Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Occasional Irritated Blog

As you know, Bob, I've been out of work for a bit. So I have an employment advisor. I made a big mistake last time I was supposed to see her. I overslept. I was a bit worried about volunteering at a shop in town. It's nothing serious, just the residue of a social anxiety so crippling I hadn't worked in half a decade. She was upset I missed our last meeting, so when we met this morning I got loads of unusual questions. It's reminded me of the importance of deceit. I shouldn't have told her the truth about why I missed our last session. I ought to have lied. When I went along today I should not have responded honestly to her questions, as it's only got her annoyed with me.

I've been applying for admin jobs for a while. One sits in an office, entering stats into a computer, and waits with growing boredom for the day's end. I know this is what they are like, because they are the only 9-5 form of employment I have had, and three different employers had the same impact. Roughly the same impact: the first job was so boring (typing up documents) that I would get home and lie on the carpet for half an hour as blood gradually flowed back to my brain. I'd like to say this is comic exaggeration, but it isn't. Some people might like them, but I'm not one. Nonetheless, these are the jobs I've been advised to apply for. I have good qualifications, but a terrible (atrocious, dreadful, abominable, diabolical?) work history, so I accept they are a necessary stepping-stone.

Sadly, "stepping-stone" was an even worse thing to say. She asked if I thought such jobs were beneath me, and I said the worst thing possible: "Er." I won a lecture on my ego, and an admonition to find a job I really want to do which can fill the time until I can go into teaching. Problems: I don't know what I want to do because I haven't got the breadth of work experience. Asking for help gets the awful answer "Only you know what you will enjoy doing." Third problem: this doesn't mesh with the mindless government job-seeking orders, which are to check their website and apply for one job daily, and to check several other places and apply for one job from each every week. By telling the truth I have just increased my pointless workload by at least 10%. I say pointless because nobody ever gets back to me. I have had maybe half a dozen responses in the past year and a half, and one invitation to interview. I reached that place and there wasn't anywhere to park in their car park. Or in the road outside. Or in any adjacent car park.

I furrowed my brow pathetically, and sought to convey those ideas with words, but failed abominably, as I only got the same spiel again. So now I have to do all the government-mandated job applications, which never get any results, and I have to come up with some job I can pretend means something special to me. In a word, it's been a frustrating morning. I shall have to get my skates on, finish off this spectacular apartment building, and then demand GW Nottingham gives me a job building scenery for them! And pigs might fly. Yes.

Frustrating as this bureaucratic rot is for me, it's a lot worse for many people. I'm fine, really. The worst that'll happen if the government stop throwing money at me is that I won't be able to put petrol in or buy insurance for my car to get to job interviews which never manifest! Spare a thought for my friends, J&T. T's mum's unwell, but the much-hated ATOS have cut the disability benefits she has relied on for years, annihilating their cash reserves. I spent a couple of months working for a big building society once, and I realised the job wasn't for me when I spent Christmas Eve writing threatening letters to people behind on their payments. I left shortly after, though they'd wanted me to stay on permanently. After all, all that's necessary for evil to triumph is that the good do bugger all when confronted with it.


  1. Sorry to hear about this... does remind me how lucky I am though. A friend has recently been forced to move to Switzerland from Portugal in an attempt to find gainful employment and that sounds atrocious.

    Good luck navigating the mandated job applications and fingers crossed you find something related to teaching.

  2. Accountants are now unpaid tax collectors more than ever. I struggle to ask clients to stop buying their children shoes (say) so they can joyfully pay the new property tax. But if I gave up, those clients would be in a worse position. There is no answer short of revolution (Bert's daily suggestion).

  3. If you plan to go into teaching why not look for teaching assistant work? It will be good experience.

  4. Thankee, Tristan. Knight, believe me when I say I am. There's just bugger all hereabouts. I've found two teaching-related jobs hereabouts, both at the same place, and which I'll be applying for.

    Gervan, I'm more inclined toward revolution daily. Don't tell Dad! :-D On the plus side: I'm not in Cyprus.

  5. It's a rough old time that's for sure. If we come out the other end, the country will be tougher.

    I don't know what you teach, but maybe you could look into running private tuition over Skype or similar, maybe to other countries even.

    It could also be possible to put together plans for the terrain you make, and maybe other gaming related things, and put them up as pdfs on Wargame Vault for example.


    That could start off low level as a hobby business for bonus pennies and go somewhere big, especially if you pulled together more people and got a loose-linked studio going.

    Going self-employed is easier than it might seem to be too. In very general terms it's knowing what rules cover what you do and then keeping careful track of what you earn and spend and filling in a form once a year. As far as I know, you can be self-employed alongside other jobs, and it might even work out easier in some way for the employer.

    1. Tougher or broken, aye! ;)

      Just an aspiring teacher of history here, though if that goes too badly awry I can throw Latin and Ancient Greek at kids until they "shut up and sit down"! :D

      I probably could put up some plans for a lot of what I've done - those bunkers would be pretty easy, for instance. Thankee, Porky. I'll take a look at that!


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