Wednesday, May 9, 2012

I work for free, shouldn't I drink for free?

Did you know that DC is expensive? No? Oh, hey, by the way, DC is hella expensive. Not as bad as say LA or Manhattan, but when you work for free like I do, even the ghetto is expensive.

(My boyfriend read this post and would like me to include here that we don't actually live in the ghetto, I'm just trying to make a point. Life is expensive, 'kay?)

As you guys probably know by now, I have an internship here in DC. And it's really great experience, looks good on my résumé, blah blah, but it's unpaid. Yet to network and meet with people who might know of a job opening somewhere, I have to spend money at coffee shops, and bars, and restaurants. And - hey! - guess what, that adds up after a while.

So one day when I was on the bus on my way back from one of these happy hour meetings I wondered - isn't it kind of unfair that this city is basically run on interns, but we interns are hardly thanked with much more than a letter of recommendation (if that)?

And yes, yes, I know I just hit on the biggest problem with capitalism and I sound like a communist right now, but I'm not going to get in to that. Stick with me on the interns thing.

You know how at a lot of restaurants you can get a stamp card that shows you're a loyal customer, and after 5 or 10 or 20 purchases, you get a free frozen yogurt or something? It's supposed to be a thank you from the restaurant for spending a whole bunch of your money there, right? 

Well, I think interns should have something like stamp cards, except they'd work like this: for every 5 or 10 hours we work, we should get a free drink. Any drink in the house (long island iced tea, please), redeemable at any time. And every bar should honor this. It could be like a thank you from the city to all the interns for making sure the work actually gets done.

I mean, if you're not going to pay us, at least give us something. Come on, DC.


  1. Interning is the biggest BS ever. I did so many unpaid internships before I got a paid one and ya it's experience and all that BS, but that's PR fluff because they would ahve to pay someone less qualified and less educated to do the same thing, so why can't they pay interns. The problem is that people are willing to do it for free (i.e., us). Bleh.

  2. and that's why I never interned...

  3. I am from DC and you are right. They need stamp cards for sure!


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