So I got a job...

After months of looking, I finally got a job.

At Blockbuster video, where I worked a couple summers ago.

The catch is, that I have to work Christmas. It’s an absolute condition of my employment. Which means I can’t see my family. Not even my beloved uncle who’s been in India for the last year. Not my little cousin, who has apparently gone from babbling to speaking complete sentences since I last saw him. Christmas is a big deal in my family. Thousands of dollars get exchanged. everyone shows up. It’s the only holiday we still celebrate as a family. It’ll be our first Christmas without my great-grandmother. We’ve had a lot of deaths in the past few years, and the family is dwindling down to less than a dozen people sitting around the table (I remember when we needed three different christmas dinners just to fit everyone in!). And I won’t be there.

I’ll be sitting three hours away, eating leftover beans alone. Everyone i know will be out of town. The busses won’t even be running, so I’ll have to walk to work.

I just want to cry. This job won’t even garentee me 40 hours a week. They won’t garentee me 30 hours a week. Much less a regular schedule. They might end up doing what they did when I worked for them last time, which involved scheduling me for 16 hours several weeks in a row. Did I mention I’ll make $7.00 an hour. $100 bucks a week doesn’t really work well when you pay $600 a month in rent. I cried all the time that summer because I was hungry all the time. And now I get to do it for a living! But now I don’t get nifty things like school to look forward to.

I have another job interview to go to today, and one of Friday. Not that that is much hope- I think this is my twelvth interview in the last few weeks. I told Blockbuster I’d check up with my family and call them back about their job. I’d be okay missing Christmas for a real job. But for a job that doesn’t pay enough to cover rent? with no hope of advancement? Without even hope of knowing what my schedule would be like more than a couple days in advance?

Yeah, but I guess I should have figured out that things like choices, happiness or hope arn’t for the likes of me.

Apparently not, if you continue to sabotage yourself. Of course, then you wouldn’t get to whine on the Dope and pose as a victim. Poor fucking you.

For one thing, is Blockbuster really open on Christmas Day? Second, how can your boss forbid you to take the day off to see your family? Third, did you check out the temp agencies that I found for you? I mean, even low level admin work pays better than working at Blockbuster! (Not to mention that offices are closed on Christmas)

Doesn’t anything good ever happen to you?

I hope something better comes along for you soon.

Can’t people live without a movie for one lousy day? Or go rent one the day before? I have a policy of not going to any store/restaurant/whatever on Thanksgiving or Christmas. I wish more people would do the same.

Ha ha ha ha! I worked at Blockbuster (Seabright and Hwy 1) after I graduated UCSC. It sucked. And I only got paid $4.25/hr. back in 1995. Then I got a job at the Bagelry and all was good.

Seriously, you need to quit whining every day and focus those energies on finding something better. Did you ever even call those temp places that gobear sent you? If you did and got nothing, you really need to consider moving.

You know, I’m going to apologize and ask a mod to close this thread.

I promised not to post any “poor me” threads. I posted in the heat of the moment because I could not think of anything to do with all these emotions. It has been a hard times for me, but parading my hardships in front of strangers is not the answer.

I really don’t think I can handle the flames that are going to start coming my way because of this post. I shouldn’t be in the pit if I can’t stand the heat. I apologize for all of you.

The ones around me are open on Dec 25th. How else can they extract their late fees :wink:

Good god woman is there anything in your life you don’t bitch about?

You were trippin’ because you couldn’t find a job. YOU FOUND ONE. And yet, you’re still bitching. Be grateful you got a damn job since by your last rant, it appeared to be quite the impossible feat. I mean, here you were, skin and bones, going days without food, on the verge of living on the streets and you got a job! Yet you’re still bitching and moaning. Unfuckingbelievable. You starting to remind me of a recently banned poster who was known for her drama queen tendencies…

I didn’t realize Blockbuster required you to work 24 hour shifts. There’s no time at all you could visit your family? Your family is ONLY going to be together that ONE day? That would mean they all live rather close, yes? If not, then you’d think they’d want to visit for more than 1 day. Then you could see them when you’re not working. Considering Blockbuster will only give you 16 hours a week, that gives you plenty of free time to visit them.

I’m with gobear, I can’t even see your screenname without visions of Tiny Tim dancing through my head…

Errr…I mean to all of you. Makes a difference, ya?

I’m really sorry. Please accept my apology. I shouldn’t go soliciting for sympathy on a public messege board on a regular basis. And I shouldn’t create messes that I can’t get out of on my own. Most of all, I shouldn’t post when I am feeling strong emotions. I’ve already learned not to post drunk (and not to drink alone- which I havn’t done since- yay!) and now I’ve got to learn the next step if I want the Straight Dope to remain the community it has become to me.

I’m sorry.


Lunasea, hush up. You are not the Arbiter of Clicking, and people will comment if they feel so moved, especially those of us who have invested time and energy in Even Sven’s previous threads.

Even Sven, we just want you to stop sabotaging yourself. You are a bright, articulate college graduate, and as difficult as the economic climate is right now (trust me, I working waaayyy below my MOS at the moment), you can do better than being a retail monkey at Blockbuster. Granted, you shot yourself in the foot by majoring in an impractical subject like film, but you can be

a copy editor (just requires a knowledge of English grammar and punctuation)

an administrative assistant

a film production assistant

a customer service representative

a help desk rep

and so on. You need to set your sights higher than you have done previously. In additon, since you have a computer, you should get a self-teaching book on business software, especially Excel and Word. You should also brush up your business math skills.

You CAN get a decent job.

Ya know, you’ll be getting paid about quadroople (sp?!?!) overtime for working on Christmas, right?

It’s a drag at the time, but you’ll feel much better when you get your cheque and discover you were paid about $21/hour for standing around (really, nowhere is particularly busy on X-Mas).

See your family on Boxing day. Reap sympathy because you had to work. Shwank on turkey.

Trust me - I’ve done it, it’s not so bad.

Well I wish people would stop stuffing their holiday down my throat every fucking year of my life but that isn’t going to happen either. Has it occurred to you that those of us who don’t celebrate xmas might want something to do that day?

alice, I doubt that Blockbuster pays any extra on holidays.

even sven, you really do need to move to an area where there are more jobs. You’ve gotten some excellent advice in previous threads. Take advantage of it.


even sven, I think I’ve suggested it before, but I’m gonna say it again, this time in bold:

Go get a job carrying newspapers.

I shit you not: I work 2 1/2 hours a day (about 4-5 on Sunday), and I make nearly $1200 a month, PLUS I expect another $800-1K at Christmas. When I carried a few more papers, I made nearly**$1600/month.** That’s damn good money for the time involved, and you’d have the day free to pursue your film projects.

I only get 5 or 6 days a year off, but Christmas is one of them.

If not newspapers, consider pizza or deli, or being a freelance errand runner.

Do what you gotta do, dear, and good luck. Email me if you want to chat.


Well, haj, I’m in Canada, so this may be different in the US, but, ahem:

Here in Canada, if a person works on a Stat Holiday (which X-Mas certainly is) and it’s their regular shift, they HAVE to be paid double time and a half, no mater how crappy their employer is. It’s an overtime rule - you can see the legislation here. Bottom of page 2 - the “Overtime” heading. It’s a tad complicated, but basically you get paid your regular wage, plus time and a half for the stat holiday.

Here is a quote:

This may not be true in the US.

even sven, you should be grateful that you got a job. Your prayer was answered, even if it wasn’t exactly what you wanted.

Make another day your “Christmas”. On your first free day after Christmas, go home.

Entertain yourself by making presents in the meantime. Find some pine cones and paint them gold and arrange them in a little bowl. Voila. Holiday decorations for somebody.

(I know it’s a bad, lame idea but I’m trying to cheer you up. Plus, I plan to do it this Christmas with dawn redwood cones. I know…I need a life.)

Is the turnover high at Blockbuster? Maybe if you stick around they’ll make you a manager. I know it’s not exactly what you had in mind as a film major, but in an ironic way they are related. Turn the lemons into lemonade, baby.

I know I’ve suggested it before, but why don’t you move closer to your folks? Is independence really worth all the heartache you’re going through? Even if it were for just a few months?

Another idea: How would you be as a substitute teacher? It’s a tough job but the pay in most districts is higher than minimum wage. And then you could teach the kids how to play rock-n-roll and enter a battle of the bands contest…

hajario, I believe federal laws says you must receive holiday pay for working on a federal holiday. I could be wrong, though.

That sucks, sven.

Yeah, most businesses that stay open on weekends and holidays (that aren’t union, mind you) don’t give holiday pay.

I worked a ton of holidays when I waited tables, never once recieved holiday pay.

I could be wrong on this, but I think that kind of thing is left to the employers discretion, unless the employer is under a union contract.

Again, please note I said I could be wrong on this. If I am, please feel free to correct me, but please refrain from snarkiness.

If you’re a government employee, that is a true statement. Most unions have that as part of their contracts as well so supermarket employees, for example, will get triple time on holidays. In addition, some companies will have such a thing as part of their employment policy. I’m almost certain that that is not the law in the U.S. for private companies.


Okay, I stand corrected. Just read Guin and Alice’s posts.

Those restaurants blew, man.

Huh - well, I’ve done some snoopie-snooping and it looks like those in the US are screwed.

Tough break. But you can still have the sympathy and the turkey.