On the Corner

Four questions for the freeway exit-ramp beggars

1. What's the best job you've had?

2. What's the worst job you've had?

3. What's the last job you had?

4. What's your dream job?


Marcus ×

35W and Lake Street

Best job: "I enjoy doing construction work, hauling, recycling, working for myself."

Worst job: "I worked in a foundry down in Kansas. Didn't like that."

Last job: "Janitorial work, couple years ago."

Dream job: "To get off the street and have my own little business and stuff."


Joe (infinity)

35W and University Avenue

Best job: "I worked for the city of Minneapolis. Nicollet Mall. Janitorial stuff."

Worst job: "A turkey plant in Medelia, Minnesota. I worked there for a year, pulling the guts out of turkeys."

Last job: "Twin City Bottle, putting labels on bottles, about a year ago. It didn't pay much."

Dream job: "I'm almost ready to retire. I could do it right now."

Damien Cummings (infinity)

35W and University Avenue

Best job: "Working for Northwestern Bell, back in '72. Lineman."

Worst job: "Day labor stuff. Minnesota Barrel, for instance. They're heavy, you gotta stack 'em three high and stuff. But it was a job. I did everything there is."

Last job: "Senior center in Cambridge, doing maintenance work on their facility. I'm a handyman."

Dream job: "I dunno. I really don't. I'm on veterans' disability. I was in Vietnam."



Peggy Chambers (check)

35W and Lake Street

Best job: "A long time ago, I worked at Mystic Lake Casino. I was in environmental services. That's a fancy word for janitor. I worked there a year."

Worst job: "This."

Last job: "Two years ago, I was a maid helping the elderly [in-home]. I could set my own hours, and I'd get paid weekly, not like these other jobs where you get paid every two weeks."

Dream job: "Helping the elderly."

Kevin Holloway (infinity)

35W and 31st Street

Best job: "Meyers Printing Company, in Brooklyn Park. Seven years ago. I liked to do it; it was the night shift. I was a floor technician. I buffed and shined the floors with a propane buffer."

Worst job: "I went through a temp service and worked for this metal company in Minneapolis. It was boring. Sitting down. I like to keep moving."

Last job: "Archer Cleaning Services in '99 and 2000."

Dream job: "I would love to start my own cleaning business. It's a growing opportunity. You can start out small, cleaning up offices and little stores, and get a contract and then get some of the big stores."


Roberto Morales (infinity)

35W and 35th Street

Best job: "Working for Billy Graham. I was working for packaging and sending letters and books out. That was before he moved to North Carolina. His headquarters were in downtown [Minneapolis] and I worked for him for two years."

Worst job: "I can't remember."

Last job: "Assembly [line] work, putting clowns together. You put little signs on baskets, and a mask. Toy clowns for Halloween. And they had shampoo, putting caps on bottles. That was 10 years ago. I had PPL jobs, too."

Dream job: "Working for Billy Graham. Helping people."


Alex Rasmussen (infinity)

35W and 46th Street

Best job: "Bartender, Timberlodge Steak House in West St. Paul. And I was a gardener for Phillips Garden for six years. I've worked at the Red Sea, and Grandma's Saloon. That smoking ban has made getting a bartender job impossible."

Worst job: "Fast food restaurant in Denver, in '93. It was called Happy Times or Good Times. Fry cook. It was just gross."

Last job: "Construction. I got laid off in September."

Dream job: "Owning a bar would be nice. A club. I'd have punk rock and alternative shows and serve some vegetarian and vegan food."


Ron (infinity)

35W and Lake Street

Best job: "I've only had the best jobs in the world. I'm a certified welder. That's what I want to do. I can go to work at anytime."

Worst job: "I'm an alcoholic, Sir. And I'm having a hard time keeping work."

Last job: "Three weeks ago." (Points to his jacket, with the logo of a steel company.)

Dream job: "If I could find a job I wouldn't have to carry around my clothing in a bag and do this. Hey! If anybody out there can hear me...."


Lee Westmoreland (infinity)

35W and University Avenue

Best job: "Moving furniture for Sears, about 10 years ago. I like physical work, I don't mind working, and I like earning money."

Worst job: "Cooking food at McNamara's. I had a bitch for a boss. But I still loved her. Actually, I worked at Nye's. And I met this beautiful lady. She asked me out for a beer, and it lasted 12 years. She was the light of my life, and I still love her so much. But I'm standing out here on a corner like Little Jack Horner. And it's not feeling too goddamn good, either."

Last job: "Wickes Furniture, delivering furniture. I got in trouble for wearing a shirt that said, 'Dicks Are For Chicks.'"

Dream job: "I'd like to be a pirate. I think that would be a good job. Just give me a treasure chest; I'll be fine."


Jim Walsh can be reached at 612.372.3775 orjwalsh@citypages.com

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