When I was eighteen, the summer before my freshman year in college, I got a great job at a fruit & produce warehouse. The job paid $10 per hour and, please note, this was in 1966…that was great money back then and, in fact, it was more money than my dad was making at his job.
Anyway, my job consisted of unloading boxcars of produce, loading trucks, bagging potatoes for grocery stores, putting orders together . . . it was hard, physical work, but I was in good shape and like I said, the money was superb.
I came home from work one hot summer day and I was complaining because I was asked, at work, to sort through a particularly nasty load of potatoes and sort out the rotten ones. Now I don’t know if you’ve ever encountered a rotten potato before, especially one that has sat in a hot boxcar for a few days, but trust me when I tell you the smell will gag you. So I was not a happy boy when I sat down at dinner and commenced to complain to my parents.
That complaining went over about as well as farting in church.
My dad, who left high school his sophomore year to ride the rails looking for work during the Great Depression, was not impressed with my complaining. In fact, he hit the roof! He informed me, in rather colorful language, that I was getting paid damned good money, money many people would gladly take, and it was honest work and I should shut up and do what was asked of me, and I should do it well, the best I could, and I’m sure he went on telling me that people were dying of starvation around the world, and single mothers worked three jobs to feed their kids, and, well, you get the point. It was not a pleasant meal!
But the lesson was learned!
It’s been fifty years since I had that lesson force-fed to me over dinner, and I haven’t forgotten it. I do my jobs without complaining. Every job is important. I am grateful for the jobs I have. Thank you, Dad!
QUOTE OF THE DAY
“By taking the time to stop and appreciate who you are and what you’ve achieved – and perhaps learned through a few mistakes, stumbles and losses – you actually can enhance everything about you. Self-acknowledgment and appreciation are what give you the insights and awareness to move forward toward higher goals and accomplishments.” Jack Canfield
THOUGHT OF THE DAY
Here’s the thing: comparatively speaking, in a world with over seven billion people, there is but a handful of people who can do what we do, and do it well. I am lucky to be a writer. I make a living doing something I love doing. I make a living out of creating stories which entertain people. I am paid money to touch the hearts and souls of people.
That is an important job and I never want to consider it anything less.
What I do is incredibly important, and what you do is important, and we really need to be thankful and do the best damned job we can.
End of sermon!
“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”