[23 – 26] Work and College

Paint Your Wagon – They Call The Wind Maria.

This isn’t an especially entertaining or eventful period of my life. Eventually, I got a job, a 6-month stint working alongside environmental and forestry organizations – nothing glorious. After a month or so of dicking around in the Portland area while being trained, we switched to a 8-day-on, 6-day-off shift, wherein we worked “10” hour days while on.

We, essentially, took on minor jobs for the forestry service – shit people would have normally been paid more for; allot more infact: one of us crunched the numbers of all our “benefits” and pay, and we apparently made less than minimum wage; it was some old, government loophole left over from the great depression. Complete bullshit, of course, but I needed work.

So, we’d spend the first day driving out, the 7 of us packed into an SUV, then set up camp, talk to whoever was hiring us, maybe do some scouting or get a little work done. For the next 6 days, we’d do any number of things: clearing brush, working on trails, gathering wild seed, gathering intel for forestry, removing invasive species, digging hole, “stick piling,” just the simpler forestry labor.

Sometimes we camped in fire-fighting warehouses, sometimes we camped in the middle of no where. We’d do the 10 hours of labor after morning camp duties, then finish the day with night camp duties – so, really, the days were more like 12-14. It was a hell of allot of fun, though we universally hated our boss, whom was unfortunately part of the team.

We had allot of fun, did allot of dicking around, but our idiot boss really limited the joys to be had. The two women on the team regularly flirted with me, which was infuriating, as one was pregnant with her boyfriend’s child, the other was fucking married. The males were fun and decent, though mostly immature.

Plenty of fun and interesting stories throughout that period of time, especially considering that we lived and worked together around the clock for the majority of 5 months. I genuinely liked them all, aside from the idiot boss; I’m slightly saddened when recalling that I don’t have them around anymore. Though I wouldn’t consider any of them good friends [due to their naivety], I would certainly open my home to them.

Once that job’s stint was up, I was planning to rejoin, but the business shut down. Probably for the best that I didn’t stick around: the management was primarily well-meaning but naive and incompetent, which seems to be the most common traits among environmentalists. After that job, I took a few months off.

Shortly after that job ended, my great Aunt and Uncle had to move for work, and I decided to stick around the area. I’m sure they’d have been glad to keep me around, but my Aunt was absolutely intolerable – as was her cooking, which I had to eat to keep her happy. So, I moved.

Great place, though I lived with the owner, whom was a little off. I happened to be.. maybe 5 blocks from the community college, which was not planned. The camping job happened to pay out a little scholarship, which I found was awarded without condition, so long as I was in college. So, I went to college for around 2 years, mostly to avoid work and test the waters.

But let me wind back a bit. Once I had moved, I got a job. It was only a 3-month contract, not that interesting, and I’m probably under a no-disclosure contract about the time I spent there, so I won’t go into detail about it. But, I worked in a clean-room, for a major corporation, doing construction, with a fun mix of locals and foreigners. Aside from the god-damned clean-suit, it was ok.

Next two or so years, I just went to college while dicking around and thinking in my free time – as usual. I genuinely don’t remember much of those years, as they were quite uneventful. I seriously flirted with a girl on the internet, but she seemed too irrational to take things further. Nothing much of interest.

Finally left college when I decided it wasn’t worth it; and when I failed a math class two or three semesters in a row – I frankly didn’t care enough to try. No idea if, due to those failures, I can still get student aid – but I’m not interested in going back.


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~ by Louis Naughtic on January 23, 2017.

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