Paula's Place

Paula's Place

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

The Gig ecconomy is not new

I have recently written a couple of posts about my career.  This seems to be turning into another one of my occasional series of posts, so here goes with the next installment of my rather odd career.

Chronologically I had got as far as being made redundant from my second job.   This wasn't as bad as it might sound, for quit a bit of my time with Michelin I had not been happy, I really liked my first job there, and my last, but the least said about the one in between the better.

So now I was in possession of my first flat, living on my own for the first time, I had a little capital in the bank, and no idea what I wanted to do when I grew up.   I needed to find something I wanted to do, yet the only thing I knew was that I didn't want to do what I had been doing.   I good friend of mine had a little business buying and selling cars, since I have always been a bit of petrol head I decided that this looked like easy money playing with toys, I rented a corner of the showroom from my friend and started dealing in second hand cars.


I had great fun, but learnt a few valuable life lessons, in commerce it is not the selling that is difficult it is the buying, contrary to what you might think from watching the apprentice where all too emphasis much is put on selling, anyone will buy desirable stuff as long as the price is right. The trick is buying the stuff at a price that allows for a profit.   My problem was that I kept buying the cars that I wanted rather than ones that would sell quickly with a profit.  

An English German band with an Australian Accordion player,
working for Canadians in Spain,
Somehow I eventually extricated myself before I became totally impoverished, while doing the car dealing I had slowly started to get a few gigs with some German Bands, and amateur orchestras. As I managed to get more and more music work I concentrated on that, abandoned the cars and enjoyed a strange lifestyle, driving from gig to gig all over the country.    This in no way represented steady work, so during this period of my life I would do anything I had to to pay my way.   Being self employed I had the flexibility and status to take on anything that came along. I did removals, piano removals, parcel deliveries, for a while I worked for Currys selling fridges and washing machines.   I emptied dust bins and drove trucks. I had a few temp jobs in offices, I laboured for a landscape gardener and cut grass for a maintenance gardener, I worked as a dispatch rider, in short what ever came along.

It was fun! It was also precarious. Work was irregular and unpredictable I would have periods of employment, but I would get bored and go back to the precarious life of a gigging musician, and the periods of poverty and depression which seem to go with that role ~ at least they do for me.

In 1992 my life changed beyond anything I had ever expected. I fell in love and proposed to the wonderful, beautiful woman who later that same year was to become my wife, I landed a good Gig, playing at Expo '92 in Seville, which saved my financial bacon, and my father died.

Now I felt it was time to grow up and get what my Mother called "A proper job" and so ended my second career.
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