Month: April 2018

May Issue: First Jobs

What were some of your very first jobs? Mine: babysitter; Asher’s candy store salesperson; ice cream scooper, book shop salesperson, John Wannamaker’s retail associate, 18th-century-preserved science museum helper. Our first jobs aren’t necessarily the ones we want for the long haul, they may not be our dream career, but they leave us with important lessons that stick with us forever. For example: When a child runs after you with a butter knife, hide in the closet and call their parents. The freshest food items are in the very back row. People always smile when presented with ice cream. Tear up anything you wouldn’t want someone to read in 150 years. In our new issue, we’re looking back at our earliest gigs with 20/20 hindsight — from the silliest to the scariest to the ones that illuminated a new path. Stacy London almost loses her cookies Robin Gelfenbien drives a giant weiner Dee Poku battles fashionable bullies Mallory Kasdan follows Ru-Paul around the country And Lauren Young tracks the first jobs of famous folk Our authors …

TueNight Live: Photos from “First Jobs” at The Wing

All photos by Erika Hokanson. We worked Fashion Week, drove a Weinermobile, toured with RuPaul, sold chocolate chip cookies — and got more than we bargained for. These were just a few of the “first jobs” our storytellers shared during our April 24 event, TueNight Live. The evening was a benefit for Higher Heights, a phenomenal organization that works to get more Black women into political life — as candidates and participants. Thanks to generous donations from ticket buyers, those who donated at the event and a matching gift from philanthropist Ruth Ann Harnisch, we raised over $6000! Thank you for that. Now, some snaps: We cozied up in the drop-dead gorgeous Wing Dumbo location. Chatting up new and old friends.       Margit took the mic, introducing the night. Kimberly Allen-Peeler, co-founder of Higher Heights, talked about the HH mission and about her job as a 15-year-old Girl Scout spending a week in a congressional office… during Tailhook. Watch her story here. Mallory Kasdan reads her first job essay about touring the country with RuPaul …

Bad Grades and Chocolate Chips: Stacy London’s First Job

Photo: Stocksy I ended my sophomore year in High School almost failing out of algebra. The D+ I received was generous and my grades in other subjects were pretty mediocre too. My parents weren’t just disappointed in me, they were livid. Here I was their oldest daughter, failing at everything, and whether their concern was for me, or the way my lack of achievement reflected on them, it didn’t really matter. My parents were divorced. Back in those days, they never spoke. My sister and I would had to have leprosy for them to get on the phone. But my academic apathy was enough to have them talking daily. This was a five-alarm fire, an earthquake, a tsunami. It was decided, without my consent, that I would have to get a job. My Father gave me the news over the phone: “Stacy London,” he said, “ You do not understand the value of a dollar. Don’t tell me you want to go to Paris! I’ll send you to Paris Island!” (A military base, of some kind …

You Better Work: My First Boss and Ru-Paul

On RuPaul’s book tour (Photos courtesy of the author) My first job out of college was as an assistant to a publicist at Hyperion, a “boutique” publishing house owned by a quaint corporation called The Walt Disney Company. We had ID cards with a Mickey Mouse hologram on them. Seriously. My boss, Jennifer, was a tall, brassy, 27-year-old woman who somehow seemed as old to me as one of the Golden Girls. She was fierce, whip smart, and a little bit scary. Jen liked a large iced coffee and a toasted cinnamon raisin bagel with butter, which I ordered for her every morning. This was back when people ate bagels. She taught me to take a thorough phone message. To grill the “freelance book reviewers” trying to get free review copies. To massage the egos of the needier authors and only get her out of “a meeting” if it was someone specific. She taught me to pitch reporters, the most awkward and agonizing part of publicity work. While at Hyperion, Disney was bought by ABC, …

My Dream to Crisscross the Country in a World-Famous Wiener

Robin on the hotdog highway (Photo courtesy of the author) I couldn’t wait to get to college. I was going to study Broadcast Journalism at the same school where Dick Clark and Bob Costas went — the Newhouse School at Syracuse University. Not because I wanted to do hard news. Oh, no. I wanted to do features like interview Ricky Schroeder at the mall or be the wacky weather girl. I dream big. Freshman year started and everything was going great. I made friends easily, I got involved in all kinds of activities, I had my first Bartles & Jaymes wine cooler and the best part? I had an awesome roommate, Mindy Cohen. Not to be confused with the one from “The Facts of Life.” Although that would have been awesome. We loved all the same things like air-popped popcorn, musicals, and Balki from “Perfect Strangers.” I was having the time of my life until I started to hear the strangest thing every time I came in and out of my dorm. It was almost …

Do You Know Who I Am!? Perils of a First-Time Fashion Week Assistant

Photo: Stocksy I was a 20-year old recent math graduate with enviable job offers and a potentially lucrative career in banking already on my horizon. But… something was missing. For one, I never actually wanted to work in finance. I wanted to be creative but no one would ever let me. Ever since my school teachers discovered at the tender age of eleven that I had a talent for math and sciences, I’d been nudged, cajoled and downright shoved (the shoving part by my parents) in that unwanted direction. Now I felt backed into a corner. Most people rebel in their teens but I’d been raised by strict Ghanaian parents in London. As an immigrant, I was well aware of the sacrifices they’d made to give me a good education and I didn’t dare start pushing back against authority until I was prepared to leave home.. Then one day, I was walking down the street, deep in thought when I caught a glimpse of the really swanky west London office building that always had the …

6 Things I Learned Tracking the First Jobs of Famous Folk

Photo (Stocksy.com) Everyone gets a start in the working world somewhere. So, as the Money editor at Reuters, I thought it would be interesting to use the monthly jobs report released by the U.S. Department of Labor as a springboard talk to notable people about their very first gigs. (For non-financial types, the jobs report is by far the most closely watched economic gauge of the U.S. economy’s health.) After all, no matter how famous or powerful they have become, all of us remember the first moment of bringing home the bacon. Here is what I’ve learned from editing three years’ worth of first job stories: 1. Many people got their start delivering newspapers It sounds so old-timey, but the list includes MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, baseball legend Ron Darling and financial wizard Warren Buffett. However, so far no one has mentioned being chased by a dog. 2. Many more of them worked in restaurants Fredrik Eklund of Million Dollar Listing New York, Olympic gold medalist Carmelita Jeter, football star Damien Woody, Wheel of Fortune’s Vanna …