Not too long ago I wrote about embracing your inner child in order to escape the day-to-day grind of being an adult. The reality of that is that you need money in order to do that. Are you trying to get into places like the zoo or a baseball game? You need money. Do you want to eat while you are at these places as, more often than not, they don't allow outside food? You need money. Do you need to pay the bills first in order to do all of these things? You get the idea.
Not everybody can be lucky to land a fairly well paying job coming right out of college. I know I wasn't. And looking through everything that I can do to increase my chances of landing a (dream?) job, it is safe to say that I need the money to make it happen. Professional resume. Rides to the city for interviews. It all adds up. So what is there to do?
The answer is simple: get a job, any job. With student loan payments looming around the corner, I need to find a job that, once those payments, the electric bill, the Internet bill, and groceries are taken care of, will allow me to have some fun. My journalism degree hasn't helped me yet, and I need to do something, anything really, to get me on track. If that means working food service or retail, so be it.
I have experience with working jobs that bite. Food service sucks, especially when the customer complains about things that are out of your control. You're asked the same stupid questions over and over again. You're on your feet for hours, and right when you have everything cleaned up and ready to go home, some jackwagon comes in looking for food just as the closed sign gets turned around.
I have heard the horror stories of working retail. My parents always talk about working at a record store back in the 80's and how the worst shopping day of the year is that Saturday right before Christmas. I can only imagine what the crowds would be like. I would hate to have to work Black Friday like my older brother had to.
While I appreciated the opportunity to gain work experience in general, I knew that I would not want to do this for the rest of my life (especially at minimum wage). But in the short term, I need something to build up my bank account, so the fact that I have the experience with doing something that isn't fun makes it an easier pill to swallow.
At least I am not the only one in this boat. According to recent data, roughly four of every nine recent college graduates are considered underemployed, meaning that they are working part-time while looking for full-time work, or are working in fields that do not require a college degree. Graduates with a degree in criminal justice tended to fare the worst in this category, with 75 percent falling into this category. Recent nursing school graduates tend to find work quickly, with 89 percent finding full-time employment shortly after receiving their diplomas.
What's the saying? "Pain is temporary, pride is forever" if I remember correctly? The hours may suck, the pay rate may suck, the fact that you would end up dead on the inside for a company that will replace you with a robot in a minute definitely sucks. But somebody has to do it until their moments to shine appear. So all I can do is grin and bear it. When I am living comfortably in a job I love, it will be worth all of the headaches.