Sunday, 8 July 2012

My Career Path Continues....

On to grade twelve.  I was forced to quit my most favourite job at the IGA because I wanted to be a camp counsellor for the summer.  I loved camp and so gave up the hours I spent scanning food.  On a side note, one of the negatives of that job was the week there was an extreme sale on pig legs.  If you have never seen an entire pig leg, they are gigantic.  About the size of me.  Apparently the people of Niagara Falls have a secret love of them because when they were on sale people were buying in bulk.  No lie.  I would have have to try and scan five or six of them in an order.  They do not fit neatly in little styrofoam deli trays.  O no.  Instead they were wrapped up in clear plastic garbage bags.  Think Dexter, but just giant legs, with bar code stickers attached.  So I would have to manuver the leg to scan the bar code, but let me just tell you this other little piece of information, pig legs are really quite hairy.  Not hairy like mine in mid February, no these hairs are like little metal spikes, breaking open the bags and quite often scratching up my arms.  You might think this is disgusting enough, but once the bags were filled with these little hair holes all of the pig juice would come dripping out all over me.  I would return home from these pig leg sale shifts covered in all sorts of bodily pig fluids, while they seeped into my open wounds from the pig hair, exhausted from the strenuous activity of even lifting them.... 

Gag if you must, but I lifted this dang things for a whole week to satisfy the resident's of Niagara and their sick porky fetishes.

So it was time to move on.  In grade twelve my job criteria was no job interview, only on weekends.  Here is when life tricked me, I was taught if you said what you wanted enough times then you could be given it.  I repeated my request approximately four times before a class mate offered me a position as gift shop girl in a motel/hotel where the rooms were rented hourly and nobody bought anything from the giftshop but the owner's son took a liking to me because of my extreme and obvious contempt bordering on hatred for his entire family including his wife and kids.  Did I mention I was often called on to babysit?  Sometimes to waitress during breakfast or stand at the front desk while they went for cigarette breaks?  I ran food to the bar.  I cleaned rooms.  I delivered room service or extra towels or answered the phone.  What I rarely did was sell anything from the tiny little nook that was the gift shop.  I dusted meticulously, frequently showed up so hungover I could barely stand, and rarely smiled.  They had a policy about employees paying 50% for their food.  I refused to eat there or give a single cent of my hard earned (well maybe just earned....) money back to my employers.  It got so extreme that the owner's son became obsessed with forcing me to eat his food.  If you know anything about me it's that I don't eat when I'm uncomfortable.  And I especially don't eat when I'm trying to prove a point to a giant asshole.  He went so far as to tell me to order anything I wanted off the menu for free.  He would leave plates of ribs for me, or have steaks cooked up just as I was walking in.  As someone who spent a while as a vegetarian, and continues to not eat beef or pork, he clearly went the wrong way about getting me to eat.

I tried to find you a picture of a gift shop without disclosing my actual place of employment, but all that came up was Zoltar.  I thought that would be more entertaining than my past anyway.....

In conclusion, that was not a good job.  But that year I went on my very first airplane at 17 to Mexico to build houses in Ensenada and get extreme pink eye.  This opened my eyes (although not literally, literally my eyes were stuck completely closed for most of the week because my whole face had swollen shut because of the infection), to a world outside my own that I wanted desperately to explore. 

I quit my job for another summer at camp and then was off to Hamilton for my university years at McMaster.  But that....  is a story for another day.

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