View Full Version : Odd jobs

09-18-2010, 01:08 AM
My heroine needs an odd job and I don't want to make her a waitress.
Changing day and night shifts are a plus, co-workers are a must.
Any ideas are welcome.

Thanks in advance!

Calla Lily
09-18-2010, 01:14 AM
Desk clerk at a hotel
Radio station DJ/engineer
TV production/engineering
Stocking shelves at a department store/drug store/grocery store

09-18-2010, 01:34 AM
Nurse or midwife

09-18-2010, 02:47 AM
Barista (coffee shop employee)

Mr Flibble
09-18-2010, 02:59 AM
Working in a 7-11
I just finished my shift. Bloody chavs.

09-18-2010, 03:05 AM
What's the time frame/location?

Bike messenger,
windshield glass repair,
dog walker,
personal shopper,
radio listener for Arbitron (yeah, that really is a job, or at least it was a few years ago.) city inspector for strip clubs.
Tire test driver for Goodyear (they drive around in caravans, often in identical cars.)

09-18-2010, 03:18 AM
A beekeeper. Some crews trade "supers," extra boxes above the hives, during the day, and other crews extract honey from the supers during the night. Many beekeepers are women, particularly on extraction crews.

Bee hives placed in orchards and fields for pollination MUST be loaded and trucked after sunset and unloaded in the new locations before sunrise -- or the workers will become lost.

The jobs are "odd," and small crews work shifts.

09-18-2010, 05:06 AM

09-18-2010, 06:09 AM
Tarring telephone poles. Yeah, I had a co-worker who did that for a while.

09-18-2010, 06:23 AM
Towel girl at a spa ...

Drachen Jager
09-18-2010, 10:59 AM
Laundry worker. If you want a little nod to Stephen King.

C.H. Valentino
09-18-2010, 12:16 PM
Made me think of William Gibbson's "cool seeker" girl who is frightened of logos.

Otherwise, dog sitter. That's way weird.


Smiling Ted
09-18-2010, 07:32 PM
What's the time frame/location?

Also - sorry to sound sexist, but her looks would definitely help her get some odd jobs. Not talking about strippers, either. In LA, a pretty woman who is outgoing can get an endless string of "gigs" - booth girl at a convention, greeter at a store, hostess at a restaurant, etc. etc.

Giant Baby
09-18-2010, 07:39 PM
Human Services (as direct care staff in group homes for MR or MH populations). Hours can be day, night, or overnight (7-3, 3-11, 11-7), and a combination of those shifts is common, as is picking up extra shifts. Number of co-workers can be anywhere from 0-4 or 5, usually, depending on the size and demands of the house.

Same for residential schools for people with disabilities, where your character would have a considerably larger number of co-workers.

09-18-2010, 09:23 PM
What's the time frame/location?
It's urban fantasy taking place in a fantasy city. Now.

Nurse or midwife
Although nurse and midwife aren't odd jobs that brought me the idea to make her part of a hospital cleaning team.
I'm not sure if that could work. Does anybody know if hospitals have permanent cleaning personnel or do the people who scrub the floors there also work in offices/schools/supermarkets?

09-18-2010, 09:43 PM
In order to stay accredited, our campus hospital had to maintain a cleaning staff thoroughly trained and regularly updated in everything from universal precautions through maintaining OSHA MSDS books on their cleaning carts. Lots and lots of training and updates.

Before an "environmental services" person (lord help anyone calling them cleaning ladies) could work solo, she and an occasional he worked 30 days with a supervisor.

ES staff worked 24/7 in 8-hour and 12-hour shifts for both part-timers and full-timers.

Giant Baby
09-18-2010, 09:50 PM
Does anybody know if hospitals have permanent cleaning personnel or do the people who scrub the floors there also work in offices/schools/supermarkets?

Usually, the housekeeping staff are hospital employees. Some may contract with other agencies, (for instance, in the hospital where I work, members of the Environmental Services and Engineering teams are all hospital employees, but Food Service is staffed by a contracted agency), but I can't imagine that's the norm for environmental services. We place a tremendous demand on them, and their training and certifications have to stay up to date. It may be more common in smaller hospitals, though? You could call one and ask.

It is very common for members of the housekeeping staff to have second jobs. However, most I know who do work a different shift at a different hospital, as opposed to working in a supermarket. No reason they couldn't though.

Edit: What Chase said.

09-20-2010, 08:15 AM
Nursing homes often have an in-house housekeeping/laundry staff. She could be a housekeeper, do the laundry, and/or supervise the staff. Plenty of coworkers. She could work both day and night.