One thing that’s neat about being a geologist is that it sounds exotic and super-scientific to many non-scientists.
One of my closest friends is an editor, and we go to a lot of meet and greet type events and functions for various organizations (she’s single, I’m wingwoman). When we tell people about our respective jobs, folks are generally super excited to hear about my work, to the extent that I sort of feel bad that my friend gets neglected. Hey, she’s the single one here!
Once I start telling folks what I actually do, they’re generally not quite as awed. I mean, collecting dirt from rust-belt cities and sending it off for analysis isn’t quite the same thing as spending 6 months on the side of a volcano in some tropical location.
But as I’ve said before, I always like to be presented in public as a female scientist, so I can help dispel the myth that geologists are all sunburnt, 60 year old men who have permanent tilley hats attached to their heads*.
*ok, so I have a tilley-style sun hat while in the field. But it comes off (with great relief) once I'm back.