Alternative title: If I want to drink Super Strength lagers out of a sweaty wellington boot while sitting on a questionably stained sofa with the rest of the dole-scum at 8:30am then I will alright!? …Trousers and blowing chunks optional…being able to discuss and critically evaluate ‘Obsessive Compulsive Cleaners‘ at various levels of incoherent whittering is essential (extra points given for how to avoid chundering when dealing with a blocked and possibly overflowing crapper).
“How’s unemployment treating you?” my ex-colleague asked “still got all your fingers?”
I’m going to assume my ex-colleague was referring to my amazing knife juggling skills (or lack of), or referring to town rivalries…or maybe he was just being a pervert. Either way I could safely answer that I did indeed have all my fingers, 6 on each hand to be precise (used my toes to count them and everything). What wasn’t so easy to answer was his first question.
How is unemployment treating me?
“Unemployment is…ok I guess” my response was rather lacklustre.
In truth my situation now is better than the one I left, yes it comes with it’s own worries but these are manageable and at the moment within my control. It’s certainly preferable to crying in my car out of panic at the prospect of another day in a job that was destroying me at an alarming rate.
“Not a JK addict yet then? If not you soon will be, then the next thing you’ll be doing is sitting around in your underpants drinking cheap beer!” He followed this statement with a couple of smiley faced emoticons, but to me this wasn’t really something that is said in jest. More often than not people assume that if you’re unemployed that means you are perfectly happy to roll out of bed just before the afternoon barrage of TV turd begins, and that you’ll just stay there in your week old undercrackers (which by this point could be used as adhesive for wallpaper) slopping food down your front and finding crisp crumbs in your belly button (if you have an inny not an outie obviously).
It isn’t a lifestyle I’ve become accustomed to yet.
Hopefully it is one I will never become accustomed to.
You see, I do try to keep a decent sleeping pattern (though my Insomnia isn’t happy with that arrangement) and I can be found walking my dog in a zombie like state at 8:30-9ish in a morning (in actual clothes not pyjamas…a onesie does naff all in a downpour and you end up dragging your soggy ass down the street using feet encased in cement-like slippers). If I’ve had a night of fractured sleep I will probably have spent the hours between 4:00am and 8:00am trawling jobs boards and saving anything of interest for a further nosy/application later (after my brain has been given enough coffee to function and I can actually manage to remember my own name…pretty sure Lady Banoffee McTartlet isn’t it).
The remainder of the day alternates between job applications (covering letters and CV’s all need tailoring to the respective adverts…a common sense nugget I’ve been told so many times that I may have it tattooed across my backside – yes my butt is that big), tasks related to these applications (dealing with the brick wall that is Recruitment Agencies), slamming my face off the table at the repetitive nature and futility of it all. Rinse, repeat.
It’s during the walks with the pup that I came across a housing estate I used to live in, I initially went there for nostalgia’s sake (seeing a wheelbarrow on a roof will do that to you) and ended up discussing life, the universe and everything with a group of rather inebriated folks sitting on a brown sofa (the answer of course, being 42). I should point out that the sofa was actually on the street, infront of a post box…a bit of tarpaulin was being used as a shelter.
“I like your dog” the woman had said during our first meeting – the fact she wasn’t licking her lips told me she wasn’t going to eat him with a bowl of cheap noodles.
“I like your….dressing gown….” I responded glancing at a what looked like the skin of a Sasquatch “it’s very….vintage”.
“Lager?” she asked, shoving a welly in my direction, it was the greenest ‘lager’ I had ever seen. I declined her offer, it was before 11am after all (as an aside: how many units of alcohol is there in a welly?).
I’ve been back to the sofa many a time on the walks since (never sat down though – I don’t fancy getting a tetanus jab), there is always someone sitting there passing the time of day with people who walk by.
Sometimes it’s just nice to talk to people about something other than job hunting…not sure I will ever try the welly lager though.