It was about a year ago I had a clear plan. After the thousandth drawing on my Naked Chicks On Post-It Notes website, I was going give it up, buy myself an X-Box 360, with games like Project Gatham Racing, where you get to race round Edinburgh and Stockholm, and Grand Theft Auto 4, where you drive round another city and shoot people too. I'd get the sort of games they play on Penny Arcade. I'd retire in the evenings, to play computer games, safe in the knowledge that I'd done a hard honets day's work.
The plan went to shit when I was made redundant, and since then the future has been too uncertain to make any plan, any aspirations, all put on hold. My self-esteem has gone through the floor. I spend days gazing blankly at job vacancies that require qualifications and experience that I don't have.
I think back to what went wrong, how and why. How did I end up being unemployable?
I could have sworn I was a productive and intelligent member of the human race, but compared to the hundred other applicants for every job, I am a non-person.
My Housing Benefit has been cut, which salves my soul slightly cos I was uncomfortable getting handouts from the state. My Job Seeker's Allowance is gone too, I've reached the end of my contributions based benefits, so now I have no income at all. My car needs a handful of fixes to pass its MOT and my rent is due next week.
I read blogs and blogs about how the UK's going down the pan, and there's nothing I can do about it, I can't even pay for my own existance.
I just wanted to slave away all day, building manufacturing databases, making production just a little bit easier, adding value to a pile of components, making stuff that people want and would pay honest money for. I just wanted to be able to come home from work, and put on Project Gotham Racing and race round cities I used to wander round five years ago.
This morning I harvested my potatos