Dun dun dun duuuuuuuunnnnnn!  It’s another blogroll post!

This week’s question is a good one.

What’s the worst job you ever held, and why was it so awful?

I actually took a couple of days to think about this, because none of my jobs really jumped out at me as being “awful,” although my current one has had moments…

I finally decided on the time I worked at one of those “jewelry” stores in the mall.  You know, the ones with tons of pink, preteen shoppers, cheap earrings and necklaces, and a place where the employees will pierce your ears for you?  I worked at the one geared more toward teens rather than children, thank heaven, although they’re owned by the same company.

I can see you begging to ask why this would be horrible.  After all, it paid above minimum wage, I was a step down from the Assistant Manager, andthe GM didn’t sexually harrass me.  That sounds pretty good.

Sure, except for “I don’t speak English” Sundays, gaggles of preteen girls, mothers and grandmothers who insisted on making me pierce babies’ ears, moronic shoplifters, and people who couldn’t understand that the mall closed at 9 pm, which meant they had to leave our store.  Not to mention the drink-spillers and dog-carriers.

Did you know parents will hide $7 worth of cheap crap under their babies’ seats in shopping carts in order to avoid paying for it?  Did you know that teenagers will hide jewelry in their Taco Bell bags or slip earrings off the cards and put them into their ears in order to get them out of the store unnoticed?  Did you know that they’ll use each other as human shields in order to do so?  And did you know that unless we see you take it and hide it and follow you around the store, never letting you out of our sight until you try to leave, we can’t prosecute you for shoplifting?  Heck, we can’t even force you to come back in so we can search you or hold you for the cops!  It’s ridiculous and pathetic, and having to see it over and over again made me so angry…

The really bad part, though, was that I worked there before I had grown a backbone.  I was still in college, and I needed the job so Southern Honey and I could stay in our apartment.  Which meant that when we hired a mooch who would skive off her hours all the time and call me — often when I was in class — I would sigh, tell her I’d cover the rest of her shift, and go in.  I rarely raised a stink about the fact that I’d start out scheduled for 14 hours a week but end up working 25.  While going to school full-time.  I didn’t even fuss about having to work day during football season so that the AM, who was in the band, could attend games, or having to cancel a trip home because she had band camp that week.

The final straw, however, was when the manager put out the schedule for finals week.  I was scheduled for well over thirty hours.  The AM?  Half that.  And she got paid better.  Plus they’d told me they wouldn’t hold my job while I did my internship that summer, so that was going to be my last hurrah.  I called the manager and told her the schedule wouldn’t work, that I was at my wit’s end with it all, and that I quit.  Most liberating moment of my life, even though I did compromise and work the next two weekends as my “two weeks notice.”  (Manager was nice, just clueless about the position she was constantly putting me in.)

I will never work in the mall again.


About SouthernSugar

A Southern girl who's used to small town life, I found myself moving to Washington, DC, in 2008 for a new job, and living there was an eye-o
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