The Best Career Advice Ever.


A Guy Asked Mike Rowe For Career Advice. The Response He Got Is Something Everyone can learn from.

Mike Rowe is best known as host of The Discovery Channel’s ‘Dirty Jobs’. The TV personality is hugely popular and gets a ton of fan mail, but one particular letter really caught his attention: a young fan had written to him in search of career advice. Rowe’s response was brilliant – when you read it, you’ll see why.

Hey Mike!

I’ve spent this last year trying to figure out the right career for myself and I still can’t figure out what to do. I have always been a hands on kind of guy and a go-getter. I could never be an office worker. I need change, excitement, and adventure in my life, but where the pay is
steady. I grew up in construction and my first job was a restoration project. I love everything outdoors. I play music for extra money. I like trying pretty much everything, but get bored very easily. I want a career that will always keep me happy, but can allow me to have a family and get some time to travel. I figure if anyone knows jobs its you so I was
wondering your thoughts on this if you ever get the time!

Thank you!– Parker Hall.

Here’s Rowe’s brilliant reply:

Hi Parker,

My first thought is that you should learn to weld and move to North Dakota. The opportunities are enormous, and as a “hands-on go-getter,” you’re qualified for the work. But after reading your post a second time, it occurs to me that your qualifications are not the reason you can’t find the career you want.

I had drinks last night with a woman I know. Let’s call her Claire. Claire just turned 42. She’s cute, smart, and successful. She’s frustrated though, because she can’t find a man. I listened all evening about how difficult her search has been. About how all the “good ones”
were taken. About how her other friends had found their soul-mates, and how it wasn’t fair that she had not.

“Look at me,” she said. “I take care of myself. I’ve put myself out there. Why is this so hard?” “How about that guy at the end of the bar,” I said. “He keeps looking at you.” “Not my type.”“Really? How do you know?”“I just know.”“Have you tried a dating site?” I asked. “Are you kidding? I would never date someone I met online!”  “Alright. How about a change of scene? Your company has offices all over – maybe try living in another city?” “What? Leave San Francisco? Never!” “How about the other side of town? You know, mix it up a little. Visit different places. New museums, new bars, new theaters…? ”She looked
at me like I had two heads. “Why the hell would I do that?”

Here’s the thing, Parker. Claire doesn’t really want a man. She wants the “right” man. She wants a soul-mate. Specifically, a soul-mate from her zip code. She assembled this guy in her mind years ago, and now, dammit, she’s tired of waiting!!

I didn’t tell her this, because Claire has the capacity for sudden violence. But it’s true. She complains about being alone, even though her rules have more or less guaranteed she’ll stay that way. She has built a wall between herself and her goal. A wall made of conditions and expectations. Is it possible that you’ve built a similar wall?

Consider your own words. You don’t want a career – you want the “right” career. You need
“excitement” and “adventure,” but not at the expense of stability. You want lots of “change” and the “freedom to travel,” but you need the certainty of “steady pay.” You talk about being “easily bored” as though boredom is out of your control. It isn’t. Boredom is a choice. Like tardiness. Or interrupting. It’s one thing to “love the outdoors,” but you take it a step further. You vow to “never” take an office job. You talk about the needs of your family, even though that family doesn’t exist. And finally, you say the career you describe must “always” make you “happy.”

These are my thoughts. You may choose to ignore them and I wouldn’t blame you
– especially after being compared to a 42 year old woman who can’t find love. But since you asked…

Stop looking for the “right” career, and start looking for a job. Any job. Forget about what
you like. Focus on what’s available. Get yourself hired. Show up early. Stay late. Volunteer for the scut work. Become indispensable. You can always quit later, and be no worse off than you are today. But don’t waste another year looking for a career that doesn’t exist. And most of all, stop worrying about your happiness. Happiness does not come from a
job. It comes from knowing what you truly value, and behaving in a way that’s consistent with those beliefs.

Many people today resent the suggestion that they’re in charge of the way the feel. But trust me, Parker. Those people are mistaken. That was a big lesson from Dirty Jobs, and I learned it several hundred times before it stuck. What you do, who you’re with, and how you feel about the world around you, is completely up to you.Good luck –


Posted in People, Philosophy, Self Improvement, Values, Writing | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

A spark of inspiration!

An exchange on Facbook.

CJS:  Well, it’s OK but what happened to that Hercules body you added to your Profile Picture?

CJS was referring to this avatar:


Me:  CJS, that was like the Michelin Man full of gas. It just deflated.  APR, are you listening?


Posted in Blogging, Facebook, Humor | Tagged | 8 Comments

All Is Well That Ends Well.

This topic has been suggested by gaelikaa for the weekly Friday Loose Bloggers Consortium where currently six of us write on the same topic every Friday.  I hope that you have enjoyed my contribution to that effort.  The five other bloggers who write regularly are, in alphabetical order,  AshokgaelikaaMaxi, and Shackman and The Old Fossil. Do drop in on their blogs and see what their take is on this week’s topic. Since some of them may post late, or not at all this week, do give some allowance for that too!

Posted in Blogging, Humor, Movies | Tagged , | 8 Comments

Phyllis Diller Quotes.

My friend Saraswathy surprised me with these Phyllis Diller quotes which I think will amuse all my readers.


Whatever  you may look like, marry  a man your own age.As your beauty fades, so  will his     eyesight.

Housework  can’t kill you, but why take a chance?

Cleaning your house  while your kids are still growing up is  like shoveling the sidewalk  before it stops snowing.

The  reason women don’t play football is because 11 of them would never wear the  same outfit in public.

Best  way to get rid of kitchen odours: Eat out.

A bachelor is a guy  who never made the same mistake once.

I want my children to have  all the things I couldn’t afford.Then I want to move in with them.

Most children threaten at times to run away from home. This is the only  thing that keeps some parents going.

Any  time three New Yorkers get into a cab without an argument, a bank has just  been robbed.

We spend the first twelve months of our children’s  lives  teaching them to walk and talk and the next twelve years telling  them to sit down and shut up.

Burt Reynolds once asked me out.I  was in his room.

What  I don’t like about office Christmas parties is looking for a job the next day.

The only time I ever enjoyed ironing was the day I accidentally  got gin in the steam iron.

His finest hour lasted a minute and a  half.

Old  age is when the liver spots show through your gloves.

My  photographs don’t do me justice -they just look like me.

I  admit, I have a tremendous sex drive. My boyfriend lives forty miles away.

Tranquillizers work only if you follow the advice on the bottle  –  keep away from children.

I asked the waiter, ‘Is this  milk fresh?’ He said, ‘Lady, three hours ago it was grass.’

The  reason the golf pro tells you to keep your head down is  so you can’t see  him laughing.

You know you’re old if they have discontinued your  blood type.



Posted in Humor | Tagged | 9 Comments

Men Are From Mars Women From Venus.

men and women graphic

My nephew in law Vivek has sent this to establish the veracity of the title of this blog post. Please click on the image to enlarge it to read it.  Thank you.


Posted in Humor, Relationships, Writing | Tagged | 4 Comments


My friend who is quite adept with Photoshop must have had some really free time from her usually busy schedule to have fantasised about me!  I am flattered and wish to share her fantasies so that you can understand the need for her to fantasise.

She must have been thoroughly bored with this avatar of mine.


So she decided that I should look like this.

She gave some more thought and was somehow not quite happy with what she got when she found this one.

Seeing such a holy and happy visage she decided that such a revered personality needs some Obeisance and produced something that she called Ob(ama)eisance.

I had no inkling about all the fantasising and was blissfully ignorant till she sent the images to me with much affection and hoped that I would not blow a gasket. I did not. How could I? Such amazing creativity and flattery! After the dust settled down, and I had posted these images on facebook to much comment and amusement, we spoke to each other and I promised to post an image that reflects the real me. No frills, no ego trips, nothing. Just plain old me.

Happy APR?

Posted in Facebook, Friendship, Humor | Tagged , | 12 Comments

Mind Mapping.

Mind Map

The Indian Institute Of Management, Ahmedabad, Alumni Association, Pune Chapter, held its Annual General Meeting yesterday.  Unlike the usual AGMs, this meeting also included a presentation by a fellow Alumnus Sirisha, a Leadership Coach, who introduced me and some other older alumni to the concept of Mind Mapping.

She informed us that the presentation would normally take three hours but considering the brain power in the room she reduced it to just over 45 minutes including brainstorming sessions to get a hands on feeling for the process which was very interesting.

We have submitted our work sheets to Sirisha and she has promised to get back to us with her feedback soon.

For me, it was a mindblowing learning experience and since this morning, I have used the technique to work my through a couple of problems.  It is very effective and I recommend it to my readers.

Posted in Self Improvement | Tagged , | 15 Comments

Review The Prince.


When I saw from the advertisements that there was a movie running with Bruce Willis and Jason Patrick, I called up my ever ready friend Ramesh to see if he would come with me for a morning show.  He was willing and we duly went to see The Prince this morning.  We were the only two serious film goers there among a total of eight persons in the audience.  The six others were actually three couples there for some other purposes.

Both Bruce Willis and Jason Patrick have more or less cameo roles and carry that out with some panache.  The lead played by John Cusack is a totally incredible performance consisting solely of his ability to kill people and keep going despite getting shot.  Other minor roles played by two young women and others add a bit of spice to the story line but were totally forgettable.  Two hotels or big office buildings totally occupied by gunmen only form the backdrop for the action and is testing one’s intelligence.

The sound effects as usual were too loud for me but I was prepared with industrial grade earplugs this time and so was not too disturbed.  The music score was totally incidental and nothing much to write home about.

But for a Sunday morning when I had nothing else to do, it was an outing worth spending some time on some action seeing, as incredible as it was.  So, while I do not regret the money and time spent, I cannot give more than  for the film.  If you are an action movie / Bruce Willis fan, you can see it without expecting much from your hero.

Posted in Movies | Tagged | 4 Comments

Silent Screams – A Book Review.

Silent Screams

This is the first time ever that I bought and read a book of poems. I have always been a prose person reading both fiction and non-fiction and since the last few years more of the latter. I need to thank a friend Malathi, for putting me in touch with this genre. Having exposed myself to it I hope to read more of poetry.

The writer of this clearly delineated, two part anthology of poems aptly named Silent Screams, is a University Professor of English literature and this collection of her poems have been written over many years. The poems are all women-centric.

The poet captures moments as experienced by others but, observed by her and coats them with a veil of fiction. The women break rules and are quite daring. I have serious doubts that the author in real life is like that and therefore conclude that it is not autobiographical.  The poet skillfully takes the reader under the skin of the protagonists.  I suppose that poetry is meant to do that!

The women are shown fighting back against injustice so often heaped upon them. They do not indulge in self-pity. The subject of marital sex is handled with extraordinary sensitivity showing that sex within a marriage with no love involved is not acceptable. There also lonely souls in search of love for love’s sake who feel exhilarated on finding a little love even from strangers.

A couple of eerie dreamlike poems complete the first part.

Part II is a story told in verse form of a personality going back to previous births. The poet informs us that she was inspired to write this while in a trance after she had attended a regression session.

All in all, a book worth buying and savouring over many readings.

Posted in Books / Reading, Relationships, Writing | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Are The Mystics Right, Is Time An Illusion?

illusionWhy only mystics? Even scientists now say that time is an illusion.

Every “thing” ie what can be called Reality, including time can exist only if there is a perceiver. No two perceivers see the same “thing”. The smallest matter that physicists have been able to perceive is ephemeral. If I sit with my girl friend, 30 minutes seem to fly away. If I sit with my mother in law, thirty minutes seems to be for ever!

Coming back to the perceiver, if there is no perceiver, there is no perceived and no perception. What is is just consciousness. When consciousness decides to use a tool like you and me, it lights that up and we perceive and there is experience.

But let us not get involved in that debate. Let us take a simple example.

It takes eight minutes for sunlight to reach the earth. The light of the nearest star to earth reaches us after 8 million years. In other words, we can not even know if that star exists ‘now’ or not.

If that does not prove that time is an illusion, I do not know what will.

This topic has been suggested by The Old Fossil for the weekly Friday Loose Bloggers Consortium where currently six of us write on the same topic every Friday.  I hope that you have enjoyed my contribution to that effort.  The five other bloggers who write regularly are, in alphabetical order,  AshokgaelikaaMaxi, and Shackman and The Old Fossil. Do drop in on their blogs and see what their take is on this week’s topic. Since some of them may post late, or not at all this week, do give some allowance for that too!

Posted in Uncategorized | 18 Comments