No more 9 to 5 guy

October 27, 2006

Sorry it’s been over a week since my last post. I’ve been distracted by events in that strange ‘real-world’ place; that shadowy limbo outside the bright colours of the blogosphere. Do you remember when ‘real-world’ was the only world…?

Er… anyway, before I start wandering off into dumb-ass philosophical wittering, the fact is – I’ve been busy resigning from my comfortable 9-5 job. A brave new self-employed future beckons. Will the new year bring me untold wealth and personal freedom, or leave me homeless and unable to afford even the humblest of veg box deliveries? Who knows? Who cares? Probably not Hugh Firmly-Witteringstall.

Shortly after resigning, I found a photocopied notice had been pinned above my desk. [ To set the scene: I work in a small, dark office in the bowels of one of this nation’s most prestigious cultural institutions – think art and design, Great Exhibition, South Kensington, Da Vinci and Kylie Minogue exhibitions, ‘great cafe, with a museum attached’ etc… ]. The notice was a resignation letter, apparently written by a museum employee called Francis Douce in 1811. It goes like this…


Reasons For Resignation

1. The nature of the constitution of the Museum altogether objectionable

2. The coldness, and even danger, in frequenting the great house in winter.

3. The vastness of the business remaining to be done & continually flowing in.

4. The total impossibility of my individual efforts, limited, restrained and controlled as they are, to do any real, or at least much, good.

5. An apparent… system of espionage throughout the place & certainly a want of due respect towards & confidence in the officers.

6. The total absence of all aid in my department


9. The want of society with the members, their habits wholly different & their manners far from fascinating & sometimes repulsive.

10. The want of power to do any good, & the difficulty of making the motley & often trifling committees sensible that they could do any.

11. The general pride & affected consequence of these committees.

12. Their assumption of power, that I think not vested in them.

13. Their fiddle faddle requisition of incessant reports, the greatest part of which can inform them of nothing, or, when they do, of what they are generally incapable of understanding or fairly judging of.


Ring a bell with those of who’ve had the pleasure of working in the public sector?

It made me chuckle, although myself, I’ll be leaving the museum with a wee lump in my throat, being a sentimental type. But tomorrow it’s back to more important matters – a new, unsullied, virgin veg box will be appearing on our doorstep. A veg box is for life, a job is just for Christmas.

10 Responses to “No more 9 to 5 guy”

  1. Henrietta Says:

    Self employed as what – this sounds very intriguing! Are you starting up a veg box franchise 😉

  2. gastropunk Says:

    henrietta, a veg box franchise would be fun (though I imagine it involves hard work and early mornings). but no, nothing related to organics or food – i’m going freelance as a web developer. so if anyone wants a web site building, i’m your man. although if guy wants to employ me as a publicist for riverford, my independence could be bought, for the right price…

  3. oldbirdofdevon Says:

    Good luck gastropunk. I think you’ll do fine because you’re a Leo and you write really well. Unscientific I know but you’re a winner and that’s all there is to it. Looking forward to the next instalment….

  4. crzy_rgntnn Says:

    Congratulations, MrTalented! 5 days without posting did make me wonder what were you up to…

    You will do very well! (if you stay in London, that is. Don`t move to Spain!)

    Here is the real business: Outsource all the work from Argentina! I will get you the developers and the designers at low cost! 🙂

  5. Welcome back Gastropunk, we were worrying about you, our imaginations working overtime – Had you sped down to Dorset to rescue Mathschick from the clutches of International Cauliflower Smugglers – or just got ‘flu?
    We must all make the most of the next few days, because once you’re self employed you’ll have no time or energy left for delighting the rest of us with your life-and-veg thoughts.
    We do wish you well in your new (ad)venture and please don’t forget us all entirely.

  6. gastropunk Says:

    hey everybody, thanks for your messages – and your confidence in me! i hope to have more time to spend on this blog once i’m freelancing, but i guess it depends how much work comes my way.

    crzy, good idea on the outsourcing – we should get some kind of transatlantic anglo-argentine agency thing going… it’s a global economy, man…

    spinning_jeni, maths chick runs the International Cauliflower Smugglers, so no worries there…

    oldbirdofdevon, you obviously know Leos are suckers for compliments 🙂

  7. BB's Richard Says:

    GP – good luck in the freelancing be it freelance web design or recipe design. Or how about taking the blog on tour? Great organic foods of Britain…. Get yourself a book deal too!

  8. gastropunk Says:

    BB’s Richard, cheers for the message. You offering a book deal? Know anyone in the publishing business? But does the world need yet another glossy coffee-table cook book? Besides, a blog is better than a book – it’s all about community, collaboration, gettin’ together and feelin’ alright, yadda yadda…

  9. Clara Bow Says:

    Good for you. I resigned from Historic Royal Palaces at the start of this year without a ‘real’ job to go to and it was one of the most exhilirating (but scary) things I have ever done (bar getting divorced!) so know what it’s like leaving a major institution. Good luck and think about how much time you’ll have to think, write, photograph about food.

  10. academicmum Says:

    Gosh missed this! What a big step – and there’s not a lot to add to spinning-jeni’s and Clara’s spot-on comments.

    There’s nothing like really being in charge of your worklife – no doubt, like a romanesco in Autumn, you’ll flourish.

    But a man must eat – so please do somehow keep up the community, collaboration, yadda yadda stuff.

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