“One of my friends used to work at” by Julia on the 15

Saturday February 8, 2020
5 minutes
Candy Cap Magic
Jocelyn Kuang

one of my friends used to work at the skydome before it was the roger’s centre

at gusto 101 before anyone knew about it

on a film she did costumes for and can’t really remember

at a nursing home cleaning up folks after they used the bathroom

at a ski hill

at a recording studio

an event planning company

a stand selling Hickory Farms crackers and mustard at the mall

one of my friends used to sneak into the walk in freezer and steal mouthfuls of smoked salmon

at No Frills checking people’s items out

at a theatre company that is now defunct

at an airport loading and unloading luggage

at a bowling alley

“I am not a waitress” by Sasha at her coffee table

Saturday December 8, 2018
5 minutes
A Common Trap
Caitlin Thomson

I am not a waitress. I now have a job where I marry several of my skills, make the money I deserve, and have a cushy benefits package. It’s weird writing that. It still doesn’t totally feel real. I was a waitress for over a decade, and, to be honest, mostly I liked it. The rush of a good service, the camaraderie, the jokes, the sweet satisfaction of finding the right balance for each table in my section of quirk and charm, attention and space. The late nights, though… And the boozing culture. And the folks’ who would treat me like I was their servant. I remember a co-worker at a fancy beer restaurant in the financial district talking about these suits and ties who would come in and treat him like trash and meanwhile he’s smirking on the inside that he makes more than them annually, but just so happens to do it delivering mussels and swiping credit cards.

“Choosing what is important for her” by Julia on the 504 going west

Friday March 27, 2015
5 minutes
Sasha’s notebook

When Andrea lifted her head from steering wheel she didn’t know where she was. She didn’t know that she had just crashed her cream coloured Toyota corolla into a city transit bus, inhibiting 50 people from getting to work on time, or to school, or to the first job interview the two or three people were able to secure since getting back on their feet. She felt her stomach doing summersaults, regretting in that instant her choice to consume only spicy salami cut up into thick round chunks for breakfast. She saw smoke all around her and thought it was only a dream; the rising and falling of a dragon’s breath, heating his layer and keeping himself warm in his cave.

“the porn industry” by Julia on her couch

Saturday March 15, 2014
5 minutes
from a web series break down

I come home early from work and don’t tell him, don’t call him, don’t surprise him that I am. I see he’s sleeping on the couch, the News blaring without him even flinching to notice. I never want to see him like this because it makes me feel old, and it makes him seem young. Today’s his day to have the house. We agreed on it before. I told him I wouldn’t be home till 8 or 9, and he said, come when you come! I think coming at 6 is too early for the plans we agreed on and I’m not mad at him for sleeping. I’m glad he is. I just wish I didn’t have to see it. It’s not something I can explain much better than that. But it doesn’t work for me, so I think tomorrow I will come home when I’m supposed to, after he’s had a chance to rest from his long day of lifting. He starts much earlier than I do. 5 AM. I would think if he didn’t nap during the afternoon he would be a zombie by dinner, so I know he does it for me. Especially when he waits for me to come home every night so we can eat together. He doesn’t have to do that, but I think it’s nice that he does.
I don’t want to take away from his day and his time, so I quietly make some crackers and cheese in the kitchen and sit down to the computer. I see the tabs that are all open: Global Tv, Life Hacks, How to get American Netflix, Best Banana Bread Recipes, and Hard..Harder..Hardest.

“Cashier: Diana” by Sasha on her couch

Thursday October 17, 2013
5 minutes
a receipt from Qi Natural Foods

I come here to tell you that… I quit, Mister Samuel. I sorry for this inconvenience. I come to Canada to learn English language and at this job I just finding the work to be just counting and scanning. I learn the grocery items – pear, squash, can of the tuna fish – but I need learn more than that. I need learn to tell all the dreams inside my thoughts. I thank you for this privilege of working at your store, Mister Samuel. I thank you for taking the risky time to train a girl who speak poor language. I thank you for the, the, the… generosity of that behaviour.

One more final question, Mister Samuel. For next job I maybe need a letter, a note? A letter telling I am hard worker, I have big smile, I pretty girl with good English language? Will you give me this? It’s not the same at the home because we don’t get the opportunity to… to, to…

“This job makes me” by Sasha on her couch

Thursday, March 28, 2013
5 minutes
All My Friends Are Dead
Avery Monsen and Jory John

They were at a standstill. They were at that fork in the road where it might turn into a fight or they might kiss, tenderly, gently, on the mouth. “This job, is, is… is who I am,” she said. He shook his head, as he often does when she makes such proclamations. “It is, Tony,” she said, indignant, child-like. You know those times, when you look at a face you know so, so, well as though you don’t? As though they are a stranger? When, really, this face is the furthest thing from it? He looked at her like that. He saw each strand of her hair. Each one. Each one hundred and twenty seven thousand strands. He finally saw the fleck of yellow in her right eye. Good grief! How had he missed it? He noticed how, now, her lips slanted slightly down, when resting, as opposed to slightly up. How they used to do. Tony touched the corner of Marguerite lip. She let him. He was surprised. “It’s hard being so different from you, sometimes,” he said, finally. “I know,” she responded, tears beginning to swirl. “I need you to support me, Tony, even though you don’t agree with what I do.” Tony moved his finger from where it was to the small, gold, cross hanging from his neck. His looked up, tilting his head back, thinking about what the expression might be on God’s face, watching them.