Sunday, October 14, 2007

First Job

Kristin's photo of a jellyfish
at the Monterey Aquarium
First job, worst job, dream job.

This prompt from Sunday Scribblings must extract a confession from me: I have seldom had a paying job. None-the-less I have had a busy and productive life. I have always been part of a cooperative, communal family
who paid little attention to which member brought home the actual cash. This was true of my birth family and of the one that Otto and I created after our marriage 66 years ago.

My first job “professional” job was undertaken when I was somewhere between 11 and 14 years old. I know it was within that time because my family lived on McKendrie street during those depression years (1932-1935). My father represented Fibreboard Products in a large area that stretched from San Jose to Monterey, and helped create boxes in which to ship everything from Santa Clara dried prunes and apricots to sardine cans from Monterey with its extensive sardine harvests. My ever-changing career hopes had turned from astronomer, aviator, cartoonist or movie maker to a fairly steady desire to be an artist - any kind of artist including commercial art.

One of Daddy’s sardine canneries needed a logo for their shipping boxes, and Daddy asked me if I might like to design one. Ever the over-confident older child, I was sure I could do so - and did design one, after the use of much poster board and India ink. It was adopted by the cannery for shipping Portola brand sardines. I don’t remember whether or not I was paid for my work.

Skip over many years to the near extinction of sardines in Monterey Bay and the advent of the magnificent Monterey Aquarium in the old Portola cannery. The aquarium underwent several remodelings as it continually improved. After one such remodeling several years ago, we took a visiting grandchild to see it - and - tremendous surprise! There, at the entrance to the aquarium, was my Portola sardines logo enlarged to wall size!

Susan photographs jellyfish at
Monterey Aquarium
Last August several folk at our family reunion spent an afternoon at the aquarium. The picture below is the only picture that I currently have of my artwor. Daria, who is the photographer being photographed as she arranged her brother and children in front of it, has not yet sent her photograph of the logo and of them to me.

Looking at it now, I recall the reason for those squared ESSes at the edges: I couldn’t figure out how to make even curves that didn’t lean the letters one way or another. And why do some of the letters have serifs while others in the same word are plain block letters? Someone must have thought it was artistry not ignorance.

No time to go into other jobs I have had if this is to be posted by the deadline...

Except to say that I must now get busy with another computer job for Otto’s and my joint project of energy conservation and reducing global warming. I do circuit diagrams and schematics for his various innovations. Here is my schematic of a more effective solar thermal power plant.
I wish you happiness in the week ahead!


Sunday Scribblings said...

That's so cool! I love the Monterey Aquarium, though I haven't been there in years.

And just to let you know about links -- the easiest way to get your permalink is to clink on your post's title; the post will load as its own entry and the permalink will be what's in your navigation bar at the top of your screen. In blogger it begins with http and ends with .html. And if you change the title to your post, the permalink won't work anymore. Hope that helps! (Your link has been updated in Sunday Scribbles. Cheers!)

nonizamboni said...

Such an interesting history is yours. I really enjoyed this post.
You have my admiration.
Happy week!