Having Big Fun With Hospital Security Guards

"Do not trespass on this property."

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Security guards have tough jobs

Security guards have jobs that are grossly-misunderstood. I know. From the fall of 1988 until March of 1990, I worked for a company called Ban Security located in my hometown: Hamilton, Alabama.

Explanation: by “misunderstood,” to the untrained eye, security guards look like, act like, and sometimes do things just like a “real” police officer, but they are very limited (sometimes) in how much authority they can exercise. (See dialogue below).

Scared citizen: “Sir! You there! Stop that man running toward you—he just grabbed my purse!”

Security guard: “Uh, ma’am, I can’t.”

Scared citizen: “What do you mean you can’t? You “are” a police officer? You look like one!”

Security guard: “No, ma’am. I am “just” a lowly-paid security guard, but I will do what I can. Hey you there! Purse snatcher! Stop this awful crime right now!”

Vintage magazine cover with female guard

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Even foreign countries have security guards

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When my short-lived career as a security guard began

The newspaper I had worked for since August, 1984, had changed owners, and “cleaning house,” terminating existing employees to bring in their staff had left me jobless, so there I was without any income to speak of besides collecting my unemployment.

So out of pity for me, and love for his sister, my brother-in-law, Tim Winsett, also of Hamilton, convinced me that I should see his boss, (a) W.R. (Bill) Brown, the general manger of BAN Security, about working for his company

“Kenny,” Tim said. “It will do until something better comes along.” Not that I believe in magic, but there was just something about his statement that just stuck in my mind.

A stern look, a straight back can only mean a security guard on the job

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The sharp eyes of a security guard scans every hallway

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"Halt! Who goes there?"

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Not all security companies are alike

Ideally, you cannot judge all security companies by BAN Security. The higher-level security companies send their new employees to training seminars to hone them into people whose minds are sharp as hatchets and bodies as hard as granite.

BAN Security on the other hand, was just what it was: A retired man’s company--meaning, if men, and a few women, who were retired and wanted extra-income, could work for 30 or 35 hours for this company and give themselves a feeling of contributing to our society.

Honestly, the hardest part of a guard’s job at BAN Security was staying awake—on any shift they were given. Most guards just met people at the entrance to the facility BAN was guarding and made sure the visitor signed his log book. That was it for most BAN guards. I was among the guards at a plant that was shutting down and we did what is called a “walking tour,” of the entire plant on the hour, every hour—and clicked our guard’s clock at strategic places to make sure that “we” had checked the station thoroughly.

No one can hide from security guards

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Security guards stand tall and proud

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Some women are now joining the ranks of security guards

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Before I tell you about “Having Big Fun With Hospital Security Guards,” which by the way, is the title of my story, I will describe the requirements for anyone wanting to work for BAN Security.

  • An applicant must be able to move under their own power and not be classified as mentally-challenged.
  • Applicant’s must have their own transportation. And budget their meager checks because BAN did not pay their employees any form of mileage.
  • Applicants to BAN Security must not bring firearms to the place they were guarding. In fact, BAN security guards were not allowed to wear side arms while on duty. Employees could wear holsters if they wanted, but no side arms.

Note: I always had a personal laugh about that last rule. I would visualize a troublemaker trying to cause problems at the factory where “I” was guarding. And when I caught him “red-handed,” of course he would commence to run so I couldn’t get his or her description. (Some) thugs are smart that way.

Then I would shout-out this line . . .”Stop right there! My holster is loaded and I am not afraid to use it!”

And there it was. The “no wearing of side arms,” rule quickly reminded me of what my brother-in-law Tim had said about BAN Security “will do” until something better comes along. I suppose he was really talking in code that not everyone who was hired to work for BAN Security really wanted to “plant their roots” with this company.

Security guards work day or night

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Alas, security guards are flesh and blood

But the one thing that most of us overlook is that all security guards are human—from the top of their head to the soles of their feet. Flesh and blood mortals doing (sometimes) impossible jobs for a little more than minimum wage.

And by being human the security guards all across our great United States and world for that matter, all have a sense of humor. You have to have a good sense of humor if you plan on having a career as a security guard.

To help these guys and girls fight the certain doldrums and boredom that stalk their every move, I have devised a list of things I like to do when I meet a security guard in my travels to see my pain specialist e every three months who helps me with my Fibromyalgia and back pain.

Standing ready to stop trouble in its tracks

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Security guard on night tour

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How security guards used to look

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Security guards are NOT rent-a-cops

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Security guards work picket lines

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Security guard patrols a clothing shop

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This is a school guard, not a security guard

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The cop on the beat has a lot in common with security guards

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So here we go with . . .

“Having Big Fun With Hospital Security Guards.”

  • This fun-filled prank involves that you take two shirts of a different color with you on your trip to visit a sick friend in the hospital. Stand in a doorway when the hospital security guard goes by on his “tour.” Speak to him and make sure he sees you. On his next “tour,” be wearing the other shirt of another color and comb your hair differently, but be posturing yourself in the same way as he passes by. One the next round, start a friendly conversation with him and he is bound to ask if you have a twin brother.
  • If you see a security guard slowly walking down a hallway, run up to him all out of breath and say, “Sir, I have this big boil in my left buttock. Would you please lance it for me?”
  • Do your “Sgt. Hartman/R. Lee Ermy, Full Metal Jacket,” impression by asking a hospital security guard, “What is your fifth general order?” Do not crack a smile. Watch him subconsciously start reaching for his “night stick” on his side.
  • Do the security guard a favor to advance his career by giving him a verbal pop test such as: You are on your tour and suddenly, the alarm on the front door is set off followed by the alarm at the back door. You are by yourself. What do you do? You might be surprised at what he says.
  • Tell the security guard, “Race ya’ down the hall!”
  • Be as serious as possible and ask the security guard, “Mind if I ride your back to the end of the hall? My feet are really hurting and I cannot afford to see a doctor.”
  • Approach another security guard and ask, “Would you show me to the cafeteria and then buy me a Coke and some peanuts?” If he or she “does” do this act of kindness for you, let him or her “off the hook,” and tell them you are working undercover from the “home office,” testing guards to see how kind they can be to average citizens.
  • Act scared to death and run up to the security guard and ask, “Have you seen my wife? She ran down this hallway about five minutes ago?” If the guard says no, then run away as fast as you can. Do this each time you see the guard and when he asks what happened say, “She and I were just married three hours ago and came to this hospital so she could visit her adopted grandpa. Then her adopted brother, “Slick,” took her in his arms and they kissed for a long time—probably happy to see her and then “Slick” took her hand and they both ran this way.” The security guard will suddenly show pity toward you for being so stupid for allowing your “wife”to run off with another guy.
  • Ask a security guard, “Mind if I walk with you?” If he doesn’t, just walk with him and when you see an open doorway on your side coming into view, duck inside the passageway without telling the guard and see if he tries to find you.
  • Casually stroll up to a security guard and ask, “Can you tell if I have been drinking?” “Have you?” He or she will ask. “Well, no, duhhh!” you reply and walk away.
  • If you are going to prank a hospital security guard, bring a lot of your unneeded-things from your home and when you see the security guard making his round, give him a pair of aviator sunglasses you never wore because your ex-girlfriend said you did not look like Tom Cruise when you wore them. Also give the guard some new socks, an 8x10 color photo of yourself and some other nice things. This guard will be touched emotionally.
  • Give the guard a free bag lunch consisting of two pickles, a Butterfinger, a spiced sausage, and some peanut butter and crackers. His reaction will be priceless.
  • Get the security guard to remove a peanut shell that has stuck in your throat. If he refuses, just tell him, “I thought your motto was ‘to protect and serve.’”
  • Ask the hard-working security guard if people often confuse him with Richard Roundtree, who was “Shaft.”

Coming soon . . .”My Secret Life as a Nosy Neighbor”

This is Penelope Cruz, not a security guard. I figured the male readers would like to see her

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Interesting Facts About Security Guards

  1. Not many security guards ever try-out for American Idol
  2. Security guards never go on a "stake-out" like undercover detectives
  3. Security guards never work as "undercover" security guards
  4. No security guard has ever won a Tony Award
  5. Not many security guards appear on late-night talk shows to just talk about their jobs
  6. The morale of most security guard services is among the highest in the country

Good advice on how to do something for someone else to make their day brighter

the next time you meet a security guard in a restaurant, bus stop, or even in a restaurant, do the American thing and walk up to them and say . . .

"Thank You for the great job you are doing."

You cannot fathom how good this one statement will make the security guard feel about him or herself and the job they are doing.


More by this Author


Comments 14 comments

Kiss andTales profile image

Kiss andTales 2 years ago

Funny I was a security officer, some years ago the work was challenging. A lot of walking ,I worked in a big mall outlet ,with stores like Tommy hilfigure , timberline , coach, I was to make sure they open on time, and be present in some for loss prevention . I also worked Menards as a gate gaurd for the large lumber. I have had some experience.

This great for you to write a hub !


mgt28 profile image

mgt28 2 years ago

You have done a great job to this profession. Most people do not spare a thought to these people.


taiwokareem profile image

taiwokareem 2 years ago from Salford

Well said mgt28. Another great article, Kenneth


lctodd1947 profile image

lctodd1947 2 years ago from USA

Hey Ken; you know how to write an interesting post and make it funny also. Excellent work!

Linda


Ericdierker profile image

Ericdierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

I knew you were a recovering security specialist III. No other profession can get you ready for your ridiculous hubs. Fantastic.

I did my 2,500 hrs on all kinds of assignments but ultimately failed the mental stability issue. ;-)


sheilamyers 2 years ago

Very funny! I'm glad I didn't apply for that security job or I'd have to put up with the practical jokers like this. So why didn't I really apply? I went to the interview/orientation thing and was bored out of my skull. I also found out many of the things you said like about not having any weapons. Hello? Someone breaks in where I'm guarding and I'm supposed to do what? Hide and call the police? No way! If I have to worry about the criminal beating me to a pulp while waiting for the police, I'm not taking the job.


aviannovice profile image

aviannovice 2 years ago from Stillwater, OK

You had some pretty funny things to test the guard with. I laughed at all of them, and yes, I would like that lunch provided.

Actually I have been a guard for Pinkerton Security at American Express in DE. I got the job when I first moved there for something to tide me over, ten later worked for DE State Police.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 2 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Wow, aviannovice,

You have had two great jobs! Pinkerton is world-wide. I am highly-impressed by your work. Honest. What do you do now?

But a Sincere Thanks to you for your comments that I value so much.

Have a sweet night.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 2 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Dear Sheila,

Bored is so right. And that is the good side of security work. But the no weapons rule? Stupid. I guess my boss must have thought I was a Kung Fu master.

I can tell you now that his company had the highest rate of turn-over in my hometown.

No wonder, huh?

Thanks for your comment, Sheila. I appreciate it.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 2 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

eric . . .

Ridiculous? Fantastic? Which is it? LOL. Oh, you are right without knowing it.

Another security guard/friend of mine and I used to write made-up stories for one another. He covered one shift and I did another. It was like in serial form and he would write where I left off and so on.

This was the highlight of our job.

Seriously. At the time, the few bucks did help.

Eric, thanks for your lively friendship.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 2 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Linda,

You are a sweetheart for leaving me such a warm comment. I am so glad that YOU and my followers like my work. This to me is what hubbing is all about. It sure isn't about making a fortune, is it?

Come back anytime.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 2 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Hello, taiwokoreem,

Thanks so much, from the heart, for your nice comment. I appreciate what you said in your comment.

Peace to you and yours.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 2 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

mgt28,

Thank you kindly. I said in one recent hub that I have always been for the underdog, and in some places in our country, the security officers who work around the clock, seven days a week, no matter what comes, never get a pat on the back.

I would love to say that is where I come in.

But that would sound arrogant. And I am not that.

I am grateful to My Father in Heaven for seeing me from that time to this time with you on HP.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 2 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Well, hi, Kiss and Tales,

You amaze me. You were a security guard? Wow. To me, that is so great. Thank you, dear friend for sharing this part of your life.

Somewhere, I have an unpublished hub on my desktop about "Why Most Security Guards Are Always Irritable," and it is a funny piece. Wonder why I haven't published it?

Hmmm.

Thanks for your feedback, friendship and following.

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