Introduce Yourself



  • ShaggyJD: conducting = rewarding; public school teaching = soul-sucking. My children's chorus kids are the best!
  • I should like to be a music major, but I'm not good enough. ): And plus I'm not like the music majors in their, you know, knowledge of composers and pieces and such. I'd just like to play something and be like, "oh, this is fun" or "oh, that's a neat effect," not so much, "oh, this is sonata number such and such by so and so, my second cousin thrice removed played it as his audition piece for the phil, but I myself prefer sonata number something else by the same person, written in such and such year, when he was really at his zenith of composing skill."

    (The above were all hypothetical statements, but still. I can't talk to music majors about music.)

    Since beginning to learn guitar what, four days ago, I can now play E major, A major, A minor, G major, G7, D major, D minor, cheat F, and a somewhat sloppy chromatic scale. Woohoo!
  • Well, it's all a matter of how much music you know -- I mean, play one thing by Debussy and you say, "Oh, that's a neat effect, I like this piece!", play another and you say, "I like this one too, it reminds me of the first Debussy I played", play more and you say, "Debussy seems to have these characteristics, and I really preferred the pieces that were all written around this year, when he was really at the zenith of his composing skill."
  • Yes, I suppose.
    Actually, yeah, that makes quite a bit of sense.
    It's still obnoxious, though, haha.

    So I guess the reason I'm not a music major is that I'm not passionate and dedicated enough to be one. I like to know a little about a lot of things, and once I've reached that point, I feel like my time would be better spent learning something else that I'm not already somewhat familiar with (which, I guess, "a little knowledge is a dangerous thing" and such, but still). So I guess the aspects of being a music major that most interest me are being able to take theory classes and learn all the instruments, not so much the hardcore practicing and familiarizing oneself with an appropriate libraryfull of repertoire.

    I guess the number of music majors in my dorm just makes me envious at times.
  • I have often thought that a "Dilettantism" major would have benefited the world by reducing the number of overspecialized dweebs and increasing the number of people with broader patterns of interest. On the other hand, would I prefer to be operated on by a dilettante or a surgeon? There's where my theory starts unraveling.
  • So I guess the aspects of being a music major that most interest me are being able to take theory classes and learn all the instruments...
    This may be really obvious, but those aren't aspects of being a music major, after all. What you mean is they fulfill requirements for music majors. But (fair warning: I'm about to use the e-word!) they're perfectly appropriate electives for everyone else.

    I know, it's a pain to get one's parents to understand why one is taking a course that doesn't help one graduate; I don't know IU's graduation requirements or the required coursework for the various departments, and I don't know how tuition works for you (if it's pay-by-the-course, then I can see how it may be too pricey).

    But don't regard an elective course as "meaningless" just because it "doesn't count for anything". If it's something you've always been interested in, or even if it just scratches an itch for you, I think it's worthwhile, at least to consider.
  • Yeah, I suppose. It's just that ... I don't know. If I were actually to do that - take classes in things I've been interested in - I would never end up with a major. Because I've always wanted to take a sociology class, and a philosophy class, and macroeconomics (for which micro is a prerequisite), and then of course music theory, and creative writing (poetry and plays), and Italian, and Hindi, and acting, and public speaking, and ... okay, maybe that's about it, but that totals to at least a year of coursework. Well, and then I frequently happen across classes that just sound interesting that I want to take.

    Perhaps I could go through with my plan or whatever, and then stay here an extra year and take all the classes I wanted to but that didn't fit in to my plan - a couple of theory classes, maybe theater and creative writing stuff...

    But is that really how I want to spend a year?

    I'm totally turning this thread into a Shruti-whines-about-her-lack-of-direction sort of thing. Sorry guys.
  • Hey, don't worry about changing the course of the thread, Shruti -- unless you don't want to talk about it any more, which I'd understand. I mean, this is already basically an open thread anyway. (Forum at large: Which means if you haven't introduced yourself, please do!)
    But is that really how I want to spend a year?
    Well, what else would you want to do? I guess if you could say with certitude, "I want to major in x and get a job in x and do x for the rest of my life," then it would make more sense to say, "well, x is what I'm really passionate about, and putting it off for a year to do things I care less about isn't really what I want to do." But if you're still not sure, what's the rush? If you're not all that attached to being a tinker or tailor or soldier or spy, what does it matter if you start at age 22 instead of age 21?

    I'm good at worst-case scenarios, so let's start there (well, we'll skip the ones that involve unexpected hunks of space debris at high velocities). Maybe you take the year to take those classes, and you end up taking a bunch of unnecessary courses that you find you're really not that into. And maybe it hurts your GPA a little (by the way, if you can, take them no-credit or pass-fail -- especially macro / micro, if you're taking it as a luxury). And maybe you pay a whole lot more tuition and spend a lot longer paying off student loans...

    ...y'know, maybe it's not such a good idea after all.

    Seriously, you see what the really obvious moral that I feel stupid spelling out is: Is that really too much to risk for the chance of doing something you're really interested in?

    (Or maybe there's another worst-case scenario: You take music theory your last term of college, realize suddenly that that's what you've really always wanted to do, and have to decide whether to backtrack and take another four years to finish a music degree. I'll let you struggle with that one yourself.)
  • Bry said: "(Forum at large: Which means if you haven't introduced yourself, please do!)"

    Hmm ok, I'll take the plunge :P

    Ceridwyn isn't my real name, so no, I'm not Welsh before you ask! Its one of a couple of handles/screen names I've used in my time on the internet, and was the current one at the time I signed up, which must have been a while ago.

    I'm a software development student in my final year of 2, though I'm currently working full time for a small software firm in a half/half testing/odd jobs role which is great!
    Spare time is usually wasted playing too much WoW, after close to 3 years playing I've still yet to find anything else to plug the void of nothing to do =S
    I live in New Zealand with my husband who is a qualified audio engineer but is retraining as a software developer too. My what geeky kids we'll have one day! 8-)

    I discovered JoCo through a then-guildmate and friend who linked Code Monkey on our WoW guild's forums and it was love at first listen as many of you I'm sure can relate to!
    The rest of my day was spent obsessively pouring through the Songs page here and devouring them, whilst feverishly discussing each one with said friend whilst herbing in Azshara ^_^

    I'd love Love LOVE to see him live but as I don't travel much and the likelihood of him touring lil ole NZ anytime soon looks slim I guess I'll just have to add that to my long-term list of goals, right next to owning a Hedgehog pet (can't convince The Boss) and moving to the woods to become a hippy (lack of internet and technology is the main thing holding me back atm =S )

    I love forums, lolcats and all manner of other web related diversions and have neck problems due to the amount of time I sit at computers but even that doesn't stop me.
    Oh and I like to knit but I'm not very good, despite the previous two generation of women trying their best to school me. I've decided I like the hodge-podge amateur look and frequently change colours at whim to cultivate it.

    I also quite like writing and have a degree in graphic design so I guess I must be ok at artsy type things but since me and my muse have a very strained and distant relationship. In fact I haven't had so much as postcard from her in a good 6 months. I have two articles on Uncyclopedia and established the Proofreading Service there if anyone is familiar with the site. Happy to supply links if anyone is interested :)
  • edited January 2008
    Bry: Are you kidding? That last case scenario would be fantastic. Okay, maybe not so fantastic monetary-costs-wise, but if I were to find, you know, something I was passionate and excited about enough to want to do for the rest of my life, it'd totally be worth it.

    On the other hand, classes that sound interesting have a nasty habit of turning out not to be, like you said; it'd be pretty awful to do it, spend the money, and then realize I wasn't even all that interested in any of the exciting classes I had anticipated taking for the previous four years.

    It just seems like 22 years is a hell of a long time to spend getting a formal education; aren't people by that age supposed to be taxpaying, financially independent, contributing members of society? You know? An equal amount of time after that, I'm past my prime, and then what? (Sorry...I have no idea how you or most of the others here are; I mean no offense to anyone who is, say, over 44 but not yet considering himself/herself to be past his/her prime.)

    (Although that's another problem: where on earth I plan to go after school. However, that is one I absolutely refuse to worry about until a couple of years from now...I was thinking *maybe* some sort of international relations or public policy school, although, you know, just getting a job and an apartment in a city somewhere'd be swell too.)

    I mean, I'm sure I'll end up doing something eventually and not minding it too much, but ... how'd he phrase it? There was this one line in Haruki Murakami's The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, that Mr. Okada (age 30ish, I think) said:

    "But knowing what I don't want to do doesn't help me figure out what I do want to do. I could do just about anything if somebody made me. But I don't have an image of the one thing I really want to do. That's my problem now. I can't find the image." -page 122
  • Shruti, I'm nearly 25 and am still studying and my husband is coming up for 28 this year and he's been in and out of study since he left school also. Finding a career/passion/or even a job you don't hate going to everyday is something I think a lot of our generation struggle with, so don't feel alone or too bad about it!
    Gone are the days where you leave high school, go into an internship/apprenticeship and work at the same job til you retire at 65. Sure in some ways thats scary and confusing but also its quite liberating and free. I bet our grandparents generation would have loved to have that much freedom in their lives.

    So as I said, try to enjoy it :)
  • Wow, I thought the whole lack of a job you like even after years in education thing was something localised to a few of my friends here in the UK, not a load of people the world over. I'd absolutely love to work as a systems administrator somewhere in a university or something. The job's rubbish,the pay's rubbish, the future prospects are probably rubbish and the hours can be rubbish. But I'd love to do it all the same. Can I find a job opening anywhere, even one that I'm not qualified for? Can I hell. Its a bit depressing to think that I'll end up in a dead end job somewhere that I hate and with no chance of ever doing something I'd love to do.
  • edited January 2008
    Daaaaaang. This tread grew quickly over a period of 2 (maybe 3, I don't know) days. Like something ... funny ... that... grows very quickly.

    Okay, I admit it, I got nothin'

    I forgot to mention that I can play the trumpet, just in case you were wondering... no one ever DOES but... you know.

    [EDIT]: Nice "I Feel Fantastic" video, sporksmith! I Just saw it.
  • Shruti: there's nothing unusual about lacking direction at this point in your life. Because you won't know what you like and don't like until you start actually trying things! I freaked out about my career, life, the universe, and everything going into college; coming out of it I had a whole bunch of stuff happen in my life that made me realize all that freaking out is rather silly. By all means take that extra year to explore your other interests. It gets a lot harder to do the functional equivalent of electives once you're no longer in school. If it takes you one quarter to discover you don't like something, it's better than years spent wondering later if it might have been your cup of tea after all. As for GPA... unless you plan on going for further education in a highly competitive field or profession (med or law school, etc.) no one is really going to care about your grades in the long run.
  • BryBry
    edited January 2008
    Welcome (back), Ceridwyn! (Out of curiosity, may I ask how your screen name translates? [Edited: Thanks, Mark.]) Keep spreadin' the JoCo spirit to your friends, neighbors, acquaintances, and strangers and sooner or later he'll have to make his way to NZ!

    Shruti, I was being half-serious -- I've known some people who would be devastated if they found they really wanted to do something that would mean scratching all their plans, starting over, and studying something without "prospects." That's what I meant by the "struggle with that one yourself" bit: it's a dilemma of sorts, but just how bad it is only you can say.

    And it's probably a good idea to take one class every so often that you're interested in, rather than lump them all together at the end, for the reasons you mention, and also because if you take Intro to Music Theory (say) and love it, you can look forward to Advanced later on. Talk to the professors, get an idea of the workload, and ask if they'd dissuade you from taking their classes for a lark.

    [Edited to say: That should parse as "ask if they'd dissuade you (from taking their classes for a lark)", not "ask if they'd dissuade you... for a lark." Although if it's the latter, you probably want to know that too.]

    Or get involved with things (extracurriculars, etc.) that are related to the kinds of courses you're interested in -- a Toastmasters club, a theatre group, a writing circle, a, uh, macroeconomic cartel... as you say, why this emphasis on formal schooling? Going through the rigmarole of college is, yeah, a little silly, but thinking of college classes as the only way to learn these things is a little narrowminded too. (It's an excellent way, of course, always assuming decent teaching, but not the only way.)

    I agree with everything Tindomiel (pardon the accent) said.

    Mr. Nobody: I am very interested in your trumpet proficiency, particularly if you think you'd be able to record yourself playing -- the Jonathan Coulton Cover Group ("The Mandelbrot Set") could always do with another musician.

    Edited to add: I hope you've all seen the other PopSci "I Feel Fantastic" video contest winners -- sporksmith / blackcatbonifide's is my favorite, but I like all the others (the first prize winner, by Andrea = AnnieKate76, has really grown on me, though I wasn't a fan at first). Also Spiff's entry, which you can get to from, and Buggy's, which I have found after forum-trawling.

    Speaking of Buggy, wherever he is, he, Kerrin, and Jinx (and JoCo, I suppose) are the only ones forum-related who've met me, but everyone else is free to speculate as to how long ago I passed my prime.
  • Glad y'all enjoyed the video :)

    Shruti- I'll second Bry's advice. College is a good time to explore what's out there. Looking back, I think I was a little *too* focused. I'd decided from the start it was computer science for me. I work work worked through the curriculum with as little branching out class-wise as possible and not much in the way of extracurriculars (and the extracurriculars I did were programming-related). Now I'm in my 6th year of grad school (in computer engineering), kind of burned out on computer science, and rediscovering my creative side and other interests that I didn't explore back when it would have been easier to do so. So yeah, being focused is overrated. Broaden your horizons. Stop and smell the roses.

    jinx- hah, just went back and caught your comment. Yes, I am an overspecialized dweeb :)
  • Hey, Shruti. As a music major, I feel much maligned! ;-) Just FYI, I went into the major with a thorough understanding of 1970s rock, 1980s pop, some choral music, and lots of barbershop tunes. So not all music majors are egg-heads who can quote great works by chapter and verse. :-) I still can't.

    Don't put so much pressure on yourself to decide the course of the rest of your life right now - or even in college. Life changes, throws you curves. I had to work my way through college, so it took me ten years to get my BA, and another two for the masters before I got to start my career. Then after six years, I went and changed careers. I'm still glad I got my music degree, though. (Not trying to convert you or anything.) All this being said, if the parents are footing the bill for college, I understand that can certianly curtail your choices, whereas I was free to waste, er *invest*, all my own money.
  • edited January 2008
    Ceridwen (and variants) was a mythical Welsh witch. I picked up the name from Lush's scrumpy bath melt (Ceridwen's Cauldron) when I worked there and used it as a character name in WoW but someone had beaten me to it so I had to opt for a variation; Ceridwyn. Technically I believe the -wyn suffix is male and -wen is female but I think it looks pretty with the 'y' anyway :)

    These days I go more by the name Percephene, another bastardisation based on the fact that in WoW a character name is unique to each server and again, someone beat me to the correct spelling. (Though on lolcat based sites I change it to Purrsephone, strictly for the lulz you see.)

    It is with a sense of deep and complete self-loathing that I'm now forced to spend my days known by mispelt variants of names I love, as I am a terrible spelling/grammar/punctuation geek. =S
    Though my friend coined a quaint but endearing nickname for me because pronouncing Percephene was apparently too hard, so sometimes I'm referred to as Perkyknee, or 'Ceph.

    Oops I just realised how much I rambled on about myself =S
  • Sporksmith --

    If you recognize the type ("overspecialized dweeb") then by definition you aren't one, although you've correctly identified the boxlike prisonlike feeling of getting molded into a single shape for too long. I guess it's the way to create a great deal of depth in one field, but I've personally never actually met anyone who was perfectly suited for one field of study and none other.

    I did my graduate work in organizational psychology; finished all the coursework & passed all the comprehensive exams for a PhD, but ended up taking a terminal masters and searching for some way, any way, to escape having to become one for the rest of my life. The more I worked with these people, the less I liked them as a group, and the fewer individuals I knew within the profession who resembled me. My interest in the subject matter wasn't enough to overcome that huge negative.

    The good news is that career patterns overall are getting a lot more fluid, and it looks like people will have a series of careers over time, rather than just one single one. The one thing I think people Shruti's age don't recognize is that the process of figuring those careers out has to become a very active one. Bry kind of alluded to that in saying that anyone can read the books, websearch topics you find interesting, and so on -- taking a course in something isn't the only way to learn things about it.

    At my last org psych conference, I was appalled to realize that I was the only person in an auditorium filled with about four or five thousand of my peers who was wearing any color other than black, navy, or beige. It was the beginning of recognizing the end.
  • Oh, no, Ceridwyn, don't be mistaken -- this thread is actually open for people besides me to ramble! Particularly about themselves, which is totally On-Topic for this thread, so sayeth the admin.
  • Yes but I'm sure no-one here *really* cares about my various handles in that much depth :P
    But thanks for the Bry Seal of Approval! XD
  • edited January 2008
    I care, Ceridwyn! Ah, I just got pwned. I thought "wyn" wasn't always used for masculine only but it turns out I'm wrong.
  • Aww its ok Tindomiel, I only had it pointed out to me after using that name for a good year or so by a google-happy friend over at Uncyclopedia. XD

    Anyway sometimes its a good idea to mask one's gender on the internet (not here but particularly in WoW it isnt always wise to let slip such information) so it can't really hurt!

    Out of interest is anyone here familiar with or a contributor to Uncyclopedia?
  • One can never assume anything from character gender in WoW. MMORPG: Many Men Online Role-Playing Girls.
  • I know it was a page ago that we were talking about this but I was struck with what JoCo said in his blog entry this morning:

    But the best part was when Tom Brislin from the band Spiraling came up and introduced himself to me - I’m a big fan, and I’m afraid I geeked out just a little.

    I wasn't able to meet JoCo at the last concert but I know I would geek out. I think anyone would when meeting someone that had an effect on your life.

    I haven't erased his emails that he has sent me, but I didn't go as far as to put them on the wall.
  • "One can never assume anything from character gender in WoW. MMORPG: Many Men Online Role-Playing Girls."

    Exactly and I play on that, all my toons are female and I let people assume I'm a guy too XD
  • I'm still slightly dazed by the amazing collection of people on this forum. Love you all ;-) But let's pick on Shruti again. She seems to be a good campfire in which to toast our personal marshmallows, or possible ourselves.

    Shruti, I did a degree in musicology at a strictly classical-oriented music school. I vaguely recall studying some high-falutin' stuff, yet today I'd be an obvious fake if you tried to get me to talk Classical Music. So much for the academic background. I enjoyed it, and it didn't put me off actually enjoying music, much like the study of biology needn't put one off meat, even if other things might.

    We are all dilettantes in some way or another, but self-awareness of our shortcomings goes a long way towards keeping us balanced. As a bonus, having the nagging feeling that you suck at/have shallow knowledge of a craft or area of learning can be a great motivator to spend more time with it. When IndigoMonkey identified himself as a "computer-geek without a CompSci degree," my initial reading was that he wishes he had one. But of course that is just me projecting onto him ;-) Seriously though, as a half-assed coder I have great respect for those who paid their dues and wrote compilers as class projects. Maybe the non-music majors get to feel the same way about people who were metaphorically whipped into doing endless counterpoint exercises. Pointerless N-size ex-counters. Countless size X endpoints.

    Perhaps you're having a case of Pre-grets: knowing that in most of the parallel universes representing your future, something you're doing now turns out to be stupid. C'est la vie. I really loved JoCo's note where he describes Town Crotch as a memory he wishes he had. I'm now toying with the idea that we are defined by the union of a) memories we wish we had, and b) those we wish we didn't.

    The end. For now.
  • edited January 2008
    This is mainly a public exercise for myself, but all this talk about changing careers and defining oneself and such made me wonder if I could actually remember all the jobs I've had so far. Many of these overlap. I haven't had just one single job for at least a dozen years. Feel free to scroll on past. :-)

    1. office clerk
    2. movie theater concessions cashier
    3. dry cleaners cashier
    ..and then I graduated from high school and went to community college...
    4. department store credit cashier
    5. computer store accounts receivable
    6. conference center kitchen/cleaning staff
    7. (different) department store credit cashier/gift-wrap
    8. bank teller
    9. book store manager
    10. administrative assistant
    ...and then I went to UCLA...
    11. kitchen help/office clerk
    12. office manager
    13. first-grade music teacher
    14. receptionist/database designer/realtor assistant/person Friday
    ...and then I went to grad school...
    15. choral director (various places and levels)
    ..and then I finally graduated...
    16. church musician
    ..and then I went back to school...
    17. accounting clerk
    18. auditor

  • I haven't had nearly as many...

    Video store clerk
    Logistics clerk at a department store
    Video store clerk
    Video store shift manager
    Assistant store manager at video store
    Communications Assistant at relay service
    Vault clerk at casino
  • Yeah, but I've got 12 years on you. ;-)
  • All I can say, Colleenky, is this: RESPECT! Damn, you've pretty much done it all, and obviously have scars to wear as a badge of honor. Wait, I don't spot the scars... You mean, all that AND sane? I kind of wish I got to teach, but somehow I managed to slip past it. I'm a pretty good pianist and I was a reasonable music director (i.e. nobody working "under" me ever felt the need to unmask me for the fraud that I probably am), but if I had to impart any so-called knowledge to anybody, I think I'd freeze up unless I was following a recipe.

    And as for having twelve years on muckalarkuary (try typing that with a keyboard-obsessed 8-month-old on your lap!) I'd say the real badge of honor is the ability to keep moving and not reach a static equilibrium. I'm hoping for dynamic equilibrium myself, which is a nice way of saying I wish I got more music back into my life.
  • I'm looking at the jobs I've listed and wishing that even one of them had made me remotely happy.

    Okay... that's disingenuous. I was remotely happy at the (second) video store and I'm remotely happy at the casino. But it isn't really enough.
  • Thanks, Borba! I feel the need to share a couple of prize-winning moments from my varied working life, if folks will indulge me.

    Most humbling: I'm cleaning out a room at the conference center, and the new group - a bunch of kids - is already coming into the dorms. As they approach the room I'm in, I hear, "There's someone in our room!" Then after they see me, "Oh, it's just the cleaning lady."

    Most inspiring: There are actually a few of these, but I'll share just one. On the bus ride back from a field trip, the guys from my high school chorus are singing My Girl. From the back of the bus I hear, "I guess you'd say/What can make me feel this way?/Miss Kennedy..." :-D Too bad the soul-sucking to inspiring ratio was so high where I was teaching.
  • I worked at a video store for a year and it was the best job I ever had. First there was the free movie rentals. The hours were great, the pay was great, and all my co'workers and managers were fun to hang out with. I worked near Chapman University so we got a lot of film students and a lot of interesting discussions about movies and directors. I watched a lot of movies I might not have otherwise.
  • The video store was a great job when I was just a regular clerk and a not-so-great job when I was Assistant Manager. I got tired of having movies thrown at me.
  • Okay, here's my surreal humbling contribution. I'm playing a regular Saturday nightclub gig for something like two months already. Our first set started at 11pm, followed by a long break before the second set. During this break, I'd always go an take a nap in the car, after which the sax player would come and wake me up for the second set, which always had a really nice, happy crowd. So one day an old school friend is in town and I suggest he drops by for a drink during this long break, since it was the only time we could sync up. He comes by toward the end of the first set, we get drinks afterwards, and finally I learn why the crowd was happier during the second set: we've been warming up the room for the stripper.

    Oh, and of course the one student stage production where I composed all the music, was music director, sound designer, loaned them equipment, and neglected my own classes for. I was the hardest-working member of the production, and I was actually quite proud of what I had done. Then I saw the program, designed by a second-year student towards class credit. My name was at the very bottom, after everybody who contributed one afternoon of credited time painting props: "Xxxx Yyyyy: Musician".

    These things keep us in our places ;-)
  • edited January 2008
    When I was at University I had so many very different jobs (mainly during the holidays), lets see if I can remember them:
    • I packaged air plane food
    • I packed Still Tango in a factory (well the machine broke, so most of the time I sat and did nothing) (I disliked Tango before I worked there)
    • I sorted 3rd class mail for the post office during a postal strike (3rd class mail is business mail, or to put it another way, junk mail)
    • I counted money for Barclays Bank central counting office...on my first day, I personally handled 14 million pounds (about 28 million dollars (sticks little finger in side of mouth))
    • I moved rocks on a dump (I hated that so much I stopped after 1/2 a day, and the temping agency never gave me another job ever again)
    • I packed tomatoes every saturday for a few months during term time at uni (I hated tomatoes before I worked there)
    • And I spent 3 months in Ocean City, Maryland working as a theme park ride was my first time aboard ever, and I have loved visiting the USA ever since.
    Since leaving uni, I have just been a software engineer (code monkeys rock!)
  • Ocean City! Thrasher's French Fries. Chincoteague Island. Putt-Putt Golf. ahhh.
  • Interesting exercise. It's funny how jobs make you hate stuff, too (or not hate stuff, because you already hated it, as in Kerrin's case.)

    In order, I've been a pet store sales clerk, a veterinarian's assistant, (and then I went to college...) a summer camp counselor for the United Way, a summer camp Nature Instructor for the United Way, a Naturalist intern with the DNR, a sales associate for Natural Wonders (Nature/Science Mall Gift Shop chain), a sales manager for the same, a Biology intern with my university, an employee of Wendy's, (and then I graduated from college...) a High School Science teacher, a professional science tutor, and a website designer.

    Looking at that, it's funny to me how ardently I've stuck with one obvious theme throughout until I became a Mom. ;) Even so, I've come out of it with a serious distaste for the Department of Natural Resources, for sales in general. Ironically, I did NOT come away with an aversion to Wendy's food. o_0
  • Let's see:

    McDonalds - started at 16

    Receptionist/accounts receivable at a inpatient drug/alcohol treatment hospital

    Kinkos - 10 years - everything from counter monkey (yes, we actually called it that years ago) to trainer at the corporate office.

    Production Manager for creating DVD's from home movies/videos/etc.

    Editor/Writer for online thrifty site (family business)

    That's a pretty short list for over 20 years of employability. I think I probably didn't work for 6 months of that time too. I will NEVER work a retail job again or food service, for that matter.
  • Corn pack. Film projectionist. Molecular biology lab hourly (everything from collecting blood from lab mice to euthenizing and dissecting them). Chemistry lab hourly (everything from mixing chemicals to running instruments to machining new parts). Health insurance claim processing. Data entry clerk. Demonstration subject for medical equipment. Software technical support. Software quality assurance.
  • BryBry
    edited January 2008
    Demonstration subject for medical equipment.
    ...well, you know I have to ask.
  • .. uh..yeah. Me too.
  • This was a temp assignment, back between the time I left biochemistry and embraced computer science, a time when I didn't really have a whole lot of marketable skills. A local medical equipment manufacturer made and sold devices that were used during surgery that came dangerously close to nerves. The devices would send a periodic electrical impulse through intact, healthy nerves in order to induce a regular twitch in some downstream piece of anatomy, typically a finger. If a surgeon working on your wrist noticed that your finger was no longer twitching, that would imply that the surgeon wasn't being sufficiently cautious around a particular nerve. A sufficiently cautious surgeon could at least use such a device to get a hint that something was wrong, hopefully before causing permanent damage.

    In any case, they made and sold such devices and trained others in their use, but it wasn't really a good idea to subject the same person to this sort of rude galvanism day after day, so they relied on temp workers who presumably would not suffer lasting harm. So it was that I was paid to lie flat on my back with twitching finger during such a training session.

    On a subsequent job application I was asked to describe my "position" at my last several jobs. For that particular job, I described my position as "supine."
  • *ba-dum-ching!*

    Honestly, I just cracked up. What a brilliant punchline.
  • My work experience is shockingly limited to a teaching assistant for a week on a forced exercise. Was pretty cool though. (I may or may not have lost track of what was going on here)
  • My first job at 15 was bartender at a private resort. I don't know how they got away with that.
    McDonalds was a crappy job till I got to management, then they payed my way through business school.
    Managed a pizza place. Managed a gas station/ foodmart. Moved out of state. Managed another McDonalds (fired an entire shift of workers my first day.)
    Earned a scholarship so school full time for several years without having to work.
    Managed a small grocery store.
    Pepsi- sales route (best paying job I've ever had.)
    Managed a small restaurant.
    Part time video store.
    full time stay at home dad.
    Emperor of the known universe and all it's subsectors except Detroit.
  • Either Britain has been fleeced, but did you guys know that (here at least) McDonalds is now qualified to give it's employees A-Levels which they can use at university? It's a little off-topic, but I've lost the open thread and wondered what you thought about it.
  • To be honest, I don't think that too many universities will accept the "Mcxaminations" as sufficient for entry most courses available, but I guess it's a good way to get more people into further education....and they get paid for it...I do think it makes a bit of a mockery out of those that really worked they asses off to get into uni in the first place though. I'm probably just being too skeptical...good luck to them!
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