5 Jobs I Have Had

OHIA - 31 Lists

Like the “rebel rebel” I am, I am backtracking even more on the 31 Lists in 31 Days thing, all the way back to numero duo. I am determined to get to every single item on the list. I am especially looking to number 19: strange things I have seen people do in public. As a long-time public transit user, I could fill a book on that one topic alone. Knowing my laziness, it might be 2017 before I get to the last subject, which is supposed to be my goals for 2014. Meh. My blog, my rules.

5 Jobs I have Had

JobsThough I have taken Ms. Dooce’s rules to heart, I figure I haven’t worked any of the below jobs in at least six or seven years so I am probably safe from eternal damnation. Heck, most of them are so random I’ve never even bothered to put them on a resume.

1. Barney’s Body Guard – You remember the big purple dinosaur, right? If you are too young to know who I am talking about then I don’t care if you understand. This was more of a volunteer job than actual employment but the experience was so traumatizing that I am including it here. You may not think a character from children’s television would need protection. You would be wrong. Until you have been mauled by over two dozen obsessed toddlers all at the same time, I don’t think you will ever understand what I went through that night. I am still not ready to talk about it.

2. Fish Fry Cook – This wasn’t technically my job either. I worked as a server in a seafood restaurant for four years while I attended university. One dull night we thought it would be fun to switch roles for a few hours. The cooks put on aprons and worked the front of house and the – mostly female – servers attempted to work in the kitchen. It wasn’t pretty. I still haven’t rid the smell of tartar sauce from my skin.

3. Ice Cream Scooper – After university I fell upon the harsh realization that the world wouldn’t just hand me my dream job because I had a shiny new degree. So I drank. But in order to afford the booze I worked two jobs, one was scooping ice cream at a kiosk in a local park. It wasn’t nearly as exciting as it sounds as it was also the rainiest summer my dry prairie city had ever seen. Mostly I just pigged out on chocolate bars and read escape literature.

4. Banquet Server – As much as it sucked to work until four in the morning every Saturday night serving holiday parties and fundraising galas this was actually one of the best jobs I have ever had. The hotel was awful. The management was useless. I attribute my hatred of the Wedding Industrial Complex to this period of my life. And yet it was also the best group of people with whom I have ever worked. When one is up until all hours of the night appeasing drunks and rolling cutlery, only to get up three hours later in order to serve the hoity-toity Sunday brunch crowd, something amazing happens. It bonds you to your co-workers like no other job you have ever had. It’s also where I met my PH.

5. Weight-loss Counsellor – I lasted at this position all of four days. It surprises me I lasted that long. In less than half a day I realized it was a lot less about helping people and a lot more about selling snake oil I signed a contract, however, that prevented me from sharing all of their evil secrets. Thankfully the company I worked for is long since out of business. One day I might write more about my opinions on the diet industry. The problem is, once I get started, I may not stop.

Oh, the tales I could tell. Since I can only list five, instead of going on about the job that made me quit the corporate world for good or the job that made me swear off glucosamine, I thought I would instead share a super bonus list! Aren’t you lucky?


5 Jobs I Wish I’d Had

1. Juror – I know, no one wants jury duty. Except me. Perhaps I just read too many John Grisham novels as a teenager but I always thought the experience would be fascinating. If nothing else, it would be something new. Unfortunately, I am sure wanting jury duty means that I would never be selected.

2. Radio Disc Jockey – When I was younger I was the biggest music snob in the world. I am talking, unless it was written two hundred years ago by a white man with a European name, I wasn’t interested. Regardless, I still listened to a wide variety of music and learned to find the genius in even the most popular of tunes. What always bugged me, though, was repetition. I hated how every radio station played the same one hundred songs over and over and over again. At the age of sixteen I decided that one day I would start my own station and I would never play the same piece twice. I would play everything: opera, rock, country, R&B, baroque, hip hop, even pop. But my listeners would never know what to expect next. It would be amazing, I thought. Of course, now that I am older I realize no one is going to listen to a station that plays Fidelio one moment and then AC/DC the next. Except me.

3. Chocolatier This was a job for which I actually applied once. It was Bernard Callebaut in Calgary, Alberta. I thought it would be fun. I secretly hoped for samples. Unfortunately, the hiring manager was a bit of a cow and probably expected me to quit after a day or two. No doubt she was right but I still wish I’d been given a chance.

4. Letter carrier – This is a job that is getting phased out but I always thought it would be awesome to get to walk around outside all day, every day with nothing more to worry about than getting a postal code mixed up. I would have been in amazing shape. I’d even deal with the frigid temperatures. Tragically, they were almost never hiring and it wasn’t meant to be.

5. Lounge singer – Okay, this is total fantasy land but I’ve always thought it would be awesome for one night to be one of those airport lounge entertainers. Just for fun. With no one in the audience but a few intoxicated flight attendants and a man who missed the last flight to Los Angeles. One day…

How about you? Any weird jobs you’ve performed? Any jobs you feel you missed?

19 thoughts on “5 Jobs I Have Had

  1. Don’t know if it was the weirdest job – but maybe the most boring – watching bread coming off the line at an industrial bakery – and watching to make sure every bread bag had a twist tie on it –


  2. I’ve been a banquet server in my past, too, and your description sounds identical to my experience sans the PH part! And I’ll especially highlight the wedding cynicism in my agreement!

    I also genuinely wish I would get called for jury duty. I think it would be fun and interesting – you’d get to see the actual process unfold in real life. I know it won’t be as exciting as Law and Order, but I would find it just as interesting.

    And it’s funny that you mention letter carrier because I was actually thinking about that very job as I was walking Moses earlier tonight. I think it would be awesome, but that I would be terrible at it, because I would waste time reading all of the postcards. Not out of nosiness – it would be fascinating! Like little glimpses into real life – like Post Secret or inscriptions you find in the covers of old books. … Do people still send postcards, even?


    • I know, right? Once you have spent an entire spring and summer listening to YMCA and tossing discarded wedding favours, you get a pretty big distaste for the whole process. There is no such thing as a non-traditional wedding. I don’t care if they all wear hula skits. A wedding is a wedding is a wedding.
      Hopefully you never knocked over an entire wedding cake like I did once… At least it was at the end of the night!

      I still send postcards, not that I go away very often. And I agree, it would be a definite perk of the job. Too bad Canada Post has announced they are phasing them all out, eh?


      • YES! YMCA. The Locomotion… the dreaded chicken dance! The worst. All wedding are the same yet people still are super up-tight about them and spend ridiculous amounts of cash. $10 for a chair cover? For 200 guests? Yes, that is out of control.

        I never knocked over a cake, but I did once drop a dirty fork in a bride’s hair. I still maintain it’s not my fault! You know that painful clink-glasses-so-they-kiss tradition? Well this particular couple decided instead of clinking glasses you’d whip your napkin over your head (food was flying EVERYwhere) like you were lassooing a steer. Well, someone started it and the bride’s mom was a bit too excited, started flailing arms as I was clearing plates and… well… cutlery in the up-do. I got the evil eye from the bride, we extracted the fork, and I tried to avoid the head table the rest of the night.

        And yes, I agree it’s a shame about the letter-carriers, but I suppose I understand the decision when you see how much money Canada Post has lost!


  3. You know what, I won’t mind listening to a radio station like that… where nothing is repeated and you never know what’s going to be played next… 🙂

    if you DO start your own, let me know… I will tune in.

    and about the most odd job i’ve done will have to include my first experience… i was given a job to OBSERVE how a particular machine was working. I wasn’t told “what” I was supposed to be looking for, just observe… I still don’t know what I supposed to observe in a machine that would just go, to and fro…to and fro….to and fro like a pendulum…


  4. I’ve done the radio job. Didn’t get paid for it but for 2 years did Breakfast and a sports talk show on our local community station. It was awesome fun.


    • That is hilarious! I love hearing about the different things people have done to make money. It’s fascinating and you can never tell a person’s history by looking at them.


  5. haha chocolatier that’s a great one! My first job in high school was in housekeeping cleaning up rooms after patients passed away in a nursing home!! When a bit younger, I also was a candystriper, if that counts as a job since it was volunteer. (Does anyone even remember candystripers?) I worked as a camp counselor. My most fun job was as a copywriter for a radio station.


    • Yikes, that’s rough! You are one tough lady. I always wanted to be the kind of person who could volunteer in a hospital as I know it makes a huge difference. Good for you for actually putting forth real effort.


  6. I’ve only had two different jobs in my life, well different jobs in just two fields. I almost took a job as a diet counselor once before I was offered a job in my field. You make me glad I didn’t have to take it. I’d like to hear more about your experiences.

    My fantasy job is as a stand up comic.


  7. Hhmm hi Kristine: Weird jobs? I’m a dog so I don’t have a real job like my peeps. My dad hasn’t had any weird jobs. He’s had jobs that didn’t pay very well and jobs that both paid well and were interesting. The latter jobs were so much better than the ones that didn’t pay well or had more than their fair share of dummies. My dad was once offered the role of marketing manager at an adult chat line company. My dad thought, “okay this could be interesting”, particularly when the interviewer flipped open a photo album of semi-nude women and said that as marketing manager, he’d be in charge of managing the photo-shoot for print ads such as those that the interviewer was showing my dad. Yeah, interesting up to the time that he told my mom.


  8. I have been dreaming about that radio too 😉 So I would listen it 😀

    And today I’m going to lounge sing 😀 I really don’t know how I can manage four hours but I really need the money and I hope people likes my performance although I can’t play piano that well, but I can sing 🙂 But I’m not going t airport but to mall. I hope people would be generous at this time of year 🙂

    I love lists too, maybe I’ll consider making these lists too 😀



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