Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Time To Burn Some Bridges

Before I became a writer I was a stand-up comedian. Before I did that I worked in Royal Mail Customer Services. For far too long.

When I was doing stand-up I always refrained from having a pop at my old day job in writing, partly out of fear that the comedy would prove to be a fad. It would all fall through and I would end up knocking on the door of my old boss with an embarrassed grin.

“Ooh, it’s the comedian!” he would say, meaning quite the opposite. And he would point me to my old desk, waiting for me much as I left it, with the addition of mould in my mug and a thin patina of dust and despair.

Well, the comedy didn’t fall through. I have now moved onto writing, with stand-up as the new safety net, secure in the knowledge that should the worst come to the worst I can knock on the door of my old stand-up agent with an embarrassed grin.

“Ooh, it’s the writer!” she’ll say, meaning “You failed as a writer.” as I strap on my big clown shoes one more time.

All of which meandering pre-amble means that Royal Mail Customer Services is now fair game for a right kicking. I don’t mind burning my bridges in the mail carrying customer services industry. I don’t think that decision will cause me to starve any time soon.

I’m building this up as though there is a big revelation I’ve been bottling up for years:
(“They burn the mail you know. I seen ‘em. Big piles of it. And they dance round it, chanting.”) but there isn’t, not really.

All this is, really, is me giving myself permission to tell some tales from my past. Some of which may not paint my employer in a particularly good light.

But hey, they should have thought about that before they burnt all that mail. Am I right?

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