So when Stretch, the laconic, 34-year-old manager of a chain store I’ll call Sporting Goods Inc.
called to tell me I was hired, it was the best news I’d had in a long time.
Perhaps youthful nonchalance and the luxury of squandering my paycheck on clothes or beer had helped camouflage the indignities of minimum wage retail job, though I don’t ever recall being frisked at the door. “They tend to shrink in the wash.”* * *Obtaining work in retail had changed a lot since the 1980s.
Yet over the decades, employee bag checks have become standard operating procedure in the retail environment, although some workers have pushed back. I needed something—anything—that resembled a steady job. That meant sucking it up and starting at the bottom rung. What used to require a paper application and a schmooze with the manager has turned into an antiseptic online process where human interaction—and the potential for an employment-discrimination complaint—is kept to a minimum. In person, thanks to good genes, people often assume I’m younger than I am.
I had landed in an alien environment obsessed with theft, where sitting down is all but forbidden, and loyalty is a one-sided proposition.
Sporting Goods Essay Health Care Fraud Term Paper
For a paycheck that barely covered my expenses, I’d relinquish my privacy, making myself subject to constant searches."If you go outside or leave the store on your break, me or another manager have to look in your backpack and see the bottom,” Stretch explained.On paper, however, I’m just another overeducated, middle-aged, middle-class refugee whose last retail experience dates to the Reagan administration.Not to mention retail employers these days have their pick of applicants: the Great Recession added countless numbers of desperate workers like me to the annual labor-market influx of college students and high schoolers., and I spent my days covering the back-and-forth of presidential politics.I had access to the White House because of my reporting beat, and I was a regular commentator on MSNBC.But when he comes on ‘Fox and Friends,’ they’re like him.They’re white folks who are very much relaxed in their own company.” Five months earlier my ex-wife and I had a fight.According to an Economic Policy Institute report, “In 1968, 48 percent of low-wage workers had a high school degree, compared to 79 percent in 2012.” Likewise, the percentage of people in these jobs who have spent some time in college has skyrocketed, jumping from under 17 percent to more than 45 percent in the same time.All of us are in a race to the bottom of the wage pool.Although older job candidates bring experience and skills to the table, their job applications typically blink like red warning lights to retail managers: “Think about it, Joey—that’s why there are online applications,” my sister, a veteran human-resources professional, told me.“If you apply online, and you never hear back, they don’t have to tell you why they rejected you and face a discrimination lawsuit.” I soon realized the only way I’d have a shot in retail is if I dumbed down my job application, met directly with the person in charge before applying, and used my journalism story-telling skills to sell myself, stretching the truth past the breaking point. on an inspiration one day, asked for an application, and then asked to see the manager.