I’ve been getting a few email and online responses to my column today on “Extreme Jobs.” The first email was in my inbox at 6:30 a.m. with the subject heading, “Extreme Jobs my ass.”

Oh boy, I thought, someone got up early to tell me that working 70 hours a week is nothing and that I’m just too lazy to know it. Turns out the writer is just a cynical, bitter information technology worker who recognized himself in the “extreme jobs” definition – except the bit about outsized compensation. He works so hard because he’s afraid of losing his job to a cheaper worker overseas.

Another posted online to say he had a job like that, but didn’t love it as the Extreme Jobs study concluded so many do. He worked that hard because it was only way he could afford to live in San Diego.

I have to disagree with this particular argument. I’m a freelance journalist married to a high school teacher and we manage. It’s not easy to live here on our salaries, but we do OK without accumulating debt.

We have bought and sold a condo since moving here in 2003. Of course, we don’t have any kids, but I don’t intend to spoil ours with things like PlayStation3s and fancy college educations.

Kidding on that last bit. Of course we’ll get them a PlayStation. Anyway, my point is you don’t have to work 60-, 70-, 80-hour work weeks to enjoy a life in San Diego, and if you are working that much you probably aren’t enjoying life here anyway.

CATHERINE HOCKMUTH

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