It seems as though we can pay people to do anything for us these days: walk our dogs, build our furniture, organise our homes … cuddle with us when we’re feeling lonely.
That’s right: You care hire a professional cuddler to snuggle with you for about $60 an hour. You can also pay an “undercover bridesmaid” to stand next to you on your big day, or a professional mourner to cry with you at a loved one’s funeral.
Those are just a few of the weirdest jobs we found while compiling our list of the most unusual professionals.
Steven Benna contributed to an earlier version of this article.
Keep scrolling to see all 14.
Snake milkers extract venom from some of the world's most dangerous snakes, like rattlesnakes and cobras. The extracted venom is often used to create antivenom for hospital or laboratory use, and can be sold for up to $1,000 per gram.
Professional bridesmaids are there to assist brides on their big day. Jen Glantz, the cofounder of Bridesmaid for Hire, a company that offers 'undercover bridesmaid' and personal assistant-type services to brides and their wedding parties, charges anywhere from $300 to $2,000 per wedding.
Iceberg mover became a profession after the disastrous sinking of the Titanic in 1912. The International Ice Patrol (IIP), which was founded a year later, is operated by the US Coast Guard. It tracks the location of icebergs and provides safe routes around them. If necessary, the iceberg will be towed out of the area.
Professional mourners attend funerals and grieve for the deceased. A company in England called Rent A Mourner specialises in the industry, offering mourners for two hours for roughly $70.
Dog surfing instructors, who you can find at certain ocean resorts, are people you pay to teach you and your dog to surf. Some locations even offer classes strictly for dogs.
Face feelers, also known as 'sensory scientists,' are trained to use their hands and judge the effectiveness of products like lotions, facial cleansers, and razors. Face feelers work part-time, but they can earn up to $25 per hour.
Professional cuddlers charge up to $80 an hour to snuggle with strangers. The downside: This work comes with its share of emotional burdens, says Portland-based cuddler Samantha Hess.
Professional TV watcher is a real job -- but it's not necessarily as easy as it sounds. According to an Investopedia.com article, pro TV watchers 'usually scan through different shows and news clips, and find the right clips that can be used on a television show or news program.' The article also says when Jimmy Kimmel was looking for a TV watcher back in 2005, his show was offering pay of $500 to $600 per week.
Ash portrait artists get creative with the remains of our loved ones. Following cremation, some people choose to hire these artists to create a token of remembrance, like a necklace or glass sculpture.
Breath odor evaluators typically work for companies that produce gum, mints, toothpaste, or mouthwash. They evaluate the effectiveness of these products and offer feedback to the manufacturers.
Dog food tasters (human ones) are hired by pet food companies to test the quality of their products. They also evaluate the nutritional value, and usually spit out the food once they taste it.
Chicken sexers determine the sex of a chick, relying heavily on intuition. Usually hired by commercial hatcheries, these professionals (who are more common in the UK and Japan) make up to $60,000 a year.
Professional line-standers do one thing most of us have no patience for: wait in line. These professionals are especially busy during big sales (think Black Friday) and product launches (new iPhone releases, for example). Rates vary, but one professional line-stander told Business Insider he earns up to $1,000 a week.
Fortune cookie writer is a real job, done by real people. Fortune cookie manufacturers usually hire freelancers or in-house writers to come up with inspiring or witty fortunes. EHow.com estimates that these professionals earn around $40,000 a year.
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