When I was going to school, I got a job that involved administrative work like filing and copying and collating. It was at the school in a department office. I didn’t take the job seriously. I’m not sure why I took it. I don’t remember much about it, but I don’t think it ended well. I was too involved with school work to care very much about it.
What’s the most unusual job you’ve had?
My 1st job was making shoe boxes from there went on to spinning cotton on mule machines then went to a papermill making toilet rolls
Optimising image file sizes so they loaded faster in web pages. It was in the days of dial-up modems and slow Internet speeds.
The most haphazard job I’ve had was working as a part-time shop assistant in a travelling shop.
The “travelling shop” was actually a battered old van, owned by the local corner shop owner and stocked with his goods.
My brother, who was only just old enough to drive and had not long passed his car driving test, was given the job of driving the van. I was only 11 years old but I was given the job of standing in the back of the van and serving the customers over the make-shift counter.
I was good at maths, so the weighing of goods, pricing and the money part was no problem - but the job itself was not one a kid should be doing, really.
I used to sit in the front of the van to travel on the main roads but when we were travelling slowly around the housing estate roads, with frequent stops along the road, it was quicker to just stay in the back of the van.
A very dangerous place to be if my brother had to do any sudden stops or manoevres around traffic - that’s when the stock had a tendency to fly off the shelves and I had to duck out of the way sometimes.
Nobody bothered about Health and Safety!
The housing estates we had to visit were in an area of poverty, so we would often get requests to give customers credit - there was quite a few customers who would pledge something of value, like their gold wedding ring in exchange for groceries or cigarettes - then when you went back on payday, they would pay their bill and you returned their ring.
My brother and I hated that side of the job - it felt like a lot of responsibility deciding whether to accept their pledges or not - we had seen our own Mum do that to buy food before and I found it so sad.
Anyway, when my brother got himself a proper job, we both left the travelling shop. After that, I got a more normal job for a kid, delivering newspapers.
I’d two summers working for the council works. Mostly dustbin emptying and maintaining parks and public paths. But one day the gaffer assigned me with one of the older blokes in the team and we went up to a local graveyard with spades. The day before a digger had taken most of the earth out and our job was to tidy up the sides of the hole, make sure it was wide enough all the way down and to dig out the last six inches of earth. That is, the earth right on top of the coffin already buried there. As we dug down my fellow grave digger advised me, “keep your feet to the edges lad, don’t put your weight in the middle”. Sound advice.
Electrical engineering - not so much the job but the locations. South Africa in Gold mines, The Sahara Desert, paper mills in China, mining in Malaysia…
Graveyards … Not sure anyone can beat that one …
I was a carpark litter picker for awhile on these out of town shopping retail parks. That was a cold job.
My uncle did that for some years.
@Besoeker … sounds like you’ve travelled around a bit .
Yes, I have - a world traveler one might say. But one of the trips was local-ish - it was the Orient Express.
Ach, not so bad for the ancient Scotsman from the backwood hills…
I was out of work and could only get the dole if I joined a government work scheme.A gang of us wasters went around painting and decorating the homes of pensioners who had applied for the free service.It was great,we met so many friendly people.But a trade union didn’t like it so it was stopped.But it was good fun while it lasted.
Going way back to when I became engaged and was saving up for a mortgage deposit. I took on part time work as a 6’6" tall life model. Anyone who thinks that is easy, should try it and see how they get on.
It wouldn’t be easy for me,I’m only 5’ 10"
built an igloo in the Hartz mountains,lived in for 3 days,i was in the army
Not sure if it would count as unusual but for me it was when I worked as a gondolier in the English landscape garden near Dessau in Saxony Anhalt, where I was born and lived the first 20 years of my life. As the name says, the garden was created because the owner had been fascinated by English gardens. As a gondolier and park guide I routinely took my visitors to a bridge, a scaled-down version of the first iron bridge in the world made of cast iron and built in Shropeshire, England, crossing the River Severn near Coalbrookdale.
The boats are not Venetian-style gondolas but rowing boats called gondolas. I didn’t and I can’t sing and I wouldn’t have called my job a gondolier because I’m aware of the associations, had it not been the official name used in the employment contract. Here is one:
Back then there were more people in a boat than nowadays. The number has been reduced to give visitors more space. Now girls can also do the job. The boats are still quite heavy especially when it’s windy and they need to be manoeuvred through those narrow canals which one can see in the pic with the iron bridge. But l loved my job. And I learned a lot.
I tried cane cutting once many decades ago, it was hell.