Friday, January 16, 2009
Today, after yesterday's decision to take the plunge into the world of journalism, I went into the world seeking inspiration.
I left my flat and turned right onto my road. I'd dressed appropriately, not just for the time of the year, but also for my chosen career path. This is the sort of thing I would have worn on a dress down Friday. Although, coincidentally, it was Friday anyway. But this would be my new apparel irrespective of the weekday in question. Unless I had an important meeting.
Smart casual, with serious leanings toward the latter. Converse sneakers, faded jeans, a plaid lemon shirt, underneath the grey jumper my Mum gave me for Christmas. She's always had such excellent taste.
I went into Specsavers and spent £300 of my redundancy package on clear glass spectacles with thick black frames.
Already feeling good I went into WH Smith and bought a new pen and 'reporters' pad - 100% recycled paper, made from post-consumer waste.
I looked the part.
All needed now was news.
I sat on a bench outside what was Woolworths on the high street. Not much happened for an hour or so, a woman sat next to me for ten minutes until her bus arrived. She was youngish, wearing a work uniform. Observation is key in journalism.
Some time after, a man arrived and started unlocking the metal mesh protective window protector of Woolworths. He would not be drawn on the issues that surround the collapse of the high street store.
The weather was inclement, although not any worse than it was yesterday.
For lunch I had McDonalds. I found a copy of Metro and read it from cover to cover seeking inspiration and stumbled across a story about a bus driver who refused to drive his bus because it carried an atheist slogan.
It got me thinking. Would God be angry that the bus driver had failed to turn the other cheek? Would God be angry with himself, or herself, for failing to turn the other cheek?
Religion is a contentious issue. Perfect for Citizan Journalists.
I thought this would make an interesting article for the readers of the Metro. So I carried out a poll on the highstreet. I simply asked the two questions I had posed myself earlier: Would God be angry that the bus driver had failed to turn the other cheek? Would God be angry with himself, or herself, for failing to turn the other cheek?
I asked 30 people. 4 people completely ignored me, 1 person was verbally abusive, 12 people said they didn't know, 2 people said yes and 11 said probably not.
I sent my findings to the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I had spent about two hours on the project (10 minutes background reading, 10 minutes considering the issues, 1 hour 30 mins collecting data and 10 minutes writing up the findings). I thought I would bill for the UK minimum wage allowance of £5.73 per hour. This seemed fair considering my inexperience.
I await a response.