Ok, time to reminisce a bit..
Back when I was in High School, my dad told me that if I wanted something, I was going to have to EARN it.
This meant that I was going to need a JOB.
Now, since Junior High, I'd been going out each summer to get extra spending cash. Picking strawberries, picking beans, and picking blueberries.
Usually, by the end of the summer I'd have about 1,000 or more, depending on the crops and my willingness to enslave myself.
Then, I'd fly out to Minnesota for a couple of weeks to my uncle's farm, take care of his stuff, and come home with another $700.
So, by the time school would start, I'd have about $1700 for clothes, books, and tuition. (Books and tuition for college, because I was taking college courses at the same time that I was going to High School!)
Well, things weren't working out so well in the "I need a car!" department, so I got my high school counselor to give me a "emancipation" document that my parents could sign so that I could get a part-time job to work at along with my schooling.
My dad agreed, and signed this.
My first employer? McDonald's.
Yes, I worked the greasy fast-food job for four years while plugging away at schoolwork.
Now, I didn't mind the work. My problem was the definition of part-time.
My school schedule went something like this:
6am. Get up, shower, eat some breakfast, get to school.
6:30 am-2pm High school and related classes.
3pm-5pm College courses.
5:30pm-10pm Work at McDonald's.
10:30-?? Home for homework, then eat a little something, and hit the sack. Usually about midnight.
Now, this wasn't really a problem, since I pulled a 4.0 GPA while in High School, and I also earned a 3.8 with my college courses.
The problem was when I'd get called for extra shifts while I was IN school!
My answering machine would usually be chock-full of messages asking if I could come in for some extra time. Or if I could cover this or that shift.
Did they not know that I was in school? Or did they just not care?
I don't know, but I do tell you that it was the reason that I quit, eventually.
I was told, in no uncertain terms, that I would be working the night of my High School graduation.
I calmly looked the manager in the face, tossed my hat and apron in their face, and said "F-you. I'm going to graduate."
I still don't think they'd rehire me if I was desperate for a job...
Anyway, thanks to that job, I was able to get my first beater of a car.
My cherished 1971 Volkswagon Super Beetle.
I paid all of $300 for it, and it abused the HELL out of it. (refer to a previous post about it, and you can see just how hard I was on it!)http://jormengrund-yetanotherdayinparadise.blogspot.com/2008/09/teen-escapades.html
Anyway, this was just one of the small joys I was able to get in touch with because of the added financial freedom!
I moved out when I was 15.
I was able to get in with a friend of mine, and we lived in a two bedroom apartment just across the way from my school. I paid half the rent, and half of utilities.
This would only cost me $250 a month, which wasn't bad!
So then I tried my hand at something else..
I decided to start saving for buying my own home.
Now, I don't know many teens who think this far ahead, but it gave me brain cramps when I'd decide how much of each paycheck I was going to put into my nest egg account at my bank.
I mean, I had gas to pay for, insurance, food, rent, and utilities. Plus, if I wanted to go play at some point during the weekend, I had to foot that bill as well.
I learned how to budget FAST. Plus, it seemed to work for me.
Thus, with some hard work, some dedication, and a little luck, I was able to put aside a nice big chunk of change when I graduated.
Add to that all the bonus cash I got for being in the service, and I was sitting pretty when I decided to buy a home!
But that's for another day..
Do you recall your first job?
Was it as glorious as mine?