I’m sitting here paying bills (ugh) and I remember my first job after I had my oldest daughter. I worked full time up until I had my baby girl and then took on the role of “stay at home mom.” (For you techie people, that is SAHM.) With our household income slashed and the addition of diapers, baby formula, and Jack Daniels, we were poor. It’s a damn good thing Gluten Intolerance wasn’t around then because let me tell you I could take canned ham and pasta that would make the Iron Chef hang up his oven mitt.
One of the neighborhood moms delivered the town’s free paper, The Independent News, and said, “You should do this… it will be fun and you can make some cash while you’re at it.” Hmm. Fun, cash and legal… what the hell was I waiting for? I rang up the Independent News and said, ” Hello, this is Mrs. Lesko, sign me up for the fun and free money.”
The next morning, I opened my front door to find six bundles of papers and a box of plastic sleeves with an introduction letter attached: place the inserts in the paper, roll it up and slide into the plastic sleeve and deliver to this area. OK, I got this; once again we have all read this chapter, that’s all I’m going to say about this one. I looked at the six pathetic bundles and ran out to the store for something. Upon my return, I found 17 additional bundles with a note on it with a frowny face saying “sorry forgot to leave the ad inserts.” WTF?
OK, just insert flyers, roll, stuff (gently) into the plastic sleeves and deliver. I was finished by 4:30 PM… stuffing the friggen bags, not to mention the 75 bags I ripped and had to discard. I had to stop the production line to make dinner, but no problem I got this. (Note to self: bad idea.) I have papers stuffed, bagged and loaded into my car, which at the time was a tiny four-door sedan. Oh crap where do put the child? I place the child in the front seat, backward like Dr. Spock instructed and just layered the papers around her. I know, I know… plastic bags are a hazard. Well, let me tell you when they are piled six deep over your child, it’s even more of a hazard.
I take my route map and head out, tossing papers like the good news fairy through my area. Unfortunately, by paper number 35, my arm lost its spunk, my throw became short and my poor daughter wound up getting pelted with the free newspapers. At one point in robot motion, I reached over and grabbed her bottle and threw it across Mrs. Ingles’ lawn, who, by the way, was on the “Do not deliver” list that they conveniently forgot to leave me. Mrs. Ingles ran to pick up the paper and then began chasing me with it, screaming something like, I don’t know, “How about a free newspaper up your ass!” or something like that.
Four hours later, deflated, my daughter bruised and traumatized, I returned home. I did this for six months; my fingers were black from the ink, I never had the same number of ads inserts and papers, and Mrs. Ingles really did pick up some speed. I conceded, threw my proverbial paper towel in and passed the torch onto a snarky 13-year-old. I will never forget this job and for the next few years had all sorts of odd jobs just to make a few extra bucks but one thing is for sure: at the end of the day when your little one is sound asleep so precious and safe, you would do it again and again.