Monocle, Week 3: Interviewing with a [very slight] hangover


So I did something I said I wouldn’t do – I spent too much money, and I drank too much alcohol, and I ate too much shit food mere hours before my shift at work. (sidebar – shift sounds like I work in a factory. Not a good thing). Such a waste as well, because my previously defined marker of success was in no way fulfilled.

I wasn’t as stupid as getting smashed on a Sunday evening. No. Instead, I completely forgot that I was working an early on Monday, which meant that when I woke up at midday on Sunday, I had managed to shorten the remainder of my weekend to about 6 hours.

(second sidebar: I also hate having shifts because my entire conversational life revolves around how messed up my body is. Like ‘My man! You tired today?’ ‘Yeah, kinda tired’. Allthetimeistoomanytimes.)

Anyway, Monday was the biggest day in my professional journey at Monocle, as I was handed the privilege of conducting an interview for the business show, The Entrepreneurs. Tout Seule! Sans Aide! As mentioned previously, however, I was dog-tired because I a) seem to now get two day hangovers (where does this stop? If it carries on at this rate, I’ll be only fucking over my new years hangover at Easter when I’m 50) and b) started Monday at 4:40am, and c) the interview took place at 5pm. Which led to me having a crazily long working day. And that was something that I was in no way prepared for.

Whilst at HeartFM I had conducted three radio interviews – one with a rogue Lib Dem councillor planning on cutting the subsidies for rat control in South Cambridgeshire (huge issue), one with a dude campaigning to have the skate park in his village re-built, and one with the head of a Cambridgeshire taxi-driving association that was going to professional war with the head of another Cambridgeshire taxi-driving association (People’s front of Judea?!). I guess you could say that I was not exactly experienced with radio interviews in that regard – but I’d consider myself such after Monday.

The guy I was interviewing was pretty trendy. Mid 30’s, well dressed, head of a successful company – Kamm and Sons – and carrying a suitcase that doubled as a bar. There I was, tired, fumbling with a microphone, unsure. In the first few minutes, pretty much everything that could’ve gone wrong did. I was trying to record but I’d plugged the headphones into the wrong socket, so I couldn’t hear anything. Despite clearly pressing record on the Marantz, the machine was not recording. When I finally got it working, the microphone volume was way too high, leading to me just recording pops all over the place. All in all, not the most professional start – or, more importantly, a start that was representative of the Monocle brand that the guy had bought into.

Still, those are life lessons. Live stuff sometimes doesn’t go so well. You’ve got to learn to deal with hiccups, and plough on with the task at hand – which I can say, with some certainty, that I did. We waded through 20 minutes of chat about his company, then headed back to the offices to record the sounds of Mr Kammeling creating a cocktail, and me drinking it.

I feel like it’s the long-term stuff that makes a job worthwhile. Whilst it is fun to do live shows and to make sure that you’re completely on top of the day’s stories, there is a sense that working day-to-day is kind of meaningless. That you’re just jumping over hurdles that reset themselves day in, day out – or, if you work two lives shows a day, hour in, hour out. But then I guess you could feel disconnected from the real world if you only ever work on longfrom pieces in complete isolation. No, maybe what makes a job worthwhile is having a mixture of short-term and long-term targets to smash through.

What I’m saying is that by having this interview to prepare for, conduct, transcribe and edit down, I was given a new and more fulfilling dimension to my working life at Monocle. Something that I could truly say was my own and representative of numerous hours of work. Again, though, it’s all part of this learning experience.

You can find the company at , or @kammandsons

My interview should be going out either this Wednesday, or the one after – I’ll keep twitter posted.

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