Jumat, 16 Oktober 2015

Interview with the Slacker #1

The first in another occasional series... this time it's interviews with other folks who have eschewed the rat race in favour of a life of tea drinking and talking bollocks. First up, it's Tim. Say hello, Tim...

Tim: Hi, I'm Tim. I'm one of four members of The Band With No Name, along with Slacker here.

S: So what do you avoid doing for a living then?

Tim: I'm currently a supply teacher. I got made redundant a couple of years ago when my old school converted to academy status, and all the staff's employment rights co-incidentally got thrown out of the window. I don't suppose being the Union rep helped my case any... I currently work in a complete shithole of a school whose catchment area is the sink estate from hell. Not the greatest prospect, I know, but then expectations are conveniently low. I gave up on any notion of actially teaching a long time ago - what I do now begins and ends with crowd control.

S: Sounds fucking awful. 

Tim: It is. Things are set to get even worse though, as it's now possible to get a job teaching in a school with no qualifications. So nowadays the latest fad is to get anyone who isn't actually dead and call them a Cover Supervisor, paying them about half what a qualified supply teacher would cost. So pretty soon I won't have any work at all.

S: Any idea what you're gonna do next?

Tim: The school system is pretty much finished for me. I'm going to keep doing the supply stuff as long as I can stand it and look for something working outside. I do some volunteering with the RSPB at a local reserve, conservation stuff and I'm thinking of re-training to get into that sort of work.

S: Sounds good... hard work though?

Tim: Well, yeah but if it's something you enjoy... I can only stand teaching because of the holidays, I've long since stopped seeing them as a great bonus or anything.

S: Do you have any strategies to share for getting through the stress of having a shitty job like that?

Tim: The biggest one for me is the band! (laughs) It means a lot to be able to hang out with a group of like-minded people and make a sound that's exactly how we want it to be. It's the idea of having something that's completely under our control, you know? There's no-one to censor it, we can do whatever we like. Agen poker

S: I know what you mean. I even think it would be a compromise to release recordings or play gigs, because that would be an acknowledgement that the sounds we create are for the benefit of someone other than us.

Tim: You just don't want to lug the equipment about! (laughs)

S: Busted. Anyway... for the benefit of anyone thinking of doing supply work, how do you manage to cover the bills when you may not have regular work?

Tim: Well, you either need an understanding landlord - and good luck finding one of those - or you need some sort of alternative accommodation. About 10 years ago, when I was a bit more flush than I am now, I bought a canal boat. It needed a fair bit of interior work, and 10 years on it's nearly done. So now I just have mooring fees, bottled gas and food to pay for. Boat dwellers are generally liable for Council Tax, but if they don't know where you are...

If I don't get any work for a couple of weeks or so I sign on. There's no problem with short periods of unemployment like this, as you're not on the dole long enough for them to hassle you, and when the money eventually arrives it's a handy bonus. They make it as hard as possible, naturally, but once you've done it a couple of times you'll know the procedure better than the drones themselves!

S: Any thoughts for the future?

Tim: It's a tricky one that, I try not to think about it too much as today is what's important. Today is the only day we're sure we going to have. At the same time I know a lot of people in my situation (i.e. without a decent pension) may face an uncertain future. That said... if I do have to work on into my dotage, at least if I'm doing something I enjoy then it could be worse. A full-on teaching career would probably see me dead long before retiring age anyway!
Source : http://theslackerscafe.blogspot.com/2015/10/interview-with-slacker-1.html

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