Thursday, April 12, 2007

Five Cool Jobs

Today, I do what I do now because my earning is maximized compared to my potential (or lack of it). But let's assume Karl Marx and Warren Buffet put together a society. Let's assume every job pays the same. What would be the cool jobs for a backbencher like me? Every year Money magazine comes up with a list of "Best Jobs in America" -- I cannot find the jobs I think are "cool" w.r.t. the Marx-Buffet society there.

Evaluating factors for such "cool" jobs would be -
  • Amount of real work - the lesser the better. Even better if the position demands least amount of seasonal work and / or mostly watching other people finish something that you would share a profit on.
  • Control on other people's lives - can you make a superstar cry or beg (Income Tax Officer)? Can you scare the shit out of the 'topper' in the school? (The guy who posts the marksheet on the wall). Remember, Marx and Buffet took care of the poverty and serious stuff, so all you have to do is to create some illusions of your importance into significant people's lives.
  • Non-cash compensation - can you get to offer batting advice to Sachin Tendulkar? Or, laugh off on Aishwarya's Cannes gown from your living room and be heard? Can you be the dispatcher from Maxim magazine that takes a hard copy of photographs to a starlet's house for her approval to print?
  • Permanence - remember you will not at all be working hard. So you have to choose a job that is safe, stable and with minimum or no competition to limit lay-off!
1. Guy who decides show times in the Movieplex -

Upside - Typically there are 8 to 16 theaters in a plex. About 4 to 6 movies release a weekend. You can make or break a relationship here. Most people remember their first movie together! After 15 years - thanks to you - something like this may come up in a conversation. "Just like our first movie - "Dil Ka Rishta" - this is not going anywhere!"

You watch all the new releases free. You can bullshit about "Just in Time" and other assembly line lingo during performance reviews.

Downside - if you are single, you probably have to go to theme park for dates!

2. One-liner writer in late night TV shows -

Upside - You can Google for "Joke" and get paid. You just have to find a safe host and write may be 15 words per night. If you are unhappy with your wife, poke fun at Hillary Clinton or Rabri Devi. If you are upset with your son - laugh at Vivek Oberoi. etc. etc.

Downside - This is a low-profile and very safe job. So, can easily be outsourced. Also, your wife won't understand your jokes after a while. She will start feeling embarrassed if you speak out in front of her friends.

3. Last Page Editor in any popular magazine -

Say, "Eyecatchers" in India Today or "Glitterati" in Outlook.
Upside - No matter what's on the cover, everyone reads those pages first (unless it's a "Playboy" or similar one). No one ever complained about the quality or lack of it. There are no 'angry' old folks writing to editors complaining about journalistic standards. Totally safe job. Just find one B-grade semi-clad female model producing first album; some politician's wedding cake arrived late-type news; Finance Minister's wife chatting with Amar Singh's and one random photo from a fashion show -- and you are done for the week!

Downside - Almost none. Except that you have to work hard on those "special anniversary issues" once every year. But even then it's just mostly a compilation of bests from earlier last pages! On 25th anniversary issue, just do a collage of all 'revealing' pint sized pics that every appeared on your magazine on the page. Just make sure people recognize Zeenat Aman and Mandakini on that collage. You may even get a bonus!

4. "Computer Analyst" to Indian Cricket Team -

Upside - Pointing out flaws to Sachin, Sourav and Rahul's batting. Tell how Kumble's arms should bend for 'optimum angular MoI (moment of inertia)'. Remember to restrict bullshit though. They may invite you for real nets otherwise! Travel to exotic locations in First class, stay in the same quality top hotels as the players, watch the match from special boxes and eat free food at stupid local rich NRI's house. When players are sweating in the field, grab a beer and surf or chat. Look busy and keep that cricinfo page open. Just in case. Pretty much like a software engineer's job with much better social life! The coach will ask for your help in drafting any 'secret' emails. Leak it - along with other dirty dressing room gossips - later to your media buddies. Ask them for free beer in return.

Introduce yourself as "I am with Indian Cricket team" in the local bar. Bitch about their lack of positive attitude and how fast Sachin eats Zunkas at lunch.

If you are really one of those enterprising types, launch a cricket 'software' or a CD compilation. Invite the whole team for inauguration. They will do it free! Sell it off to Nike, pocket the money and run.

Downside - Almost none. No matter what the team does, no one ever beat up a computer analyst. This is a dream job!

5. Movie Producer -

Upside - EVERYTHING! Just be careful it is no sting operation and avoid Amar Singh types for company. Biggest challenge in life would be to find a place to go to for vacation, now that you would have gone to all the cool places for "shooting"!

Downside - Irritating phone calls from aging stars. After a flop movie, you may have to add an extra "R" or "S" or "H" to your name. Don't introduce yourself to your son's or daughter's friends.

So, what do YOU want to be?

No comments: