Tuesday, May 15, 2007

On Occupations

The other day, I was filling out an application and got to the part about occupation. Instinctively I wrote "Administrative" but then I got to thinking, you know, I do a whole lot more than my job description. And I am not just talking about what I do at work.

Consider this: many companies have off-loaded parts of their traditional jobs over the years. And I just want credit for doing parts of those jobs. Here are some of my "occupations":

Grocery Store Cashier/Clerk
At my grocery store, I now have the option of scanning, bagging and paying for my groceries. And I choose this option much of the time.

Funny thing is that before I still had to help with cashiering by identifying fruit. So I guess I was a botanist at one time.

Clerk: So are these oranges, right?

Leesa: Clementines. They are called clementines.

Clerk: I can't find the code for clementines. Are you sure these aren't tangerines?

Leesa: They are clementines.

Clerk: I can't find the code for clementines.

Leesa: Okay, they are oranges.

So now I do all of the work of the grocery store cashier/clerk. And I am fine with that.

Gas Station Attendant
I have been told that gas station attendants once pumped gas. Well, they pretty much just sell drinks and snacks now1, but they once pumped gas. So I pump the gas, I ask myself for my credit card, and I swipe my card through the machine. Again, my job.

A lot of people have gardeners in our area. Well, they have people that cut their grass, edge, blow the grass away, and so forth. Not me. Well, I don't mow the grass much – I have a husband for that. But I do garden. I plant tomatoes in the backyard, water them, watch them grow. And peppers, and lettuce (fancy kinds of lettuce). And other vegetables. My hubbie would be more encouraged if I could plant something that grew meat or some kind, but what are you going to do. I am a gardener.

Most of the time, I don't go to the doctor when hubbie or I am sick. I diagnose, medicate, give orders. In short, I am a physician (for myself) and a pediatrician for hubbie. 2 I have allergies, and so when I get a "cold", I have to distinguish it from said allergies. Is this ragweed that is causing this, or do I have a rhinovirus? I take my own temperature, or the temperature of my patient, prescribe over the counter drugs, and order bed rest. Sounds like a doctor to me.

And I make house calls.

I am feeling a little over-worked today, but after all, I have lots of jobs to do.

1Believe it or not, gas stations make more on the food/drinks they sell than on each gas transaction.

2I bet you could guess that.


Pittchick said...

If you lived in New Jersey, you wouldn't have to pump your own gas. It's illegal there. I don't know why, but all the gas stations are attended.

Leesa said...

pitt: perhaps too many people were setting themselves on fire. Weird law.

RWA said...

Sheesh, if you got paid for all of those various jobs, wouldn't you be rich?

I can remember when gas stations pumped the gas for you. Of course, gas was a lot cheaper then too.

You make house calls, huh? I'll remember that the next time I'm under the weather.

Ian Lidster said...

You speak much truth, my dear. I remember when gas station guys would pump the gas, check the oil, wipe the windshield and wore dorky little quasi-military hats.
Of course, I also remember when we had daily milk delivery and my mom used to send my dad's shirts out to be dry-cleaned.


Stacy The Peanut Queen said...

Ever self-diagnose yourself via the info. off the internet? Isn't THAT some scary shit??? According to most of the information on-line, everyone has everything. Yeesh.

Anonymous Boxer said...

Oh, I love playing "Dr.Google" with my entire household. I also play "Dr.Vet"

Of course we all have brain tumors, but still.....

kathi said...

Where I came from, they not only pumped the gas for you but cleaned your windshield, windows and checked your oil for you.

I'd rather check out my own groceries, too, unless I've got a lot of them. Takes less time and no one tries to involve me in conversation like checkers and bag boys do.

~Deb said...

I agree with Pittchick---Jersey is about 20 minutes from me. First, it's CHEAPER---and second of all, I can sit on my lazy ass and let the guy pump. But, the cashiers that they hire today, unreal. They have NO clue about produce or any other types of foods because they're way too young to know about cooking, etc.

Scary world out there! Hope you're doing well girly!

Anonymous said...

What about all the things we can do online now, I do my own banking for example, no need to get a teller to do the work.

This is good, I feel more in control.

Letter tend to get to me now, because I have to fill in all my details - my name is spelt correctly - it´s me doing the spelling.

And the really good news? They still pump your gas for you here in Spain.

d-man said...

I'm meant to be a graphic designer these days, but I seem to spend a lot of time doing admin-related jobs. And sleeping.

mal said...

most gas stations are happy if they do not lose money on the gas. No question the gas is the draw for the rest of the merchandising.

It is a commentary and in my view a sad one, that more companies are driving to reduce the personal service aspect of their business. I wonder if we will get to a point where they will advertise "totally impersonal service" and "your buisness is appreciated and untouched by human hands". One of the reasons I left my former employers was they were driving in that direction.....

Leesa said...

rwa: I am very expensive.

ian: I don't remember milk deliveries, but chip deliveries.

stacy: I have all sorts of rare diseases, I am sure.

boxer: Oh, Dr. Google. Fun.

kathi: I like checking my own groceries out too.

~deb: you are so perceptive.

MrZhisou: you can even print your own cash "online". If you have a color printer and a scanner.

d-man: I think most of us do more admin than we want to do.

mal: I think many like the de-personalized service.

TrappedInColorado said...

This was very insightful and clever. I never looked at it that way. I like it! I can now put MD PhD on all my business cards. :)

Anonymous said...

Leesa, I don´t think you´re supposed to print your own cash though, I believe the meddling government likes to stop people doing that.

John said...

Good observation. I've long tried to help people understand economics and the fact that although you feel like you aren't contributing to Wal-mart by purchasing a roll of toilet paper, that is in fact where they make the most money; Commodity products. The whole point is to undercut the price of a TV and have you buy a stick of gum or perhaps a new candle holder. The profit margin is greater on these imported items.