Friday Question of the Day – What do you do for a Living?

by Prince Of Petworth April 27, 2017 at 10:22 pm 270 Comments

Photo by PoPville flickr user Beau Finley

At the risk of sounding like trite cocktail banter – well I’m genuinely curious – what do you do currently do for a living? Do you work “regular” 9-5 hours? Do you work in an office or at home? Do you work in DC or the suburbs?

  • Lou

    I work 9 to 5 as an architect for project management company. Also a small-potatoes landlord on the side.

    • Lou

      Forgot to mention, live/work in DC

  • DukeofHillEast

    Recently left the District, well really I recently left the country, to work for the President of a foreign nation.
    I also spend way too much time compulsively checking out PoPville, which at this point could be considered a part time job.

  • I work by myself as an architect from home in NE and also do photography. Hang out near volcano craters every once in a while.

    • Sooooooooo Happy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      I’m an architect living in NE too and I know another guy that is an architect in NE. Who knew there were so many of us.

      Your photography is dope by the way.

      • Thank you! I do know another architect living in NE, maybe the same guy :D

        • TDD

          I’m married to an architect who lives in NE…with me. Sorry, couldn’t help it.

  • Quotia Zelda

    I’m a grantmaker.

    • cachito

      As am I!

      • m.

        Me three! Well, grants management – for one of those Fed agencies that always seems to be on the chopping block. I’ve lived and worked in DC for 6 years now.

        • Quotia Zelda

          It is entirely possible we work at the same place. :)

    • BRP

      please accept this fundraiser’s thanks!

    • Quotia Zelda

      I didn’t answer the rest of the questions. I work a standard 8:30-5 schedule with very little evening/weekend work. Occasional travel.
      I live in MD, work in DC. Have been here almost 13 years.

  • David

    Is “retired” legit? Have lived in DC 41 years.

    • logandude

      Absolutely! I’m also retired (from tax accounting in the ‘burbs) and have lived in DC for 6 years now.

    • dcd

      Legit? Try preferred!

  • Yurt

    I do HR for a Fortune 5. Hours vary. Sometimes it’s a 6:30 to 4, or an 8 to 6:30. Sometimes I can give myself a break and I take it easy with shorter hours. ~3 days in office, 2 days at home. The team I work with sits in another country. Popville keeps me sane!

  • Anonymouse

    6+ years unemployed by choice. This year may be the year I go back to the boring corporate IT world.

  • I’m an elementary teacher in the Maryland suburbs.

  • Cam

    One of those government lawyers.

    • ctk

      me too

      • anonymouse

        Me three.

        • Allison

          Happy government attorney checking in. Live in close-in Maryland and work downtown 7:30 to 5pm (compressed schedule.)

          • m

            I’ll join this party. Live in Van Ness, work downtown. I have a 549 schedule, so I have every other Friday off.

      • rss

        hi from 5318!

        • ctk

          Hi! Now get back to work.

  • Newtonian

    Surgical/cardiovascular ICU nurse. Live and work in DC.

    • Chadwick

      public health nurse here. TB control and prevention for a county health department

    • wdc

      If you were on my FIL’s team at WHC last year, the entire family loves you, and your colleagues. The nurses were the bright spot in that whole affair.

    • dcd

      Newtonian – do you work in the cardiac unit at CNMC?

      • Newtonian

        @dcd I’m at MWHC.

  • mellodcd

    Transportation Engineer. Live in DC, but work in Reston. We have a 9hr Mon-Thur and 4hr Fri schedule.

  • My job title doesn’t really mesh with my actual duties. Officially a Writer/Editor; in practice, I do that plus about 50% hands-on training of health insurance counselors (Medicaid/Medicare).

  • soozles

    Editor for one of Bloomberg’s enterprises. Live in DC, work in VA.

    • Hi soozles! (My office faces Bloomberg’s)

    • IsoTopor

      We work in the same building, editor as well.

  • Betty4G

    Government Information Specialist at a federal agency in DC, but trained in architecture/construction management. Back in the day the job included space planning and office moves.

  • PM

    Government economist, live and work in DC

    • Mike


      • jcd

        Ditto Ditto

        • DC_Chica


  • an

    do a 9-5 at a govt ageny as IT Specialist. live and work in dc

  • Nathan

    Energy. Develop and finance power plants, primarily natural gas, for an independent power producer. Live in DC, work in MD.

    • MHillPark

      This is awesome! I do legal work in the same space (IPPs and utilities, that is)!

  • FridayGirl

    This is a good elevator speech exercise, PoP. I never know how to explain what I do briefly!
    I am a government liaison for parents whose children are victims of international abductions.

    • Betty4G

      So true – government jobs are hard to explain! Once got introduced to some senior state officials as the a “custodian” of the program. Thanked the senior manager for finally giving me a job title my mom could understand.

      And thank you for doing such important work.

    • dcd

      Holy crap. You’d said your work was emotionally fraught, but I never imagined something like this. You deserve all the credit in the world for taking this on.

    • Suse

      That is a ministry.

    • LittleBluePenguin

      whoa! holy crap, that puts a whole new spin on understanding some of your work stress! Mega karma points to you!

    • mtpresident

      Ditto all of the responses. Thank you for all that you do.

  • Easyenough

    Senior web stuff for feds, 10+ years. Live and work in District.

  • Splunk

    Cybersecurity engineer with heavy focus on Splunk. Contractor currently support a gov agency SOC.

  • Lincoln Park SE

    currently – Corrections Officer DC Jail – DC resident on/off since 1990.

    • ShawThroughtheHeart


  • Hookdntx

    DoD contractor, live DC Work in THE BUILDING, 8-430 hrs, T-2 months to be a 10 year DC residetn

  • Stacys

    Exam development for a certification program. Live in DC, work in Bethesda.

  • JMR

    Consulting Teacher. I observe, coach and support novice and underperforming (tenured) teachers. I taught for 14 years before starting this position. Live in DC, work in MD.

    • I had a consulting teacher. Thanks for the work you do…I really don’t think I would have made it to tenure without mine!

      • JMR

        I’m so happy to hear this! I also had a wonderful consulting teacher my first year, and I’m so grateful to have had her guidance!

    • FridayGirl

      This is awesome!

      • JMR

        It really is! I love what I do!

  • moosemom

    Congressional Affairs for a large govt agency, in the office 5 days a week, hours are usually 9-5 – occasionally answering questions at night or on weekends. Live in Arlington presently, work in DC/L’Enfant.

  • dcd

    I’m a mohel.
    (Just kidding, that’s sometimes what I tell people on a plane when I’m feeling mischievous.)
    I’m a lawyer, work in an office, and live for the days where I can come in at 9 and leave at 5. (Seriously, that feels like part time.) Office in Georgetown, lived in Columbia Heights for 10 years, recently relocated to Bethesda, just across the DC line.

    • Hill Denizen

      Seriously. You know your work-life balance is screwed up when you don’t know what you’d do with yourself if you were working 9-5.

      • dcd

        Absolutely. I can’t imagine doing this for another 20 years.
        Although I wouldn’t want to come in at 9, because I HATE traffic. The thought of working 7:15-3:13 is lovely, though.

        • mtpresident

          Yikes! How does that jive with childcare? Do you at least have weekends free?

          • dcd

            I typically don’t work too much on weekends – at least I’m trying not to – and also try to work from home when I have to. I am not good at that, though. My wife freelances, mostly from home, which helps on the child care issues. We decided long ago that it’s better for us as a family for me to go in early and be around at night, rather than go in later and spend an extra hour and a half at the office in the evening (or work after dinner). This schedule gets altered when my wife has a freelance job where she has to go to an office – one of those is coming up, and I may be coming in later or leaving early. As the kids get older, there’s a lot more flexibility – my daughter can be left alone for short periods of time, and those periods of time get longer every year.

    • FoggyBottom

      I always thought Georgetown, or rather the harbor, would be a great place for law firms. You have easy access to Virginia/Maryland and generally can avoid the gridlock of K street depending on the commute. Better yet, you still have the DC address. Foley and Kelly Drye have great office views of the river and Jorden Burt and Van Ness get courtyard views.

  • skj84

    I’m a internal Recruiting Coordinator for a staffing agency. I work 9-5 in downtown DC. Before that I worked in hospitality for almost a decade. This is my first traditional 9-5 job, though the last few years of my restaurant gig I worked 7-3.

  • Sooooooooo Happy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Architect working for the federal govt managing design for our overseas portfolio.

    Live in DC, work in NoVa. 7am-3:45pm M-F, with some international travel depending on the project.

    • maxwell smart

      also Architect, not for the government, usually working 8:30am-8pm and no international travel. womp womp.

  • Suse

    Jill-of-all-trades at a private boys school. 6:30a – 3p. Teenage boys are a hoot…knuckleheads! Native Washingtonian.

  • ANON

    Legislative Director for my 3rd member of congress (R) 12 years living in DC which is longer than i have ever lived anywhere. Love DC but falling out of love with Congress a little more every day.

    • BRP

      I feel so bad for Hill staffers these days.

  • anon

    I own a small government contracting shop where I’m currently the only customer-facing resource. Most of my contracts are subcontracted to the big shops for uninteresting defense work, but I appreciate being able to control my own hours and benefits, and get paid for every extra hour I bill. Where I work changes from contract to contract; currently at home in DC about 2 days a week, in Rockville one day a week, and in Reston two days a week. I’m at random places like up at Fort Meade or down in Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling at least once a month, since a lot of people I work with are basically in West Virginia and Pennsylvania and can’t really get places.

    • anon

      Oh, the hours I work are erratic and usually melt to fit my wife and daughter’s schedules. Usually 10-6ish if I’m going out somewhere, but I spend a lot of nights working at home after bedtime too.

  • BenBen

    I rotate between working as a federal employee and a navy officer on active duty. Also own/manage houses in DC. All this keeps me pretty busy. Live in DC.

  • Anonamom

    Essentially, I provide high level admin support to physicians. Soon to also be a full-time student, both in MD. I live in MD now but have worked here since I lived in DC.

    • mtpresident

      That’s a tough position to find good people for–what types of things do you do in that position? Anything related to quality reporting, EHR management, etc? Or mostly more along the lines of scheduling and front office support and the like?

      • Anonamom

        I currently do licensing and hospital credentialing which includes some physician-quality type responsibilities. Previous to specializing in credentialing, I was an Executive Assiatant and a Project Manager, and in these roles I was more heavily involved in quality reporting, mostly on the internal-hospital side of things, though I have experience with HCAHPS and other CMS related quality programs. I’m well-versed in pretty much every aspect of EHR/EMR since I have had to do one thing or another at some point in my career! Now, I focus pretty much solely on physician records though.

        • mtpresident

          Nifty! That’s a lot of crazy details to keep straight, I’m sure.

  • keydet

    Biz dev / sales for ginormous IT company. Live in DC and work from home, with some U.S. and int’l travel sprinkled in.

  • Govie

    Live and work in the district – work at an international development government agency.

  • ajr

    I’m an office manager/executive assistant in downtown DC but live in Arlington now.

  • Emmaleigh504

    I do patent research primarily in the fields or cryptography, social networks, and GUIs. I work 9-5:30 in an office in the burbs.

    • mtpresident

      That sounds fascinating. Is it actually?

      • Emmaleigh504

        mostly it’s pretty boring, but occasionally you get a really neat thing to research.

  • alex

    27 years in DC (wards 1, 3, 5, 6 &7). Worked in international development for while, now switching to criminal law (defense) here in DC.

  • BeverlyS

    Live/work in DC. Lead development/fundraising for a large charitable organization – mostly relief and aid-based services. Majority is 8-4 in an office but on the road much more now.

  • TinkerTaylor

    Manage risk for financial services firm. Live in DC; work in MD.

  • Jessica

    Federal government communications

  • Saltymeow

    I’m a management consultant in financial services. I travel Monday-Thursday, and relish the three days a week I am home in DC. Typically I work about 60 hours a week (including weekends). My firm doesn’t have an office in DC, so I really could live anywhere, yet somehow I never left after university.

  • kharr89

    Senior Proposal Manager for a mid-sized federal IT contractor. Live in DC, work in Fairfax. Hours are roughly consistent with a typical 9-5, but there is a fair amount of overtime and working nights and weekends to meet deadlines.

  • jim_ed

    I do construction stuff. Office is in MoCo, but most of my jobsites are in the District. DC resident for 8 years.

  • SaraEP

    8-5, Mon-Fri contractor at the State Dept. (I suspect FridayGirl and I work in the same building ;)) I also make perfume and have my own business (District Perfumery).

    • FridayGirl

      This is very possible! ;)

      • FridayGirl

        And that was supposed to be a wink not an “unsure face” hahaha….

        • SaraEP

          haha all good… if you’re at SA17 then we’ve probably shared an elevator ride! :-D

  • Florista

    Special Events Coordinator for a Smithsonian museum. Live in Old Town, have always worked in DC. Part time self-taught floral designer, 25+ years on the side.

    • Anonymous

      These both sound great!

      • Florista

        They can be – like any job, they have their “moments.”

        • Peachygirl

          Oh man how awesome event planning at any one of the Smithsonians must be! I worked in event planning in Seattle but recently moved to DC am looking for employment. Have a BA in art history so I am really hoping to combine the best of both worlds and work in events at one of the amazing museums here!

  • mtpresident

    I’m one of the many feds, and I have lived & worked in DC for nearly 8 years–though I lived in the DC burbs for the 7 years preceding that. I’m a health economist/health policy researcher, and I generally keep regular hours, though catch up on things after the kids are in bed relatively frequently (mostly because I’m a bit of a workaholic).

  • IDontGetIt

    Account rep In IT for a large non-profit. I live in DC and work from home in my pajamas. If I have to go into the office it is normally in DC but I once had to go to “Merrifield.”

    • IDontGetIt

      8:30 to 4:30 ish

  • F St NE

    Live in DC, work in MD as a PM for a professional services government contractor.
    And, actively looking for something else….

  • CPT_Doom

    Work for a healthcare non-profit, middle manager in operations, rating the quality of care of medical providers. Live/work in DC.

    • LittleBluePenguin

      Ha! now your username makes more sense!

    • mtpresident

      Very cool! Do you focus on hospitals, or physician practices as well? Does your group use administrative data or chart abstraction or a combination of both?

  • ET

    Librarian! I was born to be a librarian.

    • ET

      Ooops forgot to add have lived on the Hill since 1994 (crap I can’t believe its been that long)

    • Emmaleigh504

      I’m a librarian too! :)

      • ET

        Are you by chance from the New Orleans area or does 504 mean something/nothing else?

        • Emmaleigh504

          Yep, from New Orleans.

          • ET

            So there are two people from NOLA that are librarians in DC. hmmmmmm

  • Anonymous

    Lawyer, private practice, work from around 9 to between 6 and 8 pm. Usually an hour or two on the weekends on my own time with more weekend work and longer hours at crazy times.

  • anon

    I am a lawyer for a major maryland based television production company. pretty regular 8 to 530ish schedule. Live in DC, work in Maryland.

    • Anon

      lol, you could’ve just said “Discovery”

      • anon

        its not discovery. discovery is not a production company, they are a network.

  • 1301

    I work for a very small cultural office in a large federal agency, doing mostly back office stuff that keeps the wheels turning. It’s not what I expected I’d be doing out of MBA, but it’s a job I like that lets me feel like I can sleep at night, which is more than I could say for my old private sector gig (one of those companies that was always unethical but never illegal. Ugh.)
    I live in the District, but commute to Rosslyn. Ain’t bad.

    • Tom

      I love the reverse commute!

      • Nathan

        Same here! Metro from Shaw out to Silver Spring. Trains come frequently but are nice and empty!

    • Girl on a Hill

      I also do the reverse commute – Capitol Hill to the Ballston stop! I always get a seat :)

      • Victoria Chamberlin

        Boom! Reverse commute!

    • Anon

      My girlfriend and I live in Capitol Hill and we’ve had various jobs over the years but none in the District. The reverse commute is nice, but I still dream of a DC-to-DC commute!

  • LittleBluePenguin

    Program coordinator for a specialized clinical program, providing high level admin support to clinicians and physicians at a DC hospital, as well as interfacing with patients and helping develop new educational programs and research opportunities. Lived in DC for a couple years, now living in SS.

  • callmeB

    Im a video journalist for a national news outlet. I pitch stories, travel, film, edit. Besides the pay and irregular schedule it’s a pretty baller gig

  • xxdcxx

    Refugee Officer, downtown

    • FridayGirl


  • Skip

    DC Native. Commercial real estate broker focus on retail leasing. Live in Petworth – pretty standard 9-5 hours.

  • Anon

    I work 9-5 (well 7-4 with every other Friday off) as a collections manager at a museum. I love my job!

    • Anon

      Oh, I’ve lived in the District for almost four years but in the DMV for 13.

  • Julia

    I have been a cartographer for 25 years and 8 months. Today is my last day of work. I am retiring!

    • Oh wow congrats!!

    • FridayGirl


    • ajr

      That’s so cool! Congratulations!

    • LittleBluePenguin

      That’s fantastic, congrats! (also, now all I can think of are the scenes from Arrested Development when Buster was studying cartography and saying that Magellan, etc did “a pretty good job.”!)

    • CVR

      Awesome job and congratulations!

  • Angry Parakeet

    I have lived in DC (all 4 quadrants) for 32 years working for small consulting firms as an electrical engineer. Current office moved to MD, I miss my previous bicycle commute.

  • Truxton Thomas

    Communications for trade association for going on nine years. Largely 9-6 and check my phone a lot. Work downtown and own in the FRINJ; former Logan Circle renters.

    • hillyeah

      i’m also a 9-6ish comms for a trade association who checks my phone a lot :D

      live in hill east and work by union station (lovely walking commute!)

      • Truxton Thomas

        Pedestrian commuter as well! Such a great way to get to and from work (and daycare).

  • LCinDC

    I work 9-5 in DC in asset management for a real estate fund…basically act as landlord for big buildings of all types across different markets.

  • anonymous

    Research scientist in an earth science field, contractor at a federal agency in the MD suburbs. 830-5ish office job.

  • Hill Denizen

    I do press for a Member of Congress. Live 10 minutes from the office. Contemplating a move, because especially these days, it feels like I can’t get away from work (ie 9-5 is a dream).

  • Tom

    I work for a nonprofit association in support of the military arts and sciences, specifically the Army. They put out a magazine each month, and I’m one of the editors. I live in Bloomingdale and work in Arlington. People seem to like me because I’m polite and rarely late, and I really enjoy a nice pair of slacks.

  • Traveler

    Project Manager for an international development NGO. Live in DC, work in Arlington. 9-6pm, flex schedule year round. Occasional travel abroad. Love my job.

  • Jay

    contract attorney working on projects that are typically in the downtown/dupont/foggy bottom/georgetown area… also moonlight as a trivia host one or two nights a week… DC resident

    • rss

      I’m a gov’t lawyer & I hosted trivia on U St. every other Wednesday for two years. Loved it, but eventually decided to retire at the end of 2016 and focus on other extra-curricular activities.

  • MPinDC

    Oh and I live in DC, work in DC

  • L

    Marketing for a fun Ecommerce company. I live in DC but work out in the burbs. Except for today b/c I’m working from home. yay! :) It’s a typical 9-5, but hours are super flexible.

  • Betsy

    9-5 is a Learning Professional in Design and Development for a large firm. I am also a fitness instructor, cat herder and Tomato farmer on the side.

    • textdoc

      Cat herder? Like, metaphorically?

  • TX2DC

    I work in international relations at a foreign government’s embassy here in DC. I am a U.S. citizen.

  • Dane

    I’m a Fed. I work in a program that weatherizes low-income houses to save the occupants energy and address health and safety issues. Lived in DC almost 10 years.

    • lisavfr

      Thank you! Good work!

  • artemis

    Researcher and (often though unofficial) editor. Used to live in DC but recently moved to the burbs. Still work downtown.

  • Asparagus Therapist

    I’m a visual & UI designer and illustrator. L&W in DC.

    • justme

      Im a designer too, at a small design firm! more print then UI though. live DC work VA have been in DC for about 6 or 7yrs. 9-5:30 usually unless we are busy.

  • It’s just me

    Recovering lawyer now doing energy policy. Live/work in DC

    • It’s just me

      Oh, and hours are officially 8:30-6, but often work more than that and on weekends.

  • lizcolleena

    Development for a national non-profit supporting a cause very much in the news lately. It’s stressful with this Admin :( I work 9-6 ish, downtown DC with an occasional telework day.

    • BRP

      thanks for doing what you’re doing!

      • lizcolleena


    • Ava16

      National nonprofit fundraiser here too! Surprised you are the first one I saw. Glad to find others in the field.
      NW resident for 4 years (5 years in the DMV), part-time fitness instructor. Now any lurker friends on mine know who I am hehe.

      • lizcolleena

        I too was surprised, but then again maybe we’re mostly lurkers? Ha ha!

    • Laura

      I hear ya. We have a lot of non-profit clients who are also feeling the stress. Hang in there!

      • lizcolleena

        Thanks! We aren’t going anywhere (nor am I) but certainly learning how to do this whole political dance a whole lot more quickly.

  • LedroitTigah

    economist. I would say more but part of the reason I like this site is the anonymity of my ranting and raving :)

  • hiphopanonymous

    I’m an Office Manager in the chaplain’s office in a hospital. Definitely not my career of choice but it works for now…and I really like the people. The downside is that I hear mostly the BAD hospital stories, not the good! (especially where babies/kids are concerned)

  • Zvuv

    I’m the managing editor at a small trade association press, here in DC. It’s def a 9 to 5:30 job. Pay is low, but so is the stress.

  • L W

    Writing/content creation/design for a public interest law nonprofit downtown, with pretty flexible 9ish to 5:30ish hours. Live in DC – came for the Corcoran, when it was still Corcoran, and never left.

  • Pleasanter

    I live and work in DC for an organization that promotes energy efficiency/green building. Hours are super flexible, but mostly 9-4:30 or 5. I’ll have lived in DC 8 years this coming July, all in NW DC.

  • Survivor77

    Faculty at Gallaudet University

    • Survivor77

      Regular 9-5 hrs at the University. Also live in DC

  • Former Petworthian

    I am a civil engineer at Metro. I do feasibility/constructability studies for additional access at existing transit stations, as well as help review Joint Development plans. I live in MD, just moved there after 18 years of living in DC. My hours are primarily from 8:30-5. Contrary to the popular opinion, there are plenty of us who work very hard at Metro, and it is really disheartening to hear people say that all employees should be fired. I don’t always agree with what our management decides, but I personally am trying to make access to the system better with every project I do.

    • mtpresident

      As a random federal employee, I feel your pain. Thank you for what you do!

      • Former Petworthian

        Thanks mtpresident! I have many friends who work for the Federal Government and they all work hard. Thanks for you what you do as well!

  • anon anom

    I provide administrative support at a nonprofit think tank, work 9-5. Live and work in DC.

  • DCLiving

    I handle the accounting side for my family business. We have been in the district since 1952. My great grandmother started it and my grandfather, father, and uncle have all been here. I started 11 years ago and finally moved to the city in 2015 from VA to be closer. Best decision I’ve ever made. Why didn’t I do it sooner!?

  • Ms. D

    So you know how they’ve been talking about steel and lumber tariffs like they’re some kind of new, unprecedented thing? I do that. Have for 10 years. While it’s nice to see our little agency finally get some recognition, I’m not sure I want it in *this* climate.

    • Ms. D

      Oh yeah, the others…
      Obviously a fed, so *usually* a standard 8.5. I typically go 9:30-6, depending. But we’re a deadline-driven agency, so there are plenty of times it’s more than that. Because they shut the HVAC off at 5 on the nose (it’s tolerable until about 6 if it’s hot or cold outside, later if moderate), I often go home and finish up from there when it’s more. So, no, not all feds put in their 40 and call it quits. :)
      Live and work in the city. Just got an electric bike because Metro is so freaking unreliable (I live on the red line). I’ve been here off and on for a goodly while, consistently on for 10 years at the end of May (worked a temporary job with a different agency first on this stint, so my work anniversary is a bit later in the year). I’ve lived in the city the entire time except for 4 months in Silver Spring when my employer (not my current one) was paying my rent (not going to say no to a free apartment almost on top of the Metro). Columbia Heights (when most the stuff there now was vacant lots), Capitol Hill, Brentwood, and Brookland.

  • Girl on a Hill

    I work 8:30-5:30 for a financial adviser. Live on Capitol Hill, work in Arlington. Been in DC for 7 years minus about a year and a half living abroad doing research.

  • BRP

    front-line fundraiser at an arts organization – DC native; live and work in NW

  • sashay

    School Counselor for DC Public Schools, elementary level. Live and work in DC.

  • Beau

    part-time airline mechanic, full-time daredevil

    • Anon

      so…. mostly hand stuff?

  • JF

    I work in business development for a corporate law firm, about 60 hours a week (but really whenever I am needed). Been there almost 5 years. Its soul crushing and I feel like I don’t know who I am anymore. If it weren’t for my amazing partner I’d just be a walking ball of depression. I’ve been in DC 8 years but I’m hoping to find a new job in a new city. Love DC but time for a change.

  • stacksp

    InfoSec Engineer. AWS/Splunk/SC5 Concentration…RE Investor

    • dcd

      You are the second person to mention splunk. I feel like (i) I should know what that is, and (ii) if I look it up on Urban Dictionary, I will get a vastly different definition, and may receive a stern talking to from our firm IT people.

      • Anon

        It’s an audit management system – nothing fancy or exciting. “Great” name, though.

        • Anon

          (They won a bunch of large federal contracts relatively recently, so odds are that there are many folks around here who are immersed in splunk full-time.)

          • dcd

            “many folks around here who are immersed in splunk full-time”
            You were trying to make my inner teenager giggle, weren’t you?

          • Anon

            Couldn’t help myself, sorry!

      • textdoc

        Actual LOL, dcd!

    • ehdc

      Sheesh am I the only (not voluntarily) underemployed person reading this blog? Caught in the part-time/temp loop, but more time to read popville.

      • Anon

        Well, underemployed folks aren’t as likely to “brag” about that fact. Don’t draw too many conclusions from these posts.

      • anon

        I’m very much underemployed. You may not have realized that from my job title/description listed above.

        • ehdc


      • anon

        No, you aren’t the only one unemployed. The question doesn’t ask about us, and no one cares.

        I keep interviewing and being told that I have “too much experience.” That, or “we’re hiring on cultural fit” – which is said to me only by white men, usually well over 40, and is said to very clearly mean “we aren’t hiring any women or minorities, only more people like us.” Which in my case means “no women,”
        since I’m white.

        Interviewers use these two phases to tell you exactly to your face that they are practicing illegal discrimination (in the case of experience, age discrimination, and in the case of “culture,” gender and/or race discrimination. They say it with such glee – like they are so happy that using these phrases gives them a free pass to discriminate illegally, and to tell you to your face that they are discriminating and there’s nothing you can do about it.

        There’s possibly some anti-lesbian bias, though I’m convinced most people don’t even pick up on that, and instead don’t want to hire me because they area men think women who are middle aged (like their stay at home wives) just must have some children they have to take care of (I don’t, because I never could afford to have any, due to massive gender-based pay discrimination, and now I feel like I have to make a point of telling people at interviews that I have no kids and no other responsibilities that would impact my ability to work ALL the freaking hours, because the jobs always require long hours.) Still, can’t get hired.

        They clearly want my experience in someone who is a (preferably white) male and under 35. I have more than once had the experience of hearing nothing after an interview, only to see a new ad then posted for the job, now incorporating phrases taken DIRECTLY from my resume – my words describing my experience and skills!?!!

        There’s no lack of skills, brains, work experience with complicated stuff, expensive educational degrees – I even naturally have a friendly, collaborative midwestern demeanor. I’m now getting this line at lot – “you have an impressive resume” – which I’ve learned is the kiss of death.

        Anyone hiring?? Am able and willing to do a lot of jobs …. Maybe there could be some sharing of info on this site to match up job seekers with some who may be are hiring??? That would be a great community service!

        • Ehdc

          At least you’re getting interviews, right? It is a shitty cycle of rejection and despair and trying to keep a positive “hirable” attitude. I’ve kept semi employed and busy through volunteer work and starting my own business, partially helped by getting a different kind of experience through TaskRabbit and similar platforms. Sometimes you need to change gears entirely! It was better than self medicating by binge watching tv

  • CVR

    In DC 9-5 as a financial aid person at a university. All of our graduate students looking to borrow a loan go through my operation.

  • ATH

    Paralegal in big law, hours are 9am until 5:30 or 6, sometimes much later, sometimes weekends. I do a lot of trials in various locations and then my hours are insane. Office is downtown. I’ve lived in DC since 2004.

  • Egad

    Live and work in DC. Lawyer at a big law firm with hours that vary from manageable one week to insane the next week. Have lived in DC for 13+ years now, I’m raising a family here and I don’t plan to leave.

  • PettyShabazz

    IT vendor management at a large nonprofit in downtown DC. Hours are 9-5:30 and that’s it. Great work/life balance here. Lived in Foggy Bottom for 7 years but just bought in Mount Ranier. Come check us out :)

  • WhoseEar

    Lobbyist. Work 9ish to 7ish most days, with dinners and events thrown in, especially while Congress is in session. Generous August days. Have lived in DC (on the Hill) for 6+ years and just bought in Trinidad – moving TOMORROW!

    • Congrats on the new house!

    • CVR

      I moved to Trinidad on the 13th after closing on my house on the 6th! I love it. I hope you do too!

  • textdoc

    Writer-editor (mainly editor) for a federal government agency. Live and work in D.C.

  • anonymouse_dianne

    I live in DC and work for the Census Bureau. I turn data into information using SAS. After many years of being a contractor, I became a fed in 2011. I live at Union Row.

    • mtpresident

      Very cool! The Census complex is huge. Do you focus on one of the surveys in particular?

  • getting_schwifty

    work in USPS middle management at their Headquarters in DC; generally have a 8-5 day.

  • DF

    Damn, 180+ responses and I’m the first one from the restaurant industry?!
    I’m a baker/pastry cook, been so in DC for 10 years. Hours are early mornings because obviously. Can’t wait to help open the new Paisley Fig in Heller’s and bring bread to MtP!

    • mtpresident

      YAY! we can’t wait to welcome you to the neighborhood!!!!

    • Anon

      “Damn, 180+ responses and I’m the first one from the restaurant industry?!”
      It’s still before noon! Folks gotta sleep, after all :-)

      • DF

        It’s my day off, clearly not a M-F worker here! ;)

  • Victoria Chamberlin

    I’m on active duty as a photographer for The U.S. Army Band

    • Victoria Chamberlin

      Live in DC, work in Arlington.

    • That is so cool – no wonder why your photos in the flickr pool are so awesome!

      • Victoria Chamberlin

        Aw shucks! Actually, the Flickr pool has really helped me get out of a photography slump. Sometimes I just don’t want to walk around and shoot stuff after doing it all day at work, but then I think “what cool shit is gonna pop up on the Flickr pool?? Get out there!”

  • bluewhite

    Currently a Legislative Director for a Member of Congress. Live in Shaw but am moving to Navy Yard. Been in DC since 2009. Hours are 7-7 if i’m lucky, more common are 7-8:30

  • ftoast

    Software engineer for one of the big multinationals. 9 to 6ish. Been in DC about 2 years.

  • harmdog86

    Service Desk Technician for National Geographic Society, lived in DC about 11 years now.

    • harmdog86

      Hours are usually 8 – 5, monday through friday

  • Anonymous

    Diversity and inclusion in the federal government. Regular work hours in DC.

    • Anonymous

      Regular meaning 9-5?

  • Live in DC, work in DC – I have a 20 minute walk to work, and it’s AMAZING. I work as a Project Manager at a digital agency where we build websites and creative solutions for non-profits. It’s a great way to do what I love and make a difference – can’t beat it!

  • john3889

    Lobbyist at a big firm. Live in Cleveland Park and work at Farragut.

  • MichelleinMD20721

    Admin for a magazine based in DC. Live in Md, 9-5 hours, native Washingtonian.

  • sarah

    I’m the EA to our top exec at an alt-energy firm. Roughly 9-6, some late night and weekend work every now and then. Live (Columbia Heights) and work (downtown) in DC.

  • SP

    Research at a social justice nonprofit, mostly 9-5 M-F. Work and live in NW DC.

  • Bob

    I’m a patent attorney working in downtown DC, and also live in NW DC. I personally hate working from home so I’m downtown almost daily. Regular hours (i.e., 90% of the time) are about 9-5, but can vary wildly outside of normal times.

  • K

    I work in communications for a healthcare org. 9-5 hours. They’re very big on work/life balance, so you aren’t expected to check your email after 5. Big difference from my previous org, where you were expected to answer at all times. I live and work in DC, and have a 15 minute walk to work.

  • SCotty

    Judge (Article II) for an administrative tribunal. Usually work (from home in the District) every day of the week to keep cases moving and to be available for colleagues whose work requires collaboration with multiple judges.

  • Brittanyhstreet

    Accounting in real estate development

  • anon

    communications for a environmental nonprofit. Hours are flexible 10-6.

  • jerdlngr

    Medical librarian – specifically, reference, at a women’s health organization.

    • jerdlngr

      Forgot: hours are 9-5 (more or less); live in DC/work in DC.

  • hammers

    Work as an intel analyst; 9-5 desk job researching a topic, writing about the topic, or briefing it to decisionmakers. I also provide security training based on said topic, and occasionally get to travel to do so. Work in one of those annoying places you can’t have your phone in NoVa. Live in DC- it’s the reverse commute but it’s still an hour. Reading through these responses realllly makes me want to ask everyone what they make doing their jobs.

  • Anon

    Gov’t contractor. 8-4p if at all possible
    Live and work in DC.
    For those who’ve made a leap into the Fed; How did you make it happen?

    • Anon

      Applied straight out of college and the agency was so desperate for people they hired me. :) Quit a year later for something better though.

  • wolfpackwx

    Meteorological software tester – live in VA, work in MD. Typical 8 hour day (7-3/9-5) but WFH occasionally. Weather is 24/7/365, so if major issues develop then weekend work happens, though not often.

    • Ms. D

      I’m a huge weather nerd, and get totally into the modeling (my background is in econ, and I now do statistical programming, so I “get” it). Any fun stories to tell to someone like me? I’m from a place prone to tornadoes (not deep Midwest, one of the boundary areas where they happen often and get severe), and that’s where my fascination comes from. I’ve had 5 close calls with tornadoes, and actually saw an F5 (before the EF scale) with my own eyes when I was knee-high to a grasshopper (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1985_United_States%E2%80%93Canada_tornado_outbreak#The_Niles.2C_OH.2FWheatland.2C_PA_Tornado)

  • navyard

    Management Consultant. 9 -5 (for this client) and they require me to work onsite unless I’m working more than 40/week (rare these days). Live / work in DC.

    • navyard

      In real terms, I push buttons on a keyboard all day. The most frequently used button combinations are Ctrl-C and Ctrl-V. Well, that doesn’t count the time that I’m just using the scroll-wheel. Scroll-wheel usage might actually account for over 90% of my daily time at work.

  • Kim

    Senior Art Director for an in-house design department. I’ve been living and working in the city for a little over 9 years. Current hours are “regular” enough. I mostly work in an office, but I’m allowed to work from home one day a week.

  • MadMax

    I make government agencies run more efficiently. Unfortunately it’s a 9 to 5, in the office every day, kinda job. I definitely miss those days on the government payroll teleworking from home.

  • MaebysMom

    I work at one of the two GSE’s in governance. Very good place to work- after 3 months tenure everyone gets one work from home day a week. I generally work 9-5- hours are flexible- some work 7-3 etc etc. Located in Tyson’s Corner, live in Kalorama

  • Hire

    International education… but potential and desire to do so much more.

    MA (political science) from Georgetown. Skills in Arabic (about ILR2), R, Stata, LaTeX, and project management. Can travel, no family obligations, and have a clean background (though no opportunity to get a clearance yet).

    Can’t get a new job via USAJOBS or any of the other job sites to get into fed. government or for a contractor. Most people I have interviewed with have told me they have gone with internal candidates. Seriously though, if you want a copy of my resume, email me at [email protected]. Hire me, or just mentor me. And, yes, I posted this during my lunch break, not on the clock :)

  • OP Anon

    Financial sector regulatory expert. I represent the U.S. government on some international financial bodies, I get to negotiate with foreign central banks and financial supervisors on international agreements related to the financial sector. It’s sort of like a financial policy diplomat, but without the cool black passport or the housing allowance. :(

  • Real maria

    experiential/environmental graphic designer, work for a large architecture firm making spiffy graphics for tech offices. Work and live in DC, M-F, 9-5:30 Worked for 8 years in museum design, took a year traveling sabbatical, then 2.5 years in Seattle and we just came back last week!

  • Anonny

    Personal assistant to a high-profile individual in DC (not on the Hill). I work at least 9-5, but am available 24/7/365. It depends what he’s doing. So far this week I worked every day from 8am-11pm. I have an office in DC, but I go all around.

  • EA

    EA at a law firm. I worked crazy hours my first year because I was supporting 6 (yes, 6) people, but now I work 9-6.

    I love the people, but even though I have a ton of leeway here, I’m so bored. I need to do more than this.

  • AnonTeacher

    I’m an elementary school teacher, living in DC and commuting to VA. Early, reverse commutes are the best, but afternoon traffic returning to D.C. sucks!

  • TKPKmyHeart

    I’m a fed, working in behavioral safety research and program development as it relates to traffic safety. I work a 5-4/9 schedule, most days from 7:30-5pm. I live in MD and work in DC. We’ve lived in the area for 4 years this year.

  • I’m a novelist – (7 published with major publishers) – but have worked over 57 different jobs over the past 40 years. Every possible job in many many restaurants and catering, scuba instructor, hotwalker at a racetrack, dancer in an opera, freelance writer, street vendor/juggler, camp counselor among others.

    But for my actual income to currently live on – it’s all from rentals (and living cheap!) I bought 30 years ago in Columbia Heights and lived with lots of room-mates.

  • I’m the president of Historic Congressional Cemetery on the Hill – sill an active cemetery (with plots for sale) founded in 1807. Come visit, and stay awhile (forever).

    • molly


  • LP

    I am a paper pusher for Uncle Sam in DC.

  • another DC nerd

    I’m a psychotherapist. Dupont based; 9-5 some days, afternoon/evenings others. I’ve lived in DC for 15 years and love that my clients are such interesting people!

  • CAH

    US EPA scientist :( Ronald Reagan building, 7:30-5 most days.

  • LF

    I am a DCPS teacher and I teach at GW GSEHD. My hours are 7:30am – 4:00pm. :-)

    • wa2wa

      Thank you so much for all you do!

  • Laura

    EPA manager for an office focused on business process improvement (helping others to streamline / optimize processes and operations). Live and work in DC. Work 9-5ish. Love my job and commute

  • Sherm

    Higher education executive at a college in MD. My self imposed hours are normally 8-5. Lived in DC for 6 years now, but moving out of the area soon. It’s been a lovely adventure here in the district!

  • laszlob

    Buyer’s agent – realtor. DC Native. Work basically all the time, it’s rough out here for buyers!

  • SwampLady

    I work in political polling (aka the first against the wall when the revolution comes). I’m in the office physically from 8-6ish, but when I have surveys or during the election cycle it’s well before dawn to well after dark. I’m on call all year round for clients who may need a last minute survey depending on political developments. Live and work in DC, been here 10 years, don’t plan on leaving. Love my job, and even love the insane hours during the cycle.

  • shadydays

    I work as a Trainer for a federal national service program. I work typically 8-4 and travel about 3 months total throughout the year. I am absolutely in love with my job and what I get to do. Work down by Federal Center and live in CoHi.


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