By Angelique H. Caffrey
Tired of your boring job title? You might like the sound of your own position after seeing a few of these oddly-named occupations. Otherwise, you might just be inspired by these strange-sounding jobs to find a new role of your own.
And the Award Goes to ...
Urine Specimen Collector
For the title of "Totally Obvious," you can't beat Urine Specimen Collector. As you'd expect, this service agent collects the liquid output from persons applying for jobs, taking drug tests, or being checked for diseases. Urine specimen collectors work in a variety of places, including the federal government, in hospitals and for sports organizations.
If there were an award for a job that "Sounds Dirtier Than It Is," the title of Smutter would be in the running. Nope, the smutter doesn't focus on adult reading materials. Instead, he or she tends grain machines that remove foreign matter, such as dirt, smut, and rust from grain prior to milling. Smutters make up to the mid-$20Ks annually. They are also known by the more mundane moniker "grain cleaners." If you want to tend to a machine, but you are crazy about grain, then search for machine operator jobs.
Runner-up in the "Not Dirty ... But Could Have Fooled Me" category is Lamina Searcher. They remove the stems and foreign materials from tobacco. Lamina Searchers make about $12/hour and work in regions where tobacco is plentiful.
Want to read about more tobacco jobs? For the longest job title, Banding-and-Cellophane-Wrapping-Machine-Operator Helper might take the prize. This person assists the bander-and-cellophaner in wrapping trademark bands and cellophane wrappers around stogies.
Ever wanted to be a Hogshead Stripper? This person won't be found pole dancing in a barnyard; he or she actually opens the sealed hogsheads of tobacco. A tobacco hogshead was used in colonial times to transport and store tobacco. It was a very large wooden barrel. A standardized hogshead measured 48 inches long and 30 inches in diameter at the head. Fully packed with tobacco, it weighed about 1,000 pounds.
How about becoming a Comb Capper? They hack the caps off commercial honeycombs to extract the honey from inside. Usually, Comb Cappers work in warmer regions where bees can live year-round, so if you're a sun-worshipper, this might be a pleasant working atmosphere.
If you want a crazy-sounding job, how about a Lap Checker? These folks don't go around examining people's upper legs while they are sitting. They record the laps that drivers complete in auto or motorcycle racing. Lap Checkers don't make a lot of money, but if you love Nascar, this might be a good position for you.
The name evokes the image of a person running around the park checking the reflexes of mommies. But these employees actually inspect metal phonograph record "mothers" for surface defects. Their hip alternative title is Matrix Inspector. Since record players are harder to find these days, music lovers can find plenty more modern music jobs.
The title of Powder Monkey sounds fun, but it's a dangerous job. Powder monkeys store explosives (ammonium nitrate, dynamite, blasting powder, fireworks) and enforce safety regulations. If you're a fan of safety, there are plenty of safety-related jobs out there.
The winner of the award for "Most Alliterative Job Title" goes to Blood-Bank-Booking Clerk. As you'd expect, this person books dates for mobile blood collection visits. But let's hope he or she doesn't have to say this tongue twister three times in a row. Into the red stuff? There are plenty of blood bank jobs to be found.
Try this chic-sounding job on for size. These folks sell auto-related accessories (such as fuel) at self-service gas stations. In other words, they are station attendants. There are plenty of jobs of this nature available -- according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, approximately 96,000 gasateria attendants are employed in the nation.
If you liked to play in the dirt as a kid, a job as a Worm Sorter could come naturally. The worm sorter is expected to pack earthworms into containers; he or she may also be given the unenviable task of drying worms under heat lamps then grinding them for sale as fish food. If you're more interested in having a fish as a pet than grinding up its food, search for pet store jobs.
Is it what you think? Not in this case. This type of Hooker supervises and coordinates the activities of workers who load and haul logs in cable yarding systems. This is a rough and dirty job, but not the world's "oldest profession."
If you've ever worked in a restaurant or hotel, you might have been a Coffee-Urn Attendant and not even realized it. This person brews the dark stuff and brings it to customers in carafes. He or she may also make tea or hot chocolate as assigned and may have to pour the hot liquid into cups. Maybe you like coffee, but you don't want to be so specific in your hospitality. There are plenty of other restaurant and hotel jobs to consider.
Have you been to the Tonsorial Artist lately? If your hair isn't long and shaggy, you probably have. This person is an old-fashioned barber or haircutter who styles, cuts, and blow dries that frizzy stuff on the top of your head. There are over 338,910 in the U.S.; make sure you tip yours the next time you visit. Or perhaps you want to work in a hair salon yourself.
You'll be serving persons in dry-heat cabinets or steamrooms in bathing or athletic establishments. You may even have to dry patrons if you work in a very posh "sweatshop." Not into sweat? There is plenty to do at the spa, if you want to work hard to make others relax.