door. I am not a good salesman. It sucked.

And, one day, I was working and it was pouring, I was in Marin (Mill Valley) - nice place - lots of cabins and cool houses. One had a very long wooden staircase. I slipped at the top and fell all the way down. Tore the ligaments in my right knee. I got dropped like a turd. No workers comp. Nothing. Goodbye, see ya later. That pretty much screwed me. I could barely afford tuition, but I got a job waiting tables and washing dishes at a retirement home.

Like I said, seems tame by comparison. It's a sucky way to make money, though. Pretty corrupt, too. I see kids wandering around with clipboards now, and I always help them out, tell them which houses to go to. They always look MISERABLE.

BTW, they are trained to not take no for an answer. Someone comes to your door and you want them gone, here's the magic words: "What you are doing is hard, and I appreciate that. I'll save you some time. I'm not interested at all, but good luck." Then you smile and close the door. Or if you're feeling nice, I can't tell you how much I appreciated a cold glass of water sometimes.

Pretty much anything else just makes them try harder.

I just remembered. Funny story. So, I was canvassing in Marin and I walked about 1/2 mile down a long dirt road to a mansion in the redwoods. Walked up and there was a porsche, ferrari, and lambo in the driveway with a guy in a black suit cleaning the spotless cars. He nodded. I rang the bell and a BEAUTIFUL woman (supermodel) opened the door and smiled. There were other staggeringly beautiful women practically naked milling about. The woman goes, "Hey, there's a guy at the door!" Male voice from the back, "Well, what does he want." She looked at me and smiled. "Money" The guys yells back, "Well, give him some!"

I think she gave me $100. All I wanted was to go inside that house and never leave (I was 19).




"In a car you're always in a compartment, and because you're used to it you don't realize that through that car window everything you see is just more TV." R. Pirsig

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post #7 of 26 Old 10-04-2014, 01:54 PM
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Worst job ever? Lol, my current one

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post #8 of 26 Old 10-04-2014, 02:48 PM
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On the topic of crappy jobs, my father would have said "it builds character!" I don't know about that, but i know that crappy job made me appreciate my current job. When guys at work complain, i just laugh and tell them this job is a walk in the park. At which point they look at me like I'm crazy.
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post #9 of 26 Old 10-04-2014, 10:29 PM
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I had the misfortune of smelling and seeing a dude vacuum out portajohns one time. He wasn't even wearing gloves or a mask. It smelled so bad I had to drive 3 San Francisco blocks away.




"In a car you're always in a compartment, and because you're used to it you don't realize that through that car window everything you see is just more TV." R. Pirsig

PPMC #1.
Soon, we ride.

AKA JD Mader or you can call me "Dan" just not early for dinner.

Click my handle for a link to my homepage/blog...which has nothing to do with MCs. Free literature and music! Viva La Revolucion!
-------------------
2008 KLR 650
RIP DM - Soon, we ride.
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post #10 of 26 Old 10-05-2014, 08:15 AM Thread Starter
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I don't know. I think I'd choose the portajohn vacuum job over the door-to-door gig.



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