Singing Owl says: "Here in the USA we are celebrating the last fling of the good ol' summertime. It is Labor Day weekend, and families are camping, playing in the park, swimming, grilling hotdogs in the backyard, visiting amusement parks and zoos and historical sites and outdoor concerts and whatever else they can find to help them extend summer's sun and play just a little bit longer.It is supposed to also be a celebration of the working man and woman, the backbone of the American economy, the "salt-of-the-earth nieces and nephews of Uncle Sam. With apologies to those in other countries, this is a Friday Five about LABOR. All can play. Put down that hammer, that spoon, that rolling pin, that rake, that pen, that commentary, that lexicon, and let's have some fun."
1. Tell us about the worst job you ever had. Oh there is NO doubt in my mind on this one! It was a temp job at a place that made sandwiches for vending machines. The work itself was boring...stand on a line all day plopping meat on buns. But that was actually the least objectionable part. The place was badly run. There was flypaper above the lines and...well you can imagine. If a piece of meat or cheese dropped on the floor, the five second (or five minute) rule applied. To give you a sense....there were free sandwiches in the breakroom for the employees....everyone brown bagged!
2. Tell us about the best job you ever had. That would be the two I have now. I'd have a hard time choosing between them, too, as being a therapist and being a priest fill me in different but complimentary ways. I feel like I am doing something in both cases that I am called to and fitted for. I feel as a therapist that I am a change agent, that I can make a difference and that is good. Plus it's interesting and endlessly changing. People and their stories are so amazing, especially their resiliency and ability to heal and grow in the face of great odds. It's such an honor and privilege to be part of those conversations on a deep level. And I pretty much can't think of anything about being a priest that I don't love. Well maybe meetings....but fortunately we don't have too many of those. But otherwise....God drew me in with liturgy, but did not let me hang there basking on the altar very long before I started falling in love with my people and finding out that the doing of the Gospel, while sometimes scary and hard was also wonderful and life-giving and energizing.
3. Tell us what you would do if you could do absolutely anything (employment related) with no financial or other restrictions. I think I would do some variation of what I am doing now. As I said above there really is nothing I'd rather be doing than the "jobs" I have now. The only change might be that I would like to have more freedom to "go and do" where there might be a pressing need. If I wanted to go do mission work or hurricane rebuilding or visit our community center in Rwanda, I'd love to have the ability to just do that, which doesn't work so well when tethered to a paycheck.
4. Did you get a break from labor this summer? If so, what was it and if not, what are you gonna do about it? Nope. And having said all those wonderful things about my worklife, I really do need a break from it. I have been hearing myself say a LOT lately, "I need a vacation!" My last "real" one was the BE....in March. I will be taking off three days this month to go to clergy conference....I guess that doesn't really count does it? While the last one was pretty retreat-ish, it's not exactly vacation! The problem is, this has tended to be how my vacation time gets used, going to CC, Diocesan Convention, meetings and such, and then there is not much left for actual vacations. I am still fantasizing about Ireland in the Spring, so I'm trying not to "spend" extra days, and I don't have any burning desires to go anyplace right now. There is that three day weekend.....and I'm looking forward to not being at work, though I haven't a clue what I will do.
5. What will change regarding your work as summer morphs into fall? Are you anticipating or dreading? Not too much. We have a new Adult Ed program we are planning for church, but small as we are that doesn't involve much. We will get our music for Lessons and Carols in a month or so, that is always fun as we begin looking ahead to Advent. The day job stays at an even pace season to season. I never look forward to winter, so that would be my only dread!
Bonus question: For the gals who are mothers, do you have an interesting story about labor and delivery (LOL)? If you are a guy pal, not a mom, or you choose not to answer the above, is there a song, a book, a play, that says "workplace" to you? I don't know that this fits exactly but I love the Mitford books. Part of the appeal of course is +Tim and his ability to connect with his folks, no matter who they are or how they behave. I know it's fiction and idealized, but there is a sweetness there that I find myself drawn back to when I am feeling a little weary.