Monday, January 11, 2016

A Kelly Girl {Years Ago}

The other day I was registering for some sort of fancy-shmancy federal ID that I'd need when Addison fills out her college FAFSA form. Like many online sites, I was required to pick a series of security questions to answer. One of my options was, "What was the first name of your first boss?"

I'll leave out my rant about the absurdity of some of the typical security questions and just tell you what I started thinking about when I saw that question.

My first boss? I don't guess I should count all of the people who hired me to babysit their children while I was in high school. During one or two summers in high school, I worked at a special summer school program in our town that had some of the high schoolers helping elementary students who were getting special reading help. That doesn't seem like a real enough job to count; besides I can't remember the name of the teacher I helped, much less who would've been considered the boss. I similarly don't consider my job as a resident assistant or office help in college to count as real jobs, either.

The first job that I consider to be a "real" job was the summer between my junior and senior years in college. Tim and I had just gotten married, and he was doing an internship at Texas Instruments. I started looking for a part-time job, but I grew quickly discouraged with the lack of options in small town Texas that summer. I ended up working for Kelly Services, a company that provides temporary workers in various career fields. I scored well on the timed typing test and also knew the basics of several computer programs. I didn't have any trouble at all keeping my summer filled with temporary assignments.

The first job that summer was perhaps the funniest. I was the executive secretary for a company vice president, but he was gone for pretty much the entire six weeks I worked there. Every once in a while, he'd call me to type up a memo for him and then fax it somewhere. There really wasn't much for me to do. A couple of times a day I'd answer the phone, but nearly everybody just wanted me to transfer them to his voice mail. I started bringing books with me so that I could read instead of just sitting at the fancy desk looking pretty. I remember finishing reading Gone with the Wind in just a day or two.

It all seemed a bit funny to be all of twenty years old, getting dressed up in business clothes every morning, and then sitting at a fancy desk all day. I guess the company was pleased to have someone sitting there in case the phone rang until they could get around to hiring a regular replacement for that position. To me, it was all a bit like playing dress-up and pretending to be an adult.

A few years later, I found myself hanging out in Biloxi, Mississippi while Tim was at a military training course there. My initial plan was to lie on the beach and read books while he was in school. The beach there wasn't really nice enough to lie around on, so I eventually decided I might as well work a little. Kelly Services to the rescue again.

That summer (and on for a few months into the fall), I did general secretarial work for a development company that was trying to get approval to build a resort and casinos on Deer Island which is just a few miles off the Mississippi coast. The best part of that job was the fact that we were well connected with the tourism department in Biloxi and often had discount coupons to the casinos in our office. We took full advantage of as many buy-one-get-one-free casino dinner coupons as I could get my hands on. Our favorites were the ones that would let both of us eat all the peel-and-eat shrimp and crab legs as we wanted for only five dollars. (We'd often top off those date nights with a trip to the cheap theater where we could both get in for only $1.50.)

I seriously doubt that Kelly Services calls their temporary employees "Kelly Girls" anymore, but it's fun for me to look back on some of the adventures I had while working for them.

This week is the eleventh week in our Blogging Through the Alphabet challenge -- letter K. Click the button below for this week's linky.

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  1. Funny!! I worked for a temporary agency the summer before David and I married and had very similar experiences. I think it might have been Kelly Girls too. Wonder if that had anything to do with the name I gave my daughter. I've never connected the dots before. 😄😄

    1. What a funny coincidence if you had been a Kelly Girl and then had a Kelly girl. ;)

  2. Totally thought you were going to say you worked in the Kelly's Chili factory. Of course I'd go that direction because it was near where I live. :) What you did sounds like more fun!

  3. Sounds like those were fun experiences!

  4. Fun memories!! I remembering wanting to be a Kelly Girl and considered doing that when I was between jobs at one point. Turned out I found another job before I'd even found my way to the Kelly office. :-)

  5. Great experiences. I was a Kelly girl too during college summer break. I think two different summers. Maybe three. There were good job, boring jobs and then ones I turned down because I wasn't stupid :-)

  6. the jobs we start with eh? That first job you had would have been a dream job for me. :)

    visiting from alphabet blogging



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