There are a lot of things about my job that are unpleasant, working with teenagers is not one of them. Surprisingly enough, they are the best part of my job. Take for example the day I walked into the guard shack to find two of my guards duct taping their hands. “Please tell me what you guys are doing.” “We just wanted to know what it was like to not have thumbs!” How can you not think that is funny? If you don’t laugh at that, there is something seriously wrong with you. Laughing is what teenagers do best. Every time I am around them they are laughing about something…it’s contagious. Actually, I think that is why I like working with them so much. They are everything I am not anymore…. enthusiastic, playful, optimistic, energetic, and creative. It is so easy to keep a teenager happy. With adults, I have to jump through hoops. With teenagers it’s so simple; all it takes is a four letter word…FOOD! You wouldn’t believe how excited they get about a free pizza or a Chick Fil A sandwich. Bring them a piece of cake, and the skies part and the angels sing hallelujah. Teenagers tell the best stories too. Like the time one of my assistant managers, who shall remain nameless to protect his father’s medical career, was telling the story of how his dad boiled the head of an accident victim in his kitchen to get the skull for teaching purposes. He assured me he had the needed permits. “Oh good,” I said. “That makes me feel so much better!” See, here is the picture to prove it. (so much for anonymity) And, teenagers are outrageously confident. Like the time one of my self assured employees came into my office. “Mrs. Pease, What do you think my senior quote should be?” “Hmm, let me think about that,” I said. “Never mind.” He said, ” I know what it should be… I always win!” Without another word, he turned and walked out the door. They get excited about the craziest things too. Things that are drudgery or disgusting to me give them the biggest kick. Riding the tractor for them is like a free pass to an amusement park; for me it’s like having my gums scrapped. One day I asked an employee to trap and dispose of a rat. You would have thought I had handed him a $1000 bill. Here is another thing, teenagers hug all the time. Seriously, everything is a reason to hug. We got a new time card machine…hug, the snack bar has more strawberry Good Humor eclairs…hug (well, that one I actually understand) I have first block with you…hug, your hair looks great…hug, we got an 11 kill streak on COD…hug; uh… I mean fist pump. So, after two years of working with teenagers, here is what I have learned:
- Laugh a lot
- Get excited about the little things
- Appreciate your food.
- Make everything fun
- Be confident
- Hug a lot
There are a lot of things I will not miss about the pool closing; the teenagers are NOT one of them!!! Maybe we all can learn a little from them.