As a kid, it was always one of two things that led you to your first job: Either your parents threatened to cut off your spending money, or you were just itching for one sweet taste of adulthood. There wasn't a whole heck of a lot we could offer at that age, but that didn't stop the first jobs '90s kids had from burning a place in our memories. I, for instance, distinctly remember wanting to work in a law office. Instead, I ended up answering phones at a local gift shop and unintentionally driving potential customers away with my horrible service. Those were the days!
As adults, work can often feel like a drag. We live for the next holiday when the offices are closed, and we actually enjoy our sick days. Work is a pain because you have to do it, because of, you know, rent and food and surviving and stuff. As '90s kids, though, there was at least a little excitement in earning your own money and getting out of the house for a while. It sparked to life the entrepreneur inside of you and taught you a few valuable lessons — like responsibility, punctuality, and how to make out with co-workers in the break room without getting caught.
What was your first job as a kid of the '90s? I'd bet that you or someone you know did one of these...
This was the go-to job for '90s kids. Everyone babysat. You were extra cool if you babysat for families who kept the kitchen stocked with all the best snacks. Some of those kids were brats; but as long as they had cable and a phone with an extra long cord, you were good to go.
2. Summer Camp Counselor
In other words, babysitting on steroids. You'd be responsible for anywhere from 10 to 800 small children; and at any given moment, someone was crying, screaming, discovering they actually didn't know how to swim, or getting their head stuck in a fence. They didn't pay you enough for that ish.
This was potentially the best '90s job, because everyone knew this was where the real money was at. Golfers favored the boys because the job required some heavy lifting, and that left a bad taste in your mouth. They had no idea you once successfully gave your big brother a swirlie all by yourself. But they got what they deserved when, at the end of every summer, those caddies returned to school with wicked tan lines.
4. Popcorn Scooper
If you knew how to count change, you could be a ticket taker. Otherwise, movie theater jobs pretty much meant serving buttery popcorn (OMGyum) or handing boxes of Milk Duds across the counter. Your manager was a total weenie, but you got back at him by sneaking into more movies than you could keep track of. Revenge!
Waiting tables ties with camp counselor for being one of the dirtiest jobs we had in the '90s; but you loved the feeling of leaving at the end of your shift carrying cold, hard cash. It wasn't much money — maybe just enough for some new Pogs and a bottle of Surge — but you worked hard for it. And that made the Surge so much more delicious.
Lifeguards were rad because they could save people and stuff. They'd sit perched atop their lifeguard stands, orange flotation device nearby, zinc-oxide covered noses. They weren't very often needed; but when they did have to spring into action, the neighborhood would talk about it for weeks.
7. Lemonade Stand Operator
When you were really young and an actual, legal job was out of the question, you made lemonade from concentrate and sold it from the end of your driveway for $0.10 a pop. Neighborhood parents would stop by and purchase a cup out of pity, but you didn't care. You'd go home at the end of the night with a pocket full of dimes and sleep like a baby.
8. Gym Attendant
Picking up dirty towels and scrubbing toilets wasn't exactly the most glamorous job; but it paid well and they even gave you a free membership. You also learned how not to stare whenever people got naked right in front of you.
9. Anything At The Mall
Whether you were selling jewelry at Claire's or folding giant pretzels in the food shop, any job at the mall was a guaranteed good time. On your breaks, you loved going to Bath and Body Works to sniff all the lotions. Normally, the employees hated when people would sniff and not buy; but they knew you worked a few doors down at Hot Topic, so you got a free pass. #JobGoals.
10. Mowing Lawns
It was good for us '90s kids to have at least one job that involved serious manual labor; and mowing lawns did the trick. It was sweaty, dirty, and you'd smell like fertilizer the rest of the day. But your neighbors paid pretty well and sometimes even fed you. Bonus!