Archive for February 2nd, 2008

February 2nd, 2008


Posted in The Job - Experience by 200

How many everyday jobs have the potential to stop conversation and make you feel instantly awkward?

I was out this evening with a group of people who didn’t know what I did for a living. Over the years, depending on who was listening depended on what I told people I did for a living. Sometimes I was a copper, sometimes I was a driver, worked on computers or whatever. It’s not because I’m embarrassed by what I do, it’s because sometimes i don’t want to hear the ins & outs of a cat’s arse on someone’s latest speeding ticket, nor do I want to discuss the pros & cons of capital punishment.

You get various reactions when people hear you’re a cop. "You look like a copper" is a good one. "That’s funny because you look just like a quantity surveyor. (or is that merchant banker?)." "Oh, no, and there’s me banging on about speed cameras", was what I had tonight. As if I give a flying f*** about speed cameras when I’m in the pub on my day off. (or, indeed, when I’m at work)

You wouldn’t start a conversation with someone you’ve just met by saying something like, "Oh, you’re a webmaster? I had this webmaster once, a right arsehole, always banging on about how he knew best, took the piss out of all his clients, and overcharged them." But it’s somehow OK to tell me all about some overbearing copper from the Met in the 1990s.

Because you’re meeting a new group of people and you want to get on with everyone you end up listening to reels of rubbish about coppers & coppering when you’re actually trying to forget it for a while. You put up with it because saying you’re not f’ing interested or tell it to someone who cares, doesn’t go down to well in the first throes of a new relationship (friendly rather than romantic, although it would probably be worse in a potentially romantic relationship).

So next time you meet someone & find out they’re a copper, just smile or nod and move the conversation along on to something like the weather or the price of the round you’ve just bought.