There May Be Worse Jobs Than Yours

Because I think I’ve found one.

A friend and I took our kids to a municipal pool this summer. It’s the pool in the little town I grew up in. When I was a kid, I thought it was as big as an entire ocean. As adults, sometimes we find that the giants of our childhood have shrunk. Not this pool. It’s just as big now as it was to my child’s eye. Maybe bigger, since I’m now responsible for keeping three kids above the water’s surface. Big job, right?

Oh, speaking of big jobs. Some kid did one. I mean, I hope it was a kid. We were all paddling happily about, when suddenly the lifeguards were rushing us out of the water like someone had spotted Jaws. Code brown, people! This is not a drill!  As per health code, we were beached for sixty minutes, which was annoying. But it could have been worse.

My friend and I were not responsible for finding the floater. Which sadly for the lifeguard involved, turned out to be a sinker. Imagine it. One minute you’re all Baywatch with your rescue board and some mad CPR skills, the next you’re the chump with a haz-mat suit and a fishnet. And it’s a big pool.

Seriously. Hazmat suit. Not kidding. I’d want one, too.


If that’s not you in the picture, go hug your boss.


38 thoughts on “There May Be Worse Jobs Than Yours

    • Sorry to hear about your unemployment. I’m currently sort of looking, too. I see jobs like that and think “Nope. I can hold on a little longer…”

  1. Once at summer camp, some counselors and I decided to put a candy bar in the pool (I think they got the idea from Caddy Shack, but I hadn’t seen the movie). One of the lifeguard just used the pool skimmer to get it out and she flicked it over the fence. But another lifeguard knew that if it was poop, they would have the close the pool and yadda yadda. So she and some other counselors (including me) went to go look for the poop. It was already dark out, so we were hunched down with our flashlights looking for it, and the lifeguard finally spotted it and said started to gag and tear up, so I just picked it up and ate it. (A tootsie roll that has been soaking in chlorine is not very yummy.)

  2. Yeah, it’s not exactly appetising, but honestly, no-one could swim in a lake or the actual ocean if animal excrements were *really* that bad. Hey, anyone chosing to give birth in a birthing pool is way more yuckily inclined than a life guard. And he is even being paid to do this, if not a lot.

  3. Hilarious!! I love it! I was a lifeguard in a previous life and can honestly say that I NEVER had to retrieve a floater or a sinker… I’m not sure if that’s good or bad b/c if I wasn’t removing them… who was? Yikes. Gross. Next time I go to a public pool… I think I might invest in one of those suits.

  4. I recently worked at a facility with a pool & believe it or not floaters (poop) are a very common occurrence. Probably at least 2x per week, if not daily. I don’t understand how parents can allow their children to do this. If your child still has accidents, put them in a diaper under their suit while in the pool! This is a serious health hazard for the rest of the patrons, not to mention taking away from their enjoyment of the facility.

    • At the zoo, they have to close the splash pad until all the water has run through filters. I do have to wonder what is the matter with the next generation if they can’t keep from pooping in the pool.

  5. Reading too quickly, I saw:
    “As per health code, we were bleached for sixty minutes.”
    And then I couldn’t stop giggling. Might not be such a bad idea.

  6. I wish I could have had this dose of perspective a few hours ago! I will definitely keep it in mind tomorrow.

  7. Oh, ick! I hate swimming pools anyway. I can almost feel my hair turning brittle and green at the thought. When I was a kid, the lifeguards would sometimes throw pennies in the pool for us to dive for. One time I grabbed at what I thought was a penny on the swimming pool floor. Nope.

A penny for your thoughts! And by penny, I mean a warm-fuzzy in your heart.

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