Thursday, May 03, 2007

Dirty Jobs Blog from the New York Subway » Blog Archive » Would you work on the tracks?

Over at they were discussing the dirtiest job in New York City Transit, that of the track worker:


Think about what a typical shift must be like. First of, it’s gross. Then factor in that you’re surrounded by rats. Hell, the rats are probably hiding in the shadows planning a revolt.
Think about how hot
it must be to work down there in the summer! Even at night, it must be 100+ degrees, and you’re expected to haul concrete? Fugetabowdit.
Think of all the crap you must be breathing in, too. All that soot and brake dust. Lord knows what other carcinogens are loose down there. I’d think lead and asbestos are probably the least of your worries.
As if all that weren’t enough, you’ve got to keep your ass from being run over by trains


This got me thinking, what is the dirtiest job in the entire world?

Here is what I've come up with so far (ranked in order from worst and downwards):

1. New York City Transit Track Worker (see above) with living next to the electrified third rail adding to the threat of death along with the small dog size of rats and the vast amounts of rat poison used.

2. New York City Sewer worker. The vast amounts of raw sewage, rumours of alligators living down below ground, the large rats (did I mention they might be the size of small dogs?) and the weird steam that seems to emanate from most sewer grates cannot be healthy.

3. By-Law Enforcement Officer (Meter Maid). Death defying handing out parking tickets throughout the town. Take your own life into your own hands as you run up and down city streets fining people for parking more than a minute over the time limit. Hazards include being spat on, punched, kicked or even worse beaten half to death over a fifty dollar parking ticket!

4. Rent-a-Cop (aka security guard). Ok....not really but you are made fun of pretty much all the time for failing law school. Other hazards, besides being heckled, is to be hit by little old lady's kanes after offering the same little old lady assistance in crossing the street, teased by youths about your job and/or uniform, etc.

Got any more dirty jobs that are not listed here?


  1. Sorry Mike the alligator thing is a myth. alligators can't live long in salmonella or shigella or E. coli, organisms that one usually finds in sewage. Also, alligators live at temperatures between 78 and 90 degrees and the NYC sewar is just a bit cooler than that, most of the time.

  2. Sewers in New York cooler than 78-90 degrees? Perhaps...but explain the mysterious steam coming from the sewers then if they are so cold?

    The gator thing may be false but it is fun to think gators might be running around underground in New York City.

  3. But then they would have to compete with the CHUD, or didn't you see the movie?

    CHUD = Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dweller or

    a 1984 B horror movie produced by Andrew Bonime, and directed by Douglas Cheek


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