10 things I learned my first day at a London Job
(Sorry about stupid formatting. A demon is living in wordpress and I can’t sort it out… now on to the post!)
Today I started work for Epoch PR. They made me coffee and gently nudged me to the learning-curve lions. Here are some of the immediate lessons I picked up from day one:
- London is huge. Massive. And the tube map lies like a hungry teenage boy surrounded by a box of empty Oreos. It pretends to look like this:
It actually looks like this:
…suspicious. Cruel.Confusing. A trip I thought would take me 30 minutes, max, took a little under an hour. I feel betrayed.
- Newspapers are important. Epoch has a mass of newspapers delivered to the office daily.”So you keeping up-to-date with things?” Asked a colleague today.
I have spent the last two years reading dusty crumbling books in Cambridge libraries, emerging only occasionally to blink at the sun and the earth like a mole from its hole.
“…Aquinas was really timely and appropriate in the 16th century, so yes.”
Which is why I quietly pocketed all the newspapers as the day ended. They will make great bedtime reading.
- Matching the office colour scheme is cool.
Epoch’s colours are black accented by a bright pink.
I rather like bright pink.
“Why look at that,” said Sarah Mulder, Epoch co-founder and my boss. “You match the wall.”We were sitting on the couch having an introductory meeting.
I glanced at the wall, then at myself, then back to the wall.
“And the pillow!” Sarah held up a bright pink accent pillow, glossy and silky like my shirt.
Success. .. . ?
- Heels give blisters. Two. Big toes. Hurts now.
- Coffee addiction goes hand-in-hand with work. I had ended my addiction during the five day siege that was Flu’mageden, that horrendous stretch of recent time where I found myself confined to a friend’s bed, shrouded in blankets, draped over a bowl and generally dead to the world. The flu hit me hard.
“But it broke my caffeine addiction! I don’t need the stuff anymore!” I boasted to Z friend.
“…well that’s good,” she responded cautiously.
“It’s very zen. Healthy. I’ll drink green tea! Save coffee for when I need it!”
Which of course meant, ‘save coffee for that time at the office where it is just RIGHT THERE and I’d rather enjoy drinking some, please. Then some more. And weeeee, that’s fun.’
Caffeine victory. Mercer 0.
- Fruit vendors line tube stops. These vendors are cheap. They have fruit in bowls and signs that say “One pound for all this good delicious fruity joy!” …or something similar.
These things are lifesaves when you’re rushing into work after realizing you forgot to pack lunch, which you couldn’t really bring anyways since you don’t have any food in your kitchen, except several packets of quorn sausage and dubious looking left-over baguette.So yes. Fruit vendors are good.
- Working in PR is going to be amazing. I get to write. I get multiple clients. I get to play with new ideas, new developments, new thoughts. I get to learn about things I can hardly understand, and understand things I learn.
Today Epoch introduced me to some of the accounts I will be working with. They range from cloud computing to political ideas to health initiatives.I don’t think things will get dull anytime soon.
- Books are great for the tube. Except not Hunchback of Notre Dame, which I recently finished; and in which everyone, absolutely everyone, dies/is killed/kills by the end.
On the other hand, Bridgette Jones Diary (educational reading) often uses the word ‘Fuckwittage.’
I feel this is an important English term to understand. Thus the book is justified tube reading.
- Grocery shopping is impossible with a London Job. I don’t know how people find time. Between getting to work, working, getting home from work, showering, there’s hardly enough minutes in the day to eat… let alone search out a proper, decent, good-sized, not small grocery store that sells something beyond pasta sauce and cheap wine.Fortunately, there’s a shop right next to the tube that sells pasta sauce and cheap wine.Call me Parisian.
- I’ve got a lot to learn. Nothing quite like a day of meetings to make you aware of just how ignorant you really are. Clients, issues, topics, so many things I need to know.
“It’s a steep learning curve, isn’t it?” I asked earlier.”…you match the wall.”"Success!”