When you finish every shift pissed off at the stupidity of people around you, it’s time to move on.
In 1976 I was a stage magician. Total props, one paper bag and a handful of fingers. I made no money at all but had a good time. And got some good reviews.
As a scientist I worked with an artificial ruminant and invented a lab scale estuary and a plastic pig gut. I got in the news for the artificial cow. Nobody will remember that. It was about 35 years ago.
Still didn’t get rich, in fact I once ended up broke and homeless for a while, lived in a car and tent and other people’s sofas and less comfortable places but it was fun. All of it.
Money never mattered to me. It was just handy stuff to live on and any excess was there to buy junk. I bought a lot of junk. A hell of a lot of junk. It’s come in handy in the last few years because junk sells well on eBay and it covered bills when I had no income at all. It still helps cover bills now I have a small income.
Over three years ago, when self employment failed after seven good years, I chucked it all in and became a janitor. My plan then was to wait it out until the pension kicked in. Science was pretty much fucked anyway. Alcohol unit allowances, five a day, third hand smoke… it was all just being made up. The whole thing was fiction and I could write fiction too. I just couldn’t pass it off as real.
I can’t go back to science now. There is nothing to go back to. It’s all a sham. Oh I can write fiction but I’m not going to take money to pretend it’s fact. I was never that shallow. I can’t just do it for the money. It shouldn’t be about that. It wasn’t, but it is now.
Working with manager level intelligences is now starting to grate. How do these people find their way out of bed in the mornings? Who ties their shoes for them? What in the name of Satan’s gassy arse is controlling what passes for thoughts in their heads? What the fuck happened to basic logic?
It was fun at first. Playing with people who could be convinced that going into labour at night is what makes black babies happen was a lot of fun. Still, after three years of it, the stupid just gets boring.
There has been a lot of stupid at work lately. Too much to cope with. Oh the job was beneficial to me. It has improved my physical fitness immensely, shown me how mindless the general public can really be and taught me something very important.
I now know why, after many years of being a lecturer in health, cleaning and disinfection and so on, the procedures that should prevent any incidence of food poisoning do not work. I know why food poisoning outbreaks happen and I know exactly how to fix it. Permanently.
But I am not telling anyone this information on janitor money.
I might take the knowledge to my grave. I have applied for a job as a water hygiene tester, a job as a journalist and a job as a furniture salesman. I’ll apply for more tomorrow. I’m not going to be a janitor much longer and I’m not going back to science. There are so many other things to do.
Eventually I want to be a writer but that’s a hard road to get on to. You need time to write but when you’re always chasing the next bill it’s impossible to find time to relax and do it. It’s been like that for too many years now. I will not take the Rowling route and do it on benefits (even though she must by now have paid back more in tax than she ever got in benefits). It’s the same pride thing that had me sleeping in a car or shed when I could have called home for help. I just have to fix it myself, it’s my way.
Ah but imagine the life of making enough to live on by writing. I dream of it. You want to go somewhere, just close your laptop and go. You don’t have to make millions. Just enough to live on.
Money. It’s a pain in the arse.