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What is the most difficult thing about being a lifeguard?

Asked at Lawrence Outdoor Aquatic Center on July 29, 2008

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Photo of Tony Ceman

“Having to watch a lot of kids when there are so many people in the water.”

Photo of Jaime Meyers

“Probably dealing with unhappy or dissatisfied parents. We have a lot of rules they’re not aware of; they are posted, but they don’t always read them. So sometimes they get upset when we are just trying to keep everyone safe.”

Photo of Dusty Morlan

“The repeat offenders. There are a lot of regulars here that are always causing trouble, but it’s kind of a friendly rivalry.”

Photo of Kelli Ralph

“Being out in the hot sun for eight hours a day. It’s a long time to just sit there. You have to make yourself pay attention.”

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Comments

Pywacket 5 years, 8 months ago

Bearded~ I can't remember my exact wording, but all I said was that the hardest thing about being a lifeguard is trying to get lunker muskie to hit your bucktail lure with all the mars bar dispensers splashing & screaming around in the water.(And, note--I was not the first to refer to ... um... candy bars, either, in case that was the offensive element.)Hope you get to read this before it gets pulled--if the same trigger-happy post puller is working today.

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bearded_gnome 5 years, 8 months ago

OOOOOOOOOOOOH! you girls are being sooooooooo nasty! now, I'm really curious just what was in Py's yanked post! she doesn't get yanked very much at all, being the lady she is!
hardest thing about being a lifeguard? baywatch?

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Pywacket 5 years, 8 months ago

T_R_A--Homer Simpson voice, intoning) ..mmmmmmmmmmm...... stinkbait.........Multi~ Watch out! you could get disappeareded for thinking such things! ;-)

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Pywacket 5 years, 8 months ago

What cracks me up is that several people mentioned pitching tents, groping teens, poop, and/or shrinkage, all of which are apparently deemed acceptable. But whisper the words, "lunker muskie" and the watchful editor Durwood Pruditude nearly fractures his wrists removing those scandalous words before the public's chaste eyes are burned out at the offending sight.Naturally, Durwood, or whomever removed my post, is not going to have the cojones to respond here and tell us his reasoning or justification--much less offer an honest apology for removing it in error... They'll either maintain the lofty position that they don't need justification (this is their playground and they can be as unfair and inscrutable as they want), or just pretend that they aren't reading the subsequent comments on the thread. I'd have more respect if they'd at least say, "Oops--sometimes we goof and this was one of those times."

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tangential_reasoners_anonymous 5 years, 8 months ago

It looks like you've succeeded in avoiding it.Weblog: Interactive "____bait" fill-in-the-blank game.JAILL

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Multidisciplinary 5 years, 8 months ago

Comically, "____bait" was one of the words I was trying to avoid in my post this morning.

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tangential_reasoners_anonymous 5 years, 8 months ago

Won't work... I've already tried to lure Py with stinkbait.

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Flap Doodle 5 years, 8 months ago

Py, it's a good thing you didn't mention stinkbait.

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Pywacket 5 years, 8 months ago

I never knew "fishing" was code for something filthy. Of course, my post could've gotten pulled for the graphic mention of a bucktail lure. Just think what would happen if you mentioned (looking around, behind me, down the hallway....)...... CRANKBAIT!!! Crankbait!Crankbait!Crankbait!Now I feel so dirty.

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tangential_reasoners_anonymous 5 years, 8 months ago

TheEleventhStephanie: "How 'bout the kids who keep pooping in the pool?A few times I went last week, they had to evacuate the pool."As evacuation goes, that sounds like the Mothra of butterfly effects.Next season... microdot sunglasses!( Insectoids are soooooooo passe. )

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beatrice 5 years, 8 months ago

Py apparently got her post bounced for using the "f" word.Fishing

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Multidisciplinary 5 years, 8 months ago

Py, Now you know why the first morning post is like it is.It's the only way I could hint about what I meant without getting yanked.I see no one got it. A few alluded to similar things.

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Pywacket 5 years, 8 months ago

What in the sam holy hill?!That post was about fishing. Fishing!Will someone kindly tell me how that post could possibly have violated anything? Lucy, you got some 'splainin' to do.If I'd known the comments were going to be removed, I would have added something salacious or downright nasty. ;-)

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Pywacket 5 years, 8 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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gobbluth 5 years, 8 months ago

trying to decide which one will be a republican when they grow up and go save the other kid?

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maybeso 5 years, 8 months ago

Actually, Multidis, the fanny pack truly is the worst thing about lifeguarding.

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bearded_gnome 5 years, 8 months ago

apparently the insectoid glasses mean something to them! so, maybe those who wear them can be assumed to have a personality flaw, or even mental disorder? I remember how on Hawaii-5-oh the sunglasses were always the relflective kind. that was very big then! now, we get dick cheney wearing them while fishing in a picture, some thought they saw a nude woman reflected in them. to which he said "you should've seen the one that got away!"

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Multidisciplinary 5 years, 8 months ago

Hey gang, need some info.Who's switched to a heat pump, and are you happy with it?Does it both heat and cool like I've heard?I may buy an old place that needs a whole new system, and the heat pump issue came into play.What are your thoughts and experiences please.(I don't know why the 'angry people" can't see the glasses issue is no more than klondike bars, lemurs and smoke jumper boots. We just needed some new material this summer dudes!!If someone had been pictured with a fanny pack,and then another, that may just have well been this year's topic of humor.)

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le 5 years, 8 months ago

Oh ,and gay guys...dont bring that kinda show to the pool...besides..poo on yer joystick causes crypto....

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le 5 years, 8 months ago

Trying to pay attention 2 the kids when you spot that guy slippin the bone 2 his girl....they are very good at making it look like they are just hangin onto each other...but the facial expressions tell on them...stop spooging in the community pool folks....thats what yer home pool and hotub is for! But thanx for the free porn show...2 much wood in the pool !

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stinerides 5 years, 8 months ago

golf land sun splash in o.p., those were the good days, opening at 9:30 am and "testing" all the slides to ensure all the crickets rode down smoothly

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Quigly 5 years, 8 months ago

Mars Bars floating in the water?

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The_Original_Bob 5 years, 8 months ago

"When will the insanity end?!" DasDunno. Most fashion fads run their course in under three years. This one has been going on for awhile. I think Bea is right, welding lids will be the style soon.R_I - You learned early on that it is better to be the ringer than the ringed.

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woodenfleaeater 5 years, 8 months ago

I loved lathering up with baby oil, wearing my aviator shades and trying to impress women with the Tom Cruise / Top Gun look. Although I frequenly got in trouble for wearing my bomber jacket in the chair.

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Das_Ubermime 5 years, 8 months ago

"we are also strongly anti-Bobs.Fortunately this means we are allowed to have one.Now accepting apps"I see what you mean TOB. This is yet another example of the harm insectoid sunglasses do to America. When will the insanity end?!

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 5 years, 8 months ago

Keeping your margarita cold.Eons ago when I was a lifeguard, I always kept a plugged watermelon in the breakroom fridge. The second most difficult thing? Spotting the "ringers". These were individual(s) sent in by the recreation director to create real time situations to test your response. I eventually joined the "ringer" circuit.Most of the "ringers" were on the water polo circuit also. After the pool closed to the public, another team would show up at midnight or so play depending on how far they had to travel. Generally we would float a pony keg in an innertube during the games. Fun times, even with the black eyes, broken noses, and a few broken eardrums from getting pummeled or kicked in the head.Back then classic Ray-Ban ® Wayfarer/¢ was the choice for lifeguards, though a few still wore Aviators/¢ both seemed to complement your ACME Thunderer.

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autie 5 years, 8 months ago

Keeping a good supply of beach towels to wear around the waist..is that mandatory or is it a local phenomena? All the hot lifeguard babes wearing big towels around their waist?? Impairs the view.

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Flap Doodle 5 years, 8 months ago

Baristas wear huge sunglasses while eating fruitcake and driving around traffic-calming devices.

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beatrice 5 years, 8 months ago

Making that white stuff you put on your nose look cool, while wearing insectoid sunglasses of course. Second hardest thing about being a lifeguard is probably trying to avoid the constant thought that you should have spent my summer as a barista instead. Next fashion trend -- one large piece of welding shield sunglass hooked to a visor. This will be hot in 2009!

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bearded_gnome 5 years, 8 months ago

cutny(-Anonymous)-!says:You guys still beating the "insectoid" and "huge" sunglass horse? Get over it. Some people like big sunglasses. Post your face and on the internet and stophiding behind your anonymity and let's see what we can all find to sling at you.hardest thing: got to be the babes! oooooops, am I gonna get yelled at for "babes?""mutant wombats" yeah, and you know they're always just lirking, watching for their opportunity. however, when you're a lifeguard, how do you tell the pod-people from the others?***and finally, Ronald Reagan, while a lifeguard, saved or assisted over 70 persons at a river in southern IL.

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spiff 5 years, 8 months ago

we are also strongly anti-Bobs.Fortunately this means we are allowed to have one.Now accepting apps

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The_Original_Bob 5 years, 8 months ago

Das -You better watch yourself. The Pro-Insectoid lobby is quite powerful and apparently lacks a sense of humor.

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Das_Ubermime 5 years, 8 months ago

If we make insectoid sunglasses exceptions for lifeguards, what is to stop children from wanting insectoid sunglasses, or people from wearing multiple insectiod sunglasses at once? Next thing you know, people will want them for their dogs! Mark my words, insectoid sunglasses will undermine everything that is decent and moral about eye apparel. Just you wait...

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spiff 5 years, 8 months ago

yeah, if i was a lifeguard, i definitely wouldn't want sunglasses that provided complete coverage of my field of vision. jerks

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The_Original_Bob 5 years, 8 months ago

Huge Insectoid sunglasses are ridiculous. Woo hoo!!!!

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cutny 5 years, 8 months ago

You guys still beating the "insectoid" and "huge" sunglass horse? Get over it. Some people like big sunglasses. Post your face and on the internet and stop hiding behind your anonymity and let's see what we can all find to sling at you.

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sunflower_sue 5 years, 8 months ago

Finding just the right pair of insectoid eyewear.

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Haiku_Cuckoo 5 years, 8 months ago

"How 'bout the kids who keep pooping in the pool? A few times I went last week, they had to evacuate the pool. No joke."That's just wrong. Whenever a kid "makes dooky" in the pool, the parents should be hit with the cost to drain and sanitize. A bill for $3,500 will make the parents think twice about bringing the kid back for a while. Also, they should add that chemical that turns the water purple whenever anyone takes a squirt in the pool. The offender will be surrounded by a cloud of purple and can have his pool pass confiscated by the lifeguards.

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TheEleventhStephanie 5 years, 8 months ago

Plenty of groping teens and pitched tents too. Man, the pool is getting scary!

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The_Original_Bob 5 years, 8 months ago

Making sure I don't pitch a tent on sorority rush week.

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jonas 5 years, 8 months ago

Mutant wombats. I'll admit they're pretty rare, but when they come around you'll be thinking they're the most difficult thing then, too.

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Flap Doodle 5 years, 8 months ago

Running in slow motion while the theme music is playing.

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thomgreen 5 years, 8 months ago

Shear boredom. I was a lifeguard for over six years. From the story on the lifeguards here in Lawrence it sounds like they have a nice rotating schedule to help combat that issue.

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TheEleventhStephanie 5 years, 8 months ago

How 'bout the kids who keep pooping in the pool? A few times I went last week, they had to EVACUATE the pool. No joke.

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