Monday, October 13, 2014

In Appreciation of the Unappreciated


I have always had such admiration and respect for people working in positions that seem to be universally scoffed at or made fun of. 

Sanitation workers, trash workers, custodians, fast food workers, mechanics, brick layers, cleaning people, etc. Few things make me angrier than to hear someone make a derisive comment about people in these professions. 

First of all, nobody should ever feel that they are above any kind of work. Nobody is "less than". Why do we think the lawyer is more important in society then the custodian? Why do we think a CEO is more important than a sanitation worker? I must have missed the memo.

If the sanitation workers, fast food workers, custodians, and garbage workers took an entire week off worldwide, we would dissolve into chaos and anarchy. Within 24 hours, everyone would see just how vital these workers are and how much we take them for granted.

Every single worker in the world, from the janitor all the way up to the CEO, contributes to our society. So the next time you pass a custodian in the hall, stop to thank them and tell them that you appreciate the job they do. The next time you're picking up your café latte in the Starbucks drive-through, thank the barista and tell them how much they always make your morning. The next time you happen to be outside when the trash collector comes, tell them hello and that you really respect the work they do to keep the streets and the neighborhoods clean. 

All anyone ever wants is to be appreciated. And nobody deserves it more than those who rarely get to hear it.

Why do you think we devalue some jobs in society and people who do such hard work in them?

137 comments:

  1. well as a society we chase the glitz and the glam...not the servant heart and mentality...priorities....are all out of whack...just look at our entertainment, it debases hard work and the foundation of a good family....

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  2. Class based societies tend to link class to human worth/value.. and jobs are also attached to class ?. But as Brian says we chase the glitz and glam.. some jobs are not glamorous. Sad really. because if our cleaner doesn't how up I know immediately.. but if the chief exec's not in I would NEVER know it.
    Yes as you said , everybody deserves to be appreciated!

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  3. Brian kinda hit the nail on the head there. We chase for glamour and jobs like custodians and sanitation workers aren't very glamorous. The people who work them are seen as people who genuinely couldn't do any better and must be the lowest of the low. They do provide an invaluable service though. They don't deserve the stigma they get.

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  4. Amen! You have a good sermon here! Work needs to be valued and workers honored!

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  5. It's as messed up as how policemen or the military makes so little when they put their lives on the line every single day and yet we pay actors and athletes millions for entertainment.
    That janitor is worth ten times more than any CEO, believe me!

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  6. Keith, I agree with you 100%. You always come up with the best post subjects.

    As a woman, I've encountered inferiority treatment on countless occasions. It's getting better but it's still has a long way to go. As a housewife when I was raising my family, I felt inferior... so I know how it feels.

    These less desirable jobs are as important and maybe more important than the higher paying jobs. For example, if 10 lawyers in my area went on vacation for a few weeks, in most probability, it wouldn't affect me but if 10 sanitary engineer didn't picked up the garbage for two weeks, it would be a different story. It wouldn't take long before rats and raccoons would be foraging through the garbage and the smell and the mess would be unbearable in the heat, extend the period a little longer and the problem would be compounded.

    How did it get that way? Greed, superiority complex, lack of respect for others would be my guess.

    We are all equal in the eyes of God, but society hasn't seen the light yet.

    Hugs,
    JB

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  7. I agree with you 100 percent on this. great post. I think it is because of the almighty dollar... people are rated by how much money they make and the houses/cars etc... I do have to admit sometimes I am a reverse snob towards the CEO's and Lawyers etc.... I am from and always have been working class and hubby was a mechanic...

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  8. Yay Keith! This is a truly fabulous post and one that touches a subject dear to my heart. I have long since had a theory that everyone should be required to work one week at any service industry job just to have perspective and respect in the future. I know how badly I have been treated in working those jobs in the past and it just isn't right. We need workers of all kinds to make our society run. In my travels, I have had the good fortune to see tribes who divvy up work naturally and trust me, no one is looking down on the hunter as opposed to the gatherer if you know what I mean!

    My Mom just remarried (as I think you know) and it is always interesting when I tell people that he works at Ford driving a hi-low. He is an amazing man, has worked there for 38 years (since he was 16!) and yet there are people who squirm awkwardly as if he were less of a person because he works in a factory. It infuriates me to no end.

    So thank you, friend, keep doing the good stuff.

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  9. I can't answer the question. When I graduated from college, one of the cleaning people gave me a graduation gift to thank me for my kindness. She was a remarkable woman who, while I was in college, helped her husband through a depression when he was laid off from work, mourned the loss of a parent, and held her family together as best she could. I was (am) touched by her generosity.

    The other day, I was out shopping with Bibi and my daughter-in-law. I was paying for my items, talking with the cashier. When we left, Bibi asked me if I knew the guy at the register. I realized that she thought, because I was being so friendly towards him that he and I must be friends.

    So I can't respond to this because it's not a part of my personal experience. Have I been treated dismissively when working in retail? Of course. But I can't begin to understand why.

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  10. My husband and I try to make a point of acknowledging good service - to the person providing the service and/or to their boss, with a better tip and/or kind words. You're right - we all want to feel appreciated.

    Madeline @ The Shellshank Redemption

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  11. It absolutely irks me when I hear peeps degrade these professions ... I would be the first to admit that they have a lot more talent than me. I would have NO idea how to make a bed as perfect as a maid from a hotel, I would have NO idea how to trim my palm trees and I would have NO idea how to operate a garbage truck ... these workers all have my respect and admiration for making my world better :)

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  12. everyone likes to hear a kind word no matter their profession and I believe we are all equal from the garbage collector on up to leaders of countries, anytime someone starts thinking they are better or more valued or more important than someone else that's the beginning of problems and a sure sign of a character flaw.

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  13. Amen! Great post and excellent message! I was just thinking of writing a post along similar lines the other day...it still might be different enough to write without being accused of plagiarism ;)

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  14. I believe that all people should get as much pay as others, a cleaner versus a bank manager. Marxist.

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  15. Absolutely. And what about all those lettuce pickers? You'll never find an american stooped over in the fields of romaine.
    It's all so "above" us to clean bathrooms and mop floors for a living.
    Yes, we should stop and think about this. About the hardest working people who get no acknowledgement.
    And anyway, those folks are much more interesting to talk to than a banker or a CEO.
    Great post. Glad yer back! :)

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  16. My opinion is that when makes fun of others, it's definitely a sign of their insecurity.

    All jobs are important. EVERY single one.

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  17. Bravo, Keith! Thanks for this post. Every 'job' in this world is important in it's own right and none are any better than the next.
    I always made a point of getting to know the 'custodians' of the world I worked in before I got to know others.
    Thanks for spreading the word.

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  18. i'm the same with you. i have special respect for those people who work the jobs that most people wouldn't want to do it. i think it's human ego to think of certain jobs as less important than others. great post, Keith! and really thought provoking

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  19. Touching, Keith .... loved this read .... Indeed, world would see the real chaos if they take even a day off ...

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  20. Our values are warped.

    Often times, the janitor works much harder than the CEO too. And those earning the biggest bucks are the most malicious people. They should be forced to mop floors and clean toilets for a day or even an hour.

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  21. So right! I totally agree with this post! Likewise, why on earth do we hold up 'celebrities' as though they are someone special??

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  22. Society teaches us that these jobs are lower-class and something to be ashamed of. Very untrue. It is good honest work. And I think a cashier who deals with the general public should get paid more than a receptionist who sits at a desk and plays on the Internet 80% of the time.

    My husband is a store manager for a retail chain now, but makes a point to still clean the bathrooms occasionally or do other "grunt work". He believes in making all of his employees see that they are a team, and nobody is too good to do any task.

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  23. I try to be kind to everyone around me, whether they be sanitation workers or executives ~ But those who are unkind and belittle others, they lack empathy or have not been taught to see other people as people ~ I think education and family values play a great role here ~ This also extends to the way we treat animals and trees in the bigger picture ~

    Have a good week Keith ~

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  24. I feel the same way. What would the world be like without all the jobs, from the hands on kind of stuff to the managerial and corporate positions? I've often wondered too, why athletes and entertainers get paid so much. They aren't saving lives, teaching children, or removing our trash from the curb. Good post!

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  25. I have never understood this myself, Keith.
    Whether managing director or office cleaner, everyone is crucial in society. One cannot function without the input of the other...and a person is a person, whatever their job...they ALL deserve respect and recognition.
    Yes, great post.:)

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  26. SO agreed. Every job is important. What would happen of no one would clean the street or bake the bread we love and the list is long..

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  27. As a wife and mother I've done most of those jobs and then some lol....you better bet I appreciate when I see someone else doing them.

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  28. Such a good post Keith. I've always wished I would win a big lottery and then play it forward with a big tip for people who do the dirty jobs. Wouldn't it be fun to walk out to the garbage truck one morning and hand the sanitation worker an envelope with $1,000 in it?

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  29. Yeah the ceo takes a week off and goes to hawaii, nothing occurs. Janitor takes a week off and all hell breaks loose, who is worth more?

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  30. I totally agree. I really notice the difference now that I work in film. When I used to go to a film festival ten years ago and filmmakers learned that I owned a pet supply store, I was basically ignored. Now that I'm a writer and my work has been adapted to the screen, I'm basically everyone's best friend, even though I'm still the same girl. I hate it when people are like that. I usually avoid saying what I do for a living so I can be sure who's genuine and who's not. It's just a job. It only defines a very small part of who we are.

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  31. I often thank the train announcers on the London Underground. At peak times they stand on the platforms and announce the next train, ask people to behave respectfully in the crush and answer questions (often even though the info is all visible on the display). It must be an incredibly taxing job because although it's repetitive, there's no let up and they're on duty non-stop for a good few hours.

    So I say, "Thank you for helping to keep us safe." And they look surprised. More people should say thanks, or at least acknowledge their presence.

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  32. You are so correct and this class distinction is so pervasive it is disgusting. Our trust admin also answers the phone and she is often treated in a derisive manner but as soon as they learn she was also a counsellor they change their tune-sad! My Uncle was head of the German Dept at the University of Michigan and he was a professor. My mom accused him once of class distinction and he scolded her. He stated he has so much respect for the ditch digger and the janitor because they are the back bone. He said there are many, so-called, intellectuals who take courses but do nothing and others struggle and support families working long hours in jobs many don't want. He respected them more than many other professors. I also remember that amazing lady, from Florida, I believe, that worked over 60 years doing laundry for rich families. She finally had to stop working when she was in her in her 80's and she saved ober $200,000! She donated all the money to the negro fund for African American girls who could not afford an education. She had always wanted to go. Shame on me that I can't recall her name but I have nothing but admiration for this grand lady

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  33. Without them the world would go into chaos. They are the backbone, the ceo's are the flab.

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  34. You're in my mind! I was thinking exactly the same thing on Friday when I had a brief conversation with one of the women that cleans the restrooms at work.

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  35. I totally agree with you. I think people act this way because they are insecure and to try and make themselves feel superior. They should be made to stand in a janitor's shoes and see what it is like.

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  36. This is a very true thing and it's very sad to see. I think that society still has the mindset that wants to put people down to make themselves feel good.

    A few people, including you, are so beyond amazing to show appreciation that hopefully it will become contagious and spread to the rest of society.

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  37. Those who do an honest job do not get respect. Parents are doing a poor job teaching their kids that every job is important. At least those people are working to support themselves and not ripping us off as the CEOs and lawyers and some other professions do.

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  38. Trash workers here are very highly paid. These days a job's a job...especially one that pays. Our society is to blame for class consciousness.

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  39. Great post, Keith, and thanks so much for sharing this! Personally I don't devalue anyone or any job. I have worked in my lifetime in many different jobs. Receptionist, I have cleaned empty apartments for a property management firm, (and they hired me to supervise electricians on their property when they upgraded the electricity in their apartments), I have worked in retail both as a sales clerk and a manager....yes, I have done many things.

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  40. When you think of the world as one large organism it reminds you that hand and feet analogy. You know... the one thinks it is "better" than the other, when the reality is that it takes both to get things done.

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  41. I'd rather hang out with a janitor or fast food worker than some high paying egomaniac any day of the week. Our society does this through media all the time. It's glamorous to be this or to be that. They drool all over actors and actresses and even some politicians. I don't care about those people. It's just what happens and I don't see an end to it either.

    Have a fabulous day. :)

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  42. I wish everyone in the world could see this post! I think it's because we as a society have values which are all about aspiration, wealth and consumption, and 'good jobs' and material possessions are how we gauge success. But thankfully a lot of people see past all that stuff, and have respect for people, regardless of what they do for a living or how much stuff they have.

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  43. Welcome Back Keith. I think we might devalue some workers because we have not put our self in their place. A lack of understanding and empty contribute to harsh judgment. It's not our appearance, our occupation, our house or cars that define us, to me it's our heart and light inside. Thanks for sharing yours so beautifully Keith!!

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  44. completely agree! i have never felt i am better than anyone doing anything. we all deserve respect, a friendly smile, a thank-you for a job well done.

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  45. gewoon respect voor iedereen dan krijg je ook respect terug.

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  46. This is just a big yes! I might just copy and repost this because it is so fantastic! As they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

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  47. What a lovely and thought-provoking post. As to why we devalue certain jobs in society, I think it comes down to feeling powerful. Americans have created a world that's driven by power, money, greed; we need more, more, more! And if someone is below us in this chain of "power", or if their work seems significantly "less important" than ours, we scoff at them.
    Why? We're all on this planet together. We're all in the same boat. We all work in hopes to make enough money to support ourselves. If we thought of our jobs in more simplistic terms, as something we do to keep ourselves alive and well, I think we would stop disrespecting certain jobs.
    Many people also do a job because they love the work, they love the people they work with, etc. We don't know others stories. Let people do what they do, thank them for their contribution to society, and quit judging.

    If you can't already tell, I deeply agree with this post. Thank you for sharing it.

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  48. Your point is so well made, Keith. Really I have no original thoughts to add to what was already expressed. But I do think it is important to be polite and appreciative to all workers we encounter on a daily basis - and not to devalue them because of the kind of work they do. So true that each has a role, and if those people in any of those service jobs stopped doing them, a lot of things would just NOT get done! Thank you for this, Keith.

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  49. excellent post! Maybe some folks think CEO's and lawyers are above the rest- but for me...I think it's the people who actually do some work and keep us going. And don't even get me going about Hollywood....bah! Thanks for the reminder- I'll be telling a lot of folks today "Thanks for your hard work"! and thanks to you for all your nice comments on my blog! Cheers!

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  50. I've always felt this way! Thank you for expressing this so eloquently. We all need to show respect for each other no matter our station in life. But particularly to those who make our world a better place to live. Amen.

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  51. Your heart is where it should be!! Your words are top notch and right on. While reading this, another occupation I thought of is a farmer...getting up before sunrise and often working to sunset. Back breaking labor so often. Have you tried lifting a bale of hay? It's nearly impossible...but I've seen men lift 'em by hand, and throw them on the truck...over and over and over.

    Why do some look down to other laborers? I really don't know why. The society is pressed for recognition and 'small jobs' are frowned on. It's the way of the world, sadly.

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  52. I don't know the real answer, but two possibilities occur to me. One, that we put a monetary value on worth, so those who make the most $$$ must be the most important. Two, that we're scared that one day it could be us doing a job we would hate.

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  53. You nailed that one! I agree with you 10000%

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  54. I fully agree. We could survive quite some time without CEOS, politicians and bureaucrats but not long without the people who do the basic things for us in our lives.

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  55. Very 'very' well said. I couldn't agree more.

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  56. I can't explain WHY it's done, but I am still irate that my school district fired all the custodians -- who are all community members -- hired an outside contractor, and used the "saved" money to create more administrative positions (in effect, giving raises to the people who were already highly paid). They excuse themselves by saying the fired custodians were welcome to apply for jobs with the contractor. Yes, for less money and less health benefits.

    That's my school district, robbing the poor to give to the wealthy.

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  57. Hi Keith,

    You are so right and every job is important no matter what and everyone should be appreciated.
    Welcome back and hope you have a lovely week
    Carolyn

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  58. You are so right. Sadly I think our values are messed up. Many of those jobs keep the world running. I try to thank the clerks for their work and being there on holidays and nights. I can't even begin to say how grateful I am for our police, firemen, teachers, and health care workers, but I will try.

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  59. It takes about 2 seconds to say 'Thank you' - I've just timed myself on our clock. Appreciation for a job well done, whatever it is doesn't take a lot of our lives up. A smile and a thank you could make someone's day a bit brighter and a mundane job a bit less tedious.

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  60. I try to live by the golden rule. Condescending to anyone because of the job they hold (or for that matter age, sex, race, religion..you name it) is just rude and downright stupid. It doesn't make you the better person, that's for sure. Just be nice and people will usually be nice right back at ya! Your thoughts are perfect. One more thing I think is that so many people seem to have lost their manners. Yes ma'am, no sir, thank you...I see that in our young folks.

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  61. There is absolutely no such thing as "less than." I think what is "important" gets skewed. Great to see you!

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  62. Im absolutely agree, who could do without the men work in trash track?
    I really think all the works are really important but is true not all the people think that!
    And I hate when someones ius not nice with a person who is working with a service.
    Always I trty to say THANKS!!!
    And IM really thanksful for this work!
    Nice post Keith!!

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  63. Its the most beautiful thing.
    I have tried a lot not to differentiate. After all we're all the same. I believe we could always be at any place. So respecting each one comes naturally.

    Your perspectives are beautiful.
    So above as below, says Circa. The inside reflects on the outside.
    I'm glad to get to read your works.
    Keep writing!
    :)

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  64. Great post, Keith! I have been in some of these jobs myself in my early days.. So I do know how hard the work can be. I respect and thank all workers around me..Thanks for sharing, have a happy week!

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  65. We make judgments on money. You make more money , you're a bigger "shot". I agree with you that the person and job should be valued equally.

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  66. I feel the same way. My mom was a custodian at a car dealership once and she even worked as a cook at a McDonalds. My dad did construction and later worked at Wal-Mart in the freezer section. This work is difficult and the people in these positions are taken for granted.

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  67. Keith,

    Your posts are always thought provoking and this was so well said. I think it comes down to respect. Welcome back you have been missed.

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  68. You are so right. Every job is important and someone needs to do it. I think people make fun of others no matter what it is because they want to make themselves feel better. Sad that they hurt others to do that.

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  69. Anyone who does a job with pride and dignity is a hero.
    I cleaned campground toilets for years but I knew after university I wouldn't have to do it any more. Some people don't have that out.

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  70. When I retired, I took a job as a toll collector, an invisible job. I will never forget one day a man watched me work quickly, give out directions cheerfully and smiled. He said "Your are really good at what you do." It made my day--I always try to do the same.
    Wonderful post.

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  71. Glad you brought this up as a subject to blog about. I personally think those who work in retail and fast food have some of the toughest jobs at the low end of minimum wage. I do appreciate their efforts and try to thank them and say a kind and encouraging thing. I need to be more diligent though in the careers you mentioned here, they too need encouraging words too.

    betty

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  72. Both my husband and I, when working, always knew the power of the custodians who held the keys to everything that happened in the buildings where we worked. Without them, nothing worked.

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  73. I remember when Newt Gingrich was running for president, he might of been the only person in the world to give janitors some respect...but not really. Claimed they made too much money, and that student labor could be used instead. That THANKFULLY never went anywhere.

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  74. Yes, I think every job should be acknowledged. How nice that you wrote a post to appreciate those who aren't recognized. And I just love those Starbuck's workers. They make my day every week, and I appreciate them very much.

    ~Sheri

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  75. I agree 110%. I always smile when I see the custodial staff at the airport and tell them thank you. I agree that for the most part they are invisible, but a thank you goes a long way. I thought about this last year, but never did it, but plan this year...I'm going to leave a warm breakfast goodie bag for my garbage man as a thank you for always bringing my trash can back to the house instead of leaving it on the curb.

    Reminds me of a story from a fellow FA. She was asking a passenger what they wanted to drink and the lady ignored her. Her traveling companion said she didn't talk to the hired help, so the FA skipped her.

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  76. Personally, I think baristas are the most useful people on the planet...okay, maybe I exaggerate, but I love that you brought this up. I always smile and thank those who do those tasks so important to society. I sometimes wonder how important lawyers are, especially in some cases where justice is not served, but the law is.

    As always, thanks for a thoughtful post.

    Denise :)

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  77. I think everyone should have to work in some public servant job at some point in their lives. I have worked fast food and retail, and put up with a lot of shit during those years. Busting my butt for minimal pay, under-appreciated by both customers and bosses. It make me more sympathetic to anyone who has to have a job that is considered less than desirable. I say please and thank you way too much when out and about, but I want everyone to know that I truly value what they do for us.

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  78. Some of the jobs you mentioned actually pay well but they do have a stigma attached. I think it has to do with class divisiveness. But for some, these jobs are only transitional and they do want to advance for personal fulfillment. I think we should encourage those who strive for education and career advancement. But if others are happy with what they do, then we shouldn't judge them or devalue their choices.

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  79. Awesome post, Keith. You've raised one of the things that has bothered me most about American society. I grew up in isolated areas where each person's contribution was valued, whatever the job he or she performed. People needed each other to survive. It was slackers who were looked down on. But here, well it seems like it's only about the money. As a society, we need to open our eyes and see the humanity and dignity in the people who make our society function.

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  80. Our world as we know it would totally collapse! So true....
    Did you know that there are only 2 professions that are called a " practice "?
    Lawyers and doctors are always practicing! Lol! Just a little joke! :)
    Cheri

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  81. I agree with you! Sometimes as I go to work in the freezing cold and see people cleaning the streets or driving the tubes, I think to myself that they are unsung heroes.

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  82. I think you are right on the mark Keith... I remember seeing a show Oprah had on many years ago about how close we were to a total standstill if there were not people that would or could do it.. I am incredibly grateful for those very hard working people... :)

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  83. Great post --and OH--so true. We are ALL special and unique people --no matter what our 'status' in life is... We need those sanitation workers and the people who clean up after us... I admire people who are willing to do this kind of work. We try to tip people like this (or give home-made goodies to eat) when possible. They work HARD and don't get paid much. God Bless them ALL.

    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  84. ... surprise, surprise ... even spittoon cleaners have spittoon cleaners working for them ...

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  85. YES! So well said. I was looked down on a couple times when someone with multiple degrees asked me "what kind of education do you have?" I said High school and some college. I was snubbed after that.

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    1. ... so sorry to read that, but I know where you are coming from, Rose ... you know what, I feel the same every day ... working as an LPN in a psych unit ... but was a psych nurse in the old country ... I never treated my employees the way I am treated in this country ... but me strong and so are you ... smiles ... Love, cat.

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  86. A really worthy post. We need to look around and appreciate every little person. They too make our life easier because of their work.

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  87. ABSOLUTELY. Why are people defined by their jobs? And why are the most important jobs demeaned? It is crass, unreasonable and guaranteed to make me enraged!

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  88. Quite agree Keith. As always you post something positive or helpful. In an ocean of on line negativity we need this. Thanks

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  89. No, WE don't.
    As it is obvious by your post and all that stopped by to say "no, I really care". "I try to."
    There's even an inspirational talk regarding this issue:
    http://www.inspirationpeak.com/cgi-bin/stories.cgi?record=26
    I believe the treatement of those "below" reflects a scared mind that thinks that it would put them in the same position and they don't want to... then there's the education. I see parents not encouraging their kids to do that, they don't smile or even thank those who serve them. And once the inconsideration enters the cycle is very difficult to stop.
    Which is curious because at the end of the day there will always be someone "more important" than us that could make us feel that.
    Take Care,
    Teresa

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  90. Such a great post! Some worker thinks that they are above anyone else. I agree every worker contribute in the society and nothing should feel above or less than to anyone. great reminder to those who think they are above anyone else.
    Have great day, Keith:)

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  91. A wonderful post! There is no shame in honest work. I grew up in a working class neighbourhood, and many of the residents had these types of jobs. They were very hardworking people that I admired and respected; people that I learned good work ethics from.

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  92. Nice post - I started worked as a kitchen hand and a cleaner in a organisation I ended up staying with for almost 4 years - when I no longer did that role I went out of my way to make sure I made as little work for people who still did it. Nice shiny conference rooms and fresh bread for breakfast only happen because people make it happen!

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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  93. How many people would was the feet of a tired old woman in a room where nobody knew and nobody saw...my other favorite quote concerning this wonderful subject...you can tell the true character of a person by the way they treat those who can do nothing for them.

    great post my friend!!

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  94. It's true. We totally take them for granted, although if I hired someone to clean my house, you better bet I'd be all kinds of grateful. =) It's unfortunate our society focuses so much on the $$ behind a job. I suppose that's why I make my kids clean the house and do yard chores. Some moms just do everything for their kids. I want mine to appreciate the value of hard work and a good job done.

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  95. People seem to love the thought that they are better or more worth than somebody else. Other people, animals,...I just don't get it.

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  96. I had a house cleaning business for over 20 years that I still practice part time with a full time job. I have always been proud of my business. It paid the bills and kept a roof over my head and a car in the driveway. I think that people have a pre conceived notion on certain jobs. I have always believed that if you do something with passion and integrity no matter what it is : working in fast food or Walmart or high up the latter if you do it well it is something to be proud of.

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  97. Good post Keith-as always, It is sad but it seems that is the way of it-compares to clothes worn in schools-the affluent kids that have everything and those that struggle-everyone should be appreciated and respected-don't know how it can be changed unless everyone trys to make a difference

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  98. I LOVE this post! Food for thought and you definitely inspired me to reach out to these people and thank them. Thank YOU!

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  99. I think it's because we are too competative and we're taught to be better than everyone else when in reality we are not we are all the same.

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  100. I just stumbled on your blog and am really glad I did. Great post. Blessings to you :-)

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  101. It's true that one of the most valuable lessons we can teach our children is everyone deserves an equal amount of respect. Thanks for the important reminder, Keith!

    Julie

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  102. Yes, a great inspiring post...sad but true.

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  103. I never understood that, it never made sense. very good post.

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  104. Well said. We were at a hotel over the weekend where the chambermaids were so friendly and pleasant that it was amazing how much more welcoming the hotel felt! I truly appreciate the work done in these professions!

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  105. My maternal grandparents were my favorite people in the world, and they both worked in the service industry. They were way nicer than my paternal grandmother (grandpa on that side was nice, but gram sure wasn't) who had a little money. And they were far more dedicated to their work too. :)

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  106. I so agree with Your view. It is pretty much all about ego...being "above" doing this or that. Every person has value and deserves respect...until shown otherwise, of course.

    Big hugs, honey...

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  107. I think we disregard because of the love of arrogance more than empathy, humbleness, kindness.
    Excellent post . . .
    Pray I remembering ALL equally . . .

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  108. In answer to your question: people love to feel as if they are better than someone else. If they've had the fortune of money and were born in the "right" family, they can secure the education necessary to get a job which can guarantee they won't have to do what they consider "menial" labor.
    Okay, now on to MY story....when I told my mom I was going into the Navy after high school, I firmly believe she was relieved. Although she didn't say it, she knew she wouldn't have to fork out money to send me to college. For the first years of my service, I was the one who swabbed decks, cleaned toilets, washed dishes (not in that order), etc. It was necessary and I felt important. As I got more senior, I was put in charge of those who did all that. But, I never once thought I was better than they. Someone had to be in charge and it may as well have been the old dude, I guess. Now that my Navy days are long gone, I would LOVE to have a job that made real a difference in people's lives. If anyone doubts that, how would YOU like to go into a bathroom stall which had no toilet paper or had to dodge piles of garbage at the building entrance?
    Bottom line? I agree with you 100%

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  109. Every job is essential to the society ... we are all dependent on each other in a way.

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  110. I love your posts and I love how much I agree with you on them! So true - hearts all around this one!

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  111. Long ago, my first son got in trouble for stomping on ketchup packets in school and making a huge mess. He got detention and that was all the school made him do. I was livid. I told them I wanted HIM to clean up after the kids for a week. Then, as punishment on the home front, I made him "earn" his keep. If he wanted to eat dinner, he had to work and get paid from me. i.e.: clean the bathroom, get .50, dinner costs .75…better do another chore. I did that with him for a month. Extreme? Maybe but years later he told me how much that made him not only appreciate other's jobs but the value of money too. To me, it was the best punishment I ever did.

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  112. you're right, we often do not notice and ignore the people doing the 'dirty work' while it is very important to the life of societyю It is unfair to those workers, we have to be appreciated.

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  113. SO well put! I was at the post office yesterday at around 9 a.m. and there was only one person working. I'm sure it was a decision of the post office, since that's not a high-volume time of day on a weekday. Other employees were scrambling around, trying to get packages in post office boxes and such, but the line was long. As the one worker was waiting on me, some guy in line said, loudly, "YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK, FOLKS." I flashed the worker a sympathetic smile and she said, "Ignore him, right?" I said, "Right." As I walked out, I flashed the guy a look and he averted his gaze. I think he realized he'd been heard. I hope I helped the employee feel a little better, though.

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  114. Easy! No difficulty at all answering that one.

    The harder you work, the less you earn and appreciation is all to do with the money your job’s worth.

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  115. I'm thinking it may have something to do with our perception of intelligence and education. We believe a janitor has no education and is therefore not intelligent and that's why they do that job. Of course there are so many generalizations and incorrect presumptions thinking that way that it makes no sense. Really, if we value intelligence so much why do we pay actors millions of dollars and doctors only get a fraction of that? Looks like I have no answer for you!

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  116. So true… I think this applies in so many situations too… like, the writing world for instance…

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  117. It's those people in the low-paying jobs, who really make things run. You're right - society would be a mess without them. They should get paid more. I think they do more work than a lot of CEOs!

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  118. Today I wear braces and creep along through life...Why? I worked my way through the final 4 years of college as a custodian, a matron, at the student center at SDSU. The building is gone, my degree with honors isn't really useful, but my upper body is worn out from all I did. Another surgery coning up next week.

    The new student center is vastly larger. I pity the student custodians there who must be earning far more than the three fifty an hour than I did.

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  119. Our school plant manager has gotten to be my best friend at work. Being friends with him has it's advantages, too. He opened the secret closet and got me my equipment after two months of failure to get it from the authority figures. When I had ants in my room, he got rid of them pronto. He's also fun to chat with. I love our custodian!

    http://joycelansky.blogspot.com/2014/10/october-on-tpt.html

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  120. I really liked what you had to say!

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  121. I always believe that everything comes out of hard work... no one is less than another and what I know doesn't know the other which goes as well with them. Though many things become mechanical and technologically advanced to help people, I always admire those works with hands and physically strain to complete task.

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  122. Dear Keith, I think that some of the devaluing comes from those who think that education says how intelligent a person is. To those people, manual work doesn't require brains and so it's not esteemed. Peace.

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  123. Loved your post, brother. This si at the core of what we are as a race (the human race) and what we want the future to look like. I fully agree with you but sadly have not got an answer to your question. Or, rather, I do have an answer but it's long-winded.

    Greetings from London.

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  124. Keith - this is such a good subject. One that I think about often. You are absolutely right that no one is better than anyone else. Our value is all the same. Shamefully, I must admit that for a long time, I didn't believe that we were. I used to think that people with more money had more value. It makes no sense but that is what I learned growing up and I believed it for a lo g time. Once I made the realization that everyone is the same, it was SO freeing. Probably one the most important breakthroughs in my life to unveil that false belief.

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  125. I have been in those dirty shoes. I have flipped the burgers and waited the tables and emptied the trash, so I am always respectful and kind to hard workers like those you mentioned.

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  126. Our societal norms and mindsets are the product of a capitalistic society. The subject matter which you chose is indeed intriguing. Realizations and compassion are the only way out, I suppose.

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  127. I have this amazing curved banister railing that I touch every time I take the stairs down to our lower floor. I have no idea who made it. But I often think about the craftsman. I think the problem is that we devalue people, not jobs. We must be more grateful for the people than the jobs they do.

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  128. I believe people devalue others to try and feel superior. It is a lack o confidence that causes this dilemma.

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  129. I got a job cleaning someone's house and when a friend asked what my new job was and I told her, she was in shock and placed her hand on her mouth and said, "I'm so sorry!" I was confused! What's wrong with a job like that?? I was thankful for the job! Anyhow, I love your gratitude and attitude. Have a great day! Corine :D

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  130. I'm with you. Never make fun of hard-working people. Ever.

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  131. As a supervisor, I have always had the belief that one should know the jobs of one's employees and those job tasks should not be beneath them. Even now though I do not manage the facility where I work, I still want to ensure it is looking it's best and have no problem with getting the mop or cleaning up a mess to help out.

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  132. what a lovely post idea Keith and I couldn't agree more. I NEVER look down on anyone for the jobs they have and I really loathe when other people do feel superior in this respect. having had jobs that included cleaning in my younger days made me VERY aware of just how hard this kind of work actually is and usually very thankless too. what would the world be like without the kind souls that do keep it neat and tidy? I shudder to picture that mess.

    I've been remiss in visiting for quite a while. Hope all is well with you, it's great to stop by again. Have a wonderful week, G

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  133. This is why I love you so much. All people are equal - and we all deserve nothing but love, respect and appreciation. Wonderful post, honey!

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