Dirty Jobs' Mike Rowe Admits He's Been Fired from 300 Jobs and Confesses Big Character Flaw

| NOV 12, 2014 | 8:47 PM
Mike Rowe

Alex Wong/Getty Images

Everyone's favorite 'dirty' guy, Mike Rowe, began an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit this afternoon.

I am Mike Rowe and I can't seem to hold a job. I've been fired over 300 time [sic] in the last 10 years. Currently, and somewhat surprisingly, I am hosting a new show for CNN called Somebody's Gotta Do It. AMA.

The former host of Dirty Jobs opened up about life, his passions, and the hundreds of jobs he's been able to try out over the past decade. Check out some of his best answers:

On his favorite job:

Personally, I've never had the ability to do the same job for more than a few days at a time.

Clean, dirty, exciting, or tedious.

I simply don't have the wherewithal to stick with one vocation too long.

It is, without question, a character flaw.

On his voice resembling that of God:

Regarding the Creator's larynx, I agree that he (or she) must certainly possess a rich, well-modulated baritone.

However, for reasons that involve the Screen Actor's Guild, I must be perfectly clear about the fact that it isn't mine.

On the dirtiest/most dangerous job he hasn't been allowed to do yet:

...There have been many, and for a multitude of reasons. The segments I was most interested in doing but found the most resistance around was that of a rendering facility.

Aside from the fact that “rendering facilities” are by their very definition optically horrific, there was another concern that I had not considered.

That concern can be spelled out with the following letters.


That's right - the Mob is still involved in a surprising number of rendering facilities. Why the Mob has such a rich history in garbage-related industries and rendering-related industries is a conversation beyond my pay grade.

I only know how relieved I was to finally find a rendering outfit that was not owned or operated by the Cosa Nostra.

That facility was in Northern California. And they were called North State Rendering.

To this day, I'm impressed with how brave they were in their decision to let us provide our viewers with an unvarnished look at what it takes to turn a dead cow into several hundred pounds of chicken feed.

Yes, I'm deeply proud of that day.

Which profession does Rowe not take for granted?

At the risk of sounding overly earnest (and too metaphorical), I'm going to say: the welder.

Welders not only work their asses off, they're in high demand, and critical to polite society. The entire world, including our infrastructure, and the building in which I currently find myself, is held together with welds.

Remove the welder retroactively from the species, and the whole thing shits the bed.

On Rowe's choice to live modestly despite having, well, a lot of money:

I'm not really humble, I'm just not properly acquisitive.

I take more pleasure in saving than spending.

And like the Native Americans, I tend to look at “ownership” as something more akin to stewardship. In other words, the more things you own, the more things own you.

On a practical level, I find if you don't have the space for a lot of stuff, you don't wind up with a lot of stuff.

And seriously: what's the dirtiest job?

...Tough to beat replacing a ruptured lift pump. That's the 4 ton motor at the bottom of a 5-story silo that processes all of your crap.

And by 'crap' I mean literally your crap. When the lift pump breaks, the silo fills with excrement. And in order to stop the poop from flooding the streets and causing a modern-day Armageddon, men in woefully inadequate Tyvek suits descend a spiral staircase and muscle their way through a series of water-tight doors.

At which point, they swim - that's right, swim - to the ruptured lift pump, and climb on top of it.

Then, other men lower a cable from 5 stories above. The cable is affixed to the ruptured lift pump, and the entire apparatus is slowly lifted up towards the heavens.

The sound a ruptured lift pump breaks when it breaks the seal of shit holding it to the floor will forever haunt your dreams.

This guy probably never runs out of stories. Hop online if you want to pick Mike Rowe's brain!

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