Thursday, April 9, 2009

Growing Up . . .

. . . In Various Brief Jobs

Lady B and I had planned to meet the well drillers up north today to "supervise" installing a well pump but they didn't show.

We had to wait, nevertheless, at home for the TV satellite man to visit us and get our boob tubes working since their so-called smart cards weren't doing the trick.

He found out we didn't push the cards into the slots hard enough - the directions plainly said "don't push hard or force cards in."

We had followed the directions. Serviceman got the TVs going well in advance of Dr. Phil's show, Lady B's "can't miss an episode" favorite..

By the time we really were ready to go north and do a little work, it was too windy and dust storms would have been building up so we shelved those plans for today. Atop that, there's three wildfires burning and a few roads closed so we'll just hunker down at home.

And that brings me back to the blog screen where I think I can fill space with a few items on jobs that didn't last long or that I did not like after I got back from England in 1946 and before I got into newspapering full time. (Did I mention earlier that I was a newspaperman for lots of years?)
After my stint in the army I worked at a print shop in Easton, a town in Massachusetts about 25 miles from home but that did not pay enough to cover living costs for my bride and the cost of transportation.

Then there was the job at the state school for disabled and challenged people on a midnight to dawn shift.

Most nights I had to administer shots in the butt to quiet some patients, male and female. That chore was not up my alley and thus that job didn't last, by my own decision.

Driving a taxi wasn't too bad a job but since the pay was dependant on how many fares you drove, how far they went and how they tipped, that was a job used as a fill-in while trying to find something better.

Checker Cab and City Cab always needed drivers but it seemed to me that I was getting more of my share of drunken passengers who often had no money to pay me when we reached a destination and many times were unruly as well. But I put up with those prroblems as long as I could.

Both cab firms wanted me back but I think it was only because at closing time about 2 a. m., I was the best at parking cabs in a narrow garage and that really didn't make me rich at all.

A high school classmate, Bill Matteson, who also was a fledgling printer like I was, got me into a print shop in the downtown section of the hometown where I trained on using an automatic press called a Meihle.

A good job but it turned out the company wasn't doing enough business at the time and I being the last one in, became the first out. Figures!

In the meantime in my home I was operating my own printing business, picking up a fairly good stream of small jobs including printing at midnight a few hundred tip sheets for the next day's racing at the local dog track. This activity kept us in food, and maufacting bookmarks for libraries all around the country, a nice contract while it lasted.

Working in photography provided some additional income both before my army service and afterwards, particularly after completing a thousand hours of photography school during two years at night in Boston. The photography story will be on hold for later use.

Guess that's enoough yakking for today.

- 30 -
Old Newsie


  1. I never knew you shot people in the butt. Wow! You were doing that even before Mom and Scrabblebuff and me!

  2. I shoot my mom in the butt once a month! Its fun(evil grin).... umm I mean I give her her B-12 shot. After my daughters accident in 2001 I had to shoot her to, twice a day in the belly( youch).. I suppose ya do what ya gotta do huh Old Newsie.