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Catching Out: The Secret World of Day Laborers
Reavis reported to a labor hall each morning hoping to “catch out,” or get job assignments. To supplement his savings for retirement, the sixty-two-year-old joined people dispatched by an agency to manual jobs for which they were paid at the end of each day. Reavis writes with simple honesty, sympathy, and self-deprecating wit about his life inside day labor agencies, whic ...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published February 16th 2010 by Simon & Schuster
(first published 2010)
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When the author, a journalist and a professor of English, reached age 62, he realized that his retirement income was too small to live on. So he started going to the nearby labor hall of a temporary day labor company, which sent him to various assignments: working at a construction site, driving cars at a used car auction lot, moving furniture at a college dormitory, standing with a flag while others were doing road repairs, painting steel widgets at a factory. As a rule, the workers were the pe ...more
This is an interesting book about day laborers - a part of our society that most people don't think much about even though we are totally dependent on the work they do. Mr Reavis, a college English professor, worked as a day laborer and documented his experiences. Sometimes he gets so caught up in describing detail that his narrative gets a bit tedious, however, this is one of those books that will change forever the way a reader views those often faceless people who do the hardest and dirtiest ...more
Catching Out: The Secret World of Day Laborers by Dick J. Reavis (Simon & Shuster 2010) (331.544) is about life at a temporary employment agency for unskilled laborers. The author, who is actually a professor at North Carolina State University, spent months working through a temporary labor agency, and this is the story of the work he found, the conditions, and the company. It was eye opening! My rating: 6/10, finished 2/14/11.