Thursday, June 08, 2017

Day 8: Work

When I look back through my work experience, I am intrigued at how my work history forms a kind of “ramp” into what I do now. For the most part, I’ve always worked alone or had positions in companies that permitted me to work alone. I recall how when interviewing for my job here at the University, my supervisor (who now serves as Dean and to this day, remains my supervisor) asked, “are you able to work alone?” To which I was able to reply with a resounding “Yes!”

www.backintheawesomedays.com
My work history began (I think) with doing little jobs around the office when visiting my mom or dad at their work. You know, “busy work” given to kids to keep them out of the way, mostly. Like tearing off the perforated edges from the paper that was roller fed through dot-matrix printers. Remember that “continuous feed” paper that came in large boxes? After that I sometimes traveled with my dad on day-trips. But that was all before I could legally work.

My first job in Junior High School was working for our neighborhood’s HOA. Sure, I mowed my share of lawns for hire, but I was the kid responsible to keep the roadsides clean of trash on the one-mile-and-some-change long stretch that entered our neighborhood (I just looked a Google Maps and could not recognize the place. Holy cow!). After baseball games, the ditches were horrible!

After moving to New Mexico, I went to work for my dad after school and on Saturdays at the Welding Supply store. Stocking shelves, sweeping, mopping, loading and unloading trucks. I am confident that one particular task I performed instilled in me the sense of order in which I like to keep things: I had to collect all the weekly sales invoices and put them in numerical order. Sounds mind-numbing and perhaps it was, but I like order :-)

I worked for K-mart for a short while--never understood why they made stockroom people wear a tie back in those days. It was hot and dirty. Loading and unloading, moving inventory in slacks and a tie just never clicked with me.

Worked a few years selling precious and base metals as well as semi-precious stones to Native American craftsmen then moved to Georgia where I held a part-time position in the Physical Plant at the college I attended while also working part-time in area churches as worship leader or youth pastor.

After moving to South Carolina, finding a job was tough but I finally found work through a temp agency that opened the door to longer jobs at Blue Cross, Blue Shield then remodeled a local Sears store. They eventually hired me (a man died and a position was open they needed filled) and I stayed a few years until I quit and went to work at a HAZMAT company--the worst job of my life. The hours were great and the overtime was amazing--but the work itself was out of balance. They put too much on one person at a time! Nearly worked myself to death.

Then in 2001, I filled out an application for a position here at Columbia International University and have been here ever since! While here, I’ve done other part-time work either teaching as an adjunct or in serving in local churches.

So that's my work history--more or less. 

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