Tuesday, January 12, 2010


(Sorry I couldn’t post last week. As it turned out in a thematically appropriate way, work sucked…Special Early Post here for the West Coast to get a jump. Ahem hem...cue 2010/2001 theme song...)

We’ve all had them. We might still have them, to some degree. Witness:

“Welcome to McDonald’s. I’m Stan. Would you be interested in the $4.99 Lobster Sandwich, circa 1991, which is basically a bun only? Would you care for an Apple Pie with that?”

That pic appears on page (fucking) THREE of the 1992 Barrington High School Yearbook. Frozen in time for all future historians. This same picture that some of my (ahem) best friends have successfully re-immortalized on Myspace and Facebook. I sell Lobster Sandwiches with a Sun-Inned horrible haircut dressed in a clown suit, in the Internet Cloud, for all eternity.

However, I kicked some serious fucking ASS at Drive-Thru Run. Proud of it. People literally DIDN'T BRAKE when they pulled up to my window, and found their Swirly Cone and bag of Extra Value junk already hanging there in my outstretched hands. And my Saturday peak lunch register line always fucking FLEW. Management material. JSP (as my coworker there for a brief time) has eyewitness accounts that can hopefully come in 17 syllables.

Continuing the high school/college theme:


I think half of Horrorthon knows what I’m talkin’ about here. Strangely, this was one of the best jobs I ever had. But Hako-ing SUCKED…

Anyway, we’ve all probably found varying degrees of mental & physical frustration in what we have chosen for ourselves as our professional lives.


As rational beings, we always strive for the higher, we hope for the perfect.

Whether we’ve found ourselves being the de facto male in the office who is the Only Guy that can change the water cooler (didn’t forget THAT haiku, JPX), or whether it’s being the dorky guy in some horrible city called Rome having to tolerate the mindless ramblings of some dingbat, we all have our crosses to bear:


Anyway, my particular chosen job and industry may seem somewhat “oh hooray” on the surface, but it really sucks serious big hairy donkey balls most of the time: the 80 or so crew people you work with are always genetically surly (to an almost existential degree), the hours approach something Upton Sinclair would feel compelled to write a novel about, and occasionally, working conditions are so miserable that you have to consider, on a deep, personal, rational level, why ANY human being would choose to do this and/or continue to do this sort of thing. Mailmen look at film crews from behind their living room curtains, shaking their heads in dismay and disbelief. (“Neither rain nor sleet, I know, but LOOK at those fucking retards out there…”)

Stan, in his minus–40 degree-rated thermal monkey suit (a $400 item bought out of necessity, which actually happens to be totally awesome and effective - I'm warm ALL DAY), collapses on the steps of a trailer after repeatedly cueing a helicopter to film extras walking through a frozen forest for 8 hours straight. This happened YESTERDAY.

Anyway, jobs suck, and I must apologize, I didn’t mean this to turn out to be a litany of my trials and tribulations (*collective blog yell: “SURE you didn’t!”*), and I wish, beyond the deepest vibrations of my soul, that the human race would find some way to eliminate Work as this ridiculous and for some reason inevitable Concept that we all must be forced to go through. There has to be a better way.

Some of us get to build Legos and models for a living, and for that, I am SO encouraged that there actually is stuff out there that gives you money for doing shit you love. Go get ‘em, Octo! (But there HAVE to be disgruntled Lego people out there – even the guy that built the $14,000 6-foot Batman could be the Office Jerk.)

“What do you MEAN we’re fucking out of gray bricks?”

But to bring it all back, as the subject of this Inaugural Haiku Hump Day Of The New Decade (pause for moment of somber reflection), the whole thing is really about Jobs That Totally Suck. Total Crap Jobs. Ones we’ve had, ones we hate, and ones we’d never ever in a million years ever conceive of being able to do.

I’ll leave you with two things, the first from my own experience, the second from the good ol’ Interwebs:

First, The Joke:

These old high school friends bump into each other after many years. One says he's a lawyer and the other says he works at the circus. "My job," he says, "is to climb on a stepladder behind constipated elephants, stick a fire hose up their ass and loosen them up."

"My God, that's terrible," says his friend, "Why don't you leave?" And he answers,

"What, and quit show business?"

[One of the camera operators and I were talking about this subject (the nature of the joke, not actual enemas for elephants), and he had a great tidbit he uses to describe working in the film business to those that want to know:

On the coldest, wettest, snowiest, most miserable night of the year, go outside and stand in your backyard. Unspool your garden hose, and take every single item out of your garage and put it on the lawn. Every 45 minutes, rearrange all the stuff onto the other side of the lawn. Don’t ever sit down. After 6 straight hours, you can go back inside, sit down and eat for 30 minutes. For every half hour that you don’t go inside to eat, you get handed $7. After lunch, continue this same process for another 7 hours. When the sun starts to come up, re-coil the hose, and put everything back in the garage. Go inside and sleep for 6 hours. Wake up & do it all over again in a different neighbor’s yard for two months.

I countered with the adage about no matter how beautiful, how sexy, how awe-inspiringly gorgeous any given woman is that you might see or meet, the rule of thumb is, There's Always Some Guy Out There Sick Of Taking Her Crap. Bottom line, the grass is NEVER greener. And sometimes, it's only dirt. By the way, that adage applies to every girl in the world except for this one, in a return appearance in one of my posts:]

"No, that's totally cool baby. Eat crackers in bed while farting and picking your nose. I can TOTALLY handle it. (pause) My car? Destroyed? Well, whaddaya gonna do...(face into breasts)...Let's go back to the wrestling ring I have conveniently built next to the bedroom..."


A little list I found (created by someone else, not me), which we all can use as fodder for our 17-syllable simulacrum:


10. Restaurant dishwasher
9. Slime line workers
8. Barnyard masturbator
7. Medical waste biohazard cooker
6. Sewage treatment workers
5. Chainsaw operator
4. Poultry kill room attendant
3. Hazmat diver
2. Hospital laundry workers
1. Meat plant carcass splitters

And let us not forget Garbageman (as necessary as it must be), Cab Driver, Mailman, Telemarketer, Customer Service Representative, Airline Security Checkpoint Employee, Parking Ticket Enforcer, Doofus that hands out flyers and shit on the streets, the Guy in the animal shelter that has to kill kittens and puppies as part of a JOB (yes, I went there, it’s a horrible job and SOMEBODY’S got to do it…sorry, Catfreeek).

When you really stop to think about what some people will do to simply be "working" and "have a paycheck," the range of activity is mind-blowing. ("I got benefits, but I gotta put all this expired uranium in a bucket...") Noble selves, to be sure. Except for the animal shelter guy. He’s caught in a personal hell of compassion and duty, presumably. Wouldn't wanna be THAT guy.

All of your 17-syllabic thoughts are welcome. Ambrosia, in fact. Help me get through my current 17-hour workday. One syllable for every hour I spend not playing Wii Golf and drinking beer. Love you all.

And yes, #8 was NOT a typo. Real job.

As an antidote to this topic, go read "Atlas Shrugged." Please do so right now. It will make you feel really good about working hard in any field even slightly approaching what you love. Trust me. Plus you'll feel really smart & stuff.

Topic-wise, there’s also Jobs That Are Totally Awesome, but maybe that can be a sequel week someday.

Like being the guys that build one of these - Happy 2010, Everyone! The Year We Make Contact! On the blog! With Each Other! Um, Still! [Cue rousing music...]

“What do you MEAN we’re fucking out of gray bricks?”


HandsomeStan said...

And to kick things off, with more to come...

Life as an A.D.
Bad back, alcohol problem
Insomnia, tears

My arches, they fall
My back & my knees – they go
My liver – oh no

Enough about me
Meter maid - spawn of Satan
Don’t ENJOY your job

Scurry to the meter
Fiendishly write down license
Giggle, place ticket

HandsomeStan said...

My syllables are way fucking off here and there in my initial offerings, more to come when I can sleep on it.

Exhausted, I tells ya...

Which is 6 syllables, which sucks...

HandsomeStan said...

Yes, Mr. AC
A Barnyard Masturbator
Give it, both barrels

Red carpet rolled out
This is Mr AC's show
Can't wait...just can't wait

Catfreeek said...

Late night cab driving
at first seemed not all that bad
then, puke in my cab

Surely must be job from hell
Rude phone intruder

JSP's old job
Good or bad I do not know
he said, "Purchasing"

Catfreeek said...

Mike Rowe, my hero
making gross jobs look like fun
to entertain us

Hands down, my worst job
working in a nursing home
sea of death and shit

JPX said...

Worked on a golf course
Which is really odd to me
I just can't stand golf

Snobby club members
Territorial workers
And I just hate golf

"Go rake the sand traps"
My boss didn't respect me
I had the last laugh

Catfreeek said...

Working at Wal-mart
like dragging nails on my skin
has scarred me for life

Ran a call center
owned by arrogant morons
slow mental torture

Nursing home antics
assign the new nurses aid
to man with the shits

Showcase was not fun
when the weird rug caused flashbacks
but I made Stan laugh

JPX said...

Worst job at Showcase?
Cleaning out all the ash trays
Sometimes there was gum

I would not clean puke
I drew the line at vomit
Life is too damn short

Wouldn't plung toilets
Not for $4 an hour
clean up your own shit

I loved checking tempts
Wanna know a big secret?
I never checked them

HandsomeStan said...

One degree or two
That's all you needed to change
Then go watch movies

AC said...

first day working with
autistic teens, cleaned shit off
200 pound male

later (yes, i stayed)
got beaten up, glasses broke
the job? "teacher's aide"

AC said...

daycare wasn't great
shit, piss, vomit, germs galore
for minimum wage

Johnny Sweatpants said...

You want fries with that?
This haiku's going nowhere
I'm just warming up

Johnny Sweatpants said...

One McDonalds perk
Make a custom fajita
Mine weighed seven pounds

The rest is torture
Deal with shitheads all day long
For minimum wage

The worst of the worst
Garbage juice dripping from trash
A smell unholy

AC said...

johnny's fajita
couldn't have been a perk for
his McD colleagues

Octopunk said...

The luggage warehouse
Hand caught in conveyor belt
Really scarred for life

Octopunk said...

Hotel bartending
"We need limes from the walk-in"
Fill pockets with shrimp

Bartending can rule
They all want to be your friend
And prove it with cash

It also sucks, natch
Stuck in corner, no one drinks
One dollar in glass

Octopunk said...

Conveyor belt? True!
Big scar on back of my hand
Man that fucking hurt

Totally my fault
"What if my hand got stuck...here?"
Oh crap it just did

Johnny Sweatpants said...

That's badass, Octo
I've gotta "hand" it to you
You don't give a fuck

Poor flight attendants
Flying twelve hours a day
My idea of Hell

The first face one sees
after morning traffic jam
Toll booth guy's lament

HandsomeStan said...

Thanks for getting trash
4 am though? Honestly?
Trash-eatin' stinkbags

AC said...

pizza hut summer
sweltering rancid dough smell
moots "free pizza" perk

Catfreeek said...

Lunch Ladies Lament
Screaming kids and hot as hell
Why stay? Summers off!

Worst part of Wal-mart
Hardware John never showered
smelled like rancid soup

He also stuttered
Conversations were too long
to keep holding breath

Catfreeek said...

Showcase cashiering
so many stupid questions
just pick a film, ass!

That nursing home job
Wiping asses, changing sheets
a true shitty job

Years of dealing with
shitty Wal-mart customers
make me shop online

Johnny Sweatpants said...

A silver lining
It was only a "handjob"
Coul've been your junk

Catfreeek said...

Worked at Sears auto
Changing mufflers, shocks & tires
got rust in my bra

Fixed cars for some years
busted knuckles, lots of grease
and I swore a lot

Think it's a safe job?
Metal filings in my eyes
almost lost my sight

Catfreeek said...

Greatest job for men
for women all hard labor
blow jobs are sexist

HandsomeStan said...

Some sci-fi crap jobs:
Death Star Trash Compactor Man
Cantina Bouncer

Nazgul Stablehand
Mt. Doom Maintenance Worker
Balrog's Assistant

HandsomeStan said...

Conan's Sword Caddy
The Predator's Hairstylist
Skynet Tech Support

Johnny Sweatpants said...

Bathroom attendant
Smells poop then hands out towel
Where's the dignity?

Johnny Sweatpants said...

All proctologists
Should be incarcerated
Deviants, for sure

Catfreeek said...

looking at zits and rashes
the thought makes me itch

Dream job for men? I think not.
Some women are gross

And Podiatrists
Bunyan, toe jam, fungus yikes!
feet are just nasty

JPX said...

The following haikus come courtesy of Whirlygirl, who is having difficulty posting from her computer,

What's that awful smell
Shit mixed with some potpourri
Boss is in the john

Scared to lift the seat
Might find an unpleasant treat
Boss was in the john

The phone rings rings rings
No one to answer but me
Boss is in the john

The call is for him
There is a phone in the john
Awkwardly I knock

I always felt bad
None knew he would shit and speak
A vile human

Mr. AC said...

Mayan Calendar Maker
Not much future there

Catfreeek said...

Curious Octo
Hurt his hand and scarred for life
But it could be worse

Conveyor mishap
for Darwin award winner
involved his penis

Catfreeek said...

Catfreeek at the pound
would take home doomed animals
house turned petting zoo