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Gettin’ a Job: Very Un-Hoboish Behavior

Posted by on Nov 28, 2012 | 8 Comments

My adventures in obtaining a “real” job have been interesting. I finally found an employer that would hire me. The goal was simple- get a menial job to earn some cash to put ourselves in a better position financially.

The last three months of our travel included A LOT of driving, which required a lot of gas. We exhausted our safety net. While we could eventually build it back up using our regular income streams (writing, clinics, consulting), it would take many months. Since winter is a down-time for running in the US and clinic demand is exceptionally low, getting a job would expedite that process.

I got a job as a driver’s helper with UPS. During their busy season, they hire temporary employees to help deliver packages. While I’ve only worked two days, I can say the job is enjoyable. I get tons of exercise (the job is far more physically-demanding than I would have guessed), work outside, meet lots of people, and my driver is a really cool dude that loves talking about politics, social issues, etc.

The most interesting aspect of getting this job is the reaction of friends- many were shocked that I’d get a “normal” job. It just doesn’t seem like something a nomadic hobo would do.

Indeed, it IS a major departure from our previous adventures. It’s not a sign our hobo ways have ended, however. It’s a temporary measure to assure we can fully fund our future adventures… which we’re already planning. I can’t discuss the details yet, but the next round of adventure should be far more epic than the last round. Needless to say, I’m highly motivated to get our family in a position to make those adventures come to fruition.

In his book “The 4 Hour Work Week“, Tim Ferriss talks about cycling between periods of work and adventure, which is exactly what we’re doing now. Sometimes hobos have to refill the tanks. 🙂



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  1. Bare Lee
    December 4, 2012

    Au contraire, seasonal work is hobo-ish behavior par excellence.

    For international hobo-ing, in say, Chile, if you need seasonal work, try English teaching. Half the world’s native English-speaking English instructors are hobos, in fact. They call themselves backpackers, or ‘travelers.’

  2. Josh Sutcliffe
    November 29, 2012

    I think you’ll enjoy the UPS gig. Being able to appreciate physical activity is definitely an asset, however your coworkers will be annoyed at you for raising the bar.

  3. Ben W
    November 28, 2012

    Keep it up! While I’m not a hobo, yet, I’m inspired by your example of doing rather than just dreaming.

  4. John Y.
    November 28, 2012

    Imagine if you could get that UPS job while in Chile…just sayin’

  5. Nathan
    November 28, 2012

    At the sight of the name Tim Ferriss, I shudder impulsively. The guy might have decent ideas, but he’s a get-rich-quick jagoff. His new book touts unhealthy ways to lose weight. He noted in a blog posting how you can lose 20 pounds in 30 days. This is NOT healthy. He is slime.

    • Jason
      November 28, 2012

      Ferriss’ philosophies discussed in T4HWW are great. The methodology used isn’t always realistic. The 4 Hour Body wasn’t nearly as good, and his newer stuff seems to be even worse. Despite that, I don’t think Shelly and I would have attempted our adventures if it weren’t for his book. The very idea that someone else shared our life philosophy gave us the confidence to actually do it.

  6. Chris
    November 28, 2012

    Hobo’s should be opportunistic, no?

    • Jason
      November 28, 2012

      Indeed. 🙂