In late September of my senior year in college, my situation was as follows. My girlfriend and I were splitting the rent—$450 a month, about right for the time—on half of a duplex on the edge of Tallahassee’s questionable Frenchtown neighborhood. I hadn’t got a paycheck of any kind since April, when I moved out of the residence hall on campus where I’d been an RA the previous year. My savings were tapped out, and my girlfriend was, understandably, tired of shouldering the entirety of the household expenses. It was a critical juncture for our continued existence as a couple. She was planning to graduate in December, a semester ahead of me, and we’d started to talk about making plans for what might come next. So I needed a job. Any job.
“How about this one,” I said as I perused the Sunday want ads over our morning coffee. By then, scanning the classifieds was the second step of my daily routine. Step one: Make coffee. Step two: Check the help-wanted section. Step three: Sink into a funk because there’s nothing remotely lucrative, interesting, or dignified on offer. Repeat daily until dead. “‘Phone reps needed ASAP for fast-growing company with steady, built-in demand. Evening hours. Salary + comm. + generous bonuses. Call Southern Pre-Need Services at—” I looked up. “I think this is a funeral home or something.”Continue reading “The worst job I never quite had”