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(Don’s Boss at the brewery)
John got out of high school early and started driving truck first thing out of the shoots. He did this for 2 years and then worked in the grocery business. The grocery business paid well and it was easy work. He did that for about 6 years and then realized he wanted more than just stacking cans on a shelf so, he went back to school while still working part time in the grocery business.
When John finished school and started looking for more meaningful work. There were 4 postings for jobs with the government. He applied for all 4. He really wanted to be an electrician which was one of the jobs. What he got was a job at a government hospital as a Stationary Engineer. At first he was overwhelmed by the immensity of the job. After being exposed to the job for 4 days things clicked for him and he thought it was fantastic. Even today he still thinks it’s fantastic because of the learning curve, hands on work, the wide spectrum of jobs to do in any one work location as well as the different job opportunities one has at their finger tips.
John worked at the hospital for 8 years. He studied while on shift and got his 4th then, his 3rd and then part A of his 2nd class Stationary Engineer. After getting his part A of his 2nd John got a job at the brewery where he currently works and has worked for the last 11 years (as of the date of this interview July 2001). He says, ‘There ain’t nothing like it. It’s great!" He and his fellow engineers have worked hard to promote a real team spirit in the union environment and it seems to have worked well. "Guys really like working at the brewery and it ain’t because we make booze."
He believes being a Stationary Engineer offers more flexibility in life for friends, family and family needs as well as attending to hobbies and day to day chores one has to do. He thoroughly enjoys the changing technology, the intellectual stimulation and the continuing learning curve his job as a Stationary Engineering offers.
John works 8 hour day shifts as a Chief Engineer at a brewery these days. He use to work 12 hour shifts and does prefer the 12 hour shifts. He recalls getting in more fishing and camping as well as having more time to do maintenance and restoration work on his vehicles than he does these days while working the 8 hour shifts. John has a 1964 Meteor he has restored. It may not be anything fabulous to anybody but it is to him. It’s his baby. If it wasn’t the 12 hour shifts he had worked he may not have had the time to put into it as he did.
Other things he likes is doing his own renovation work to his home. The 12’s helped out alot here too. He still manages to keep up with things on his 8 hour shifts though. It just takes a little more planning and effort.
He has also had the good fortune to actually spend numerous days at school with his young ones. Not many fathers have the opportunity to spend time at their child’s school without having to take a day off from work. 12 hour shifts support John’s efforts with his children at school. A big plus for him and his children.
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