Skip to comments.A day in the strawberry fields seems like forever (Barf Alert!)
Posted on 05/03/2013 8:22:46 PM PDT by Route395
About 30 minutes into my job as a picker, the strawberry fairy left her first gift. On one of the beds of berries that seemed to stretch forever into the Santa Maria marine layer, Elvia Lopez had laid a little bundle of picked fruit. She and the other three dozen Mexican immigrants in the field were bent at an almost 90-degree angle, using two hands to pack strawberries into plastic containers that they pushed along on ungainly one-wheeled carts. They moved forward, relentlessly, ever bent, following a hulking machine with a conveyor belt that spirited away their fruit. But Lopez, a 31-year-old immigrant from Baja California, knew I was falling behind.
(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...
Does the author’s last name give you any real insight into his motivation?
Before they know it they’ll be replaced with cheaper labor from Vietnam and Thailand .....
No how is your BS punk attitude?
Picking fruit is damn hard, I picked fruit every summer from eight grade until til the eleventh.
I also scrubbed toilets/houses and baby sat every weekend......that’s how I earned money.
Then in college I cleaned houses, worked in a day care, worked in a book store, walked to work/school (my husband and I had one car between us, which was always breaking down), had no phone...almost never went out (parties/movies)......big fracking deal.
You do what you need to to get ahead.
You don’t like picking fruit in the US, go home and pick it there.
WAH WAH! This idiot would have never lasted in the bean fields of Arkansas back in the 1960s!
Pick green beans, one cent a lb! bent double. 100+ temperature. 70-90 humidity made it feel like 125 degrees!
After a rain you could make five dollars a day! When it was dry you made maybe 2.60 dollars a day even though you picked the same amount of beans. It didn’t rain enough!
My brother passed out in the fields due to the heat.
Never again! (I hope)
Strawberry fields forever...Migrant workers and the very rich. Will the last middle class family leaving California please turn out the lights?
We spent 30 minutes in the field picking strawberries yesterday. Back felt fine. No gift from the fairy just delicious fresh fruit without any illegal immigrant pee all over it. They seem to like to pee when they pick, causing all those outbreaks. So pick your own, save money and a trip to the ER.
I will never buy fruit in clamshells, again.
[and it's not because they're illegals...it's just unsanitary]
Those of us who have done field work probably have a different perspective than the OP, who most likely has not.
It’s an ugly truth that unskilled American workers aren’t willing to take those jobs because it’s too hard and many of them would rather live off food stamps and charity.
Americans don’t like to sweat, unless it’s in a quest for good looks.
Cry me a river. I spent my summers from ages 11-14 picking strawberries, beans, cherries, and blackberries. Heck yeah it was hard work. So?
I didn’t know they were packed by the field workers either...No washing?
The photo is up there and it sure doesn’t look like it.
Bucking bales of hay with hooks onto a wagon, in August on a a ranch, and sometimes turning one over and there’s an unhappy little prairie rattler trapped in the wire. And similar jobs.
I’m going to have to skip the ‘pity party’ put on by those worried about having to mow their own lawns, make their own beds, clean their own pools, and on-and-on.
Go #@$ yourself, Hector. You filthy little propagandist.
***Bucking bales of hay with hooks onto a wagon, in August on a a ranch,****
Been there done that. Thank heaven for round bales!
Ever notice that a farmer who bales square bales for himself makes the bales extremely heavy in the 80-100 lb range? Costs less to hire teens at a few cents a bale to load and stack.
Then when he bales hay to sell to others, they are in the 30-50 lb range. More bales per field that way.
Thats why they are here to do what you won’t do you lazy bum!
Maybe you should have took your desk chair to the fields!
I was working for my uncle. I’ll guesstimate the bales were about 70 lbs.
He ran a lot of cattle, owned a lot of land. My cousin runs it now.
It was real ‘Of Mice and Men’ stuff, but I didn’t even get a puppy. But I did get ketchup on my beans!
I started picking berries in 1962, at the age of 7. Back then, it was the about the only way for a kid that age to make actual cash. It was 5 cents a halleck (anyone remember that term?) which was 60 cents a crate. $3.00 was an OK day. Got us kids out of the house for the day, and we learned that pay was directly related to how hard you worked.
I was in awe of how the Mexican pickers could work.
In 1962 my husband planted strawberries and green onions in Fountain Valley, CA. He was 14 yrs. old. He went to Santa Ana employment office to find an after school job and filled out the card... they gave him a card for farm help. He hitch hiked back and forth to work every day... he worked for Wat Hasegawa. He to this day felt it was a healthy experience. It was the last year of the Bracero program. He learned a lot working beside Japanese and Mexican people. He felt the stoop labor was not too much different from what he did in Alabama when he was 8 yrs old. He said you might wish things were easier, but was thankful to have the work. And yes... there were many families up into the 1960’s who had children working and contributing to the family... that’s the way it use to be.
Heck yeah, I remember “halleck”! So, do you remember getting back on the schoolbus, filthy, beat, and triumphant, with a couple bucks worth of real folding money in your hand? King of the world, baby.