What I Do (Did) For A Living

I hope that you enjoy reading this post on the weekly Friday Loose Bloggers Consortium where eleven of us write on the same topic. Today’s topic has been chosen by Conrad The Old Fossil. The ten other bloggers who write regularly are, in alphabetical order, Delirious, gaelikaa, Grannymar, Maxi, Maria SF, Padmum, Paul, Rohit,Shackman, The Old Fossil and Will. Do drop in on their blogs and see what their take is on this week’s topic. Since some of them may post late, do give some allowance for that too!


When strangers meet me for the first time, as I am sure that all my readers experience, I am inevitably asked “What do you do?” Depending on the mood I am in and the importance/receptivity of the enquirer, I answer with one of the following;

A bugger all.

I am a retired hippie.

I sponge off on my son.

I am squandering my inherited fortune.

I vegetate.

Another question that was never asked when I was younger but which now seems to be quite common, is “How are you doing?” I inevitably answer that I stopped doing a long time ago.

You can therefore understand how difficult I find it to write on this very intriguing topic chosen uncharacteristically by our venerable Old Fossil.

Without sounding facetious, I do not believe that I ever did anything for a living. I have blogged about how events kept overtaking me and I just flowed along. I suspect that I just lived a life and the making a living happened as a by product.

Just to give you an idea about the veracity of that paragraph, I take you to my earlier posts:



Skepticism Vs Disbelief.

The post on Ambition unfortunately does not show the image which I had put in which was this Michael Speller’s sculpture.

Having said all that, I continue to live my life.  Taking everything as it comes and by and large enjoy myself doing exactly that.  The making a living still happens but that is incidental to my just being alive.

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22 Responses to What I Do (Did) For A Living

  1. Nick says:

    What do I do for a living? Anything I’m qualified for that’s enjoyable, not too difficult, fairly well paid and not too far from home. Like you, I found opportunities just came up and I took advantage of them. I never had any grand plan for my working life. But it’s all come together remarkably well despite all the ad-hoccery.
    Nick recently posted..Sharp as knives

  2. Grannymar says:

    Only once in my ‘working life’ did I go searching for a job. The one I secured was permanent and pensionable… does that happen anymore? It was the only job I ever disliked, but stuck with it for three years, back in those far off days of the last century changing jobs after a short stay was considered flighty!
    Grannymar recently posted..What I did for a living

  3. Ursula says:

    It’s ok, Ramana, sleep in peace:I will Not ask you what you are doing. Or did.

    As to “How are you doing?”. Well, yes, it’s one of those annoying Americanisms. But only if you don’t understand it’s meant friendly, a sort of ice breaker in the choppy seas of social intercourse. For reasons I now can’t remember, some years ago I found it hugely irritating when my son, on answering the phone, would automatically ask “You’re alright?” I had it out with him as to trying to be a little more sincere. Fact is: He is my better and told me to stop being so narrow and just accept it as when someone says: Hello. Or Hi.

    OK. Fine. Whatever.

    Most vexing to me, and to this day, an Englishman/woman’s question: “How are you”. There is only one answer (“Fine”) even if it’s a total lie. No one in the UK (apart from me) is interested in your whole life’s medical history.

    The one I still haven’t got my brain round is when, on first being introduced to someone:: “How do you do?” What sort of question is that? HOW DO I DO? Do what? No idea. You tell me.


    PS Other than the above, Ramana, t’s fun revisiting old posts and comments. So glad I did follow your links before penning my reply. Otherwise I’d repeated myself. Particularly on the question what constitutes success. All I know (now) that success means very different things over a life time.
    Ursula recently posted..Open or shut

    • I am asked those very English questions too Ursula, I respond to “How are you?” with “How much time do you have to listen to my woes?” To “How do you do?”, “I do it the missionary way, why? do you do it differently? How?”

      And, once again to annoy you let me quote someone.
      “I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody.”
      ~ Bill Cosby

  4. Love the Maya Angelou quote. And I think you’re doing just fine!
    Maria from ‘gaelikaa’s diary’ recently posted..What I Did For A Living

  5. tammyj says:

    well bamba!
    I thoroughly enjoyed today’s post.
    I went back and listened to the speaker on ted. his name escapes me at the moment but I thought he was inspired! and inspiring! wonderful.
    I have long thought that the idea of ‘success’ had its roots in envy and snobbery. and especially here in the western meccas of New York and LA. shallow. materialistic. generally tragic.
    and I absolutely loved Ashok’s comment to you in the post on ambition!
    thank you for a lovely time here.
    happy weekend to all of us ‘successful in the happiest sense’ people!
    and oh yes… after I was a homemaker (I didn’t work when Bob was alive) I spent the last 20 years of my life managing a call center for the state dept of tourism. consequently… I hate talking on the phone today!
    too many years of a phone in my ear I guess.
    I ‘came up through the ranks’ and yet made a comfortable living.
    not luxurious. but my needs have always been simple. so happy was and am I in my livelihood and retirement.
    tammyj recently posted..heartache

    • You are blessed.
      ““Do not seek for anything; do not perform anything; do not intend anything. Simply accept the fact that you are accepted.”
      ~ Paul Tillich.

  6. Excuse me! What ‘inherited’ fortune? How much was it that you could ‘squander’ it? Maybe you are talking about your arthritic bones and wheezing. That I can understand. 🙂
    Padmini Natarajan recently posted..What I did and do for a living

  7. Maxi says:

    Once again, you inspire me Rummy. I love the “strike oil” best.
    Guess I’m a millionaire many times over, since I have struck oil many a time.

    My latest fortune is called Brittany. She is eight.
    blessings ~ maxi
    Maxi recently posted..Ain’t Never Doing That Again

    • And I would give an arm and a leg to have a similar fortune Maxi. She is completely adorable.

      “Do not seek for anything; do not perform anything; do not intend anything. Simply accept the fact that you are accepted.”
      ~ Paul Tillich.

  8. Keith says:

    I have always disliked this question,”what do you do?” Obviously it implies what do you do to make money, & this has never really been an important part of my life. I have had many jobs at both ends of the ladder, but to me this is not my life. What I do outside of work is my life & to me it is much more important.
    Now if someone said “do you have any hobbies?” I would be more inclined to give them a straight answer.
    Regards, Keith.

    • That is an aspect of success that I did not get around to mention. Most of us do make a living out of some thing that we do not like to fund something else that we are passionate about. You are an important example of what that passion can do to one’s life. Thank you Keith for reminding me of that aspect of success too.

  9. Cathy in NZ says:

    I’ve done a lot of different kinds of jobs…but none of them completely were the answer other than having enough to live and pay my dues. I’m currently semi-retired with a small voluntary job that I have held for more 14 years; time to study; time to make art; time to be me!
    Cathy in NZ recently posted..Paper, Paint and “What-if?”

  10. If only you could have gotten paid for flying out that second story window!
    The Old Fossil recently posted..What I Do (Did) For a Living

    • Ah, there is a story there to be told TOF. I think that it is time that you caught up with my posts after this LBC post. But to answer this particular comment, I was and continue to be the Indian clone of Albert O Hirschman. I hope that you will find out more about that illustrious fellow American.

  11. Well, that all makes sense. Except perhaps the “Bugger All”:) That sounds a bit out of character.
    One should prioritize and what good is making a living if we are alive, after all. P. S. Love Maya Angelou.
    Talk to Me…I’m Your Mother recently posted..Birthdays and Memorials

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