The job you hated most

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S-J's picture
S-J
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Aug 21 2012 22:20
The job you hated most

So what's the worst job you've ever had? And by worst I don't necessarily mean the most physically awful or degrading (like having to clean out waist-deep cesspits like my mate did for a while) but more like the job you had that you most wished was not a thing you had to accept doing to pay your rent. The thing that most went against your political or personal views and made you feel like a worse person for having done. A kind of 'FML' job if you will. That kind of thing.

To give an example, unless something else miraculously comes up in the next week, I'm about to start work as a 'trainee property manager' for a large evil-rich-basterd estate agent company. This will essentially mean I'll be talking to 'sales teams' in various branch offices (and, like most well adjusted people, I hate estate agents), being ever so friendly to private landlords (mostly scum then) and entering people's details for referencing and credit checks, which will frequently result in my having to write to tell people that they aren't allowed to have a home because they are too poor/have once been in trouble with the law/have precarious working conditions. Wonderful. Obviously it's not the most terrible thing anyone has ever had to do for cash, but something about working for a bunch of property owning parasites just rubs me up the wrong way...

Melancholy of Resistance's picture
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Aug 22 2012 08:58

Tie between current role as advertising producer for a very very big evil corp (whose motto refers to evil and its avoidance of it) - honestly what's the point of advertising, this whole shit industry can go once we FULLY COMMUNISE the world - and my previous role doing training modules for tax collectors.

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Aug 22 2012 11:42

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Choccy's picture
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Aug 22 2012 11:49

Cash handling in a security firm's sorting building.
No windows, timed locks. Counted millions of pounds a day, loaded ATM cassettes and counted company takings.
Was only a temp for a few months, fucking horrible depressing work, no daylight really fucks you up as well as counting obscene amounts of business money. One friend there hung himself during the time which also colours my memory of it. Awful horrible place.

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Arbeiten
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Aug 22 2012 12:31

No day light is fuckig shit. ESPECIALLY WHEN IT IS WINTER AND YOU WORK IN A MEAT PACKING FACILITY WHICH IS BASICALLY A HUGE FUCKING FRIDGE. Start at 6am (no daylight) finish at half 3 (see an hour of sun if i am lucky). 4 steaks in a bag, back on the conveyor belt for nine hours. You didn't think four steaks just jumped into a bag by their own volition right? NO THE STEAKS IN A BAG THING IS A FUCKING SOCIAL RELATION!

On other occasions I would by the guy who sorts the meat chunks, throwing out the really stringy fatty ones as they go across the conveyor belt.

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Arbeiten
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Aug 22 2012 12:30

Also shit that looks like this (can't remember whether it were pork or beef, but you know, the stuff tht comes with netting around it and has loads of fat on it),

That stuff would come in in 20k boxes. about 4-5 joints, all big and frozen, they looked like over shaped meat pills. Anyway. They come in, the boxes are emptied out into a MASSIVE metal bath thing (its fucking freezing on your fingers and they bounce around like bowling balls so you stub your fingers all the time). They were covered in plastic so we would have to cut an X in the plastic them remove it all. Put it on a table. Then on the table they put the fat on the joint. The fat comes separately in tiny things that look like maggots. It is compressed into a sheet, then it is pressed around the joint and put through a machine that puts netting on them (much like those big ass things you put christmas trees through). Then the next day, they are cut into smaller joints on a band saw. HOORAY, CHRISTMAS MEAT!

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Aug 22 2012 14:12

Arbeiten, that sounds like my nightmare job! Fucking horrible... I've got to say, in a perverse kind of way I'm enjoying this thread - everyone's had a shit time! Yay!

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Aug 22 2012 21:04

ive worked in tons of shit jobs, call centres, factories, warehouses... but the worst job i think ive had is the one i have at the moment. a 'development worker' for a youth project specialising in serious bouts of liberal do goodery. my best moment was getting 15k on a funding application where i had to pimp the social problems of the area i live in in a more creative way that my competitors. worst part was the only motivating thing was that i knew my ex boss would be applying for this and i wanted to get one over him. pathetic. but the most intolerable thing is the people that work in this scene that actually believe that our job is actually a solution to the ISSUEZZZ they pure care about man... its great when they do wanky language about providing the means to facilitate transformative change in the community context whilst upholding the most hierarchical relations youd ever come across in a workplace. plus i want to punch my boss who wears a cnd badge.

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Aug 23 2012 15:00

Worked in a supermarket throughout my teenage years until I was twenty. Sorry to say I was an enthusiastic worker, dropped out of highschool and worked there and everything. I caught a shoplifter one day in unusual circumstances involving garbage bags and a stolen car, and I had to report to the cops (who were dicks to me too). Felt really bad about it and still do. One time when I was arrested for being a tough anarchist rebel, the cops bought it up. Ugh, fuck that job. Worst thing I ever did.

Also worked at a large magazine publishing house as a writer. I had to write some very problematic material for a test edition (not thinking it would ever be published). I was let go over some differences with my boss – I told him his jokes about killing muslims were unfunny – and they published the articles. Thank fuck my name wasn't on them. The publication did cause some wringing of liberal hands and I died a little on the inside.

I worked in a studio for a year doing packaging for cleaning products for very little pay. By the time I was sacked, my eyelids had developed a twitch and my brain turned to mush.

They were all pretty bad jobs, but on different levels.

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Aug 23 2012 17:00

This should be moved to the main forum. I had just started as a hotel porter when they lost a third dishwasher in a row and decided I would do it. It was no fucking wonder, the job was a ballache. I had to clean the chunks of grease off the ovens standing right on the cooking hob in this sweaty kitchen with no open windows. That was because there was grease caked on them too. Washed plates and pans in boiling water all day while I had this arsehole French chef barking at me and following me about saying I don't smile enough. Bloke was a loon. I lasted a week until they found out I was skipping early.

Also, who'd have thought people staying in a 5 star hotel would be so fucking stingy with tips?

Reginald J. Tro...
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Aug 23 2012 17:08

The worst job I ever had was last summer - needed some income during the holidays from uni so a friend of mine got me a cash in hand job with this events company. The first task they set me to was pulling out the weeds from the management's car parking area (right out the front of the building, workers had to park off site). As I was sweeping up the cigarette butts the Managing Director pulls up in a BMW, parks in the space I just cleaned and just walks by me without even saying hello. I've never felt more working class in my life.

It got worse from there. Wanting to be a good commie, I started asking my collegues about the working conditions, one of the lads was on an apprenticeship, so getting paid £2.90 an hour, but they had him working 7 days a week, with the normal working day being 12.5 hours long. There were no breaks, the bosses expected you to just eat your lunch and get back to it within 5 minutes or so, health and safety was totally absent and of course, no one was in the union.

A bit of conflict broke out when the bosses tried to fire the apprentice for going home "early" after we had done 15 hours of work (you have to be "flexible" in events). I let him know that management didn't have a leg to stand on and he fought back and was able to keep his job. They fired me a few days later, but not having a contract, there wasn't much I could do.

wojtek
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Aug 23 2012 22:14

I hope this makes your jobs a little less intolerable! smile

Mark Steel on Unemployment - "Having a job should be illegal" (Radio 4, 15 July 1994)

Arbeiten's picture
Arbeiten
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Aug 23 2012 22:51
Lumpen wrote:
One time when I was arrested for being a tough anarchist rebel, the cops bought it up. Ugh, fuck that job.

laugh out loud I like this A LOT! (so much so I thought merely clicking up was NOT ENOUGH)

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Aug 23 2012 23:47

Only thing i've ever done but working in Fast Food.

Most of the time it was OK. We were all around the same age going to college or abit older so there was always someone to talk to and we used to lark about. I distinctly remembering us singing Oasis alot. The part where it got bad was the night shifts. Essentially the role was meant to be clean up, serve anyone who can be bothered to order fast food at god knows what time. Sadly for us god knows what time was also the time when the clubs kicked out. Legally we weren't supposed to serve them, something about the drive through being for cars or something, but the boss didn't care, they liked their figures looking good for the regional managers. The windows got smashed a fair few times, we got drinks thrown on us occasionally, you get the picture. Also there was a 'reward system' where you had to do so good on mystery shoppers and sales etc. etc. to get food, despite the restaurant making loads of money (They posted up how much they made on the staff website when they had a 'record day', we were on minimum wage. Pricks.) Oh, and it was boiling working in the kitchen all day, and you smelled when you finished :3

Fleur
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Aug 24 2012 01:42

I've had a fair share of shit jobs, as a right of passage it's monumentally over-rated. From a dirty, nasty point of view, cleaning a bakery had to be the worst, I never, ever felt clean, burnt grease and sugar never seemed to wash out of my pores. I also worked in a wholegrain, healthfood bakery for the hippy, holistic sort of market, getting up to go to work at at time when more sensible folk were going to bed, wholefoods including mouse droppings and insects and they transported the baked goods in the same van they transported the goats the owners had on their farm, so it at least it engendered a desire to cook my own food. I did lots of things which were very precarious, but about 10 years after graduating university I decided to get a proper grown up job, which paid a reasonable amount of money and had a bit of security, so I went back to college, got the relevant qualifications and got myself a nice cushy office job. And it sent me completely demented, with the boredom, it's futility, mindless repetition. I just used to go home and drink too much, dreading the next day. I've done lots of things, most of which were not well paid, were temporary, had no status in a world where people judge others on what they do for a living. Sometimes they were demeaning, like being a hostess in a "gentleman's" club (not that kind, at least you get tipped there, the kind where bankers and barristers go for lunch, ) but absolutely the worst one was office work. I would prefer to do just about anything else than go back to doing that. It probably sounds a bit whiney, not being able to deal with the 9 to 5, but just the thought of spreadsheets makes me shudder.

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Aug 24 2012 08:12

oh I just remembered. I also used to work in a men's changing room at a gym/tennis club. As the cleaner. That was fucking shit. Old men with their horrid old little dicks and saggy asses mopping up after their shite all day. Used to have to tell guys they had to wear undies in the sauna which, would obviously cause an argument. So I would have to argue with naked sweaty men. I used to have to clean the sun bed, the toilets, the showers, everything. One time an old man asked if I could dry his back. Reasonably I told him to get the fuck. My boss was a prick as well. There used to be a 100 point marking sheet that we would get tested on (have you cleaned, X, restocked Y, etc, etc). I used to remember it all, then, one day, on the cusp of 100. BAM! He runs his finger across the top of the toilet cubicle, little bit of dust, marks me down. THAT WASN'T EVEN ON THE FUCKING SHEET! Bullshit.

Harrison
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Aug 24 2012 17:32

i stopped someone trying to steal a copy of The Sun from a library i worked in. Clearly i was saving him from bourgeois mind decay.

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Aug 24 2012 20:45
Arbeiten wrote:
Used to have to tell guys they had to wear undies in the sauna

LOL! in Sweden it's the other way around. You're not allowed to wear swimming trunks in the sauna. There was always someone coming in to check, no joke. Perhaps it's changed now, gotta go swimming to check wink just moved back here.

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Aug 24 2012 21:53

I have done many unpleasant jobs- like Arbeiten I have cleaned in a sports hall and had the added joy of removing a shite from a sauna, I have grafted 12 hour shifts in tunnels on rail construction sites and backbreaking scrap loading but the job that sticks in my mind as the worst was a warehouse in Glasgow where the culture was dominated by arse licking bosses men. I can stand the crap from management because I have always had some rapport with my fellow workers but in this place they would grass you off right in front of you and could not grasp that this would cause resentment. They were absolute shits.The work was dull but not arduous and I had intended to do it for a few months but as it was I got into a small conflict with the manager and just decided I would rather go out with a bang than a whimper and got my self sacked.

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Aug 25 2012 10:37

My first proper job after school, was working on a production line making pizzas for supermarkets. When people say there is no difference between x and y product and it's about a label, there is a kind of truth to this. We would produce low and high end supermarket own brand and the only real changes was in the ratio of the quality of good cheese and tomato purée.

The place was one big fridge, health and safety was awful, casual racism was prelevant throughout, it was impossible to arrive there in good time because of the obscure location of the factory and the difficulty of finding a bus that would get you there, but what sticks in memory the most is that when the minimum wage was first introduced the factory dropped our wages because they were paying 12 pence above it an hour and they wanted to be in line with the minimum wage. Total cunts!

Also had pretty rotten jobs at a cash and carry, a nightclub and doing personal loans at a bank.

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Aug 25 2012 16:52

Most value things are no different but not pizzas. I've learnt from being a cheapskate and getting the 90p ones that they always taste like shit, the dough is like what you make toast out of.

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Standfield
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Aug 27 2012 09:38

Like others, I've had loads of shit jobs, mainly in the hospitality area. On your feet all day, and you're in the firing line constantly, whether it's from supervisors, the boss, or customers. You can't get away from it. Your hours are sporadic, and not garenteed as certain seasons and days are busier than others, so you could be sent home after an hours work. Not to mention not being able to touch the stuff you're selling - for ten times the amount you're paid.

I'm currently working in an Italian resturaunt. Yesterday, some distributor came in to drop off some food, and while he went up to the counter to recieve his payment, I heard the boss say, "Fuck it, I'll take it out of the tips jar - they're all retards anyway." I couldn't fucking believe it. If I wasn't so skint and desperate for a job, I would've walked out - maybe I should of. It's shit, because I feel I've let myself down in a way by not acting on what I thought. Another thing is, I'm new, it's a small resturaunt, and my collegues are all so cliquey, saying stuff like, "the boss is a good guy, fun to work for, etc, etc", and taking their job overly serious for what is is. So there's no chance of me stirring shit up. Luckily, I've got a better job lined up in another city in a months time, so I'm planning on getting some form of revenge. Fucker.

So yeah, my current one is probably the worst I've had, in terms of who I'm working for. So much for career progression!

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knotwho
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Aug 28 2012 21:03
fleurnoire-et-rouge wrote:
...got myself a nice cushy office job. And it sent me completely demented, with the boredom, it's futility, mindless repetition. I just used to go home and drink too much, dreading the next day. I've done lots of things ... but absolutely the worst one was office work. I would prefer to do just about anything else than go back to doing that. It probably sounds a bit whiney, not being able to deal with the 9 to 5, but just the thought of spreadsheets makes me shudder.

This. I am working an office job right now. I've put on weight from sitting on my ass all day. My eyes suffer from looking at a screen all day. I have nothing to report when I go home and they ask "How was work?". It's unbelievably dull. Though, I have learned a lot about communist theory while reading at work.

I'm going to be a teacher. For the lulz.

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Steven.
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Aug 28 2012 21:10
Cooked wrote:
Arbeiten wrote:
Used to have to tell guys they had to wear undies in the sauna

LOL! in Sweden it's the other way around. You're not allowed to wear swimming trunks in the sauna. There was always someone coming in to check, no joke. Perhaps it's changed now, gotta go swimming to check wink just moved back here.

That is so Swedish, that's brilliant. Great thread anyway, have moved it to the general forum. I will try to think about my worst job…

working class self organisation's picture
working class s...
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Aug 28 2012 21:38

SWP paper seller

davidbroder
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Aug 28 2012 21:43

I worked at a market research call centre for four years. The worst job I ever had was as Trot group office monkey.

shitehouse
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Aug 28 2012 21:49

Charity fundraising on telephone. The office was set out like and 18th century factory with callers around the outside and supervisors in the middle, constantly looking over your shoulder and listening in on your calls. So had no option but badger old women into paying their umpteenth charity direct debit. I felt like I was conning people. Shitty.

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Nate
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Aug 28 2012 22:03

Spent a summer cleaning out stables and doing landscaping at a tourist trap near where I grew up, when I was 14. Shoveling horse shit in the hot sun around a bunch of tourists sucked even on a good day. Got minimum wage, got bullied and screamed at by management all the time (which, looking back, is why the place hired so many young teenagers I think), out in the sun a lot, no gloves when doing stuff that could cause blisters (raking for hours etc) then when we were like "uh, could we have gloves?" they shouted "your safety is not our responsibility!" I used to wish the old man boss would have a heart attack when he'd start shouting. One time a co-worker and I were walking to punch in and a manager was like "hey help me move this rug and straighten out this hose" and we were like "okay, just gonna go clock in first" and he started shouting at us about loyalty and commitment and principles. I used to get drunk with a friend who lived right next to him, guy had a huge fucking house, with a huge swimming pool with a slide in the backyard.

orkhis
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Aug 28 2012 22:42

Worked in a job centre for nearly a year. Most of my coworkers were okay, but there were some real shits who revelled in power they had over people's lives. Shortly before I left a dead cat was found in the air conditioning unit there, which explained the awful smell that came over the place whenever it was hot.

Worst job though was as dishwasher in a function venue at Christmas. We were asked to scoop the meat and roast spuds off people's plates and into bowls to be served up again. Tried to upset this scheme by stuffing Christmas crackers toys into a few of the potatoes, but people must've either been too drunk to notice or they thought it was a present from the chef or something. It's all I can think of whenever I hear that fucking Slade song at Christmas.

x371220
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Aug 28 2012 22:46

I could monopolize this thread with bad work stories, but two jobs stand out as being beyond soul-crushing. I'm changing the names to not advertise at all for these exploitative monsters.

#1 - O'Donnell Brass. I worked in a small light assembly shop in a generic industrial park. Every day I got literally dozens of brass slivers in my hands. My boss would sit in front of my station and watch me work, saying nothing at all. I felt that he was creeping on me, as I caught him staring regularly. There were eight of us and none of us made a living wage, felt any satisfaction from our work or were treated like people. At noon on Fridays, we had to stop working and clean the entire place top to bottom because actual cleaners were paid better than us (we made min wage plus ten cents). Conservative AM radio was piped in, and most of the rest of the crew were totally on board with the views. I worked through a temp agency and my paycheck bounced more than once. It was hell. Many people who started when I was there did not even last until lunch on the first day. I put in four months. It was the hardest four months I had to endure, but I had bills to pay.

#2 - Smith's Pools. I was 15 and worked under the table for an in-ground pool installer. The guy was an abusive drunk who thought it was funny to berate me in front of his clients to show how important he was. He'd get tanked, jump in a backhoe and dig a hole crooked. Then he made me dig it straight with a shovel and a bucket. I moved thousands of cubic yards of dirt while he made fun of me (and occasionally tossed empty beer cans at me). He'd go weeks without paying me, and when I'd push the issue, he'd write clever things like "For a dick and a faggot" on the memo line of my paycheck. I am so lucky I was never injured on the job (besides sunburns, blisters and other working class honor badges). Leaving that place was so liberating.

x371220
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Aug 28 2012 22:52

#3 (last one) - I worked for a telemarketing firm fixing computers where they could call old people and warn them about the "homosexual agenda" and raise funds for the RNC, NRA, NRCC and various Pat Robertson affiliated groups. It was PURE prostitution on my part. I'd occasionally have to pull over to vomit on my way to work, knowing I was furthering the exploitation of the working class and actively working against my own interests. There were days when I wasn't too motivated to get things working too quickly, but even that wasn't too fulfilling a resistance. It's like voting for Obama to deny the crazy right wing a victory. You still end up with a moderate right winger and get to call that a win. No thanks.

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