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First Jobs    by Merritt Watts order for
First Jobs
by Merritt Watts
Order:  USA  Can
Picador, 2015 (2015)
Softcover, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Carrol Wolverton

We all have tales from our first job. Ms. Watts has collected stories across the spectrum of employment. The oldest date to WWII and Rosie the Riveter. Most weren't riveters but were women pressed into defense industry-related jobs because the men were gone. One era sixteen-year-old guy became sports' editor for his hometown newspaper. His green tail was saved repeatedly by an older guy in the press room who knew sports. Painful mistakes lace through these first jobs.

There's also telemarketing, ice cream shops, retail sales, restaurants, pulling fish guts, Disneyland, and a gopher for a millionaire. Many persons interviewed are now employed in the publishing industry or fashion in the New York area. Many are retired. Several have their own businesses.

The book served to bring back my first 85 cent/hour job at Woolworth. Irene, my supervisor, insisted I work weeknights before Christmas. I told her I needed to be studying for a final test. She said work or be fired. I flunked the test and was laid off anyway the week after Christmas. Life's early lessons are learned in these first jobs. Everyone reading this book will recognize him or herself in at least one of the stories.

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