We’ve all had weird gigs.
Just after college I worked part time at a 19th century natural history museum, preserved as such — the Wagner Free Institute of Science in North Philly — where I did everything from dust off a cabinet filled with arrowheads and tomahawks, to filing William Wagner’s old letters in acid free paper, to drawing butterflies with neighborhood kids who came in after school.
Huh. In hindsight, that was actually a pretty awesome job.
Sometimes it’s those gigs that have nothing to do with your intended career that were the most fun — or taught you life lessons you’ve carried for decades.
Like, to save everything (sorry, hoarders) and that prehistoric bones are very, very fragile. Oops.
This week, we’re remembering what made some of the jobs we’ve had curious, fun or just plain bad.
We’ve got some pretty intense pieces, some sound job advice, and a few downright hilarious situations, so there’s something here for all types of odd jobs and career paths:
- Day Job: I Was a Heroin Ethnographer by Judy McGuire
- How Working in Fast Food Prepared Me for Life on a Slippery Floor by Wendy Goldman Scherer
- My “Wide Open Mistakes” as a Dude Ranch Cook by Jody Jones
- Bored at Work? Adopt a Gig Mentality by Jennifer Hill
- In the Army, Out with PTSD: One Vet’s Story of Survival by Margit Detweiler
- Why No One Wants to Go to Your Meeting — And How to Make it Better by Lindsey Green
Clocking out y’all.