15 Things I learned as a seasonal sorter for UPS.


  1. Just because they tell you not to throw the boxes, doesn’t mean that you don’t throw the boxes.

  2. They don’t care if packages make it to their destinations unbroken, just that they arrive.

  3. Using their ‘methods’ for proper movement takes practice, and you will still hurt.

  4. It is possible to be both hot and freezing at the same time.

  5. Understanding the PA system is a skill, except when it comes to break time.

  6. Break time is actually referred to as a relief period.

  7. That relief period occurs at completely random times in the shift. It is meant to be at least an hour into the shift, but if a conveyor belt is broken, it can be moved forward.

  8. A ten minute relief period doesn’t always come as a relief.

  9. Leaving your phone in your car makes it hard to tell time in a warehouse with no windows and no clocks.

  10. Everyone who works the night sort is an idiot, it is some sort of dumping ground for incompetent idiots.

  11. Don’t ever volunteer for a double shift.

  12. Injuries are different than being hurt, but they take them very seriously. (Note Aside: At one of my last jobs, I fell off a ladder in front of the owner of the company and she told me to get back to work. Didn’t even ask if I was okay or anything.)

  13. Just because you’re working with a guy who is in his mid fifties and only has one hand, don’t think he can’t sort faster than you can.

  14. When a supervisor tells you that you have just as much volume to sort as the day before, but one hour less to do it in, that doesn’t really mean anything, don’t kill yourself working harder, they aren’t paying you enough to hurt yourself.

  15. Vicodin helps with all the aches and pains that you will acquire. This is bad for your liver.


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