Newspaper reporter not such a bad job

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Once again newspaper reporter has been declared the worst job, this time according to a survey by CareerCast.com.

Lots of people have written about this subject more eloquently than I can, but here’s my take on the matter.

Pshaw, I say.

Journalism isn't the worst job. It's not even the worst job I've ever done. 

Since I graduated from high school I've done a lot of different jobs, thanks in part to working for a temp service one summer as a lowly university student working on getting an English degree. 

All of them were far worse than working as a reporter. 

I've spent days loading 80-pound boxes of siding into a trailer with a man who smelled like he'd never heard of a shower and a skinhead who regaled us at random intervals with his racist adventures. 

I spent a day in mud up to my knees picking garbage out of a ditch at a dump to spruce up the place. 

I've worked in a fast food kitchen in the height of the summer heat.

I've worked in call centres where I was yelled at for almost eight hours a day. 

I was in a hotel when it flooded with sewage. That last one happened twice.

Those were all worse than working as a newspaper reporter. 

The arguments against my profession usually revolve around the pay and the job prospects. 

The CareerCast.com survey threw in physical demands, work environment and stress for good measure.

All of those are good points but I wasn't exactly working my ideal shifts or getting ready for early retirement at any of my other jobs. 

Reporters do work long hours and when the legislature is sitting they get even longer for some of us. 

But I'd rather work long hours doing something I love than spend my days glued to a phone trying to explain to customers why their heating oil price is doubling. 

I've done that. It sucked. A lot. 

As a reporter I've interviewed four premiers, four federal party leaders, numerous MLAs and several MPs.

I've interviewed professional athletes and regular people who just have interesting stories to tell. 

I’ve spent time riding around in police cars on the right side of the glass.

As a reporter I talk to someone new almost every day.

I’ve flown an airplane! 

I’ve done all those things and a lot more in the almost six years since I first started working in a newsroom and can’t say I’ve ever wished I was doing something else.

Best of all, reporters get the privilege of having people invite them into their lives to tell their stories. What could be better than that?

rross@theguardian.pe.ca

twitter.com/ryanrross 

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  • I agree
    December 27, 2013 - 09:48

    It is a very very interesting job.