Every night, at bars and dinner parties across Washington, one icebreaker question seems to be more common than others: “What do you do?” It sounds like a harmless query, but many Washingtonians bristle when the subject is broached. Some perceive it as emblematic of a networking-hungry culture that is far too pervasive in the nation’s capital. We talk about whether or not it’s just a garden-variety introductory question or if it is a problematic part of modern Washington culture.


  • Rev. Alisa Lasater Wailoo Pastor, Capitol Hill United Methodist Church
  • Jason Dick Senior Writer, Roll Call
  • Martin Austermuhle Producer / Reporter, WAMU.org

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