Hello, friends, and welcome to the Labor Day weekend! Quick question: If money or likely success were not issues, what job would you love to have?
That’s a good way to start off our Labor Day edition of the brunch. We’ll be asking a few more job/career related questions as we go along. It’s a good way for our regular commentators to get to know each other better; It’s also a good chance for some of you lurkers (you know who you are) to join in
When and how did Labor Day begin? It’s complicated. One versions of the story is set in September 1882 with the Knights of Labor, the largest and one of the most important American labor organizations at the time. The Knights in New York City held a public parade featuring various labor organizations on September 5 — with the aid of the fledgling Central Labor Union (CLU) of New York. Subsequently, CLU Secretary Matthew Maguire proposed that a national Labor Day holiday be held on the first Monday of each September to mark this successful public demonstration.
In another version, Labor Day in September was proposed by Peter J. McGuire, a vice president of the American Federation of Labor. In spring 1882, McGuire reportedly proposed a “general holiday for the laboring classes” to the CLU, which would begin with a street parade of organized labor solidarity and end with a picnic fundraiser for local unions. McGuire suggested the first Monday in September as an ideal date for Labor Day because the weather is great at that time of year, and it falls in between July 4th and Thanksgiving. Oregon became the first U.S. state to make it an official public holiday. Twenty-nine other states had joined by the time the federal government declared in a federal holiday in 1894.
What are your plans for the weekend? Here’s a handy chart to see how most people are spending it.
What are the most and least stressful jobs? CareerCast evaluated 11 stress factors including travel required, industry growth potential and hazardous conditions — like putting your life at risk. Here is the list they came up with:
The 10 most stressful jobs and their median salaries:
- Enlisted military personnel of three or four years: $26,802
- Firefighter: $49,080
- Airline pilot: $111,930
- Police officer: $62,960
- Broadcaster: $62,960
- Event coordinator: $48,290
- News Reporter: $39,370
- Public relations executive: $111,280
- Senior corporate executive: $104,700
- Taxi driver: $24,880
The 10 least stressful jobs and their median salaries:
- Diagnostic medical sonographer: $71,410
- Compliance officer: $67,870
- Hair stylist $25,850
- Audiologist: $75,920
- University professor: $76,000
- Medical records technician: $67,870
- Jeweler: $37,960
- Operations research analyst: $81,390
- Pharmacy technician: $31,750
- Massage therapist: $39,990
Any surprises to you? What was the most stressful job you have ever had?
Between 1978 and 2018, the average pay of the bosses of the US’s largest 350 companies has grown by 1,007.5%, adjusted for inflation, according to the Economics Policy Institute’s latest survey.
The increase far outstripped the typical worker’s salary growth, at 11.9%, adjusted for inflation.
George Whitefield was in the news this week. The great evangelist died 1770 at age 55 in the parsonage of the Old South Presbyterian Church in Newburyport, Massachusetts. He was buried soon thereafter beneath the pulpit. In London, a funeral service was held for him at which John Wesley, the founder of Methodism and a contemporary of Whitefield’s, preached.
Yet according to Whitefield’s great-great-niece, Vicki Kenderline, an American, the famed preacher wanted to be buried in England next to his wife and she claims that the historic church is ignoring his wish. In a Tuesday interview with the Sunday Times (UK), Kenderdine said that soon after he died the church where he had preached his final sermons quickly buried him.
“It is my wish to go to Newburyport and finally collect my Uncle George’s body and fly him back to Gloucester, England, so he may rest in peace alongside his wife and only child . . . in the church he first preached in and attended as a child in school.”
Thus far, the church has shown no indication of releasing his remains to his ancestors, telling the outlet that Whitefield’s dying wish was to be buried in the church crypt and that they have no authority to grant an exhumation.
Question: What was your favorite job?
Some headlines from the Babylon Bee:
Here’s the copy on that last one:
DELPHI, IN—A strikingly clever pun on the marquee of Beacon Baptist Ministries has reportedly sparked revival in the town of Delphi, Indiana.
“I’ve never talked to God in my life,” claimed area resident Darrell Jones, “but when I saw that ‘Son screen prevents sin burn,’ I pulled right over, dropped to my knees, and begged God for forgiveness. Right there on the side of the road I gave my life to Jesus Christ.”
“Later on, Brother Dwayne told me that’s called ‘sending God a knee-mail,’” he added.
Brother Dwayne Baker, who has managed the church sign for years, told reporters that he knew it was just a matter of time before massive revival broke out. “When I first started, I thought ‘1 cross + 3 nails = 4given’ would do the trick. I was young and naïve. ‘Boaz was a Ruthless man before he got married’ was popular with the congregation, but wasn’t helpful as an outreach tool. Then a couple years back, when I posted ‘What’s missing from Ch__ch? U R,’ we preemptively bought honey baked ham for 700. The folks here just weren’t ready—we’re still eating that ham at my house.”
“But this week we finally nailed it.”
Jeffrey Shaw was a staunch atheist before chatter around town caused him to check the church sign out for himself. “I thought Christians were bigoted hatemongers worshiping a cosmic child abuser. But when I saw that marquee, I saw the light. Literally—thousands of headlights up and down the road. All of Delphi came out. And there was Brother Dwayne, shouting, ‘How will you spend eternity? Smoking or non-smoking?’ I’m a new man. I’ll never be the same.”
For Brother Dwayne, “God gets all the glory. It’ll be tough to squeeze all of Delphi into Beacon Baptist on Sundays. I’m just glad the church is prayer-conditioned.”
Do you enjoy a harmless prank?
Have you heard of Disney’s new theme park, Galaxy’s Edge? In the rush to make everything in the park look and feel like you’re on a planet in the Star Wars universe, their “Imagineers” had to come up with a way to make it look like Coca-Cola’s corporate reach had extended beyond our own galaxy (which it will, in due time). But, in retrospect, it probably wasn’t a great idea to make the novelty Star Wars Coke bottle look like a grenade.
By the way, hope you enjoy your $5 sugar water grenade in the park, because you can’t take it on the plane. The TSA, when asked about the bottles, responded, “Replica and inert explosives aren’t allowed in either carry-on or checked bags.”
Question: What is one mainstream job you would NEVER do?
Massive Study Finds No Single Genetic Cause of Same-Sex Sexual Behavior. That’s the headline from Scientific American, reporting on a new study published in Science. Subtitle: Analysis of half a million people suggests genetics may have a limited contribution to sexual orientation. You can read the Science article here.
Drug to boost women’s sex drive? The US Food and Drug Administration approved a drug to return sexual desire to some women with low libido, the agency said Friday.The drug, bremelanotide, sold under the brand name Vyleesi by AMAG Pharmaceuticals, is an injection to be taken before sex. It’s intended to treat women who are premenopausal and have a lack of interest in sex. It will be available in September, and the company has not yet determined pricing or reimbursement information, according to AMAG spokeswoman Sarah Connors. Experts say the diagnosis is the most common type of sexual dysfunction among women, estimated to affect between 8% to 10% of women.
Can we refreeze glaciers, or even the arctic? Each summer, residents of the Swiss Alps make their way through the mountains to the edge of the famous Rhône Glacier. There, fleecy white blankets in hand, they cover up the ice. They’re trying to reflect the sun and prevent the glacier from melting.
Similar protective coverings are used on other glaciers, as well, in places like Italy and Germany — and scientists have begun to propose higher-tech solutions for the future. One research group from Utrecht University hopes to save Switzerland’s Morteratsch Glacier by blowing reflective artificial snow across its surface.
Scientists are now beginning to consider ways to refreeze the waters of the arctic. Here is one of the top proposals:
Well, that’s it for this week. Let’s end with some images of Labor Days past.