Tag Archives: Metro

Working 9-5 (what a way to make a living)

26 Sep

Dolly Parton wasn’t too keen on the daily grind of working 9-5, and as someone who doesn’t have a Monday-Friday job, I’m a mere wannabe hack  after all, I miss out on all the things that folks like Dolly have to do.

One definite advantage Ms Parton might comment on is not being stuck in rush-hour traffic. I don’t have to get up at the crack of dawn and battle it out whenthe traffic starts jumpin’ on the morning commute.

Fellow commuters are sleep-deprived, cranky at having to be awake at such an ungodly hour and the thought of being squashed together with other people sardine-style.

If you’re lucky enough to sit down this may involve balancing precariously on the edge of a seat while the next person elbows you as they read the Metro. But if you fail to grab the last seat and are left standing (bad times) you may have the delight of becoming intimately acquainted with someone’s armpit. Joy.

Rush hour commute: not quite at Indian levels... yet

Another advantage is you don’t have a nightmare of a boss who never gives you credit for the hard work you do. You don’t clash with work colleagues because, quite simply, you don’t have any.

Flexi-hours come into their own as a wannabe. Lie-in? Go on then. Gourmet-style breakfast instead of a rushed bowl of cornflakes? Of course, you can’t work without eating properly. All day pyjama session? Why the hell not? Sneaky 90-minute lunch break, well, because it’s you….

Sounds like a dream. But in fact like sick days, which you can’t truly appreciate if you really are unwell, being a wannabe instead of an actual player isn’t as good as it sounds.

You may not have to get up really early, but when you do, what do you actually do? Pottering around in your PJs until 11am (or all day, let’s face it we’ve all done it) may feel like a guilty pleasure, but what happens when the novelty wears off? Then it’s time to face up to the fact that you’re a grown woman without a job wearing a novelty, albeit comfortable, elasticated flannel suit. Nice.

Flannel lover: Bridget Jones, champion of pyjama-wearing

As someone who has done the London and Manchester rush-hour commute (often wedged between a Chinese tourist and a greying businessman) I long to get back in the game. When I wasn’t clinging to the edge of a seat or a handrail, I enjoyed people-watching. Whether it was imagining what job they did, coming up with editorial ideas, or having a chat (yes this even happened in London!) more often than not I enjoyed rather than endured the daily commute.

Nightmare boss and annoying colleagues? Bring them on! There’s nothing more demoralising than not speaking to someone in a work capacity for an entire eight hours. You may not like Steph from admin, but at least you can say hello to her, and then talk to Debbie, who you do like…. about Steph.

And if you indulge in huge breakfasts and lengthy lunches everyday, the only change you’ll see is in your waist-band (which you won’t notice straight-away because you’re wearing pyjamas all the time.) It’s a dangerous cycle.

I look forward to the day when the alarm clock screams me awake, I only have time to grab a piece of toast before I head out of the door and I’m in the same boat as a lot of  my friends having a ‘nightmare’ commute. Then I’ll get the chance to spend eight hours with people at work before heading home, kicking my heels off and feeling satisfied at a job well done.

For now it’s job applications, buckets of tea and, of course, pyjamas.