All kinds of things come across my desk, and lately a lot of stories about the struggling American work force have been showing up in my in box because people are finding or losing jobs with security companies.
Anyway, this one from CNN
bothers me. Look at the title:
"Deliver pizzas, wife tells laid-off hubby"
What's that supposed to imply? Delivering pizzas is a great job. It says in the article the guy's making $10 an hour, plus tips. That's not bad at all. I paid my rent and drank my beer in college thanks to pizza-delivery jobs (making, I think, $4.25 plus tips), and I know a lot of guys who got themselves through grad school and financed moves to locations all over the country thanks to delivering pizzas. That's not exactly supporting a family, I understand, but we weren't exactly working 40 hours a week.
Check this out:
"I had to swallow my pride and take whatever I could get," Rob LeBlanc says. "I kept telling myself one of these days something better will come along."
He spent nearly five months delivering pizzas at Domino's. He admits he fell into depression during that time.
But the family received good news Friday, when a private security company hired Rob LeBlanc to be a security officer. He says the company offers many opportunities to move up to a managerial position.
"My first thought was to tell my wife right away," he says. "I could hear the relief in her voice."
Swallow your pride? It must have been tough! Give me a break. What job is better than listening to tunes in your car, driving around and seeing people, and hustling for decent pay? A security guard? No way. I'm sorry. I would take delivering pizza over being a security guard six days a week and twice on Sunday.
And did anybody at CNN do any math for this story? The guy lost a $55,000 a year job. Okay. How much could he make delivering pies (that's industry talk, there)?
40 hours x $10 = $400 x 52 = $20,800 base
Plus, you should be able to hit at least 5 houses an hour even in a slow night, depending on the size of the city and how well the pizza joint advertises (Domino's is pretty good at that).
So that's another $10 an hour, easy, which, of course, is under the table and you don't report, so a very robust $20,000 a year.
My first year out of school, I made more than $50,000 (shhh, don't tell the IRS) doing nothing more than substitute teaching and delivering pizzas. That's good scratch.
So I don't think it's outrageous to say those jobs are fairly comparable. A pay cut, for sure, and you've got to subtract out the gas money, which isn't insignificant, but better than unemployment, probably, and I think lots of people would take $40,000 a year. That's a damn good job in the journalism industry. My first gig at the Portland Phoenix paid me $6.25 an hour.
Sorry, I was off track there. My point was: These people are not suffering from financial hardship! Things aren't that bad. It's just that, yes, the unprecedented life of opulence being led by the American middle class over the last 10 years is coming to an end for a short time. It's just like Obama said in his inauguration speech: It's time to start working our asses off again. Suck it up. Deliver some pies. Do some babysitting. Knit and sell some hats. Hustle. Be better than the other guy.
Stop crying about how you can't afford HBO and
Did you read this part?
The LeBlanc family lives lean in their five-bedroom, three-bathroom house with its $440 a month mortgage. The couple is teaching their children about budgeting and bargaining while relying on coupons and sales. They no longer eat out and no longer have cable TV. For entertainment, they attend free movies at a church. Donna LeBlanc takes pride that they have no credit card debt.
$440 a month mortgage? On a five-bedroom, three-bathroom place? Holy smokes! That's like living for free! They have no credit card debt? This is an example of the bad economy how?
Sorry, only tangentially about security, I know, but it speaks to a growing feeling on my part that people are beginning to wallow in their own self pity, even in this industry, and people need to knock it off.