26.11.11

Six Types of Teachers Who Suck

I recently decided that having two useless university degrees is not enough, so I want to apply for a third.


Not just any degree, either: a PGCE. For those of you not from the United Kingdom of Everything's Fucking Complicated and Absurd, PGCE stands for "Professional Graduate Certificate of Education". (Or "Postgraduate Certificate of Education," I dunno. I'm getting conflicted accounts.) Basically, what that means is that I want to be a teacher.

I've thought about this before. I've always wanted to teach. If Ph.D.s weren't so time-consuming and difficult, I'd give them a try to become a lecturer -- although I hate the research part, as my own dissertation reminded me daily last summer.

(My feelings on the matter of research.)

I think this decision came now because I've reached a point where university life is over, most of my friends are away, I'm working a casual job that isn't even remotely stimulating (unless serving food excites you) and it's going to take at least a year to get a proper job in the social care or criminal justice or media sector.

In other words, life is kinda shit at the moment.

(Except it was the other way around for me. Stupid health and appearance regulations.)

Anyway, I've not just been thinking about it, I've started the (lengthy and demoralising) process of applying. And since I began, I've been thinking about the teachers I had in primary and secondary school, and who were good and who were bad. Not all teachers are bad, but some of them were absolutely terrible. The worst part is that when a teacher sucks, it can really affect your life and your future: it's not like a sucky barista who will annoy you for the two seconds it'll take you to get your coffee and fuck off and then you'll forget about him. No, a sucky teacher can stay with you for years, and terrible high-school experiences can be life-forming, especially if they could've been prevented by a more capable teacher. So, here's the six types of teacher I never, ever hope to be:

#1. The One Whose Subject Matters Most

Who that is: That's the teacher who thinks that their subject is the be all and end all of all school life. Most commonly, they just so happen to be the teacher of the most useless and worthless subject.

("I don't care about your English exam, assholes. I want a 1000-word essay on
what the parable of the sower teaches us by next week or else you'll fail!")

Why they suck: Because no subject should be more important than any other, unless that subject is called "How to Get A*s on everything without studying (and learn shit in the meantime)".

Proposed punishment: Forcing them to correct about 500 essays in two hours while their house is burning. Maybe that'll teach them the meaning of "priority".

#2. The No-Shit-Giver

Who that is: On the completely opposite side of the spectrum from the previous entry, Scatulus Nongivous is the teacher who doesn't give a rat's arse about their subject, or teaching you anything. You will most likely encounter them in public schools, and they're prone to lots of profanity and sleep attacks.

("A'right, just open your textbooks to page 63 and solve problems 1 through 8.
Whoever's done first come show me.")

Why they suck: Look, I know that most of us don't realise it at the time, but we actually go to school to learn things. I get that dealing with a bunch of teenagers every day can get rather tiring, but guess what? You picked this career. So be a fucking adult, suck it up and do your job.

Proposed Punishment: I'd rather not pick one. I had a teacher in secondary school who was like that, and I really hated him and wished harm upon him, and then he got sick and died. So... yeah. Pick a punishment yourselves.

#3. The One Who Plays Favourites

Who they are: They're the teacher who will consistently ignore you and your efforts while they praise someone else's, or berate you when you've done nothing and at the same time pretend not to see when someone else is being mischievous. Simple as that.

(And, unlike Snape, they're not likely to die for you eventually.)

Why they suck: Because yeah, OK, we're all human beings and we can't possibly like everyone, but when you're a teacher, you're kind of like a boss, except your employees are at least five to ten years younger than you, and they're far more impressionable. A teacher who plays favourites is like a flight attendant freaking out when there's turbulence: their behaviour could have disastrous results.

Proposed punishment: Avada Kedavra.

#4. The Bully

Who they are: There are many versions of the Bully Teacher. There's the teacher who will witness students bullying someone and do nothing. There's the teacher who will actively mock or mistreat a student either because they're playing favourites, as described above, or, even worse, because they think they're being funny. Basically, they're the teacher who will act without thinking about the severe psychological damage their behaviour could have.

Why they suck: Need I explain? 

I was bullied by teachers once or twice. One teacher once called me something demeaning and it was later used by my classmates as an insult against me for an extended period. Another teacher had not only believed a classmate when she blamed me for something she'd done, but she had also asked the class to vote on whether they believed me when I said I was innocent, and punished me because they didn't believe me. (Of course they "didn't believe me", that girl was more popular than me.) I've heard some horror stories and excuse me if this entry's not funny at all, but there is nothing funny about teachers being responsible for bullying, either directly or indirectly.

Proposed punishment: Everybody has weaknesses, and teachers can be bullied as well. I say bully them until they're forced to quit the jobs they didn't deserve in the first place.

#5. The Racist/Homophobe

Who they are: They're the advanced version of #3 and #4 combined, except their targets are not random; instead, they're based on creed, colour, ethnicity or sexuality. They're the teacher who will make an offhand remark about gay people and hell, or who will favour "normal" white kids and subtly mistreat immigrants or other minorities.

Why they suck: ...

Proposed Punishment:




...Yeah. I'm cool with all those.

#6. The Pervert

Who they are: They're the teacher staring at your boobs instead of looking into your eyes when they speak to you. They're the teacher favouring you because you're a girl/boy. They're the teacher who will get an erection during a lecture, forcing you to wonder how they haven't been arrested yet. They're usually in their 50s+, but there have been rare specimens in younger ages as well.


Why they suck: Because the only ones allowed to lust after teenagers are teenagers themselves. I don't care if the teenager you're lusting after looks at least 20, they're still a teenager. And you're clearly not.

Proposed Punishment: Making sure their child goes to a school with a teacher like them. Maybe that'll be a wake-up call.

...

So, yeah. I really hope I never end up belonging in one of these categories. Instead, I hope to belong in the other list, the list of teachers who have inspired and taught and helped and change lives for the better, all by just remembering the simple rules of teaching, which are...

...I'll get back to you on that after I get accepted for a PGCE.

Good luck to me. TTYL.

16.11.11

Why Working in Retail Sucks

I finally got a decent job this week.


When I say "decent," of course, I don't mean something I'm so proud of I would even add it in the work section on Facebook. (As everybody born after 1980 knows, no job is official unless you boast about it on Facebook.) I mean not as crappy as my other latest experience and good enough to pay the rent, which, considering I was steadily approaching the very unflattering financial status of "broke", is honestly more than enough at this point.

Anyway, this got me thinking about the other casual jobs I had in the past. My first job was as an online content writer for a travel agency in 2006-2007, for six months; in 2007-2008, I worked as a barista for Starbucks; in 2008-2010, I worked at Replay, an Italian fashion brand -- starting at a mall and later being transferred to a department store.

I like interacting with people. I'm an open person -- not always friendly, but I'm definitely not shy and I know how to start a conversation with strangers. (This, of course, is assuming I'm not trying to flirt -- in those occasions, I come off like this:)

("Eer... Hi.")

Nevertheless, my three-year experience in retail has taught me that serving customers kind of sucks. This is why:

#1. The schedules are ridiculous.

Let me be clear: I don't find 9-5 jobs all that great. Most of my dream jobs have schedules that are sort of all over the place (e.g. writers, probation officers, prison governors), and I still wouldn't mind having them. The problem with retail is that it's nobody's dream job -- it's just something you do because you couldn't get anything better (yet, or ever). You might enjoy it while it lasts, you might get something out of it (I met most of my dearest friends at jobs I had), but if it's your dream job, there's something seriously wrong with you.

(Case in point.)

So having a work schedule that includes every single day of the week (even Bank holidays, if you work at a coffee shop or a restaurant) and can start as early as 5am and end as late as 1am kind of adds insult to injury -- or, as I like to call it, fucking sucks.

And then there's the job itself, where...

#2. You have to bullshit people.

If you've worked in fashion retail (or basically anything that has to do with selling goods people need convincing to buy), you know what I'm talking about.

If not, here are some examples from the renowned English-Retail, Retail-English Dictionary:

"Those jeans look amazing on you." [ðəʊz dʒiːnz ləˈmeɪzɪŋ än jʊ]
       1. They're okay, I guess.
       2. You'll look like a cow no matter what you wear, so buy them already.
       3. I haven't sold anything today. Please oh please please buy something please.

"Yeah, I like this shirt more than the other one." [jɛə i lTHis mawr thən THē ˈʌðə wən]
       1. They actually look the same, I'm just agreeing with you.
       2. I don't like either of them.
       3. I have no opinion on the matter, but I have to pretend I do.



"Thank you, have a nice day!" [θæŋk jʊ (h)əv ā ns dā]
       1. Good riddance.
       2. I hope you fall on your face and die.
       3. I can't believe I actually convinced you to buy this shit. Haha!



Basically, sales advisors are like a bunch of street fundraisers, except without the moral superiority; like advertisers and marketing directors, except without the salary; like fashion critics, except without anyone (besides the customer, occasionally) giving a shit about their opinion. 

(Sad, but true.)

Of course, all of this wouldn't work if people didn't fall for it. But the truth is...

#3. People are stupid.

And not just because they believe what a sales advisor will tell them, even though they are fully aware that this person's job is to convince them to buy. People are stupid just because. In my three years in retail, I have had some of the most ridiculous conversations with customers:

Customer: How much does this cost?
Me: £120.
Customer: Pounds?!?
Me: ... No, Monopoly notes.

Customer: Excuse me, when does the department store open?
Me: 9am.
Customer: The entire department store?!?
Me: ... No, just the first floor.

Customer: If I press the button that says '5' in the lift, will it take me to the fifth floor?
Me: ... Depends on its mood swings.

Customer: [points at stairs leading to higher floor] Will these take me upstairs?
Me: ... No, we turned the store upside down this morning.

Male Customer: [grabs skirt] Is this for women?
Me: ... Depends. Where do you work?

(The average customer.)

It's like people just decide to take stupid pills before they enter a store, just to keep the stereotype of dumb customers afloat. And while some of the questions can make your entire day (such as the ones quoted above), most are just seriously depressing with regards to the future of humanity.

All of this, of course, can be summarised in one point...

#4. It's exhausting, but it pays shit.

This is what having a retail job means: cleaning the store (hoovering, mopping, cleaning windows), folding hundreds of clothes or placing merchandise on shelves, bullshitting dozens or annoying/stupid people in hopes that they'll be convinced and buy products, standing on your feet for eight hours, listening to your boss complain about your performance often just because they had shitty sex the previous night, whiling tedious hours away... and getting paid minimum wage because, well, anybody can do this job so you're not that special.

(Basically, this.)

So... yeah. Oh, did I tell you that I got a freelance job writing fiction for a website? Here's the link.

What? I'm promoting myself because spending the rest of my life in retail makes me want to scratch my own eyeballs off my face and feed them to myself? Haha. Nonsense.

8.11.11

Why The Walking Dead Sucks

I was watching The Walking Dead this morning. Actually, I started watching while I was having breakfast; then I paused, and I came here because I wanted to complain about how much it sucks.

("Come here and say that if you dare, asshole!")

I watched The Walking Dead from the beginning. It had a solid, excellent pilot and I was quite intrigued with the idea of a TV series about zombies. I'm not a huge zombie fan -- I love 28 Days Later and I enjoyed John Ajvide Lindqvist's Handling the Undead, but that's about it. Nevertheless, I'm always open to TV series with horror elements, and this one looked like it had potential. Oh, boy, was I wrong. 

It's not terrible; it's not completely irredeemable yet. In fact, I'm not even planning on stopping it. (I have a lot of free time, true.) But if it wants to become a good show, not a great show but a good show, then these things need to be corrected. Soon.

#1. It's slow as shit.

I'll give a perfect example of this: in the first episode of the second series, a little girl disappeared. (Don't ask me her name, I don't remember.) Three episodes later, she's still missing and they're nowhere near finding her.

(Nobody cares. Move on.)

Another example: The son (Carl?) gets shot in the first episode. They then spend two entire episodes preparing him for a surgery. They have to get medical supplies, they have to inform the mother, the doctor has to perform the surgery, the dad has to give blood. That takes two episodes. Two episodes! 90 freaking minutes! That's as long as an entire film -- in 90 minutes, the zombie apocalypse would've ended in the cinema. In 90 minutes, the boy would've been in recovery in another series. In 90 minutes, somebody else would've got shot/bitten/killed.


Honestly, I'm not crazy about action. I didn't watch Buffy for the vampire-slaying scenes, and I didn't watch 24 or Prison Break because there was nothing but action scenes. Nevertheless, when the show description includes the word "zombies", you kinda expect there to be some action between the characters and, you know... zombies. So far, out of four episodes, only the first included a horde of zombies and a chasing scene. There's something wrong with that.

And I wouldn't mind it being slow if something else was going on, but the problem is...

#2. It's not about the characters.

Honestly, I don't even remember the names. There's the main cop guy, there's the wife-fucker other cop guy, there's the wife, the two kids (Carl and what's-her-face), there's the Asian does-it-all-with-a-little-whining guy, the old guy, the suicidal blonde, the you-killed-my-brother tough guy and... am I forgetting anyone? Probably. But who. Cares.

I don't remember the dramas that have occurred so far either. All I remember is that the wife slept with the best friend while her husband was in a coma and that the blonde's sister died and now she has no reason to live any more and she hates the old guy for not letting her die in the explosion. (Because there's no other way to kill yourself, apparently.)

(You're surrounded by guns, moron.)

If the series was slow because it was meticulous about its characterisation, I wouldn't mind. (Unless its characterisation was boring as shit.) But right now it's going at snail-speed and it's not developing the characters in any way, either. So far, the only characters I find even remotely interesting are the other cop guy and the dude with the arrow. The rest, as far as I'm concerned, are completely expendable.

#3. It's Plotholes and Ridiculousness 101.

In the first series, they made a huge deal about how vampires can smell you and the only way to walk among them is to mask your odour with zombie blood. (They wasted half a fucking episode chopping up dead bodies and rubbing the guts against their clothes for that, so I'm certain.) A series later, a horde of zombies comes out of nowhere and what the characters do is they hide under cars.

("Didn't you hear? Zombies don't eat car mechanics.
Something about fumes and petrol, I think.")

In the second series, the cop guy and other cop guy decide to stay a little longer in the woods to look for the missing girl (who has apparently borrowed Harry Potter's invisibility cloak). For some unknown and unimaginable reason, cop guy decides that it's a good idea to keep his son around instead of sending him back to the camp with his mum and all the other people who can protect him. Then, as if that wasn't stupid enough, he decides to let him approach a deer that appears out of nowhere to pet him because... it's cute.

("What's the worst thing that could happen, except 
a. finding out that the deer is actually a zombie
b. discovering that deer do not like to be touched by strange children and might react
c. getting shot by a guy who can see the deer but not the two grown men behind it?")

I can excuse a few plot holes here and there (I am a Dead Like Me fan, after all), if they're not blatantly obvious, if they're honest mistakes I could make as well or if they don't take too much away from the story. But seriously, this is testing our intelligence, and patience. You tell a child to wait in the bushes so you can kill two zombies, but you can't kill them in proximity? Why? And that child, even though horrified, decides to run off seconds after you tell her to wait there and you'll come get her? What the fuck.

And finally...

#4. Will you shut up about god already?!

I would expect pseudo-moral lessons from series like Glee, or Desperate Housewives, or Angel. When you watch a TV series about a zombie apocalypse, the last thing you expect is the promotion of moral views and religious values. But alas, according to the Walking Dead, in case of a zombie outbreak, this should be your survival plan:

(Step 5:
BELIEVE IN JESUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

Apparently, fighting with all your might is not enough. Unless you got God by your side, your chances at surviving are as slim as an anorexic model-turned-zombie stuck in a room with no exit or food supply for a year.

Thanks a lot, The Walking Dead. I'll keep that in mind for future reference.

(...I now pronounce thee "God".)

7.11.11

Why Reading the News Sucks

I studied Journalism in my undergrad. Well, not journalism exactly: "Communication and the Media", which is a fancy way of saying "if you don't want to be a journalist, better start planning that Master's now." (I didn't want to be a journalist, so I studied for a Master's. This improved my chances of getting a job incredibly.)

(The usefulness of both my Master's and my Bachelor's.)

In my four and a half years as an undergraduate student, I learned to read the news daily. For some reason, our lecturers decided that as non-Journalism-but-actually-Journalism students, it was important to read newspapers and visit news websites and watch the news on TV all the time, so they asked us to do it every day. (Insane troll logic.) I didn't want to become a journalist, but I picked up the habit anyway.

I don't like discussing most news. I hate talks about politics, I find conversations about international relations rather dire and anything having to do with the economy depresses me to no end. I like reading about social care issues and I do find it necessary to be up to speed with recent developments around the world or regarding the economy, but I don't want to talk about them.

So why am I writing this post? I dunno. Probably because I think that reading the news sucks. (I won't even talk about TV, I haven't watched the news on TV in three years.) This is why:

#1. It's all subjective. (And there is no humanly possible way to make it objective.)

If the Great Flood happened tomorrow, these would be the headlines of the day after:

Daily Mail: "Britain's Membership to the EU Sinks the Country to Depths of Hell"

Daily Telegraph: "British Public Punished for the Sins of the Liberals"

Guardian: "Scientists and Normal People Still Baffled by Unnatural Flood"

Evening Standard: "Britain's Deficit Raised in the Face of Danger of Biblical Proportions"

The Sun: "Noah Accidentally Picks Gay Penguin Couple -- Species Now Doomed to Extinction"

(Of course, it wouldn't matter in any way 'cause we would all be dead.)

I have this theory: if it ever became illegal to lace articles with personal opinions or political beliefs, then newspapers would become about three pages thick. In fact, I believe we shouldn't even call them newspapers as they are right now: they should be called opinionspapers, and the news on TV should be called the views.

("Welcome to Fox Views, home of the rich white males.
If you're... ahem... coloured, please switch to a different channel.")

It's natural to promote one view; there are interests in line, and it's a human tendency to take sides. We don't read newspapers to be informed; we read them to reinforce our opinion that the world is exactly as we think it is. The problem is that we label those opinions "truth". One (often uninformed) asshole decides that something he thought is right, and he turns it into a fact, just by writing an article about it.

So what do you do when you really want to hear the truth? The best you can do is read all available coverage of the same event and hope to make some sense of it, or achieve a semblance of objective truth.

(In other words, good luck.)

#2. It's fucking depressing.

The quote from this A Softer World strip used to be my email signature until a while ago. (More specifically, until I realised that email signatures aren't cool.)


This is frighteningly spot-on. When was the last time you read an article about a happy thing that lasted more than a page or, hell, half a page? Struggling to remember? That's because news are all doom and gloom. Regardless of whether it's about the shitty economy, some war and our questionable participation in it or some freaky death in a small town in Leicestershire, picking up a newspaper is like looking for reasons to book an appointment with a psychiatrist.

And again, we've got no one to blame but human nature. It's human nature to want to read about doom and gloom, about death and pain and trouble. What's more likely to grab your attention: "Happily Married Couple Has Their First Daughter" or "23-year-old Student Found Brutally Mutilated"? Unless you're Brangelina, tough shit my dear couple. The brutally mutilated student wins.

(Well, sort of.)

Occasionally, there will be an opinions article that will make you smile, some extraordinary story about a puppy that miraculously survived certain death or an old couple that died a Notebook death or a well-deserved court case against the Vatican. Before you can even say "yay", however, your heart will be blackened again by news like the new anti-immigration law in Alabama or the latest gay teen suicide or that people would willingly tattoo Twilight characters on their backs. And you'd be back to square one.

(In a world populated by people like this.)

#3. It makes you mad, but there's nothing you can do about it.

This is in connection to #2. How many times have you read the news and thought, "argh, this makes me so sad/angry!"? How many times have you thought, "something must be done!"? How many times have you actually come up with what that something was? And how many of those times was it possible for you to help in doing that something?


The news are not looking for volunteers. There isn't a section under each article that says, "tick that box if you want to help change or improve this and an agent will visit you at your convenience to let you know how." The news only seek to inform you (selectively). The emotions that you get out of this interaction are your problem. You can feel as angry or depressed or annoyed as you like, just as long as you buy the same newspaper tomorrow.

Because, guess what? Tomorrow the world will be as shitty as it was today. And you will be able to do nothing about it. Again.

(Unless you give your money to these guys, apparently.)

#4. News online have comment sections.

This is a new-age thing. Many newspaper websites such as The Guardian or The Daily Telegraph often include the option of commenting on views articles. This, unfortunately, leads to a terrible situation where, if you agree with the author, you get depressed by the amount of stupid people who violently disagree in the comment section, whereas if you disagree, you get depressed by the amount of stupid people who agree. Even if you are indifferent towards the subject, you don't escape: there are always comments that will drive you insane with their sheer stupidity, even if they're about a subject you don't care about.

Basically, people suck and comment sections make that abundantly clear every day.

(Which is why I wasn't surprised this was the first result
when I googled "newspaper comment section".)

So what do you do? Do you not read the news any more? Do you hide yourself in a bubble and never get out?

(We already know how this would end.)

There's nothing you can do, except accept the fact that reading the news sucks, and not reading the news is not an option. It's just one of the many things in life you've got to deal with.

My suggestion?


3.11.11

Why Street Fundraising Sucks

It's been more than a week since I last posted. It's been a busy week: I had a Halloween party at the house on Saturday, a friend stayed over from Sunday to yesterday, I started a new job on Monday... I was a busy little beaver.

The party was good. We drank, we ate, we talked, we socialised and we listened to good music. (Courtesy of le moi.) My escapades with Carolyn, despite our limited time together, were fun. We drank, we ate, we talked, we watched Ringer and we went to a local pub and the biggest shopping centre in Europe.

Image courtesy of Guy and Dolls.

The only part that sucked about my week (and when I say sucked, I mean I'll-have-trouble-keeping-this-post-short sucked) was the new job I got, which was as a street fundraiser, also known as a "chugger".


(These guys.)

I saw the listing about a week or two ago on Gum Tree, and while I knew it was dressed up to sound nice, it did look to be quite good: £8.5 per hour, always 10-6, Monday to Friday or Tuesday to Saturday and immediate start. I wasn't sure if I'd be able to do this, but I decided to give it a go. (I was desperate, and still am.) Of course, after one day on the job, I discovered that everything about it sucked. Here's why:

#1. You put yourself in a position where you welcome abuse.

On my first (and only) day on the job, I got to experience a variety of reactions towards me when I approached people. Some nicely said "no, thank you", some rudely responded with "Busy!" when I asked them how they were, some just totally ignored me and others raised their palm to my face as if addressing a dog. One guy told me to fuck off. Another guy shoved past me so hard that he knocked me over.

When I'm on the street and I see a fundraiser a few steps ahead, I take the mobile phone approach: I pull my mobile phone out of my pocket, pretend to call or text someone and put it back in as soon as I've walked past them.

("I just happened to remember I need call a friend I haven't talked to in years
as soon as I saw you. Not my fault!)

Witnessing that from the other side, I can say that it looks quite ridiculous, but at least it's amusing. People don't have the time for you but they don't want to tell you to your face, so they come up with poorly planned alternatives. I didn't mind.

I didn't mind the ones that said "no, thank you," either. At least they had the decency to acknowledge my existence. The people who ignored me were annoying, but a mouthed "fuck you" made me feel better. The worst ones were the ones who showed me their palm.

I get that you don't want to talk to me. I wouldn't want to talk to me either. But who the fuck do you think you are to treat me like I'm beneath you? And you can't even say anything to them, because it would "create a bad image for the charity". All you can do is smile and take it while you swear at them between your teeth.

("I hope that hand of yours falls off and a blue waffle vagina grows in its place.")

#1. You're basically harassing people.

On my first (and only) day on the job, I also got to witness the team leader, a tall black guy who'd been doing this for seven and a half years (!), approach two people and get them to sign up as donors for a charity. I'd heard all about the methods we were expected to use during the training process, but I hadn't seen them in action until then.

It was horrible.

What you're supposed to do as a street fundraiser is ask people questions that would make them look like Hitler if they said no to: "Do you believe everyone deserves the same human rights?" "11 million children die every year. Do you think that's right?" "People are being imprisoned because of their beliefs, their religion or their sexual orientation. Do you think that's fair?"

("11 million children... only?!")

Then, once you've got that down, you start tearing down their defenses one by one. You reassure them that the direct debit is safe, you explain where the money's going (conveniently forgetting that 25% of that goes to your salary, even if indirectly), you remind them that £10 a month is only, what? Two pints? And there you have it: you've got them signed up.

And all that's after you get them to stop. The harassment begins long before that. I'm not joking: I actually witnessed the team leader approach a 20-something-year-old girl who was texting and say, "Did you get my message, love?"

(The team leader.)

#3. It's not really that great of a cause.

For obvious reasons, I will not be naming the charity I worked for, but I will give you the figures: in 2010, they spent 6.8 million on research, 8.2 million on campaigning, educating and raising awareness, 3.2 million on encouraging more people to take action or become supporters, members and funders, 4.3 million on recruiting and communicating with their supporters, 1.5 million on raising funds and 447 thousands on administrative costs.

What does this mean? Out of £22.9 million, 29% didn't actually go to charity. And out of that 29% only 5% was administrative costs; the rest (about 25%) was spent on... guess what... fundraising.

("This is for a great cause. You give £10 and I keep £2.5!
And the rest goes to research and stuff.")

The worst thing is that street fundraisers rely on that feeling of doing the right thing to get through their day and do their job well, but if you break it down, you're not doing that great of a thing. Sure, you can say that if charities didn't benefit then street fundraisers wouldn't exist and that "95% of our income comes from our supporters!" (which... duh), but the truth of the matter is, you're just a glorified salesman. The charity is doing good things, and the people donating are doing a good thing, but you? The middleman? You're not doing a good thing.

(And this kitty is judging you for pretending you are.)

As I said, I saw the team leader get two people to sign up, both of them women. When the second woman finally agreed to give him her bank details, she said, "You bullied me into it." He answered, "No, miss. I inspired you."

Baby Jesus cried when those words were spoken. And the kitty above judged.

#5. At the end of the day, you have to be a certain type of person to fit the profile.

And that person has to be a persuasive, manipulative masochist, with excellent skills at bullying and harassing people and who is that broke.

(I thought I fit the profile, but I guess I wasn't enough of a masochist.)

Which is why this morning, after one day on the job, I went to the office to meet the manager and said, "I don't think I can do this."

And he answered, "Neither do we."

Back to job-hunting. Yay!