On the IxDA mailinglist, Chris Dame pointed the subscribers to a US News article on the best careers for 2008 which featured "Usability/User Experience Specialist" on the list of best careers!
The article is a bit heavy on the usability engineer side and a little light on the user experience side but to the general audience that this article was written for, it's a good description of what a lot of people in our field do.
The day in the life" sidebar got some push-back from the IxDA subscribers because it managed to leave out the design part of our job entirely (unless you consider "make recommendations for changes" a description of design activities). I mostly agree but must also say I liked the tone of the section very much. How do you feel about this description of a requirements gathering session: "While you make suggestions and raise questions, for the most part you're a listener. You leave the room with a list of musts, maybes, and questions about the prospective product."? And the last sentence is a realistic description of how I usually feel after a project: "The final product ends up incorporating only some of what you had hoped for, but you still feel a sense of pride for having helped ensure that the [product] will be more effective and pleasurable to use."
I will work to keep this job on the list of best careers in 2009!