It's the end of my first week driving a tour bus. It's been interesting, to say the least. I've been the 5pm trolley every day this week, which makes for a very long evening. One of the dispatchers chalked it up to "luck of the draw", but another was more apologetic and promised to try to balance it out over the next week. I can't really complain; I'm the newbie and I'll expect all the crap assignments for a while.
Otherwise, it's going the way I expected - it's been fun, and I am literally taking home daypacks full of money every day. It's "Sail Boston
" this coming week, so it's going to be crazy.
This is a major change for me. As you know, I have held a desk job in the healthcare industry since October of 1984. I've dabbled in other things here and there, but this is the first time in my life that I'm not holding down an office job.
I did a little digging around, and the industry I'm in now has a new classification, it's considered "Pink Collar". We're all familiar with the Blue and the White
, I would hope.
In English-speaking countries, a blue-collar worker is a working class person who performs non-agricultural manual labour. Blue-collar work may involve skilled or unskilled manufacturing, mining, sanitation, custodial work, oil field work, construction, mechanical maintenance, warehousing, firefighting, technical installation and many other types of physical work. Often something is physically being built or maintained.
In contrast, the white-collar worker typically performs work in an office environment and may involve sitting at a computer or desk. A third type of work is a service worker (pink collar) whose labour is related to customer interaction, entertainment, sales or other service-oriented work. Many occupations blend blue, white or pink industry categorizations.
Blue-collar work is often paid hourly wage-labor, although some professionals may be paid by the project or salaried. There is a wide range of payscales for such work depending upon field of specialty and experience.
I've noticed something curious, changing industries. Most days I have no idea what is going on. At a desk, I could always go clickety-click and have instant access to news and events, and in the before time it was easy to flip on a radio and listen to the news, too.
Driving for a living, especially hauling passengers on a 40-foot bus, negates all that.
I did a little digging, and I found that the United States is roughly divided 60/40 between Blue/White collar workers
. I don't know if my experience is typical for information and news gathering, but it seems to me that the majority of the population, based on my four days of observations, simply doesn't have the time or opportunity to keep up with news and events the way a desk jockey would.
Does this matter?
I think it might. I've gone home every night and run quickly through Google News, the BBC, and NECN to fill myself in on what has gone on that day, but I expect that is the exception to the rule. It would be very easy for me to give up and turn on the television and see what's happening at Fenway or on the latest reality show without giving a thought to the news of the day, and I suspect many of my blue and pink collared colleagues do.
I'm afraid that this is where the more questionable news outlets get their meat and drink. It's very easy to throw out a noisy, inaccurate headline to sway the opinion of people one way or the other, perhaps knowing that 60% of the population would never follow up on the story due to lack of time or interest.
It's not accurate math, and I know that Mrs. Clinton won the popular vote, but when you look at the electoral college, Mr. Trump won approximately 57% of the vote, with Clinton at the remaining 43%. This very nearly parallels the Blue/White worker split, and I'm starting to think it's not a coincidence.