Your first job.

60's guy

Active member
Other than having a paper route when you were 12 years old, what was your first real job you got and had to pay income tax?
My first job was at an Italian bakery. For $1:00 an hour, I scrubbed and washed stainless steel pots 30" in diameter. I also had to take baked products and place them into one of or the other of two freezers.
One freezer was set at -30 degrees for cookies and other delicate baked goods.
The other freezer was set at -50 degrees for breads etc.
The bakery was a family owned business filled with, family.
There wasn't a single day that I did not see one of the "family" walk out of the cookie freezer without a cookie in their hand and eat it.
One day I decided that it might also be okay if I walked out of that freezer with a cookie and eat it.
Wrong decision!
Five minutes later the owner (Dante) had me sitting in a chair in front of him. He told me that he had witnesses who had told him that I had stolen and ate a cookie. He said, "I should fire you for stealing."
I laughed at him and also said enough to him to make him realize that I wasn't just another 16 year old kid for him to intimidate.
The day after I told Dante to go Fuck himself, and his family, I got myself another job for more money.

Everyone has a story. What's yours?
 

TalismanRich

Well-known member
My dad owned greenhouses. Back then flowers were grown locally in every town We would grow carnations, poinsettias, mums, iris, azaleas, pansies, etc. 4 glass covered greenhouses, plus 6 outside beds that were covered in plastic in the winter.

I worked there every summer from grade school thru college. As kids, we would pull weeds, cut or plant flowers, carry pots to the greenhouse after potting, planting bulbs, washing flower pots. As we got older, we learned out to sweat solder copper pipe, clean out the coal boilers, retarp the roof over the offices, and finally, each summer for 4 years, we would reglaze one green house. 5000 windows to remove, clean the support bars and repaint. All the windows were washed and scrapped to remove old putty and dirt. Then we would reputty the bars and replace the windows, and put aluminum caps to seal the windows. Nothing like climbing on top of a greenhouse in the summer sun 5 days a week. We were like monkeys swinging through trees!

After his cataract surgery, Dad couldn't work in the dirt any more, and we slowly converted the business to wholesale supplies. We converted two houses to warehouse space the first year, covering the windows with sheet metal, removing all the transite benches (concrete and asbestos - really safe stuff to cut up with a circular saw, eh?) and wheelbarrowing concrete to build floors. Again, fun work in the summer under glass and temps around 100+ degrees. We also took out all of the outside benches and converted the space to concrete parking. Then next two years, we converted the other two houses.

I remember taking my date over to the florist in the winter after dances in high school. The coal boiler needed to be filled, so she would wander around looking at the flowers while I shoveled coal and pulled clinkers out of the boiler. It saved dad a trip over there on Friday or Saturday night.

Once I got my drivers license, I got to make deliveries, driving to all the retail flower shops through college.

We converted to overhead gas furnaces when I was in college. We disassembled the gas boiler and hauled it out of the basement. The coal boiler is still down there.

Today, all of it is still standing and active.

After college, I got a job as a chemist in the printing ink business. I had enough of the florist business. My youngest sister met her husband when he was working there part time. When dad retired, they took over the business, and still have it.

If nothing else, I learned skills. Back then you couldn't afford to hire people to do everything. It taught me how to build things, how to repair stuff, do electrical work, plumbing, build rooms, lay concrete, do roofing. I used to do all that stuff myself. These days, I still do a lot of repairs myself. I've built fences, I built the room in the basement where my stereo and recording equipment lives, I've painted and wallpapered rooms, changed out plumbing, repaired the garage door.

However, its getting to the point that I'm hiring people to do more and more stuff. There are people who know how to do things better than me, have the proper tools, and can get it done in 1/3 the time. It gives me more time to play guitar and golf. That's when you do when you retire, right?
 

60's guy

Active member
My dad owned greenhouses. Back then flowers were grown locally in every town We would grow carnations, poinsettias, mums, iris, azaleas, pansies, etc. 4 glass covered greenhouses, plus 6 outside beds that were covered in plastic in the winter.

I worked there every summer from grade school thru college. As kids, we would pull weeds, cut or plant flowers, carry pots to the greenhouse after potting, planting bulbs, washing flower pots. As we got older, we learned out to sweat solder copper pipe, clean out the coal boilers, retarp the roof over the offices, and finally, each summer for 4 years, we would reglaze one green house. 5000 windows to remove, clean the support bars and repaint. All the windows were washed and scrapped to remove old putty and dirt. Then we would reputty the bars and replace the windows, and put aluminum caps to seal the windows. Nothing like climbing on top of a greenhouse in the summer sun 5 days a week. We were like monkeys swinging through trees!

After his cataract surgery, Dad couldn't work in the dirt any more, and we slowly converted the business to wholesale supplies. We converted two houses to warehouse space the first year, covering the windows with sheet metal, removing all the transite benches (concrete and asbestos - really safe stuff to cut up with a circular saw, eh?) and wheelbarrowing concrete to build floors. Again, fun work in the summer under glass and temps around 100+ degrees. We also took out all of the outside benches and converted the space to concrete parking. Then next two years, we converted the other two houses.

I remember taking my date over to the florist in the winter after dances in high school. The coal boiler needed to be filled, so she would wander around looking at the flowers while I shoveled coal and pulled clinkers out of the boiler. It saved dad a trip over there on Friday or Saturday night.

Once I got my drivers license, I got to make deliveries, driving to all the retail flower shops through college.

We converted to overhead gas furnaces when I was in college. We disassembled the gas boiler and hauled it out of the basement. The coal boiler is still down there.

Today, all of it is still standing and active.

After college, I got a job as a chemist in the printing ink business. I had enough of the florist business. My youngest sister met her husband when he was working there part time. When dad retired, they took over the business, and still have it.

If nothing else, I learned skills. Back then you couldn't afford to hire people to do everything. It taught me how to build things, how to repair stuff, do electrical work, plumbing, build rooms, lay concrete, do roofing. I used to do all that stuff myself. These days, I still do a lot of repairs myself. I've built fences, I built the room in the basement where my stereo and recording equipment lives, I've painted and wallpapered rooms, changed out plumbing, repaired the garage door.

However, its getting to the point that I'm hiring people to do more and more stuff. There are people who know how to do things better than me, have the proper tools, and can get it done in 1/3 the time. It gives me more time to play guitar and golf. That's when you do when you retire, right?
I'm glad you took the time to tell the story of your first job and a great deal of family history and much more.
 

spantini

COO of me, inc.
Youza life-a-guard.. meeza life-a-guard.. AYyyy .. Life-a-guard! :thumbs up:

My first job was Lifeguard at the pool of our apartment project. I think it was around $1.50/Hr. I was 16 years old and lovin' life. A group of us "children" of the residents spent the summer being instructed and certified by the head Lifeguard, then waited through a long winter for the company who provided Lifeguards to area pools to call us in for our summer assignments.

I was assigned to my home pool. I was the first "hippie" lifeguard - all previous Lifeguards were at least 10 years older and missed the revolution. They all had short hair and looked like Joe College.

As I walked the perimeter of the pool each day, I would hear older ladies comment to each other about not liking all this long hair on kids, but they liked mine because I always kept it looking trim, not shaggy.

Half the job was pool maintenance, so when not in the chair or walking the area I could be found in the pump room adding chemicals and checking pressures. Every morning before opening, the water had to be skimmed for floating debris and the bottom vacuumed. When it was slow, we had to scrub the tiles surrounding the edge of the pool - you know, the colored tiles where the depth numbers were indicated.

Usually on the 4th of July, we'd have water games. My favorite was just for the kids where we'd purchase a few dozen tropical fish from the pet store and let them loose in the pool...one was a very small baby shark which was the bonus catch. Just the kids would play - we'd give each of them a small aquarium net and have them all jump in to see how many fish they could catch. Finders keepers. That would never fly today.

Ahhh.. those were the days of diving boards.. and HIGH dives.. Anyone remember diving boards? Try to find one at a public pool these days. All you see are signs all around the pool saying "No Diving". Public pools are no fun anymore.
 

60's guy

Active member
Youza life-a-guard.. meeza life-a-guard.. AYyyy .. Life-a-guard! :thumbs up:

My first job was Lifeguard at the pool of our apartment project. I think it was around $1.50/Hr. I was 16 years old and lovin' life. A group of us "children" of the residents spent the summer being instructed and certified by the head Lifeguard, then waited through a long winter for the company who provided Lifeguards to area pools to call us in for our summer assignments.

I was assigned to my home pool. I was the first "hippie" lifeguard - all previous Lifeguards were at least 10 years older and missed the revolution. They all had short hair and looked like Joe College.

As I walked the perimeter of the pool each day, I would hear older ladies comment to each other about not liking all this long hair on kids, but they liked mine because I always kept it looking trim, not shaggy.

Half the job was pool maintenance, so when not in the chair or walking the area I could be found in the pump room adding chemicals and checking pressures. Every morning before opening, the water had to be skimmed for floating debris and the bottom vacuumed. When it was slow, we had to scrub the tiles surrounding the edge of the pool - you know, the colored tiles where the depth numbers were indicated.

Usually on the 4th of July, we'd have water games. My favorite was just for the kids where we'd purchase a few dozen tropical fish from the pet store and let them loose in the pool...one was a very small baby shark which was the bonus catch. Just the kids would play - we'd give each of them a small aquarium net and have them all jump in to see how many fish they could catch. Finders keepers. That would never fly today.

Ahhh.. those were the days of diving boards.. and HIGH dives.. Anyone remember diving boards? Try to find one at a public pool these days. All you see are signs all around the pool saying "No Diving". Public pools are no fun anymore.
Great story. A wapping $1.50 dollar per hour!
I quit my job at the bakery and got hired at $1.25 per hour.
 

gecko zzed

Grumpy Mod
My first job was picking strawberries, which I started doing when I was 14. We weren't paid an hourly rate; we were paid by the punnet. That was ok by me because (a) I was young, (b) I was fit, and (c) I was keen. So I got a healthy pay packet each summer, even after tax was taken out. I did this for about six summers, even after moving to a different state, until grown-up life and grown-up jobs took over.
 

rob aylestone

Well-known member
My first paying job was in theatre, backstage at a 1000 seater, and I had to pretend that I had seen dancers getting changed so many times before I could ignore them. Wow, was that difficult! To this day, I keep returning to work in live theatre. I haven’t regretted a day of it, and in over forty years of doing jobs, I keep ending back up in live events. My first job ended abruptly when we went in and found the theatre empty as the producer had gone bust. That hasn’t changed either!
 

Snowman999

Active member
I was kicked out of high school at 16. Good Lord if I only knew then what I know now.

My brother who had graduated, worked in a restaurant and told us "I will only eat what's been in the freezer." I didn't understand till I got my first job washing dishes at the Babylon Diner. I worked from 11pm to 7am. I had my little cassette player and I remember I listened to a lot of Clapton. I'd keep rewinding to hear Layla (OK that's D&TD. It's still Clapton).

I wouldn't see the mice. But, I constantly heard them over head. Since it was the night shift, the diner was never crowded and one night the creepy cook chased the lone waitress around with a dead mouse (a big one) in a trap. It was here I realized what my brother was talking about. But, that's not the worst story.

The mashed potatoes, string beans, corn, and other dinner items were put into large cans and sat in a "steam tub". It's very hot water, and it keeps the food hot, in case someone orders a meal at 2am. After I'd been there a while the cook gave me the task of dumping the vegetables from the metal containers to the buckets. He decided to show me, and in some of the buckets were mice droppings. He just poured the food on top of the mice shit.

I still think about that when I eat out.

This is NOT about me. But, it's another HORROR story of food. I worked with a guy who lived in Astoria Queens. He was not a bullshitter. He told me how he went into a friends bagel shop and went to the back. He walks in and the friend is peeing in the batter.
 

Orson

Well-known member
Helping the milkman, a paper delivery round and spud picking in October of which all the jobs I was glad to have them and get paid whatever the going rate was without complaints.

I then on leaving school started an 'indentured' apprenticeship in an engineering factory and paid initially £19.50 per week. What a complete waste of time that job was. It wasnt the money although trainees were paid low. It was working in engineering.
 
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Kingofpain678

Returned from the dead
my first job was at kfc. did really well with promotions and raises and what not until they wouldnt let me go to our town festival so i just stopped showing up. not my proudest moment...
never did learn what all the secret herbs and spices was :facepalm:
 
bus boy at $1.60 / hr which was enough to buy a 65 VW deluxe.

but it's not cool to have to dis my four previous jobs. :(
 

Gtoboy

Well-known member
I had a buddy who was a year and a half older who got me into the state sponsored program for low income youth and so at 14 started working as a mechanics apprentice at the local public school garage. Full time in summer and after school and Saturday in winter.$3.23/hr, but all the money but about 20 dollars went to buy groceries and pay bills for the family. I saved up and got my first electric guitar(a gods awful thing made of plywood in the shape of a LP) for $100 cash new in the box.
 

keith.rogers

Well-known member
I was a dishwasher/busboy at Howard Johnson's, age 15. (I'd been a caddy for a couple years before that, but no taxes paid, and probably lost half my wages "learning poker" from the older kids.) Anyway, I was supposed to be 16 but I changed the birthdate on my [driver's] learner's permit to get a work permit signed by the school so I could go to work. Looking back on my memory of the crude pen eraser and pen job I did, I'm sure the lady in the school office knew exactly what I was doing, but I'm sure I wasn't the only one that did that sort of thing either - no "allowance" in the family budget so if you wanted to buy a soda or milkshake (payday splurge :)), go play pinball or shoot pool, whatever, you had to work. What did I make? What was the minimum wage you could pay a school kid in 1965/66? Not a nickel more, I'm sure. (Just googled - $1.25/hr, but students could be paid 15% less. I'm sure they took advantage of that.)

The "assistant manager" was an asshole, but I lasted through spring and almost the whole summer before I called in sick one time because I couldn't stand going in. He just fired me for that. Tried dishwashing one more time. That job lasted a day. Moved into retail sales in a local department store, and shoe sales in a small chain store after that. Moving on, moving up, or down, perhaps :)
 

Supercreep

Lizard People
Listen up IBB. You didn't share a real story about your first real job when you actually had to pay income taxes.
If your desire is to use this thread to bitch and moan about minimum wage.....forget about it.
I would gladly accept it that the thread becomes closed by mods before you have the opportunity to corrupt the thread.
That's my polite way of saying...STFU.
I posted the thread because people have stories to tell about their first jobs and had to pay income taxes.

lolwut
 
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