No matter how insufferable your job may be, at least you aren't a whale feces researcher or an elephant vasectomist.
Every year, Popular Science assesses the world of scientific employment and dredges up a list of the strangest jobs on the face of the Earth.
No matter how bad or boring your job might be, it's better than this! Here are the 10 worst jobs in science:
1. Hazmat diver
"They swim in sewage. Enough said," quips Popular Science of hazmat divers. And we mean sewage. One diver really had it bad. When a truck driver crashed, his truck tumbled into a lagoon at a factory pig farm. He drowned. So a hazmat diver had to go in and pull the body out of a waste lagoon filled with urine, liquid pig feces and needles.
With overfishing threatening to end wild seafood harvests by 2049 and Earth's coral reefs forecasted to be nothing but rubble within decades, this is one gloomy job.
3. Elephant vasectomist
The elephant is the largest animal on land, so sterilizing this giant creature is a giant job. An elephant's testicle is one foot across and sits behind two inches of skin, four inches of fat and 10 inches of muscle.
This is an archaeologist who picks through ancient garbage. As Popular Science quips, "Think 'Indiana Jones'--in a Dumpster."
5. Coursework carcass preparer
They kill, pickle and bottle the critters that school kids dissect in science class. That means they get to smell formaldehyde all day long. Mmmm.
6. Microsoft security grunt
Popular Science says this job is just like wearing a big sign that reads "Hack Me." The people manning firstname.lastname@example.org receive approximately 100,000 e-mails annually, and each one could be a message that something at Microsoft has gone horribly wrong.
7. Gravity research subject
It may look like fun to do somersaults in zero gravity, but astronauts also must endure a puffy face, atrophied muscles and bone degeneration. Gravity research volunteers approximate the effects of weightlessness by lying still for weeks on end.
8. Olympic drug tester
This job kicks into high gear every two years in an attempt to combat the inevitable doping among Olympic athletes trying to cheat their way to a medal. Testers get to watch the athletes pee in a cup, and if they catch a doper, an entire country is mad at them.
9. Forensic entomologist
The job title may sound glamorous, but it's not. They solve murders by studying maggots in corpses. They estimate the time between death and the body's discovery by charting the life stages of the blowfly.
10. Whale-feces researcher
They scoop up whale dung, then dig through it for clues about the whale. They use it to test for pregnancy, measure hormones and biotoxins and even examine genetics.
--From the Editors at Netscape