Work, work, work...
It's good to enjoy the simple pleasures in life: one of them for me recently has been the pictured Forgotten English calendar I found in the January sales. It has all kinds of discoveries lying in wait for fans of the quirky and strange.
Last Monday's entry was more thought provoking than usual as it highlighted all kinds of strange occupations found in the early days of the census. As well as showing us a snapshot of occupations long gone, it seems being a little subversive when we can has deeper roots too. Perhaps declaring Jedi Knight as your religion on the census return isn't quite so original after all.
It got me musing on how we spend most of our lives letting work define us. Often one of the early questions when meeting someone for the first time is so what do you do? The idea being to seek out the common ground with the people we're talking to. How much more refreshing (and enjoyable) it would be to be asked so what do you like to do?
When NAH and I first met we had occupations designed to make other people's eyes glaze over when meeting them: electronics and electrical engineer for him and systems analyst for me. Yawn. So we invented 'alternative careers' which we'd use when going out to parties and suchlike.
NAH alternated between designing shapes for dog biscuits and putting cones out on motorways - this was in the days well before John Major and the cones hotline - and I was a crazy paving designer. We were constantly amazed by how seriously these occupations were taken before our joke was rumbled and there was laughter all round.
Nowadays we don't work in the conventional sense and it's well before the age retirement is decreed for us, so I often see people struggling to slot us into the 'correct' pigeonhole when they meet us. The one marked Bloody Lucky will do, but I'm also finding the idea of using one or two of the occupations on the pictured list quite tempting ;)