Tough Pay and Work at CP for 2010?

Friday, November 27, 2009 8:25 PM

Cropsey said:

For hose of you that have never worked in a park but think you know what it's all about, you don't. Even if you've been on coasters in every continent, you still don't know what it's like to work a 12 hour shift at one. One of the more annoying aspects is when guests tell you how to do your job. Unless you've worn the name tag, you won't know the feeling of anger in the back of your neck, the pulse pounding in your temples. This all happens when a chubby guy with coaster patches all over his jacket waddles up to your panel to bitch about unrealsitic dispatch times that would never happen due to the current block system -for the third time that day. :)

I remember one day I was changing out the trash on a TTD platform. Well, one of the guests gives me a gentle tug on the arm an mentions that there's a girl nearby who's fainted. So I do what I've been told to do: get the ride ops attention and have them call First Aid and grab her some water. I grab what I've got at hand, a trash bag, and start fanning her. This one other guest, for some reason has some heartburn with this. She starts to give me flack about, "You're not doing enough!" I politely tell her that we have a procedure for this and the EMT's are on their way. She snaps back rudely, "You call that proceedure?????" If I hadn't been as calm, I may have slapped her silly.

For the other part of your comment, some of my ride op friends told some stories about those "effin' ACEers!" (No offense is intended to any ACE members here!) It's the bad ones who've got the attitude that since they belong to ACE, they can make one phone call and have the park shut down and the employye who ticked them off axed.

Cropsey, you do make a good point about " having worn the name tag." Unless you've worked at a park, you don't have a clue about 99% of what goes down behind the scenes. Even if you meet somebody who's workd at a COMPLETELY different park on the other side of the world, there's almost an unwritten knowledge about what goes on. We know that there are four types of guests: Good, Bad, Ugly, and other. Okay, there's a 5th one too: ACEer.

If you want to START to remotely get a clue, watch Adventureland. Then work at a park. Then watch Adventureland a few more times. Bang your head aginst a wall in 90+ heat, wearing polyester, while somebody berates and belittles you for 12 hours straight. Only then will you start to get the SLIGHTEST LITTLE BIT of a clue.


Coaster Junkie from NH
I drive in & out of Boston, so I ride coasters to relax!

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Friday, November 27, 2009 8:27 PM
LostKause's avatar

I will admit that I have not worked any other seasonal job besides at a toy store during the holidays when I was a teen. I did, however work at Universal Studios Islands of Adventure, full time, which was very different than CP.

I always thought that most seasonal theme parks didn't offer housing, and got their employees from within driving distance. Same goes for ski lodges and public pools.

So maybe some seasonal jobs are similar, but definitely not all. Some theme park jobs could also be similar, but definitely not all of them.


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Friday, November 27, 2009 8:37 PM
Carrie M.'s avatar

I guess that's where you guys keep losing me. You have all but directly said you want those who have never worked at CP to shut up on this topic because unless you've worked there, you can't possibly understand what it's like. And yet, you keep outlining the experience for people, presumably for those who have never worked there so they can have some understanding should they choose to in the future.

But if it's not possible to understand anything about the experience unless you've lived it, then why do you keep trying to explain it to those who haven't lived it?

You have no idea what my various work experiences have been like. Why do you assume they can't possibly compare to what you have described in detail in this forum?


"If passion drives you, let reason hold the reins." --- Benjamin Franklin

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Friday, November 27, 2009 8:57 PM

The reason why we're doing this is to help you realize that there's SO MUCH more you don't see that what you do see at a park.

It's kind of like when you go out to dinner. You see the nice, well-matained exterior and the show, but do you really know what's going on in the bowles of the kitchen and dish pit?

Another analagy would be going to see a play or other theater. What you see with the actors and sets is but a meer sliver of the flury of activity that's gone on for week and months before the curtin opens.


Coaster Junkie from NH
I drive in & out of Boston, so I ride coasters to relax!

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Friday, November 27, 2009 9:02 PM
Carrie M.'s avatar

Right, but after you invite me in by describing some of those things, how can you tell me that I'm not allowed to talk about it?

There is a ton of behind the scenes aspects to all jobs. I already know that.

Again, I've had various jobs, too, that you have no idea about. But you are making the assumption that they couldn't possibly be as bad as what you've experienced at CP. What makes you think that?


"If passion drives you, let reason hold the reins." --- Benjamin Franklin

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Friday, November 27, 2009 10:12 PM
LostKause's avatar

No one ever said that you "weren't allowed".

You are right. There are probably a thousand other places to work in the U.S. that are nearly just as bad, maybe even worse. I never worked at any of them though.

I can't say for sure, but I wouldn't guess any of those to be amusement parks though. My job at Universal Studios was spiffy.


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Friday, November 27, 2009 10:27 PM

LostKause said:
I always thought that most seasonal theme parks didn't offer housing, and got their employees from within driving distance. Same goes for ski lodges and public pools.

Most don't but a few did. SFOG, SFAW, and I think SFGAm had them but not sure if they still do. They had housing for the international employees. Also there were intern programs in the parks for marketing, operations and retail management and they provided housing for them as well, if there was room others could fill in. Probably not on the same scale as CP. Pretty sure this all went away when Premier come in, however the international program may still be around.

The larger resorts in the ski industry also provide subsidized dorm style housing. The housing options in the area of a large resort are super expensive so they generally have to offer something to keep the places staffed. It's a similar industry with long hours, low pay all in exchage for a free season pass. Some of the seasonal ops managment at SFOG used to go work at Vail in the winter and lived in the dorms there.

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Friday, November 27, 2009 10:36 PM
CoasterDemon's avatar

^I think we went over this years ago Cropsey, but are you a fan of 'The Burning'?

Working at Cedar Point 91-93 was great. The dorm (Cedars!) was like $15 every week or every 2 weeks. Food was great (pizzas and real milk shakes). It was really cool back then. Plus, we liked to hang in the park alot (back then...) I do remember having to pay $10 one time when I had to visit the employee clinic. And you only would get 1 day off a week.

At the time, for a coaster geek going to college, it wasn't bad. In retrospect, some managers... forget it ;)


Billy
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Friday, November 27, 2009 10:54 PM

^You bet! I'm addition to coasters, skiing, and metal, I'm also a horror movie freak. :)

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Friday, November 27, 2009 11:03 PM
Carrie M.'s avatar

LostKause said:


No one ever said that you "weren't allowed".

No, you didn't say we weren't allowed. I don't think you have that ability.


But you sent the message that the commentary was not welcomed. You said we were being unfair. You said we didn't know what we were talking about (and couldn't possibly unless we've actually worked there.) All that despite the fact the whole point in your post was to explain it to us. That doesn't make sense to me.


Lost Kause said:


You are right. There are probably a thousand other places to work in the U.S. that are nearly just as bad, maybe even worse. I never worked at any of them though.

And there in lies the problem. Bad is a relative term. The experiences you and I have had at different work places may be the same or similar, but you have perceived them to be bad whereas I and some others here perceive them to be normal and acceptable.

Can you be open to the idea that what you experienced as bad at Cedar Point (at least where laws are not being broken) is not necessarily cause for change or consequence?


"If passion drives you, let reason hold the reins." --- Benjamin Franklin

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Friday, November 27, 2009 11:09 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Carrie M. said:
The experiences you and I have had at different work places may be the same or similar, but you have perceived them to be bad whereas I and some others here perceive them to be normal and acceptable.

Can you be open to the idea that what you experienced as bad at Cedar Point (at least where laws are not being broken) is not necessarily cause for change or consequence?

Yeah, exactly. :)


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Saturday, November 28, 2009 12:08 AM

Carrie M. said:
I guess that's where you guys keep losing me. You have all but directly said you want those who have never worked at CP to shut up on this topic because unless you've worked there, you can't possibly understand what it's like. And yet, you keep outlining the experience for people, presumably for those who have never worked there so they can have some understanding should they choose to in the future.

I think at this point they were sharing their experiences not for your sake (nor anyone who hadn't worked at a park) but for others who had worked there. It doesn't matter if you didn't work in the same year or in the same department, you still shared many of the same experiences.

I think we can all agree that when working at a park, your experiences with the public will usually be negative. While you will have your thankful and appreciative guests, the ones that cause problems will be the ones you remember and will seem to far outstrip nice ones. That's where your coworkers come in. No matter how different you are, when your pulling 40, 50+ hours a week, you start to bond over shared experiences. It will be a downright miserable summer if you don't. That comradely then carries over from your original coworkers or crew to those who worked in different departments, different parks. I think that's what's happening here.

(I should add that not EVERYONE will have a negative experience with the public. There are those that are people-friendly enough (for lack of a better way to put it) who can make it work year after year. How they do it is beyond me.)

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Saturday, November 28, 2009 1:14 AM
LostKause's avatar

I've worked with the public a lot. It's a mixed bag. I try to forget the negative customers or guests, and be as friendly as possible. Sometimes, being friendly helps them to understand that you are on their side, whatever that means.

I love the friendly heated debating here, by the way. I do grow tired of it after a few pages though. :)

Carrie M. said:

No, you didn't say we weren't allowed. I don't think you have that ability.

It would be so ridiculous if I ever thought that I had a say in what you can and can't post. You are the one who said that I said you weren't allowed, which is silly. Get happy.

But you sent the message that the commentary was not welcomed.

I don't remember typing that. I seem to remember you saying that my commentary wasn't welcome too, which you might have not said.

You said we were being unfair. You said we didn't know what we were talking about (and couldn't possibly unless we've actually worked there.) All that despite the fact the whole point in your post was to explain it to us. That doesn't make sense to me.

If that's how you interpreted it, than no, it doesn't make any sense. If you put it into the context though, and remember that I also said that I was posting for other reasons as well...

1. so that maybe management could read it and maybe have an idea of what past employees thought about the job

2. and maybe new employees would read it and have a better idea of what the job would be like.

...then it makes sense.

...Bad is a relative term. The experiences you and I have had at different work places may be the same or similar, but you have perceived them to be bad whereas I and some others here perceive them to be normal and acceptable.


I've already admitted that I was surprised to hear that there are seasonal jobs available that where the experience is similarly dreadful. I can't imagine that they could be any worse, but I can't say for sure, and neither can you, because we have not worked them all. I already admitted that.

Can you be open to the idea that what you experienced as bad at Cedar Point (at least where laws are not being broken) is not necessarily cause for change or consequence?

Some people will accept any working conditions that are handed to them, and they don't even think about how a better work experience would be beneficial to the park or to their health. I am open to that. I am not one of those people though. It is my desire that younger generations of Cedar Point employees will have better working and living conditions. I think someone in this very thread said that happy employees make happy guests.

It may seem that I am being Mr. Negative, but I have different motives than to just complain. I've been smiling throughout this entire thread. See... :)

Last edited by LostKause, Saturday, November 28, 2009 1:18 AM
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Saturday, November 28, 2009 2:00 AM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

LostKause said:
Some people will accept any working conditions that are handed to them, and they don't even think about how a better work experience would be beneficial to the park or to their health. I am open to that. I am not one of those people though.

I though it'd be fun to hold that quote up to a mirror:

"Some people won't accept any working conditions that are handed to them and they don't even think about how the current work experience is beneficial to the park or their health. I am not open to that. I am one of those people though."

Creepy.

Seriously though, I like how you try to portray it as some noble cause. You're not like most of the mindless drones who accept whatever is given to them, are you? You're not one of those people.

The part that gets me is that after years of going back and forth with you on so many topics (and I'm getting into armchair psychology stuff that I'm not even remotely qualified for here) is that I think you really believe that. That it's not you, it's everyone else. Heck, you've said as much about Cedar Point in this thread:

LK said:
When the people who have the power to change the way things are done at Cedar Point read mine and others "bitching and whining", they should look at it as a passionate complaint.

See? It's not you. It's their fault because they don't listen, not your fault for complaining.

And then you said pretty much the same thing about those who disagree with you in this thread:

LK said:
Even though a lot of people will refuse to understand what I am trying to say in my previous posts...

Again, it's not you. It's everyone else refusing to understand that's the problem. It's them, not you.

It's that pesky perspective thing again and, as usual, yours seems skewed a bit. No one is out to get you. No one is against you. Your situation is not unique. Your experience in this situation is not exceptional.

You were an employee in an entry-level style seasonal position facing nothing particularly out of the ordinary or unreasonable. In fact, your complaints sound like those of the masses, those that feel underpaid and underappreciated (trust me, it's all of us) that have come to understand the mundane annoyances that make life what it is. Your attempt to be some sort of free-willed, free thinking, rebellious resistance to things paints more a picture of a naiveté than of higher thinking or consciousness.

In other words, you sound like some teenager whining that work is hard and stuff.


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Saturday, November 28, 2009 2:23 AM
Jeff's avatar

LostKause said:
HA! Jeff. You never worked there either, and yet there you are, as well, criticizing me for telling the negative points of Cedar Point employment.

Actually, I've worked as a contractor there, and likely made more in a day than any seasonal does in a week. I'm not interested in playing this pissy game with you. You (and countless seasonals before you) are hell bent on proving how special and unique the job is, as if it's the only thing like it in the world. Please. It's a crappy minimum wage job like countless others. It's not that special, unless you really happen to enjoy it.

I'm not criticizing you for making negative points about the job, I'm criticizing you for making the job out to be more than it is, and for having expectations higher than those warranted for said crappy job. More check-minuses for thinking it's actually unique and that no one else could get it.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Silly Nonsense

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Saturday, November 28, 2009 3:15 AM
LostKause's avatar

That's a good angle for you at this point in the discussion, Gonch. These discussions are like a predictable formula.

Their fault; my fault, blablabla. That why it's a disagreement.

Why are we talking about me and my motives? This isn't a topic about "Tough Pay and Work at CP" anymore, is it? It's now become a topic about helping a lost kause to find his way. Good save! You should really get paid to do that, if you don't already.

You do realize that the only people I am talking about when I mention those who are refusing to understand, are probably only you and Carrie, right. You are "them".

I never complained that CP doesn't listen. I did say that they should view any negative feedback coming from employees and customers alike, as a passionate complaint, as should all businesses. As a matter of fact, Cedar Point does listen to employee complaints, and they pretend to care via the employee newsletter. A lot of times their response is something like, "We are aware of the problem, and we are looking for a solution that will be cost effective". See, they listen.

You've probably scared away any potential new "complainers". Nobody want's to be like that Lost Kause guy, not after what that Gonch guy said about him. HAHA!


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Saturday, November 28, 2009 3:32 AM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

So your response to my saying you're trying to play the victim is to play the victim?

Touche...or something.

It's absolutely still a discussion about the work at CP - and as far as I'm concerned, your views. My argument (and I believe others) is that you don't get it. There's nothing unique or special about the situation. Your complaining is mostly unwarranted and sounds like the wonking of some run-of-the-mill teenager who thinks they have it all figured out, but in reality doesn't at all.

You worked a crap job and it sucked a lot of the time. Your complaints and the work environment are pathetically typical of all people working crap jobs. Welcome to the club. Where's the mystery?

(I mean, come on. At one point you complained about not getting to work on time. But of course, that was someone else's fault.)


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Saturday, November 28, 2009 3:55 AM
LostKause's avatar

Jeff, I did change my stance about the uniqueness of the job a few posts ago, because it was brought to our attention form other posters here that there are a few other places in the U.S. that have a similar work experience (dorms, buses, 16 hour work days, ect.). Maybe we don't have to disagree about that anymore.

Compared to Burger King or a movie theater, which are crappy minimum wage jobs, Cedar Point is unique. That's where I was going with that whole argument. I hope you agree there.

It's a crappy job. It looks like we only disagree that it could ever get better. I happened to really like it, by the way.


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Saturday, November 28, 2009 4:37 AM
LostKause's avatar

I think that I am starting to figure out where we have been losing each other.

Cedar point is not unique in that employees have to put up with crap. Practically all crappy minimum wage jobs offer crap to put up with. :)

Cedar Point is unique in that employees live in dorms, rely on their employer for transportation to work, and rely on their employer to feed them for practically every meal of the day, much like college.

Am I getting warmer?

This discussion stuff makes me sleepy...Oh! Look what time it is. lol


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Saturday, November 28, 2009 8:19 AM

^ Yes you are. During the summer, Sandusky acts like a "college town" The city's resident population esentaily grows by 20% (accroding to Wiki, 25,000 or so as of '08) when all 5,000 or so seasonal employees start work.

I wouldn't be surprized if Louie's makes 99% of it's income between May and Oct. 1st.


Coaster Junkie from NH
I drive in & out of Boston, so I ride coasters to relax!

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