Maybe my title is misleading; these are professions for people that have very little value for their own life. A healthy disregard for personal safety is definitely a job requirement for this list of professions. So, put on your body armor; we’re off to a warzone. Oh, you’re just wearing that ‘ride or die’ tank-top, jeans and chucks?
So what kind of job drops you in the middle of a warzone with no weapon, not even a knife, hangs a camera off your neck and pats you on the shoulder and says: “Off you go.” Warzone Photojournalism does. Why do I mentioned photojournalism specifically, and not journalism specifically? Well, a journalist can hunker down avoiding all deadly projectiles moving at sound barrier-breaking speeds straight at your vital organs, and still get their story. A photojournalist needs to get right in the thick of things and if they manage to snap a photo of said sound barrier-breaking projectile, they’ll probably even get a Pulitzer Prize for it. Added bonus for harrowing life-threatening experience seekers is that you have to be on both sides of the conflict (that means being shot at by everyone involved, not just the bad guys) and that you are constantly in danger of being kidnapped and held for ransom. Sounds like summer camp, doesn’t it? If you want to hear a bit more about the topic, read the battle-ready Robert Young Pelton’s article here.
Venerated as the fix-gear-godfathers by beard-wearing hipsters around the world, bicycle couriers are used in large urban hubs to deliver packages to avoid automotive congestion. The job doesn’t include medical insurance or benefits, but hey, you get to barrel down between two semi-trucks going 30 mph on a little less than a couple of welded metal pipes and two wheels for just a touch more than minimum wage (if you’re lucky). The rate of injury for messengers is three times higher than the profession with the most reported injuries, meat packers, which have an injury rate three times higher than the national average themselves. In the saddle you will be exposed to veritable Death’s playground with car doors, distracted pedestrians, intoxicated drivers, and even cavernous potholes out to help you fall into the Reaper’s clammy embrace.
As I mentioned above, meat packers have an injury rate that is three times the national average. If you have ever dreamt of being covered in filet mignon, it was because it wasn’t frozen. This group of workers is often exploited, underpaid and pressured to keep the pace high. In an environment that is specifically designed to portion meat and cut through bone. You do the gruesome, dismembering math.
Land Mine Remover
Land mines are despicable devices specifically made to inflict maximum damage on ‘soft targets’. If you need clarification, ‘soft targets’ are shmucks like you and me, humans. If you want to be exposed to these maximum damage-inflicting devices, you can either go to war or go after war and start digging them up. Exposing all your soft target-iness to its exploding goodness. Although compared to most of the other jobs on this list, this involves a lot less on-the-job training (training that could mangle you); even with all that training, it can still be a solid exit strategy from your mortal coil.
Huge chainsaws, huge trees, and flannel are the basic requirements. If you have any doubt as to how dangerous a chainsaw is, watch the unedited version of Scarface. For those with a weak stomach, here’s a (censored for dry-heaving’s sake) synopsis: chainsaw vs. flesh and bone, chainsaw always wins. Add to that trees that are heavy enough to make you a bright red human marmalade on the forest floor and a hive of heavy machinery whizzing around, and you have a combination that could smash you in a myriad of creatively gruesome scenarios. But you get to wear flannel, which is nice.
Do you have another death-inducing profession that I overlooked? Then let me know in the comment section below. Not that I’m interested in pursuing life-threatening career paths, but it’s always nice to have options.
See also: The Killing Machine That Became a Hippie