February 1st, 2005

Shit Job No. 1

I once had a job at a local potato farm. They employed a number of high-school-age kids for minimum wage throughout the summer and early fall. Basically, we were inside a huge Quonset (a link for you city kids) with a conveyor belt that stretched into a ginormous pile of potatoes. The auto-loader in the back picked up the stored potatoes and passed them down the conveyor belt to the kids, who picked out the rotten ones and the really big ones (they're hollow). The season started at the front of the hut, where it was somewhat pleasant to be outside, but as the work progressed the loader moved into the unlit Quonset until I was shrouded in potato-scented gloom. The only light fell on the belt.

The job itself was bad enough, but the worst part was the other teens working across the belt. They were the bullies of elementary school who grew up to be drunken, angry boys inside the bodies of hulking Scots-Ukranian men. Now, imagine giving these semi-grown orcs a rotten potato, which is really just a thin brown skin filled with skunky potato rot. I recieved many of these in the face with no warning. Fortunately, some days my mother would come and supervise for the farmer, in which case the boys were good as gold. Eventually my hulking Scots-Ukranian boyfriend also got a job as the loader mechanic and my social tortures ended, but the potatoes always kept coming.

The back of the hut was filled with potatoes that had been percolating in there for almost a year. The smell!

The only good part of the job was when someone would break out a paring knife and carve a potato statue of some sort.
  • Current Music
    Interpol - Obstacle 2