Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America

What kind of physical alingment does Barbara suffer? How does she treat it?

Chapter 2, part 3

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Barbara Ehrenreich develops a rash of unknown origin. She also has aches and pains from her physical job. The itching becomes so intense that she falls back on her old safety network and gets a prescription from her dermatologist. Meanwhile, though she looks like a “leper,” she shows up to work and is told to soldier on. “Work through it,” Ted likes to say to or of ill employees. From the muscular pains to the rashes, from the stink to the occasional shit in the toilets, from the five-minute pit stop for lunch (when a thirty-minute break had been promised when Ehrenreich applied) to the degradation of it all (Ehrenreich notes that throughout her own life hardly ever has she managed to bring herself to hire a cleaning person or service), the job is something of a nightmare.