Sunday, September 12, 2010

My top 5 list of possible career options

** "BIAS" is a special feature in my blog where I get to say whatever I want with scant regards for your feelings. I'm not politically correct in this feature, so go ahead, judge me."

I was thinking what I would do as a career if I were to just follow my passions blindly, with no regards to the monetary rewards and social repercussions. Yes, social repercussions - there are some jobs that you can't bring yourself to tell others because people would look at you as if you're an alien who just landed on Earth. My job is almost like that actually, but I guess I've grown accustomed to it.

"So what do you do for a living?", he asks.

"I'm a private tutor"

"Oh...good hor, no need to pay tax"

"..... But I do."

"Oh okay...the weather very hot today hor?"

And the conversation shifts to something else. I guess without your social ranking (aka manager, executive etc.), people do not know where you stand in society, hence explaining the awkwardness in social occasions. Quite interesting to take note of people's reaction, actually.

Anyway, here's my list for career that I would do. They are not in any order of importance, just which one came to my mind the first:

1. Artist

Not the sing song type but the one who draws and paints. I'm also interested in such things but thought better of it to pursue as a career. Singapore? Arts? Somehow the two words do not equate together. I'm a practical soul, most unfortunately. Hence, I do not think I'm the arty farty people who can really do this kind of thing for a living.

2. Novelist

I always think that my penchant for words is better than my English grades show in my report books. There must be a conspiracy between all the English teachers because I always seem to get a low B or usually a C for my English results. I say they don't appreciate my kind of style. The next best thing to being a novelist is to be a blogger. I publish whatever crap and there are still people who reads them. Financially rewarding as a blogger? Okay lah, earn some kopi money. Satisfying? Definitely.

3. High flying executive

My job does not have a corporate ladder for me to climb, so I always wonder how it feels like to climb one. Will I be a dagger and cloak kind of people or will I be the underlings who gets tramped under? I think wearing a power suit with neck ties to work seems sexy to me when I don't have to actually do it, hahaha. Perhaps the perks and the social pecking rules are the incentives? I wonder what it'll be like to have subordinates report to me, or to have reports to deliver to customers and you know, the likes of rats doing the rat race.

4. Pianist

My utmost regret is not to be able to learn piano when I'm young. I always feel that I can do a good job (in fact, a very good job at it) but am not given a chance to do so. It frustrates me when I tried laying my hands on the keys of the piano but what I produced is just noise, but under a skilled hands, beautiful music emanates out from it. I play the guitar (suckily though, been self-taught) but piano is still....well, classier. All is not lost though, because if I have a kid, I would really want to learn the piano together. It'll be interesting to be the oldest student there amongst the tiny tots, haha

5. Educator

To encompass the whole spectrum of people who teach others to learn a skill and do coaching, I would loosely use the word 'educator'. I think my character is very suited for this type of work and I enjoy the interaction very much. Probably would do what I'm doing till I can't do anymore, but of course, without the intensity that I'm doing at now, which hardly leaves me with room to recuperate.

So there, presenting to you my top 5 career options. Interesting list to write down actually, and see what you could be doing in an alternate universe where everything is different and you're not restricted by monetary concerns and the generally uncomfortable and harsh realities of life. Would you share with me your top 5 list? haha :D


As I was finishing this post, I've a sudden urge to add in my 6th on the list. I feel that I'm not doing myself justice if I didn't add in. It's THAT important.

6. Computer programmer

I think I would have liked being a computer programmer. I've done a few modules on software programming (no biggies like C++ or java, mine is the engineering's very own ancient FORTRAN) and they interest me to no end. I like how I can construct algorithms and figure out different but progressively more efficient way to get to the end point. It's like solving a mathematical problem and you can get to do it creatively and still reach the same goals. Yes, I think maths is a very creative subject.


Createwealth8888 said...

When you completed your in-camp training, will you still pay tax?

AK71 said...

Hey LP,

You have a great job! I would be glad to exchange places with you and I am saying this sincerely.

As you know, I do a bit of tuition and I was teaching. I really enjoy teaching but we might not always be able to do the things we enjoy. Such is life. :(

I don't know if I still care about what people think of me these days but I think I am less affected than before.

Some people look at me and say "Wah, you have a good life hor?" and if these are people who matter to me, I might explain to them why my life is not all that good. Most, of the time, I just smile and say something desultory.

When I first got into NUS, a neighbour asked me which faculty I got into. When I told him "Arts and Social Sciences", he paused for a while as if trying to find the right words before consoling me, "Never mind lah, can get in is good enough."

I could have been in Law with my grades and I went to NUS on a PSC scholarship. Did I bother to tell him just to wipe that look of pity off his face? No. I didn't think he mattered in my life.

Life is short. Time is limited. Having a job we truly enjoy is a blessing and you are blessed. :)

la papillion said...

Hi bro8888,

Of course I would. It's mandatory under the law to pay tax as long as I'm earning above a certain amt.

la papillion said...

Hi AK,

Thanks for sharing with me your experience in life :) I guess when we get older, we really grew more mature and heck-care about what other people say. Only a few significant others matter to me :)

JW said...

Hi AK,

your neighbour is really hor... doing a lot of generalisation leh...

To many, the dumping grounds in NUS are (ranked in order):
1) Arts and Social Science
2) Science
3) Engineering

That said, I still went into Engineering, my gf still went into science, and you still went into Arts as our passion :)

JW said...

Hi LP,

I guess I'm much luckier in the sense that I'm indeed doing what I liked to do, which is what you have already mentioned in part of your list of 6.

1) Novelist or rather, author. I'm trying to get my own guidebook out :)

2) Educator -- self explanatory

3) Computer Programmer. Hey, I'm a test engineer working on computer programmes that test devices!

Jobs retail said...

Seeing your career options I can tell that you are more of an artistic person.

Kyith said...

computer programming or it related is another dumping ground.

Createwealth8888 said...

anyone personally know any senior citizen grade programmers still working?

la papillion said...

Hi JW,

Haha, you have the same career choices as me? Cannot be lah right? :)

If it is, then you must be very very thankful!

la papillion said...

Hi Jobs retail,

I think I'm a bit of both :)

la papillion said...

Hi Drizzt,

Hmm, of the engineering, I think civil is the dumping ground of all dumping ground now...oh well...

la papillion said...

Hi bro8888,

Not that I know of. But can't ask me, I don't know anyone in that area at all.

Patrick T. said...

Me... I had many options but when I saw the Shrek suit at Universal Studios at RWS, I knew that was my calling.

You get to swear in a Scottish accent and fart at visitors without them every knowing who you are? Priceless.

la papillion said...

Hi Pat,

Hahaha :) But try not to do it in Singapore. Even wearing a batman suit in HOT, HUMID singapore is not COOL at all! I bet you'll be swimming in the shrek suit if you wore it in Singapore for 1 hr. Maybe that's how you can be in the 'foul mood' :)

PanzerGrenadier said...


I've learnt that one can incorporate fun elements into one's job especially when one reaches a certain seniority.

I count myself blessed in being able to structure my work and have autonomy as I manage my own little team.

I enjoy sharing and teaching too so while my job as an internal auditor is not a teaching job, I actually started an in-house training course related to fraud awareness for my colleagues to attend to learn more about it and now I also "teach" 2 sessions a year.

My new staff is coming in next month so the next few months will be a lot of on-the-job teaching as well which I found out to be most enjoyable!

Maybe teaching is in my blood as I have parents who are retired career teachers in mainstream education :-)