This Is Me--2024 A to Z Theme

My A to Z Themes in the past have covered a range of topics and for 2024 the theme is a personal retrospective that I call "I Coulda Been" which is in reference to my job and career arc over my lifetime. I'll be looking at all sorts of occupations that I have done or could have done. Maybe you've done some of these too!

Saturday, April 20, 2024

Railroad Worker, Retailer, Radio DJ, Roustabout, Roadie, Road Warrior ( #AtoZChallenge )


#AtoZChallenge 2024 letter R

           Railroads have been a fascination for me since I was a young child.  But railroads have fueled many imaginations since their inception nearly 300 years ago.  Aside from that fact, railroading might have been passed down through my family heritage.  For a while my maternal grandfather worked on a railroad.  That was before I was born, though I often heard stories about his working on a railroad operating a steam engine.  Working on a railroad not only sounds interesting, but it also sounds like a good topic for a song.

         Retailer is a common occupation that is not too bad to pursue even if it is often not particularly lucrative.  Most of my jobs dealing with tangible goods were related to the wholesale end of selling.  In the late eighties I did a few month stint working at a Radio Shack. I did enjoy the work environment and the people I encountered, but, alas, I didn't have a good grasp on what I was selling.  Still, the upper management did attempt to recruit me into managing a store.  That store would have been farther than I wanted to commute so I was hesitant to take it.  Then a wholesale position opened up for me and that was the end to my retail job.  I'd rather sell merchandise wholesale to retailers anyway.

        Radio DJ sounds like a dream job to me.  I'd do that one now if I had a good offer.  However I doubt whether I'll be getting that offer anytime soon.  I don't know that my voice is all that good to be a radio personality anyway.  But spinning discs on some late night radio show sounds kind of cool.  I'd play some weird music until the guys on top told me not to anymore.

        I was frequently around roustabouts when I was working in circuses or carnivals.  I'd rather be that kind of roustabout than one that works on oil rigs.  The pay would be a lot less, but I'd still be under a show business spell.  Still, it would be a rough life and I don't think I'd be cut out for that.  Likewise being a roadie for a rock and roll band.  It might be a glamorous life in some ways, but I'd rather be on the stage than setting it and cleaning it up.

       Most of my life I've been a "road warrior" as I've traveled the continent playing shows all over the place.   I've become very adapted to travel since I've been doing it since childhood.  I love the road and I am suited to the lifestyle of traveling.  Road life has a lure for many of us.  I'm one of those.

        Do enjoy long road trips?     Have you taken any extensive train trips?    What retail selling experiences have you had?  


  1. I used to enjoy long road trips but at 76, it's much harder on my body.

  2. Dad worked for the Monon in the late '50's. For years, we had dishes from them that used to be used on the dining cars. Don't know what happened to them...

    A friend of mne was a DJ for a while and hated it. His dad was the station manager at WCFL (he didn't work there).

    I worked retail through most of my college years. I kind of enjoyed it,actually.

  3. Hubby and I do enjoy long car trips... we talk a lot and just enjoy the scenery. I've always wanted to take a train trip, but so expensive so I give up. I wanted to do the train car thing from VA to Florida, but darn that was quite pricey... so we drive. I'm back for my 9th year in the A to Z.

  4. My son tried training for conductor. There's a reason why 3 of the 4 worst companies to work for in the US are Railroad companies.

  5. I love a good road. The best we've done so far was Darwin to Wollongong (just over 4000kms) which we did over eight days. What a great trip! No retail experience to report unless you count trying to sell my books at local markets.


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