A few years ago, I was working for a company that sold, among other things, financial transaction processing machines - debit and credit transactions. We call them EFTPOS machines here in NZ, and I worked on the software that goes inside them.
I believe that I am the first person in the world to program games for an EFTPOS terminal.
I did the work on my own time, but the games were certified and were installed on machines for many years. The games have disappeared from more recent software revisions, so perhaps the current developers needed to reclaim some of that code space; I don't know. It was a gas to show how to access these hidden games, to people working at random points-of-sale.
The terminal had a touch-screen interface. I created five games in all. They would all print their instructions, and most would remember and display your initials and past high scores. When you won, the game would display one of the "fortunes" from the old microsoft "mah-jong" game, I believe (including the very weird "Bouncy ball is the source of all goodness and light").
A 'Concentration' memory game, 20 'cards'.
Doodle (draw images, save them, print them on the receipt paper).
Attaxx (othello-like game, modelled from an internet game I had).
A sliding-tile puzzle game - 15 tiles, where you move the 'hole' around.
Then one day he shows up with a shaved head, doc martens and he didn't speak at all for a week. One day out of the blue he started going this huge rant about how the Jews were the reason this bad thing was happening and that bad thing was going on. The bus driver couldn't hear him because the skinhead sat at the back of the bus. He just kept going on and on and on. Nobody said anything. We all looked at each other, making faces in disbelief that he was doing this. But nobody was going to say anything. So I got up and told him, pardon my french, to "shut the fuck up, you skinhead piece of shit." Everyone was staring, and he stood up and started yelling back about how the way he dresses doesn't hurt anybody. It's a lifestyle choice. He's being persecuted for the way he looks. So we back and forth for a while before our bus driver finally hears whats going on and stops the bus. He's a native from Newfoundland, "he knows what it like to be persecuted." The skinhead was berated by our driver, and didn't fight back at all.
The next day he was transferred to another bus because his mom threatened to sue the school if they banned him completely from the bus service.
It's not that big of a deal. I know most people have probably done bigger things in their lives. But this was a defining moment in who I am. I'm really proud that I was able to stand up when no one else would.
The thing is, they need you to be available on short notice for long hours usually during the week. If you have a consistent day job then basically forget it. They'll give you an online account that is essentially a calender. It'll be your job to update each day with either a green or red square meaning available or not available respectively. I finally got a salaried job in my trained field last week so I won't be an extra any longer.
It's interesting though because you never know where it will go. I was only getting $10 an hour so it kinda sucked. A friend of mine in the city had better luck. On her 'things you can do' portion of the questionnaire, she put 'kayaking'. They called her and her husband in to do a car commercial which in turn aired during the last Superbowl and they made roughly $25,000 for literally 1 second of airtime! She showed me the commercial and was like 'There! Did you see me? That was my foot!' Ha! And she was paid each time it aired. Crazy business...