To be honest, I’m not a real fan of any job that isn’t a writing gig, but there were some that I’ve just hated way more than others.
And I’ll admit, I have liked some of my jobs.
Here’s my 3 Least Favorite Favorite Jobs:
1. Employment Agency — When I first moved to Maine, I had a lot of problems finding a job. Luckily, my wife (at the time) was able to keep her high paying job from California and set up her home office in our dining room.
When I’d check the classifieds, I’d notice the same numbers listed over and over. I called and discovered that the jobs were listed through an employment agency. I set up an interview, and they ended up hiring me to work for them.
I was desperate so I took the job even though it involved cold calling companies and working on a commission. As it turned out, the job was a load of crap. The company promised it had exclusive job listings, but the clients could have saved the fee and just found the jobs themselves by searching the internet or doing a little legwork.
I finally told my boss I thought it was unfair to claim we held the job listings exclusively. That led to a clash of philosophies and my leaving, never to return.
2. Waiter/Busboy — I put myself through NYU by working in a restaurant. Every weekend, I’d leave campus to head back to Brooklyn. I’d work four shifts (a double on Sunday) and crash at my sister’s apartment.
It was fun at first when I was 17 and making decent money for the first time. The job quickly grew old, however. I’m not really good at taking orders, and this job literally required that I do so.
I hate cleaning up after myself, so having to clean up after total strangers was a real trial. Plus, I just really resented having to miss all the weekend fun at college. Isn’t that what college is all about?
I kept the job after I graduated, but just walked out one night after I just couldn’t take it any more. For the record, I have always been an excellent tipper as a result of having that job. Be nice to your wait staff, Modern Philosophers!
3. Production Assistant — While I was at NYU, I interned for a production company and ad agency that did a ton of work for MTV and its sister stations. One Summer, one of the directors was shooting a commercial for MTV and asked me if I wanted to be a P.A. on it. It was four days’ work and paid $300. I was down with that.
Or so I thought. The first day was about 12 hours long, which brought my hourly rate down to just over $6. Not cool.
I spent most of the day painting the set white. Over and over again until it was just the shade of white they needed for the shot. There was also a lot of lugging around equipment and being barked at by anyone with a walkie talkie and a clipboard.
The P.A. is at the absolute bottom of the production food chain, and the $%^& on a commercial shoot flows right down on top of them.
I did not show up for days 2, 3, or 4 of the job.
On Labor Day, take some time to think about your past work experiences, and let me know if you had any that sounded like my bottom 3.
Happy Labor Day!