As an idealistic young, healthy, journalist I imagined my words would change the world, that my name would be up inlights and that fame and fortune would come my way.
Approximately five minutes after opening my wage packet as a trainee reporter, I realised the latter was out of reach and resigned myself to starving in a garre t as I instigated world peace and uncovered stories that would rock the world, paragraph by paragraph. Two weeks after that, after my byline had been spelled incorrectly and then missed alogether at the top of my stories, I realised fame was unlikely to come my way. So I was left with words, journalistic integrity and a resignation that the difference I could make would be small and on a case by case basis - but difference nonetheless.
So, fully educated inthe world of journalism, I then embarked upon all the cliches I swore I would avoid as an irrating young trainee.
1. A lifelong tea drinker, I am now addicted to coffee, a trait shared by wordsmiths and media types across the world.
Two hours without and I’m seen pale and shaking until a restorativedose is administered.
2. I’m late for everything. Once you have seen one deadline you’ve seen them all and its considered our duty as reporters of the finest ilk to push, challenge and stretch them to our maximum advantage - usually when the printers want to go home for their tea.
This translates into real life - with standard procedure to invite me to events an hour earlier than is strictly necessary.
4. I am now the deepest cynic ever to walk the earth. When people tell me something my immediate reaction is to question their motives, wonder what’s in it for them, and look for the gaps in their statements.
This does not always go down well with waiters, call centre operatives or my dad.
5.I consider cakes, biscuits and crisps a food group and indeed, life giving force.
You get the picture.. but don’t think I’ve given up on journalism. I may be caffeinated and poor but I still love words and journalism. But I’d better go. I’m late...