A McSweeney’s Kickstarter Testimonial

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“It was May, 1999 or so, give or take a year, and I had hit the road, tired of working for the ‘man.’ I was thumbing rides, and hopping boxcars or ‘shuffling squaretops’ (hobo slang). I was a loner, didn’t want or need another’s company. I was tired, strung out. I’d been working 80-hour weeks writing copy for a hot new product called ‘the Internet.’ One night I was holed up in a tree outside of Phoenix and from my perch I could see a young punk fussing with a rusty bicycle outside of the public library. I yelled down, ‘Hey, man! Don’t ya got no sense?’ and he scattered like he’d heard a ghost. I got to thinking bout that library down there and fell asleep dreaming of the possibilities. In the morning I crawled over to the entrance like a baby on a trail of crumbs. A kind lady let me in early and I got the first seat in front of their brand new computer. I logged onto the devil himself, wondering if I’d regret it, but then to my surprise I found me a little site called ‘McSweeney’s.’ It was a gateway, man. Finally the devil had redeemed himself. It was as if Saint Peter had popped his head out and said, ‘Hey, ‘bo, life can be a breeze if you let it, ya know?’ I made an about face, and now I run a chain of carpet shops in the Midwest. All thanks to McSweeney’s. So please support their Kickstarter.”
— Ted Travelstead, actor, writer, longtime Tendency contributor, and 41st ranked carpet salesperson in the Midwest

Visit our Kickstarter page to pledge your support.

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Interviews With People Who Have Interesting or Unusual Jobs


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We’re always looking for people with interesting or unusual jobs. If you fall into one of these categories, or know someone who does, please e-mail us at unusualjobs@mcsweeneys.net.

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Justine Coldwater: No Keys in the IgnitionNew (5/19/2015)

Wendy Merron, Hypnotist (4/10/2015)

Michela Dai Zovi: Working With Schizophrenics (3/3/2015)

Rachel Wheels Them Out (2/2/2015)

Zhanna Slor: Dying Isn’t Cheap (9/30/2014)

Tim Kovar, Professional Tree Climber (8/8/2014)

Throwing Chicken (6/20/2014)

Zoe DeLeon and the Family Band (5/7/2014)

A Former Methadone Clinic Counselor (4/16/2014)

Sprinkles and Fear: An Interview with a Baker at a Haunted Donut Shop (2/28/2014)

Alayna Pretended She Was Sick (12/4/2013)

Kate Can’t Get Your Bonbons But She’ll Take a Message (10/22/2013)

Mega Church Rent-a-Cop (8/22/2013)

John Ertle Buries Dead People (6/14/2013)

Roy the Roller King (5/7/2013)

Levi Greenacres Has a Bright Aura (4/8/2013)

Michael Blake, Former Pheasant Beater (3/28/2013)

Holly Harper Sells Cow Waterbeds (2/26/2013)

Sarah Kaufmann, Cheese Sculptor (1/31/2013)

Dexter O’Connell, Referee (11/12/2012)

Gabriel Harley, Record Producer (9/26/2012)

Rachael Burke, Apprentice to the Lampshade Lady (8/29/2012)

I Lost My Faith in Humanity (8/8/2012)

Phil So Sold Ice Cream to Your Children (7/2/2012)

Laura Anderson, Making a Living from Bananas (6/6/2012)

Jessica Anderson, Former Obituary Clerk (5/7/2012)

Ken Doyle, Safecracker (3/20/2012)

Meron Langsner, Choreographing Fights (2/13/2012)

50 Cents Per Rat (1/4/2012)

Andrea’s Boyfriend Hated That She Worked at the DMV (8/26/2011)

Stacey McLachlan Must Be the Honey (3/24/2011)

Daryl Langford: Immune to the Crap (2/16/2011)

Shelby Frantz, Come Home with Me! I Drive a Chevy! (1/21/2011)

Christen Carter Sells Saucy Buttons (12/23/2010)

Nick Jurkowski Doesn’t Mind Eating Ostriches Because They’re Such Jerks (11/9/2010)

Sara Horvath Picks Out the Lice (9/7/2010)

Christopher Horan, Lifting Three Garbage Cans for Every One Of Yours (7/11/2010)

Barry Rodgers: If You Have Cockroaches, I’ve Already Made the Sale (6/2/2010)

Liam Daniel Pierce, Central Park Gondolier (4/20/2010)

Nico Alba, Carpet Salesgirl (3/10/2010)

Dave Norman and the Paintball Invasion of Normandy (2/8/2010)

Tom, Drunk On the Christmas Tree Lot (12/18/2009)

I Eat Camping Fuel: An Interview with Allison Williams (11/18/2009)

Justin Hager, Phone Psychic (10/16/2009)

Josh Sims, Friend of the Jaguar (6/17/2009)

Tracy Unick, 911 Dispatcher and Trainer (7/19/2008)

Jana Leigh McWhorter, Walking on Airplane Wings (3/7/2008)

Pete Harman, Making Snow (2/26/2008)

William Hamilton, Former Army Prison Medic (1/29/2008)

Trent Botkin: Relocating Prairie Dogs (11/13/2007)

Joel Pierson, Cruise Ship Pianist (8/3/2007)

Alison Green, Not Recommending That You Smoke Pot (4/7/2007)

Andrea Holbeche, Knocking People Over (3/10/2007)

Matt Benson, Red Kangaroo (1/7/2007)

Aurora Nibley, Universal Studios Tour Guide (11/21/2006)

Ellen Bar, Ballerina (10/27/2006)

Kameron Bashi, Pharmaceutical Guinea Pig (8/27/2006)

Waxing and Extracting at a Five-Star Spa (7/22/2006)

My Ankles Are Pink and I Don’t Care: An Interview With Harrison Behl (5/28/2006)

I Was in the Navy (Sort Of): An Interview With Alex MacInnis (3/7/2006)

David Kruchowski, Working at a Strip Club With Mom (2/9/2006)

Serving Subpoenas With Scott (1/16/2006)

Laura Erickson, Ornithologist (1/2/2006)

No More Plastic Birds: An Interview With Eva Amsen (12/6/2005)

Screaming at the Dentist With Wendy K (11/3/2005)

An Interview With Geoff Fox, Meteorologist (10/13/2005)

An Interview with Krista, Activities Director for a Retirement Community (8/29/2005)

An Interview with Stephanie Parry, Former Hardware Technician (7/23/2005)

I Ran the Scrambler: An Interview with Kim Engler (5/19/2005)

An Interview with Matt Haze, Former Movie Extra (4/27/2005)

Putting an Orange-Juice-like Drink in the Hopper: An Interview with Tony Meehan (2/19/2005)

Buying Malt Liquor With Nickels (11/2/2004)

I Haul Your Booze: An Interview with a Trucker (9/12/2004)

I’m Your Trumpet-Playing Gorilla: An Interview with Brian Wishnefsky, a.k.a. Sparky the Clown (6/24/2004)

An Interview With Robert Cork Kallen, Certified Firewalk Instructor (5/2/2004)

An Interview with the Repo Man (3/18/2004)

An Interview with Nicole G., Former U.S. Census Bureau Employee (2/16/2004)

An Interview with Joe Bodnar, Auctioneer (1/31/2004)

Jackie Watson, on Calling BINGO (1/6/2004)

An Interview with Sara Willkomm, President of a Michael Ian Black Fan Club (12/6/2003)

Never Been to Jitterbugs, An Interview With Michele Beardsley (10/13/2003)

Just Call Me Zippy, An Interview With Amy Barich (9/27/2003)

The Sperm Bank, an Interview with Dina N (8/1/2003)

Be Nice to Me, An Interview with Darshan, a New York City Limo Driver (6/17/2003)

Tell Me About Your Lights in the Sky, An Interview with Larry Haapanen (5/6/2003)

Saving Lives and Doing Dip, An Interview with Kari, Former Lifeguard (3/15/2003)

An Interview with Avril Watson, Former Magician’s Assistant (1/19/2003)

Wearing a Shower Cap and Raking the Chips, An Interview with Tom Cooney (12/5/2002)

On the Night Shift, An Interview with Aaron Bostian, On Vacuuming, Scrubbing, and Mopping (9/27/2002)

McSweeney’s is a publishing company based in San Francisco.
As well as operating a daily humor website, we also publish Timothy McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, the Believer, and an ever-growing selection of books under various imprints. You can buy all of these things from our online store. We’re also transitioning to a nonprofit and would greatly appreciate your help. You can support us today by donating to our Kickstarter campaign.