Jul 10, 200602:18 PMThe Life
Human signposts: Karl
Jul 10, 2006 - 02:18 PMName: Karl. With a K.
Location: NW corner of Washington and 42nd, Bermuda Dunes.
Interviewed: Saturday, 10:45am.
How long have you been doing this?
About 45 minutes.
So it's your first day! What made you decide to come out here?
Just for the extra money on the weekends.
What do you do during the week?
I sell welding supplies and gases.
That sign says it's 107 degrees. Do you think you'll be doing this much longer?
[Laughing] Depends on how I hold up today. It's nice and warm out here. I keep trying to move back, to keep myself out of the sun.
Ah, I see - you're following the shade of the light pole. Good strategy. Did you apply directly to this company for the job?
No, it was actually arranged through a manual-labor temp agency.
So you might be out here only today and tomorrow?
I may come back next weekend. I'm getting ready to move to Orange County in two weeks, so I'm trying to make some extra money for moving expenses.
Do you know anything about the name on your sign?
I know it's a housing tract, and I know it's in the direction this arrow sign is pointing. [We both laugh.] They got 12 guys, and we all met over at Wendy's. I was dropped off first, and they headed off in that direction. I'm not sure where the rest of them are.
Do they have tripod stands, too? [Click thumbnail photo to enlarge.]
Yep, we all have the same contraptions. Fingertip control. [He demonstrates, and we both laugh.]
I'm noticing these guys on the northeast and southeast corners of this intersection, and they're holding up signs advertising other housing tracts... but they don't have tripod stands.
Yeah, they've got it tougher. It's good to have the latest in sign-twirling technology. [We both laugh.]
What are your initial feelings about this job?
I was a little apprehensive at first. I guess I was kinda hoping that I wouldn't run into anybody I knew. I didn't want them to look at me and think, "What the hell are you doing, twirling a sign on the street corner?" But after about a half-hour, it felt comfortable. I'm just putting my time in, doing it. I was talking to a couple of the other guys, asking them what it was like, and they said, "Well, it's not really hard... but it is, too. Because you're just standing there the whole time." So I guess it's just a matter of keeping your mind occupied. Which this interview does. [We both laugh.] [others]