I am not a big fan of Geico. Still, I have to give them their due. Their camel “Hump day” ad makes me laugh. So, in my mind, I am imagining the camel walking around and saying, “What day is it? What day is it? Yep, it’s Joel’s Friday blog”.
Today’s “Did You Know” is also a trip down memory lane for me. What was the very first federal minimum wage that was required pay? Before the answer, my story of my first minimum wage job.
I was sixteen and started interviewing for my first “real job”. I had cut grass, sold kool aid, the Williamsport Grit newspaper, flower and vegetable garden seeds and a host of other things for spending money. Still, this was going to be my first job where I had to “clock in”.
I was hired at Burger King, Then, I also was hired for a night job at Roses Department Store. Each had their own life long memory experiences.
For pay, I was paid an extra 5 cents an hour at Burger King, That 5 cents was supposedly to cover the washing of my Burger King uniform. A uniform that was red and yellow. Yes… the color of ketchup and mustard. Now that is some real marketing genius!
At Roses, I was paid 10 cents less than the minimum wage. They had some kind of summer program under probationary hiring. At the time, it allowed them to pay less than minimum wage. The fact that I was called the Assistant Manager for Toys and Stationary just gave me a grand title. It really meant that a bunch of sixteen-year-olds were running the store.
I used to say to the manager, “Mr Blackwelder, I want a raise. You are paying me less than minimum wage. Do you want me to do less than minimum work?” He would just smirk and say something like, “Get those boxes out of the back”. I would just keep working… for less than minimum wage.
And now to our minimum wage question. The first federal minimum wage labor law went into effect in 1938. (Oregon State University) Previously, some states had enacted their own minimum wage laws. At that time, the federal minimum wage was 25 cents per hour. The attached graph shows that the current minimum wage has not kept up with that initial rate. Some states currently require a higher rate of pay. (State labor map)
And for pic o’ day: