Have you found a job thanks to Linkedin?

Hola. Hope you are well.

Every now and again I feel I should do something to elevate my career from its near comatose state. This was my mindset last summer, when whilst off work for 6 weeks (school holidays) and feeling energised, I decided to join Linkedin. I have to admit I didn’t really know what I was doing (I still don’t).

Since then, I’ve not really done much with it, til now. In the last week I’ve ‘connected’ with people who requested a connection, all people I already knew, is it technically networking if I already know them? In addition to this I now ‘follow’ a number of organisations, whatever that means.

Should you have any tips on how I can make the most out of being on Linkedin, feel free to let me know. Alternatively let me know if you’ve found a job thanks to Linkedin. Cheers. You can contact me via the comments button or on Twitter @anunknowncomic

Til next time, be nice to each other.

Should you have any spare time, check out my comedy prongcast

 

Who wants to change the world?

Hola. Hope you are well.

On leaving Newsnight, Jeremy Paxman effectively said, that trying to change the world is for thirteen year olds.

Is he right?

Are you older than a teenager and want to change the world?

If not change the world, as this may be overly ambitious, do you want to make a positive difference, whether that be to your family, the area you live, to the people you meet, or society in general?

Feel free to let me know your thoughts. You can contact me via the comments button or on twitter @anunknowncomic

Til next time, stay safe!

Prongcasts

Talking books

Hola. Hope you are well.

Katie Price recently released her 5th autobiography. That’s fifth autobiography, and she’s only 35. To write 5 books about yourself and still be in your 30s must mean she’s the most interesting person to ever walk this earth.

I’m surprised anyone can be so interesting and still have time to write (she also writes novels). I struggle to put these blog posts out with any regularity and I don’t do anything of much interest, so I have a lot of respect for Katie.

I’m must confess I’ve yet to read any of her autobiographies but maybe you have, if so, if I were to read only one of them which one would you recommend? You can let me know via the comments button.

Talking of autobiographies I’m currently reading Tony Cascarino’s ‘Full Time’, it’s fast becoming one of my favourite books. In it he mentions how he named one of his children Teddy after Teddy Sheringham, his striker partner when he was at Millwall. With this in mind, have you ever named your child after a work colleague?

And Finally… whilst we are talking books, I spotted used copies of the book I co-wrote selling for 1p (plus P&P) on Amazon. There maybe some out there asking why so expensive. In the past this news may have put me in a bad mood, but I quite like it, as I want as many people to read the book as possible. What I don’t understand is who makes money when books are priced at 1p, Amazon? The seller? The author? It’s definitely not the author. Should you know enlighten me, cheers.

Til next time, stay safe!

@anunknowncomic

Prongcasts

The people of Norwich need not worry

Hola. Hope you are well.

On last week’s blog post I was having a little moan about being underpaid by my summer job, and having to do a bit of admin in order to get what was owed to me. Yesterday I received the money, woohoo, I’m a winner. It’s only taken til bonfire night for me to get fully paid for a summer job.

Also last week I claimed back £1:35 from Transport for London, for an extra bus journey I was forced to make, through no fault of my own. I was on the phone for 6 mins reclaiming my money, so I may well be out of pocket. That’s the price of principles (stubbornness) Feel free to let me no of any petty stances you’ve made and the outcome. You can contact me via the comments button.

I’ve not just been complaining about transport, I’ve also been booking it, or attempting to. This is because I have a gig coming up in Norwich, and although I’ve known about this for months, it’s only now with a couple weeks to go I’ve turned my attention to booking a train. This has not proved to be that simple, mainly due to the fact that I will be going after work and the trains are now too expensive, so I decided a £7:50 coach was more to my liking. The problem I had with the coach was that it departs at 4pm and I don’t finish school til 3:15 and so wouldn’t be able to get a train to the coach station with enough time to spare. ‘Her With One Permanent Job’ suggested getting a taxi from school to the coach station. As a non taxi going person I had not thought of this, but realised this was the solution to my problem. Well, that’s what I thought, but although the distance is only 6.4 miles, taxi companies were saying  I needed to leave at least 50 mins to ensure I got there on time, due to traffic issues. This seemed somewhat ridiculous, especially when you consider a few weeks ago I ran 6.2 miles in 44mins (and 7 secs).

Before the people of Norwich get worried that I won’t be able to make it to the gig, my school kindly said I could leave early. I didn’t mention why, I didn’t want to prejudice my chances. People often think comedy is all glamour, glamour but when Russell Brand is not marrying and divorcing Katy Perry or introducing the Delai Lama on stage, he will be sorting out transport to Norwich and trying to fit it round his work in schools.

And Finally, I saw the story of a man who was charged with giving trick or treaters cocaine as opposed to sweets. Obviously this is wrong on many levels but it did make think, what have you received/given as an alternative to sweets to trick or treaters?

Til next week, stay safe!

Have you been overpaid?

Hola. Hope you are well.

I’m on half-term and I’m currently trying to do all those little jobs I’ve been meaning to do in the evening after work, only to put off til the weekend, only to realise that I don’t have the time to fit them in, on my two days off and the cycle begins again. Now doing these jobs, I can see why I didn’t do them in the first place.

One of the things I’ve had  to do is ring up my summer job, and explain that I’ve been underpaid. I spoke to a nice lady, who when I rang up asked me if “I’d been overpaid or underpaid”? Who in these tough economic times is ringing up their place of work to say they’ve been overpaid? I’m now imagining a scenario where someone’s ringing their work from a Caribbean Island, to ask if the £50 000 that was put in their account was supposed to happen or a mistake. Feel free to let me know if you’ve ever been overpaid by work, how much was it by and what did you do? You can contact me via the comments button.

Anyway, back to me and my pay discrepancy. You’d think in this situation, all they’d need from me is my name and maybe my National Insurance number and from that they’d be able to work out what is going on. As it happens for this to be sorted out I’ve had to go through my emails, looking for the payslips I’ve been sent, plus the dates I worked. This isn’t the hardest of tasks, it’s just a bit fiddley. My irritation comes from the fact this is not my fault and yet I’ve got to do someone elses’ job for them. I did my side of the bargain during the summer, I can’t remember anyone from payroll offering to do my job.

This is just a glimpse into the world of showbiz. This is the bit OK magazine don’t tell you about, probably for a good reason.

In some good news 3 Prong Attack (the double act I belong to) had a good gig last Thurs. I can’t help thinking I was influential in this happening as when we met up to talk about our set, I said that we should aim to get at least 2 laughs. I can’t imagine any other comedy duo having such a conversation. To most in the ‘laughter industry’, this would be considered a pre-requisite of the job.

The gig itself wasn’t without incident as the penultimate act, a white man, repeatedly used the ‘N’ word. I think he was trying to make some clever point about racism, but it wasn’t clear, so he just came across as a bit of a racist. The crowd took against him and booed him and told him to “Get off”! He ended his set by saying the audience were too thick to understand what he was doing, then pulled his pants down and waddled off stage. It may not have been his best gig, but some good did come from it, he’s now the new Chelsea captain.

Til next week, stay safe!

(Ps That ‘N’ word incident did happen, it wasnt just an excuse for me to do the Chelsea gag)

@anunknowncomic

Twin perks

Hola. Hope you are well.

Last week was a slightly different blog post, what with it focussing solely on former paedophile DJ Jimmy Savile. (as he’s now known)

It’s not been a great time for charity, because not only has Savile, a man who’s helped raise millions for children’s charities been exposed as a serial sex offender but Lance Armstrong, who set up his own cancer charity, has been outed as a drugs cheat. Just today (Mon 22nd Oct) he was stripped of all 7 of his Tour de France victories and banned from cycling for life, although I doubt the latter will have much effect on Lance what with him having already retired from the sport. I’m now so sceptical about those who front charity campaigns that I seriously doubt Pudsey has anything wrong with his eye.

It’s a shame about Lance Armstrong, because he was the man who started the whole wearing of wristbands to support campaigns. For a period of time in the early noughties any issue could be solved by wearing a rubber wristband, whether it be racism or poverty. They were simpler times back then.

Now on to me. Being  a TA in schools I don’t get many perks of the job (ie added extras) but last week two of them were on show. Firstly, due to my working day finishing at 3:15 (out the gate 3:18) I was able to get back home  in time for the rearranged England v Poland match that kicked off at 4pm. This was the game that had to be postponed the previous day due to a waterlogged pitch, despite the stadium having a roof. And secondly, as the drama class I assist in were going to see the musical Blood Brothers, I was allowed to go along as staff, getting in for free. The third perk comes along next week as it’s half-term.

I’m sure other people have more glamorous perks to their job, ‘Her With One Permanent Job’, for example, not only gets free tea and coffee but has also been out to Peru and Kenya with work and Prong 2 (from the 3 Prong Attack radio show) can get free tickets to a specific theatre show (although not this weekend, when ‘HWOPJ’ wanted to take her colleague from Kenya). Feel free to let me know what the perks of your job are. You can contact me via the comments button.

And Finally… The other two notable things I did this week included buying a huge box of soap powder for £13:99 and writing to a MP about Wonga.com, it’s all part and parcel of being an unknown comedian.

Til next week, stay safe!

@anunknowncomic

Who has keys to a hospital?

Hola. Hope you are well.

It’s hard to move these days without hearing another Jimmy Savile child sex abuse allegation. It’s hard to believe how widespread his actions were. It’s also unbelievable how quickly his reputation has been shattered. Before the ITV programme, ‘The Other Side of Jimmy Savile’ there were only ‘rumours‘ about him, mainly based on him being odd, looking odd, living alone and worshipping his dead mother.

After the programme aired, his family defended him by saying, these were ‘unfounded allegations’, a few days later they were removing his headstone. This was the result of continuous days of more and more people coming forward and saying they were victims of him. It got to the point where it wasn’t, will there be another revelation in the next day’s newspapers but from which decade it would come from.

At the time of writing the police are saying the cases of abuse span 6 decades and they are looking at 60 different lines of enquiry. It begs the question, how did he get away with it? How much did other people know? With it being so widespread, how was he not caught in the act? Some people have suggested that he got away with it because, “that was the culture” at the time, or he was able to get away with it because he was so powerful. How powerful was he? He was only a DJ and a children’s TV presenter (no disrespect to DJs and children’s TV presenters).

Others have said he was protected because he raised so much money for charity. I’m sure if given the choice, these charities would have preferred to have raised less money and not have a pervert as their patron. His charity work and fame does seem to have allowed him easy access to the vulnerable. For example, he was given a flat at a hospital and given keys allowing him access to various wards. Who has keys to a hospital? Especially when you’re an entertainer and not a medical person.I used to do hospital radio, and I wasn’t given keys to the radio studio, nevermind to areas where patients were.

It’s just a shame that these allegations have come out after he died. It would have felt more just if he were here in person to face these charges.

It may not be the most shocking thing about this case but who would have thought that something good could come from an ITV programme?

Til next time, stay safe!

We’re all European today

Hola. Hope you are well.

I presume we are all golf fans today, especially if like me you’re European? I am of course referring to the Ryder Cup and Europe’s epic comeback to take the trophy out of the hands of the Americans. At one point I was following the game via Ian Wright and Robbie Fowler‘s Twitter feeds. It’s just how I roll.That and not having Sky.

One of the big talking points surrounded the fact that Europe’s top play Rory Mcllroy almost missed his game y’day as he set his alarm wrongly. He made it with 10 mins to spare but this made me think what has been the most important thing you’ve been late for? (Feel free to contact me via the comments button).

Whilst we’re talking golf, I think one problem with the game, is that the thing you hit the ball with is called a golf club but the place where you might sign up to play the game is also called a golf club. Surely someone should have foreseen this, there is no excuse for having the same term, for two different things within the one sport.

Talking of Twitter (see 1st paragraph), I was having a text conversation with a friend yday and she said I should be on Twitter, as I would get a following. I had to remind her that  not only am I on Twitter but that we follow each other. That’s the impact I have on Twitter. Plus I’ve yet to see this following. Should you wish to swell the number of Followers I’m at @unknowncomic.

My month of working 7 day weeks has officially ended, as my summer job finished y’day. After banging on about having to work two jobs during September and having no lie ins for a month, once it was all over, it was slightly underwhelming as after a day of sanding and painting railings (more the young people than me), we said our goodbyes and then my mind turned to, “how do I get home”?

Working a month without a lie in has neither been really hard, nor has it been easy, like a recovering alcoholic I’ve just taken it day by day. The stupid thing is the first day I should be having a lie in, this Sat, I’m booked in to do a 10K run, so not only will I have to get up early but I have to run just over 6 miles as well.

I say it’s my last day working for this organisation but in mid November they want me to work as part of their Big Sleep Out, as you might have guessed, it involves sleeping outdoors for a night. It’s to raise money and awareness for a homeless charity. I wouldn’t normally gravitate to this kind of thing, but how often are you going to experience what it is like to be homeless. Although having said that, our landlady has recently informed us that she wants to put our rent up by 13.3% so maybe this will be preparation for a future life.

And Finally… I may have been working two jobs, but one of my friends currently has 5 jobs. You wouldn’t have thought there is enough hours in the day to have so many jobs, but this is the case. So in honour of my friend, can you compete with 5 jobs?

Til next week, stay safe!

Two and a half years is a long time in politics

Hola. Hope you are well.

On last week’s blog I mentioned how one of the comedians took half the audience with him, leaving 3 Prong Attack (my double act) to play in front of 3 paying audience members. In the days afterwards, ‘Her With One Permanent Job’ spotted him, as he works in the same building as her. This made me think me and Prong 2 should do our 5 min set at his work and the good thing about this is that most of the people he was with, at the gig, were his colleagues, so it would be poetic justice.

On Thursday, I had a rare lie in, as school started late for me. It was quite exciting, as the phrase goes, ‘in the kingdom of the 7 day working week, the lie in is king’ or something like that. I’m not sure I made best use of my lie in, as all I did in the morning was some washing up, some mopping and attempted to listen to Chris Moyles’s penultimate show on iPlayer. For those interested, I didn’t quite get to listen to the whole show before I had to leave for work, despite fast forwarding through songs and the news.

On Saturday evening I watched the film Remains of the Day (not necessarily my choice). It was 2 hours of suppressed love but because the love was so suppressed nothing actually happened. This is a film that is highly thought of, it was nominated for 8 Oscars, yet it did nothing for me. Feel free to let me know of classic films that have done nothing for you, or feel free to tell me why I’m wrong about Remains of the Day. (You can contact me via the comments button)

And Finally… a little bit of politics and Nick Clegg in particular. I couldn’t help thinking this week, what is Nick Clegg for? I imagine at quiet times, probably in the middle of the night, even Nick Clegg wonders what he’s for. Two and a half years ago he was seen as a bright new politician, admittedly this was based on the fact that during the televised leadership debates he was able to look into the camera and he was able to remember people’s names. In the world of politics this is a big deal. Now he’s just this anonymous figure, no use to anyone. I’m sure even Lib Dems see him as a liability. If you find anyone willing to admit they are a Lib Dem, ask them.

Last week Nick Clegg appeared on the internet apologising for not being able to prevent a rise in tuition fees, despite this being the policy they ran their election campaign on. I’m not sure why was he bringing attention to something that happened two and half years ago? Either apologise at the time or don’t mention at all, especially if that thing doesn’t show you in a good light.

Anyway in honour of Nick Clegg, when was the last time you’ve had to apologise?

Til next week, stay safe!

The naked truth

Hola. Hope you are well.

It’s been another varied week for me, for starters last night I was out doing a 3 Prong Attack gig. After it, I couldn’t help thinking I’ve overseen the end of open mic nights. Since moving to London and resuming my live comedy career, I’ve been to a fair amount of open mic comedy nights, possibly too many for my sanity. Don’t get me wrong, the idea of open mic comedy is honourable, ie giving new comedians stage time and more established comics the chance to try out new material, however in these tough financial times we find ourselves in, I’m not sure the public has much of an appetite for such nights.

We were on second in the second half and by that time, thanks to half the audience leaving with one of the acts who’d performed in the first half, we performed in front of 3 genuine punters, plus ‘Her With One Permanent Job’ and fellow comedians. It felt more like a workshop, rather than a comedy gig. As I said to Prong 2 on the relatively packed tube home, we would have been better served in terms of numbers, doing our act there and then. I’m sure the reaction of the commuters wouldn’t have been much difference to that of the audience at the gig.

In more uplifting news, last week I was corresponding with a radio presenter from a national radio station. This follows on from, former Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez, checking out my football blog. I say he checked it out, in reality, the person who answers his emails said he would pass on my email, which contained a link to my football blog. But we shouldn’t let fact get in the way of a good story.

Which kind of leads into my next piece, as last week I also emailed, This Morning, Sky News and BBC Trust to see if after the revelations the Hillsborough investigation unearthed, whether these TV companies would be employing Kelvin Mackenzie as a mouthpiece on their show(s). Kelvin Mackenzie after all, was the editor of The Sun who days after the tragedy, with no evidence decided to print on their front page, as fact, that Liverpool fans were stealing from the dying/dead and were urinating on officers who were trying to assist fans. As I pointed out to these broadcasters Kelvin Mackenzie was at best grossly incompetent and at worse, guilty of spreading malicious untruths against the dead and causing extreme pain to grieving families. At the time of writing, I’ve yet to have a replay back.

And Finally… in a show of solidarity with our future Queen, Kate Middleton, I’ve decided I won’t be buying French Closer from this day forward. It’s a sacrifice I’m prepared to make.

Til next week, stay safe!

@anunknowncomic