WBEZ | John Giolas http://www.wbez.org/tags/john-giolas Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Take this job and shove it http://www.wbez.org/series/storycorps/take-job-and-shove-it-108780 <p><p>In 1949, when John Giolas was just 19, he started work at the U.S. Steel mill in Gary, Ind.</p><p>For a while, he had a plum job working in the metallurgical lab, testing all the steel. But then U.S. Steel started its downward slide, laying off workers. By the late 1950s, Giolas found himself working a series of increasingly &ldquo;low, demeaning jobs&rdquo; at the mill.</p><p>Giolas visited the StoryCorps booth with his sons Markus and Dale to remember the day he walked off the job and how he made a new life, despite his battles with depression.</p><p><strong>John Giolas</strong>: When you went in the mill, the gates closed. And there was no way you were going to get out until the next shift started, and that&rsquo;s when the gates opened. So I always called it a prison.</p><p>While Giolas was working at the mill, he started taking photographs of the other mill workers and their families.</p><p><strong>John</strong>: These guys would say, &lsquo;You do good work, this is your opportunity to get out of here, it&rsquo;s too late for us.&rsquo;&nbsp;</p><p>Lay-offs had started at the steel mill, and things grew worse:<img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/giolas with cam cropped.jpg" style="float: right; height: 215px; width: 250px;" title="" /></p><p><strong>John</strong>: I ended up in a pit of steaming water with coke falling off of a conveyor belt, and it was my job as it landed in the water to scoop it up and put it back on the conveyor belt. And on one midnight turn I just lost it, I blew up. I asked the foreman, I said, &lsquo;Where&rsquo;s the gate? I want to leave, I want to quit,&rsquo; and he said, &lsquo;You can&rsquo;t quit,&rsquo; so I stayed there &lsquo;til morning, daylight -&nbsp; walked out of the mill and never went back.</p><p>To find out how what Giolas did next, click on the audio above.</p><p><em>Katie Mingle is a producer for WBEZ and the Third Coast Festival.</em></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Fplaylists%2F6250422" width="100%"></iframe></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><hr /><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 27 Sep 2013 08:21:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/storycorps/take-job-and-shove-it-108780