Living the Life You Choose

i282600889613164547._szw1280h1280_It’s common place for some of today’s political sorts to speak of the present economic time as being quite horrible as compared to the past. They speak of the troubles that face young people and insist that this is the first generation that will not have the opportunities that were available in earlier times. I can’t speak for anybody else but I know that in my own case opportunity meant hard work. My first job was a summer gig in which I served as a receptionist at a medical clinic. I arrived promptly at eight thirty each morning so that I might be ready to answer the phones when they began to ring at the opening hour of nine. I generally worked until six in the evening but sometimes one of the doctors requested that I stay a bit longer to help close up after the late patients had left. For my efforts I was paid the grand salary of eighty eight dollars per month! (Yes, you read that correctly. I received twenty two dollars a week for working forty plus hours. A quick bit of math confirms that my salary was about fifty cents per hour.)

While I was busy working a “professional” job my brothers spent their summers at a roadside fruit and vegetable stand where they sat in the sweltering heat hoping to sell paper buckets of tomatoes and such. If I remember correctly they made about twenty five cents an hour which seemed like a gold mine to them because neither had yet turned sixteen years of age. My job was high living compared to theirs and I also managed to add a bit to my coffers with babysitting gigs on the weekends for which I received twenty five cents an hour. Over time my brothers and I managed to land an assortment of jobs all designed to pay for our extras like class rings, senior trips, and college. It never occurred to us that we should be outraged for having to put some sweat equity into our slow but sure progression up the socio-economic ladder.  Continue reading “Living the Life You Choose”