WOW...reading this I'm amazed. My story is a little different and I have a humorous take on Scn and some of the true nutjobs I met there. I do not mean to insult those that did call this a "religion" or even remote "business". Small town Pa boy moving to the big bad city of New York. Worked for only 8 months or so for the "Church". I was attending NYU for Acting/Performance and was looking for a part-time job to have some spending money. lol A friend, in a few of my core classes wanted to introduce and invite me into something "life changing". The people were nice enough and as I was finishing up my last semester before transferring I did some volunteering. Well, signed the "sign your life away for four years" org staff contract. I was to be hatted Com Officer. (Let's see my minor was in marketing and I was Dean's List figured I could do this in my sleep.) Moved in with she and her b/f who was also a fellow staff member. At least it was comfortable and had my own room. I was stuck in an "office" on the 6th floor (or something like that) and worked w/ a wonderful, but tired, obviously poor and depressed woman named Kathy and an old elderly black gentleman (and that's what he was in all words a gentleman). Oh, the times lol Worst thing was was going to the file room to get those folders to do the letters to ensure "stats were up". Can someone (with some humor) explain to me how a Ms. V. Gina (say it fast) who lived somewhere in Brooklyn in 1973 was going to receive my letter in black pen, it HAD to be BLACK, that said "We miss you at the org. Can we expect to see you sometime soon?" I've never gone to Barnes & Noble and had them write me a letter saying "we miss your business". lol Talk about unsafe working conditions: My favorite part of my job was working the front desk and answering the phones. At least I could see people outside walking past on 45th Street, the marquee to the Richard Rodgers and happiness. Well, they decided to have 3 brain cells among them and decide to use high pressure epoxy (almost like glue w/ stone flakes) paint to redo the lobby since shabby chic wasn't selling books or "services". They handed me one of those flimsy, sold for a quarter, masks to wear all the while allowing me to inhale this nasty junk into my lungs. Needless to say, I came down with a serious bronchial and throat infection that turned nearly into bronchitis and pnumonia. Well, after a day of coughing my brains out and spitting a little blood I went to my superior and the ethics officer (a woman who had the personality of a wet mop left outside on a few consecutive hot days). They recommended that I goto a Scn doctor. I told them "No" and got on the first bus back to my hometown to see the family doctor that had seen me since I was a small child. Oh did they pitch a fit but I was home, in my own bed and under medical supervision not in a damp stuffy office. I took 10 days to me to recover. I swear my folks got easily 100 calls that week asking me when I was coming back, that I was off-lines, out of ethics and all that crap. Wait, let me get this straight: You pay me next to nothing, I'm not eating properly b/c of pay rate and YOU GOT ME sick which in a "real" business OSHA would shut you down but I'M at fault? Well, I went back, was put on ethics (don't remember what because it was a joke) and had my hand slapped. About a month later my favorite Great Aunt passed away after a long battle with cancer. She was probably one of the sweetest, warmest human beings God put on this planet. Raised her family with 3 wonderful children, a marriage of 50+ years, etc. I found this out from my family calling me and a letter from my grandmother. I told my "boss" and the ethics officer that I needed to attend this funeral and would be back in three days. Immediately, I was put on the cans. I got asked what did I recall about her. I recall this vividly. I usually spent a weekend during the summer with them as a child and she and my Great Uncle grew their own vegetables. She made the most wonderful tomato sandwiches. "What do you remember negatively about her?" I repeated for easily an hour, nothing. She was a mentor, a confidant and I'd never could or did have anything negative with her but somehow I was "out of ethics" b/c of nothing but the warm memories. I was allowed to attend the funeral. Well, I went home the day before the viewing was scheduled. The day of the viewing was the blizzard of '94 which dumped over 36" of snow. Well, the Governor of our state closed down the roads and we didn't see a plow on our street. Called up to the org, "if there isn't a way make a way". I asked back if I should call the Governor to lift the driving ban just so I could write some more letters and hung up. lol 2 days later the roads were passable to attend the viewing but they couldn't open the grave to place her. All-in-all was "insubordinate" for a total of 6 days this time. Mind you, my professors and such at NYU were very lax about this and understood a family situation. I got back and was on forced labor beyond normal duties to "make up the time and the stats we lost bc of your absence". I got to know Kathy very well and we'd have amazing conversations about life, etc. I said to her one day what was odd was I was used to going out after work and having a beer or pizza with the people I worked with. I said, I never see anyone having fun, socializing, talking about movies. So, Kathy and another employee made a big show to go out for a few beers and games of pool. It was obvious, this would be a large financial hit and time away from sleep for them but the other employee said, "well, see we Scn's can have fun away from work too". Someone explain that as well. Last one for now. Got the opportunity to get one of my union cards by auditioning for and getting on a major motion picture. Time rolled around for the weekend of filming. I asked for the weekend off (just post Easter) and there was going to be 3 wks away a "HUGE" IAS event and launch and we needed to "really make it happen" to go "Saint Hill size". I argued this was MY future and part of MY life goals and plans. "Well, don't you believe in the tech and LRH?" I said, yes but if this were the org that I had been presented that increasing and changing your life positively why is this bad for me?" My boss, who was a former modern dancer and actress said but your duties are equally important. Yet again, I won the fight, they couldn't do their oppressive guilt trip on me b/c I could think for myself and didn't immerse myself in the tech too much. Again, was out-ethics but I got my S.A.G. card. lol Enough for now. Hope you'll enjoy my stories.