Yep, this is my anniversary month at my place of work. I’ve been working in shipping/receiving/inventory management at (insert orthopedic company name here) for fifteen years now. Before that I was at (insert another orthopedic company name here) for six years. Prior to that I worked for two months in the newspaper industry, a year renting porn and video games to troglodytes(one of my favorite jobs), prior to that I was stock boy and ponytail-wearing grocery bagger, and there were even a few stints in the food industry. Granted, I was 19 when I started my six year stint at my first orthopedic company, so everything prior to that was high school-age craziness.
So yeah, I’m celebrating being at the same employer for 15 years. I can tell you it’s been a bumpy 15 years to say the least. Within two weeks of starting there I was wondering what in the hell I’d done leaving my cozy auditing job, with my own cubicle, voicemail, pager, and frequent flyer miles(I traveled all over the U.S. checking inventories of my employer’s products at hospitals, offices, basements, and trunks of cars.) Well, I know WHY I left that job. My wife was pregnant and I knew I didn’t want to be in Tuscon, AZ loading inventories into a laptop while she was having an ultrasound. My current manager was a turd of a human being and I knew he wouldn’t give two shits about my situation so I started looking for something else on the sly while I took flights to Lubbock, Billings, and Miami Lakes. Turns out this other orthopedic company liked the cut of my jib(at least according to my resume) and called me in for an interview. One morning while I slept off a late flight and an even later arrival home I was woke up on the couch by a phone call. This orthopedic company wanted me to come in for an interview. Of course I said yes and headed in. After a rather strange interview with the flightiest Human Resources woman I’d ever met I met with who would become my supervisor. Her name was Judy and she was the size of a Volkswagon Bug. To most I’m sure she was quite intimidating. To me she seemed like a cartoon character come to life. Or someone I would make up and tell stories about to my friends and family. Well, after a series of questions about stressfull situations and what I felt were my strengths and weaknesses I said goodbye and was on my way. Within a week I’d gotten a call from the weird Human Resources lady telling me she needed some of my urine. I’d gotten the job and they needed a drug test.
After countless battles of wills, idiot supervisors, managers, General Managers, and former fellow employees I’ve made it through with very few scars. I was lucky because they hired another guy for the same department. We hired in the same day, started the same day, went through orientation together, and are still working together to this day. We’re ten years apart(him being the older one) but you’d think we’d grown up together since kiddos. Two smart ass peas in a pod. We basically got each other through those first rough couple years.
Dream job? Not on your life. But it is a job that’s allowed me to fulfill dreams for my kids, wife, and yes even me. It’s allowed me to put a roof over our heads. It allowed my wife to quit her job so she could stay home with our kiddos so they never had to know that word “daycare”. It’s affored us vacations, affordable healthcare, sick pay, holiday pay, and general peace of mind. So while I’m not making a living playing music or writing about music, I’m happy, content, and my family is happy and content.
Plus, as a gift the company gave me a bunch of “recognize points” that can be spent at an online store. Know what I got? A turntable and noise-cancelling headphones. With those Bose speakers downstairs it looks like I have my basement listening nook complete. That’s an anniversary gift that keeps on giving.