Friday, November 25, 2011

Being a security guard

by Nathan Stout (of AccordingToWhim.com)

Well hello there! I'm sure you are online this 'Black Friday' reading interesting things instead of giving into the hysteria that is the beginning of the 2011 Christmas Shopping Season. In that case, let's have a Black Celebration!

Today's blog is a recollection of some of my exploits as a security guard. You might not think that it's too exciting but there were a few interesting bits that I thought you'd like to read.

I got my start in the security field in 1993 when my brother told me about a contract security company in Dallas that he was working for (but working in the Fort Worth area). He encouraged me to try it out and I did. I started my new job after working at Kmart for several years so the change was nice and the experience was very different. I began working at several different posts in the Fort Worth area. Once place I would have to stand around all day in one spot in the burning sun while at another I would stand around while employees entered and left a PC manufacturing plant, using a wand on them to make sure they weren't stealing (that sucked). They finally got me a semi permanent spot at a building right across from the Water Gardens in downtown Fort Worth. You can read more about it in a series of blogs I wrote back in March. Long story short about the building next to the Water Gardens is that it gave me lots of reading time but not much excitement.

A few months into that post I got transferred again to Houston General Insurance company (see the blog above for alot more detail about that post). During this time I had run of the place in the evenings and had lots of fun reading books, writing, playing PC games, poking my nose into every part of that place, and other fun. A couple of times the fire alarms went off and that was unnerving. I set the fire alarm off once by being a dumb ass and putting the elevator key (a long metal stick) into the 'fireman phone jack' in the stair well. I don't know what the fuck I was thinking. Anyway it freaked me out when the alarm went off. There was no one there at the time so I was alright. Once someone called an escort service and sent a woman to the building and the guard on duty took her up to the floor she was requested to go to (to model lingerie). After getting there and discovering that there was no one on that floor she left. Now the guard on duty was a Seminary student and this was very upsetting to him. I had a good laugh though. There was a period of time when I worked during the day there and we had medical emergencies. Since building management was there I was relegated to standing out at the parking lot entrance to flag down the ambulance or firetruck.

Several years later I got another security job and there were many shenanigans that I got up to with Chris shooting Season 1 of the public access show. You can read all about those in this blog. Other than those instances were I was the culpruit of the mayhem I would often pass cars parked on the side of the some of the backstreets with the windows fogged up. I'm sure the people in those vehicles were praying or something innocent like that. I would also see cars go park behind some of the empty business so I would get out in front and go into the building and sneek a peek at the people through windows. I got to see some BJs in progess and some people making out and such. I am sure those were married people (to eachother) and what I thought were BJs were infact medial testing. She was just checking  his area for some medical reason. I never busted any of these people. I am sure there are guards who enjoy doing that sort of thing but I was more of a live and let live knid of guy. They weren't doing anything to the property so I was fine with it. I would be parked someone nearby afterwards when they would leave so I am sure I scared a few of them, te he he.

If you prove to be reliable and dependable you can make it far in a security job. A lot of people get into the field but are generally flaky (usually depending on the pay) so someone who can be relied on will get lots of opportunities to get into good posts. The pay is not so great but it's better than busting your ass at retail and making less.

I have noticed that many people can't handle being a security guard. Some people need that interaction with other to feel fulfilled in their job. For someone like me the quiet of a security job was welcome. It was just me and my thoughts. All that 'me' time allowed me to do a lot of brainstorming and such. I guess this type of job is good for the creative type of person.

Being a security guard for several different companies has given me a great range of experience and some definite opinions about the industry. I never worked as an armed guard and I would never want to. We live in a day and age where people's lives are cheap and there are many who wouldn't loose a night of sleep over killing you so my opinions are about the unarmed aspect of security. I believe it's an easy job that requires little (as long as you are at the right post). Working for a contract security company you will probably get shifted around to a lot of different (good and bad) posts but all in all your job allows you to do a lot of nothing while doing something (if that makes sense). Even if you are patrolling you have alot of thinking time. If you can write (or text or whatever) you can do much even at the most annoying posts. The requirements for a security job a little and most people can do it (unless you have a serious criminal record). All in all it's a fairly easy job that offers a lot of alone time.

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