(or, another reason not to be a journalist)
I had a shockingly expensive insurance quote today, seemingly for being a journalist. Typical.
I have been wanting to do this for over 15 years, since the needles & knives made vetalisting (er, being a vet) impossible. I edited a newspaper for 100,000 students, but that never really seemed to count because we had no qualifications or much clue. Then I spent more time than any other British citizen being an intern, learning the craft from Harry (ha!). OK, so I didn’t want to be a journalist enough to revise enough for the law exams, but even so, happy was the day when I could fill in my first form with ‘occupation: journalist’ without feeling I was somehow pretending.
After all that, I now find it’s a risky profession.
‘Well, what sort of journalist are you?’ they asked, as I tried to reassure them I wouldn’t be using my scooter to investigate the crack dens of East London. ‘Well, I’m sort of a production journalist’, I said, feeling like I was pretending again. ‘I do layout and sub-editing and, er... I work for a religious magazine. It’s really very innocent. I don’t do any reporting really, except sometimes about Africa and I’m not planning to ride there on my scooter’.
‘Can we call you an administrator?’
‘Well, I suppose so’, I bristled, snobbishly. ‘My actual job title is Production Manager, as it happens’.
They perked up a little at that. But the quote was still nearly £1000, so they put me through to a cheaper competitor, the sort who deals with dangerous types presumably, with the advice ‘perhaps best to say production manager, not journalist.’