Saturday, September 15, 2012

My Job- Sometimes I Feel Like I am in Jail

Not me, just a stock photo found online.
I always had a vision of myself dressed in high heels and business attire, full makeup, and perfectly blown out hair, getting out of a cab. Successful women take taxis not the subway. I came to the big city and landed a job at a large retailer and lived that life for a brief minute. I was the assistant to a Vice President and soon enough my glamorous position turned into something out of The Devil Wears Prada. I lasted six months until I called it quits. 

I found myself unemployed and desperate for a job. My livelihood in New York depended on a stable income. Two weeks later I received an offer for a small mom and pop business which seemed pretty solid. They had even given me an option of what department I would like to work in. It was incredible. I was no longer a small fish in a big pond but finally regarded as someone important. I held the key to my own destiny and I chose prison life.

Visiting Inmates Upstate
What do I mean by prison life? I didn’t do anything illegal nor am I on death row but every day I deal with inmates on the federal level nationwide. I sell them clothing and footwear, not the orange jumpsuit kind, but athletic wear and Nikes. In a sense, I still work in fashion. My job is quite the conversation piece. Actually, that’s why I chose it; to be able to say I do something different and have stories to tell.

The big underwear. If you only knew.
My days often stretch to the 7 o’clock hour and I have to keep things light just to get through the daily grind. Each day is different and I am always amazed at what I encounter. Through this job I get sent on assignment to exciting destinations like St. Joseph, Missouri and St. Petersburg, Virginia, listen to how inmates turn Doritos into enchiladas, get a play by play of the latest inmate revolt and attack on prison staff (bloody details included), and receive the occasional love letter. That is just the tip of it.

Sizing shoes before I ship them out.
My job is not glamorous nor is it high profile but it suits my life here just fine. I would have never had this opportunity in California. This job also gives me another reason to say, “Only in New York.” Only in New York, indeed.   

1 comment:

  1. Wow, I had no idea! I can't wait to hear some stories when you come in a few weeks.