on work: a beginning

there is only one way to do this, and that is by just writing–making a beginning. I have been thinking about writing for a while now. maybe almost daily. there will never be a better time to start writing than now. pick a topic. write about it, however imperfectly. the writing is the important thing. so. 

I have been struggling with work for as long as I’ve been of working age. my first ever job–if we’re not counting the dusting I did for my next door neighbors before I was in double digits–was a paper route. I found out about it from my friend Jenny when we were maybe ten? she was going to be delivering The Southfield Eccentric on a route in our neighborhood, and I could do it too–for “cold, hard cash!” ten year olds say these things.

in hindsight, I don’t think I did a very good job. I couldn’t keep straight which households on my route were supposed to receive the paper, and which didn’t, and lacking the basic organizational skills and higher brain functioning possessed by many adults, I just kind of played it by ear and hoped for the best.  I’m remembering a particularly awkward and uncomfortable exchange with a lady when I went to “collect” for the paper service. apparently I wasn’t consistently delivering the paper to them, so they weren’t going to pay. I can still hear the lady saying, “OH NO,” and launching into what at the time seemed an exceedingly harsh tirade. early adulting attempt: FAIL.

my next job was babysitting for a family that lived up the street, on Friday or Saturday nights, and then also during the week, watching their two elementary age kids after school when I was in middle school. they were very bright. in fact, I actually have a memory of the boy once talking about a “coup” and the “shah” (this child was only in third grade?), subjects about which I knew exactly NOTHING. a little unnerving. but I was old enough to play it off with the typical indifference of an older (read: cooler) kid. the funniest thing that ever happened on that job was the time that I got home from babysitting after having the standard, face-to-face, here’s-what-happened-with-the-kids-today conversation with their mom, and finding that the Hershey’s chocolate sauce I so surreptitiously consumed just prior, was still all over my face. In no conceivable universe could that conversation have taken place without the mom seeing what a messy little fool I was. early attempt at image control: FAIL.

alright, maybe all this “FAIL” business seems harsh, but to me it’s funny. see, it’s funny NOW, though it definitely wasn’t funny at the time. more like mortifying. I’ve had many more years of experience with myself and my follies to recognize the lifetime patterns exemplified in these two anecdotes. my intention is to continue to write about my work and life experience, and ultimately, somehow, in this very universe, get paid to write. more to come.

One Comment Add yours

  1. William Mitchell says:

    It’s about time. I’ve missed your writing. Don’t deny the world your talent.

    Liked by 1 person

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