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What People Don't Get About My Job: From A(rmy Soldier) to Z(ookeeper)

I'm a librarian, and I can't tell you how many times I've heard people provide wildly inaccurate descriptions of what we do. This is a common experience in many professions, so Derek Thompson of The Atlantic asked people in twenty-six professions, one for each letter of the alphabet, what laypeople don't understand about their jobs. Thompson's interviews included opera singers, graphic designers, and quiz masters. Here's what a soldier in the US Army had to say:

The thing that surprises people is that some of the most free-thinking people in the United States are in the US Army. The problems that we have to contend with require innovative solutions and given the breadth of educational backgrounds of Army Officers, you find some incredibly adaptive people. Deployments and combat result in an environment where evolution is sped up by a million and those that cannot adapt fail. As long as basic forms are obeyed, you find that most leaders actively encourage free thinking within their ranks. To be sure, we have our share of intellectual dullards and buffoons but the reality is that the more time you spend with Soldiers, the more you begin to realize how vibrant, adaptive and broad they are in their thoughts.


Link -via First Things | Photo: US Army

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