Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Apparently, It All Adds Up

Stumbled over this interesting piece on something that concerns just about all of us. Jobs. Specifically, which are the best ones and worst ones. The study released today is from CareerCast.com, a new job site. (It has the whole list.) It evaluates 200 professions according to five criteria inherent to every job: environment, income, employment outlook, physical demands and stress to determine which are the best and worst to have.

Best job on the list is mathematician; worst is lumberjack. If you're like me, both of these will surprise you. I would have have been too bent by my own tastes and prejudices in coming up with the best job to have: baseball player, chess professional, writer, musician, and of course historian, my own profession, which I have found engaging and rewarding for the most part. I immediately thought of garbageman as the worst possible job.

To my amazement, I came pretty close in both cases. Historian is actually on the list of best jobs--at #7, no less, right below computer systems analyst and right above sociologist. Garbageman is #195 on the list. Just a quick gander at the list of top jobs proves that "head work" is the best kind of job to have: economists are there, also computer programmers. astronomers, and--the ultimate head workers--philosophers.

Not many surprises on the 20 worst jobs: construction, welder, roustabout, child care worker, taxi driver. I would have thought waitress or waiter (#154) would have made the worst 20. Those people work hard and take a shitload of abuse. Tip your waitress nicely. She deserves it even if she didn't make the worst of worst list.
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