Friday, August 29, 2008

A Laborious Friday Five

This Friday the RevGalBlogPals say, "Put down that hammer, that spoon, that rolling pin, that rake, that pen, that commentary, that lexicon, and let's have some fun."

1. Tell us about the worst job you ever had.
It has to be a tie between restaurant salad girl (a high school-era position I held for exactly two weeks, for the good of all concerned) and advertising sales rep for a weekly newspaper whose crotchety editor literally growled when he was angry -- which was a lot -- and at one point threw his X-Acto knife into the ceiling in a fit of pique over our reporter's misspelled word.

2. Tell us about the best job you ever had.
I have to say that helping my dad make hay -- a task that paid for much of my college education -- was one of the most satisfying jobs I've ever had. Maneuvering the tractor around the windrows in a way that allowed the baler to capture all the loose hay was an acquired skill, as was negotiating low, mucky spots, steep hillsides and deep ditches with baler and wagons in tow; and I was very proud when my father, a man of few compliments, told me that I was a better hired hand than any of the high school lads he had hired before I got old enough to help. I also felt an incredible sense of accomplishment when we unloaded the very last load of hay into our bulging barn for the season; it always made me think of "All is safely gathered in/'ere the winter storms begin." My dad, who hardly ever drank alcohol, would invite me to join him for a beer after the last bale went through the hay maw and the equipment got put away for another year. That was pretty cool.

I am also very much liking my unpaid position as lay minister at my parish. We went around at our ministry team meeting last night sharing our "joys and sorrows" related to our responsibilities, and I could honestly say that I didn't have any sorrows related to lay ministry. Now, sometime in the near future my pastor may send me and another colleague up the road to what we religious types delicately refer to as a "troubled congregation," currently between pastors, to help out with worship leadership on given Sundays...but more about that later.

3. Tell us what you would do if you could do absolutely anything (employment related) with no financial or other restrictions.
I think I'd like to spend my days in some diaconal role on the congregational level, and volunteer at our food cooperative. I'm quite serious. FT and I also want to try our hand at stained glass -- a hobby that absolutely fascinated me as a child in the Sixties, during the last renaissance of such crafts -- and maybe someday work the art fair circuit at our leisure/convenience. Now, if we really did win the Powerball and were able to retire up to the Leelanau or some similar haven of tranquility in another state -- we thought it might be fun, and a source of extra income, to have a rental unit of some sort on our property -- perhaps an over-the-garage apartment or out-back cottage -- and judiciously rent it to simpatico tourists we'd advertise to in selected media. I'm not sure we have landlord/innkeeper temperments, though.

4. Did you get a break from labor this summer? If so, what was it and if not, what are you gonna do about it?
Well, I've just come off a very nice break with The Kids, although between our frenetic touristing and their constant witty repartee, which made us feel compelled to keep up, both FT and I are still wanting to sleep for about 48 hours straight; our bodies and brains are pretty much shot.

5. What will change regarding your work as summer morphs into fall? Are you anticipating or dreading?
Our fiscal year begins in October, which always means a certain amount of craziness as accounts are closed, books are balanced and end-of-year reports are shot off to the Powers That Be. It's the second most stressful season in our office, next to our regional funding agency's annual review in the springtime. Even after nine years, it all makes me want to curl up into a mushy little ball under my desk. Or go bale some hay.

Bonus question: For the gals who are mothers, do you have an interesting story about labor and delivery (LOL)? If you are a guy pal, not a mom, or you choose not to answer the above, is there a song, a book, a play, that says "workplace" to you?
The fact that we are not allowed to keep Dilbert cartoons or other references to that comic strip in our workspaces may tell you as much as you need to know about my workplace.


Hot Cup Lutheran said...

oh dear woman... you don't work in a cubicle do you????? aahhh... prayers for sure! baling hay... there's nothing like that sweet, sweet smell.... uhm and the cold beer!

Chilly Fingers said...

I liked your best job! There is something to be said for tasks that have a beginning and an end!

DogBlogger said...

OMG to your Bonus answer!!!!

And I'm jealous of your hay baling experience.

As for the B&B luck, Google "pet friendly B&B" and you come up with tons of resources!

jpgrmeck said...

Thanks for the chocolate comment! I've "lurked" off and on on your blog, but haven't commented. Don't you love when you need a sleeping vacation to recover from your actual vacation? :-)

Processing Counselor said...

Did you :"Make hay while the sun shined" (Did I say that right?
What, no Dilbert? What good is work if you can't make fun of it? My significant other is the woman with the triangular hair in the cartoon-and her hair is so curly-isro curly, that she could probably shape it that way!

Sheryl said...

My boss has a Dilbert cartoon on his door, and sent it to everyone in the company with the caption, "Everything you ever wanted to know about proposals but were afraid to ask!" The owner of the company loved it.

Of course, we're also allowed to wear shorts, t-shirts, and flip-flops, as long as we aren't at a client site or meeting with a client at our site...

ellbee said...

Love Dilbert... when I went from Teaching into the corporate world, I suddenly understood why that odd-looking man was so revered. I keep a handful of particularly spot-on strips in my desk drawer at work, so that when I need that knowing wink or nod, he's there.