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In Praise of Dirty Jobs

Mike Rowe, the host of the TV show "Dirty Jobs" is a surprisingly eloquent guy. In this TED talk in December 2008, he talked about people with dirty jobs, questioning one's assumptions, the nature of hard work, and the "war on work."

I learned a lot of new things by watching this video clip, including how to properly castrate lambs (hint: yanking 'em out with one's teeth is one of the steps)

Hit play or go to Link [TED video clip]


WOW. I have always thought that Mike Rowe seemed like a very intelligent man. I now know for a FACT that he is.
That is one of the most uplifting speeches I have seen in a very long time.
I am a blue collar guy. I also went to college on a full ride scholarship. Do I use my degree? The simple answer. No.
I have a degree in music education. I found that it wasn't for me, and now I'm a helicopter mechanic. It's great to see someone stepping up for the average joe that "swings a hammer" all day. Especially from someone, who apparently isn't necessarily "pro" union. Not that anything IS wrong with unions. But he is a real advocate for the real ppl in Americas work force.
GREAT VIDEO. Thank you for posting this. I will be forwarding this to as many ppl as I can.
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Not sure why he's described as "surprisingly eloquent" but he's certainly one of the most interesting people around. I'd love to hear him talk in person, or get a beer. Can you imagine the stories he has to tell??
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TED has some of the most amazing speakers in the world. It's a practical clinic on how to be an effective public speaker.

I actually had a presentation skills class a while ago, and the instructor showed us this video clip which he absolutely loves:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYyN_6GmzWI
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lol. hey christophe, I guess it's a good thing he's in AMERICA.
I'm assuming you're french? if so, feel lucky you're not speaking GERMAN.
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Mike Rowe has always been on my top five list of people that I would want to sit down and have a conversation with. His life story would be amazing to hear. His father was a pig farmer, which is why he does dirty jobs, but he is a trained opera singer. For some reason, I find that fact surprising.. from son of a pig farmer to opera sinder seems like such a leap in my mind.
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"Surprisingly eloquent"? He was an opera singer at one point! I love Mike, he has been through a lot. He's been a high-rise window washer, sewer explorer and insemination expert for many an animal.

Great show. Great speech.
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With being a computer programmer for quite awhile I must admit that it doesn't compare to the satisfaction that I get whenever I get to work with my hands building something out of wood or digging a hole. After watching this, it's embarrassing how we have ridiculed the manual laborer here in America but yet Mike is right when he says that most manual laborers he has met are the happiest and I cannot disagree.
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I like the conclusion about the War on Work and the negative outcomes of engaging in it. But I don't take as 'made', his arguement attempting to debunk the wisdom of "follow your passion". I posit that these people who work dirty jobs (for small money or big) do so only because passion is in there somewhere. They buck the trend (i.e., seeking easy jobs with good money) because something in the dirty job "does it" for them. Anyways, great talk by Mike.
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Wow! Thanks for sharing. I think I knew this intuitively and by being raised my parents and grandparents, but its good to be reminded.
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The Dirty Jobs episode with the Cedar Shakes, I could not watch. I shiver each time I think about being near those saws without any safety's in place.

Love Dirty Jobs
Love Mike Rowe
Loce TED Talks.
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This was a real treat. I've always been a fan of Mike Rowe and Dirty Jobs. He's always seemed so well-rounded and humble with such a diverse life., I'm with Laurel, it'd be great to have a beer with the guy and talk. What he said about debunking the 'follow your dream' ethos really strikes a chord with me. While higher learning is something we all should strive for, there is nothing wrong with choosing a career that involves picking up a shovel and coming home covered with dirt. :)
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