I was laid off from ITT Cannon Electric in 1982, the year I
turned 27. 1982 proved to be one of the most challenging years
of my life career-wise. Not only was I an unskilled and
un-educated 27-year-old during a recession, but I really didn't
have any kind of proven track record for anything that was
Now, as you have seen from my past posts, and will continue to
see in my future ones, I am not lazy. I may be un-hirable in
any kind of meaningful work because of a lack of direction and
education (and I totally concede that this is nobody's fault but
mine) but lazy I am not. I knew I needed money to live, but you
can see that I didn't look for handouts from anyone, nor did I
turn to a life of crime. I worked at whatever I could find.
I hadn't enjoyed any of the jobs I had taken so far, and even up
to today, that has not changed. I took what I could get, like
it or not. I am telling you all this so you don't think that I
am lazy because I ended up taking unemployment benefits for a
while during this wonderful year of 1982.
Before I applied for unemployment, I tried my hand at a few
more sales jobs, since they were pretty much the only people
that were willing to hire me for anything, and sales-type jobs
are always available, regardless of the state of the economy.
(This is because they are commission-only, so they lose nothing
by hiring you).
I sold a menagerie of miscellaneous gadgets by taking my
sales kit and cold-calling on businesses, and going door-to-
door in residential neighborhoods.
I cycled through selling little pillows with small vibrating
massaging motors inside them, car alarms, car stereos, etc.
It was a dark depressing period for me, because as you can
imagine, this type of cold-calling hard sales is scary and
intimidating. I didn't like it, and I wasn't making any
I was running out of money, rent was late on my apartment,
and I can remember going to the grocery store with five bucks
and buying a jar of mayonnaise and some bread so I could
have mayonnaise and salt sandwiches.
And as a side note...understand that I was a 'normal' 27 year-old
male that was not really in a position to attract any attention
from any eligible females that I may meet...which is one reason
that I never got married until I was 32.
I hated to do it, because I felt guilty for taking free
money, but I finally applied for unemployment benefits, and for
several months I took a break, did not work, and managed to
stay in my apartment.
But even then, I was not idle. My best friend Ray and I were
approached to sign up for Amway during this year. Now, I know
there are people who say these multi-level marketing companies
are scams...but as these things go, Amway had been around a
long time...and are still around today.
We could see the potential, and we had to admit that there ARE
people who actually make money at it. And Ray and I worked it
hard. We didn't just sit around drinking and sleeping all day like
we were tempted to do...we really tried to make it work. We
plugged away full-time trying to recruit people and make sales.
We had a positive attitude, we tried, but we eventually had to
give it up. I had to find a job as soon as I could. I was very
glad to see the end of 1982.
Peace be with you.