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The Real Poop

If I had a hammer…er, wait. I do.

If you're really good at this job, you could start a religion. (Odds of Getting in: Low; Odds of Hanging on: High; Power: Priceless.)

Okay, back to reality.

Carpentry is about as highly skilled labor as you can get without going to med school. Smacking nails into wood in the backyard to build Rover's dog house is one thing (easy, brainless); finely finishing expensive wood cabinetry is a completely different thing (incredibly hard, brain...ful).

Simply put, carpenters build stuff. They…carpent. Mostly out of wood and nails. The tools tell a lot of the story.

Carpenters generally specialize in areas—and that specialty can be anything from securing meshed 4 x 4s as load bearing struts forming the corner of a McMansion, to tacking wooden roof shingles with a staple gun (guys, be sure you've finished having children before you use this thing), to custom crafting fine furniture. The basic idea here is that carpentry can range from rough and rugged hard physical labor to fussy and exacting craftsmanship.

Looks good enough to eat off of.

And the good news for you, the would-be carpenter, is that all of these jobs pay VERY nice money...if you're good. You can have your own hammer and be a contract killer—er, hammerer. Or you can be a salaried employee of a union shop.

But you work. You do stuff. You make stuff. You can look back over your shoulder at the end of the day and say, "Yeah, I made that."

Cabinets.

Roofing.

Floorboards.

Wall frames.

Bookshelves.

A tool shed.

A table.

Those thingies on the border of your ceilings where they connect with the walls.

You'll do all of this stuff (and more!), and that dull aching thud in your head at the end of the day from all of the pounding will just reinforce the fact that you had a really productive day.

Kind of, Sort of, Semi-Related Careers:

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