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Enough with the pencil pushing.

Do you have a passion for water parks, exotic baby birds or pretending to be dead? There might be a job out there with your name on it. 

Ahead, 10 strange and interesting careers that actually exist--from professor of Lego to professional snuggler. Makes opening a gluten-free bakery in Maine seem so banal, right?


Professor of Lego

You read that right: England’s University of Cambridge is on the hunt for someone to head a “Research Centre on Play in Education, Development and Learning.” In case you had any doubts, this professor of everyone’s new favorite class will enjoy a program backed by over $6 million in funding.

Waterslide Tester

Yes, there is a person--employed by a vacation booking company called First Choice--whose job it is to travel the world and test waterslides. What you’d be looking for: Is the splash big enough? How thrilling is the ride? Is it safe? For your trouble, you’d be paid about $31K a year.

Professional TV Corpse

Lights, camera, no action. Movement-averse actors can thank the continuing popularity of crime dramas for a high demand for corpse actors, who make around $140 for a hard day’s work (a little more if gross fake wounds are part of the gig). An ideal career change for any working stiff who hates moving and making small talk.

Pot Critic

What’s the difference between the mellow notes of Lemon Kush versus Red Headed Stranger No. 14? Care to find out? In states where marijuana has been legalized, newspapers are hiring critics to sample the goods and write reviews. God bless service journalism.

Ostrich Babysitter

Sounds like this might be the most adorable job on the planet: People are employed by ostrich farms in places like South Africa and Australia to keep baby birds out of trouble. And by “trouble” we mean kicking and pecking each other to death. (Less cute.)


Professional Snuggler

If you enjoy spooning strangers, head to Japan and work in a cuddle café, where random people pay you for human contact. Snuggle buddies earn about $40 per session, plus tips.

Coconut Safety Engineer

No degree required, just a big stick. CSEs are hired to walk around tropical hotel and resort properties and whack trees, dislodging any potentially dangerous coconuts that might otherwise fall onto guests. Just one question: Who gets the coconuts?

Official Elephant Stylist

Garment makers in places like India and Sri Lanka outfit elephants in elaborate embroidered costumes for religious festivals. A step up from forcing your mortified Chihuahua into a sweater vest.

Video-Game Tester

Video-game developers and publishers hire testers to try new games before they're released to the masses. A seemingly great gig if you don’t mind earning a mere $10 an hour while being chained to a PlayStation all day. (In other words, it's perfect for your teenage nephew.)



Official Pusher-Onto-Train Person

Another goody from Japan: Professional pushers (oshiya) guarantee everyone’s on time by cramming commuters into rush-hour trains. A great line of work if you have upper-body strength and no problem violently pushing strangers.

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