It is one of the great debates of our time, right up there with ‘Why doesn’t Porky Pig Wear Pants’ (a question we will address in depth at another time)…WHERE DID BARNEY WORK?
While the subject of Barney’s occupation (that is, if he worked at all) was never given during the original series (I smell a cover up), subsequent spinoffs suggest Barney went to work at the Slate Rock and Gravel Company quarry alongside Fred … but we know this is total bullshit as Barney always dropped Fred at the quarry then picked him up at the end of the day. Although, Barney does seem to know most of Fred’s coworkers and is often around the quarry he never does seem to actually be employed there.
Don’t despair … there are clues … one episode does have a brief scene of Barney talking on the phone to Fred from where he works and a sign on the wall behind him that says ‘Granite Building’ … but there is no hint of what he does there…? Betty implies that Barney is in “top secret” work so, assuming he is American, perhaps he worked for a branch of the CIA or the FBI. This seems unlikely as Barney was a member of the ‘Water Buffalo’s’ and, obviously, that would be a conflict.
Yes, this may remain one of the great mysteries of out time …. that and, ‘How did Wiley Coyote pay for all that stuff he ordered from ACME’? … better leave that for another day.