A friend points out to me that “newspaper reporter” is now listed as one of the five worst jobs to have. Right down there with lumberjack. Here’s the CNN Headline News report:
On the heels of a report indicating good job prospects for the college class of 2012, career guidance website CareerCast released its list of the best and worst jobs of the year, and after reviewing 200 professions across a wide range of industries.
The five “best” jobs are software engineer, actuary, human resources manager, dental hygienist and financial planner. The top five “worst” jobs are lumberjack, dairy farmer, enlisted military soldier, oil rig worker and newspaper reporter.
So what makes a job among the best or the worst? CareerCast based the rankings on a methodology that rated each profession’s work environment by assessing both the physical and emotional demands, including: necessary energy, physical demands (crawling, stooping), work conditions (toxic fumes, noise), degree of competitiveness, degree of hazards personally faced and degree of contact with the public. Each category was broken into elements and then each element was given points. In the end, a higher point total made a job less desirable, while a lower total indicated a job was more desirable….
I’m not sure whether that was supposed to make me feel good or bad. Actually, it’s sort of irrelevant, since I haven’t been a reporter since the early months of 1980. But I can tell you that being a newspaper editor is not what it once was, if you can even find such a job.
Which of course is the problem. The main thing wrong with being a newspaper anything is that if that’s what you do, it probably won’t be long before you join the ranks of those who used to do it.
Beyond that, I’m suspicious of the criteria used in compiling this list. Lumberjack? Obviously they’re not taking into account such factors as leaping from tree to tree as they float down the mighty rivers of British Columbia… the giant redwood, the larch, the fir, the mighty Scotch pine… the smell of fresh-cut timber… the crash of mighty trees… with my best girly by my side…