The Landscape of Hell
Day 1 as a new hiree at a landscaping job, I excitedly head out the door. B, my new boss, calls literally just as I am headed out the door and cancels the workday.
Day 2: I drive the 30 min to work only to find today’s workday also to be cancelled.
Third try is a charm and I work 10 hour days 6 days straight. Upon return from the long weekend I find three new high school hires, including a real-life Barbie. Shockingly, after 10 hours of work in the hot sun Barbie does not return for a second day of torture to her fake nails. The other two new hires are fired the next day for making honest mistakes made as a result of a lack of training. As the sole employee now, I am told I can work whichever schedule I desire. By the end of the day, however, B has managed to change the schedule a half dozen times before finally implementing a schedule whereby tomorrow – a previously scheduled day off (for which I had made plans that B was aware of) – is now a mandatory full day. The following day at 8:23 AM, B calls to cancel the workday.
During the course of my employment, I am yelled at and treated in a demeaning manner, often enduring undeserved and irrelevant rants and of course an erratic schedule that seems to change as often as the weather in our area (hint: every five minutes). I am expected to work 10-hour days in the sweltering heat without break even for food or drink, and B strongly suggests I pee in a bottle, as he does, in the back of the trailer (I am a woman). He places said bottle in the cooler next to my Gatorade. Then came the day B ignorantly drove 1,000lbs+ of mulch-filled trailer over my foot without so much as an apology or offer to take me to a hospital. I tough out the remainder of the day without complaint, despite being unable to bear weight on said foot.
I work long and hard for B despite all the above because a) as a university student I am desperate for the work and b) I am a really hard and proud worker who does not give up easy.
The last straw though was when pay day rolled around and my cheque was missing hours. I worked for B for a month and was one of his longest-working employees. Later I discovered that he owed at least two former employees thousands of dollars in hours and equipment; those employees recounted similar stories to mine (down to the pee bottle stored next to their lunch and drinks).