Tuesday, 12 April 2016

J is for Job Titles

A to Z Challenge


The good old "lollipop lady" at work.


Once upon a time you knew near enough what someone did for a living by their job title. You knew what a dustman, a dinner lady, a lollipop lady and a restaurant dish-washer were up to all day (I'm sure there are some non-British readers who are scratching their heads over some these titles, but bear with me). I can see the need to change some of the titles so they are not gender specific but just look at what some of them have been changed to.

These days you're hard-pushed to figure out a person's job because all these people have been given such grandiose titles. Here are a few: a school advertised for a dinner lady/man - you know, that lovely person who dollops fishfingers and mashed potato onto kids' plates. The job title? An education centre nourishment consultant.

Swimming pools and beaches no longer employ lifeguards. If you get into trouble no hunky lifeguard or Bay Watch-style babe is going to come to your aid - but you might get a "wet leisure attendant". Doesn't have the same ring to it, does it?

If you are a student washing up in a restaurant to make some cash to help pay off your loan, you can use the title "hygiene engineer".

I don't think any other country has lollipop ladies - but neither does Britain any more. They are now school crossing patrol people or crossing guards. The people who collect my rubbish every week are no longer binmen or dustmen but waste management and disposal technicians.

I have a friend who has a job organising activities for the elderly. She is the "director of life enrichment". Even she laughs at this title. I have another who is a university librarian - or should I say "information advisor".

Then there is the "coordinator of interpretive teaching" or museum tour guide to you and me. The next time you're in a big department store, spare a thought for the vertical transport engineer, the lift (elevator) engineer.

What's wrong with the title "receptionist"? Everyone knows what a receptionist is but I'm not so sure they know what a "director of first impressions" does. If you are feeling a little peckish you can avail yourself of a sandwich technician - that's how Subway advertised for someone to make their sandwiches.

Must go. I have a busy day ahead of me, working as a "domestic services operative, first class". In other words, I'm off to do the housework.


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8 comments:

Gorilla Bananas said...

Everyone deserves a title, Mrs Table. I award you with the title of 'Her Royal Pillow Fluffer'.

Vanilla Bean said...

Oh, is that what I get to be today? A domestic services operative, first class? I am moving up in the world!
~VanillaBean at Travelling Spoons

Kathleen Valentine said...

I have had some pretty extravagant titles in the corporate world. It's what they give you instead of money.

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Darla M Sands said...

Brilliant post! You have a fabulous sense of humor. I have recently noticed that the term townhouse has become town home. I guess it's supposed to sell or rent more units. As for me, I prefer the more musical sound of townhouse. ~sigh~ It's a crazy world.
Awakening Dreams and Conquering Nightmares with a Pen
I hope you are having a lovely day!

Jeffrey Scott said...

In America, they call dustmen or garbage-men, Custodial Engineers. I can't figure out why job title have to change either. Seems silly to me.

Liz said...

I wonder if it does make anyone feel any better about their job? We need everyone, every job is important, pity we can't celebrate the importance of every job instead of changing the name as if it is something to be ashamed of... great post! ~Liz http://www.lizbrownleepoet.com

John Holton said...

We always called lollipop ladies "crossing guards."

Patricia said...

Where I work everyone has a job title except me. Wonder what that says about me and what I do?