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jOys & wOes of shArOn
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2003-12-07 03:09:37 (UTC)

3 tormenTinG dAys of Exhausting HolS jOb

::04.12.2003::2324hr::

hA... i'm writing my first entry for today. And if you're
interested in reading it, let me warn you - there're a lot
of grumbles and grievances and gripes. But you have every
prerogative to stop reading once you can't stand mE; I
mean, I'm writing for myself, heehee.

I admit that i'm a hapless person. You see, after my O
levels, I have 6 weeks of holidays -- neither too long nor
short. I intended to find a holiday job and guess what --
I used 2 WHOLE weeks to find it! [Actually I did go out
and enjoy myself...]

So in the end I was left with not much choice (and time)
and I had to go to this hamper company for an interview as
a hamper packer. As the wage is piece-rated, I was
promised good pay (20 bucks each morn provided if i'm fast
enough) and OT (which means more pay). Everything the
interviewer said was close to perfect. By the way, don't
be fooled or deceived by interviewers. Most of the time
they're talking about the bEst, which is difficult to
achieve in practical situation. SuPerFicIaL.

When i reported for work on the first day, i was so
excited! (how stUpid i was) i thought i could earn, say,
about 30 bucks each day (though it's still meagre). It's
good enough for a student like me. And finally there's
someone who's willing to employ me. Never did I realise,
there are more to suffer. Plain negative, bad stuff awaitS.

Surmise how much I earned for the first day? A POOR,
MISERABLE SUM OF MERELY $12.90! Oh my gosh! Imagine how
you would feel if you put yourself into my situation?
Standing for 8 plus hours and wrapping all those cheap
goods (mind you, scotchtapes are used but no personal
sissors, no penknives provided for cutting! fingers come
handy but please, students' hands are used for writing!) i
was not told how tough this job was at first! Kind of
feeling being chEaTed. And worst still, being treated as a
cheap labour. SlAvEs.

The second day was no better. Suffered a cut on my right
hand when I used a penknife shared among many of us (this
company is quite famous; isn't it ironic that they can't
even afford penknives for each and every packer?!) And
pay? $17.60! Oh yeah, in addition, the cafeteria food cost
a bomb! Very little ingredients and prices range from $2
to $4! The meagre and miserable pay is not enough as an
allowance after covering transport and food cost! This
wage should be considered as an act of almsgiving.
Benefaction. Charity. For dummies (including me) who are
so gullible, who offer cheap cheap cheap cheap labour.

And, on today, finally, I've had enough of all these
nonsense. Obviously, my friends and I were eXtremely
disappointed! Having done so much, wRapped so much (and
very nicely), what have we got? Whole load of grumbles,
anger and aches. The pay is too inSigNifIcant!!! We're
aching all over. And today is only the third day of work.
No wonder some people have stopped coming since the first
day. I could have done so ... but I thought things would
get better. ABSOLUTELY NOT. It didn't. I suffered a major
cut on my palm. And pay? $24.30! Still so liTTle!
Considering all the effort we've put in! In case you don't
know, packing a hamper is very tiRIng and meaningless
process. You'll know it when you take the foodstuffs in a
hamper apart. It's the grEateSt practical joke I've came
across. When the packers are here, wrapping with all they
might, using much force and strength to tear the repugnant
scotChtapeS apart, the customers would also have to waste
a lot of time trying to get rid of the scotchtapes! (if
they're dumb enough to spend their money on these
meangingless stuff) hAhA! I've never hated scotchtapes
this muCh!

Well come to think of it, the trainers, or rather, the
supervisiors, have loads of free time. They're just
walking around, looking at us and sometimes demostrate.
Also to see whether we're lazing around. Oh pleAse! The
fact is, everyone there is hradworking! (maybe except
them) They wanted us to pack a nice, pretty hamper and yet
required us to do that in a short time of 5 minutes! Hey!
This is impossible! We're still newbies! (I didn't know
how to wrap at hamper on my first day) What makes me even
more livid was that they were taking their own sweet time
to pack a hamper during demostrations. Feel so sorry for
them because they don't have a simple brain to think: our
pay is piece-rated! And they're hourly-paid! Who cares
whether the quality is good or not in this system, what we
packers are concerned of is the quantity! The more we do,
the more we earn!

Of couse, we can't pack the hampers anyhow. There's a QC
to check whether we've done our work properly, i.e. the
foodstuffs and the XO are tightly secured. She does her
work so SLOWLY! And we has to wait there to let her
inspect. This shortie often pick on the newcomers. So what
if she's a QC? So what if she holds a slightly higher
position than us? She's still stuck at this rotten
company, facing the disgusting hampers! What a meaningless
job. Actually she's quite young too. What a waste! If
she's a close friend of mine, I would ask her to do
something more interesting!

During work, the atmosphere is very tense. Everyone is
rushing. Sounds of tearing scotchtapes can be heard once
work starts. If you've had a heart attack, you'll probably
have a relapse and die there. On spot.

Feel so so so so sorry for the company. They do not have
enough expenses to do IT research and development. The
government is giving subsidies for companies to do R&D for
new and better products. Or is it so insignificant to the
economy that the government is excluding it? Poor thing! I
suggest that they should resort to machinery. Spend a few
hundred million to develop roborts! Make them do the
hamper packing work! Then the quality of their products is
ensured. And man, aren't roborts fast and efficient! Just
programme them to produce the quantity the company wants!
Quick and easy! And the electricity they need would cost
less then our pay! Roborts won't lament. Easy to maintain
too. Just employ technicans and those trainers can do some
other more meaningful job. It's such an excellent solution
but I wonder why is the company still using manpower when
manpower is so limited and precious in Singapore ... ...

To end all my sufferings, I've come out with this
fantastic decision. I'm gonna quit. After working for 2
weeks. That's looong. (They need at least one weeks'
notice in advance if we resign. How inefficient. It's no
wonder the company is stuck) Anyway the wage is too
little. Maybe I should consider myself as a volunteer. To
help some poor, dying company by offering [far too much]
chEaP labour. The feeling is like when I've given ten
times of my effort and what I reaped is less than one over
one hundred thousand of what I should get.

I've been groaning and lamenting since I arrived home
everyday. For 3 contiunous days. My mum couldn't stand it,
haha. That is why I should seek my diary's help. To pour
all my woes and gripes. Mum has been asking me to quit.
And yes, I will. Some friends told me that my holidays
definitely worth much more than the miserable wage. When i
analysed it, yeaH, i guesS it's trUe. Dad consoled me and
told me that i've learnt a valuable experience: earning
money is not easy, especially when you don't receive much
education.

Well well, this job has let me made 2 great friends. Very
helpful indeed, and chummy. One has even agreed to give me
all her friend's JC notes for references! HahA. It's a
pleasure meeting them. But too bad we're quiting soon.

Lastly, to people who have endured and read my blog to
this paragraph: congratulations! And lesson learnt for
you? Don't become a hamper packer. Don't suffer. Don't
torment yourself. And if possible, save the trees and the
environment. Hampers are nice to look at, but they are a
hindrance. Fifty percent of the hamper are waste,
actually. i.e. scotchtapes and cardboards. Bunch of
meaningless stuff. Wonder why they're still in a great
demand during festive seasons. An advice for you: if you
want to give your relatives and friends some gifts, DO NOT
LOOK for impractical ones. Don't you think it's true?

I agree that i'm prejudiced against hampers since i've
come so close to them. The sight of hampers makes me
utterly disGusTed. yUcK. I probably won't purchase one at
all in my lifetime. Not one, unless i'm forced to.


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