Tuesday, 12 January 2010
Killing the Obituary Editor and other tales of my time at the Guardian
Without a shadow of a doubt (out come the clichés!), The Guardian is my absolute favourite newspaper of all time, bar none. I'm not some mad, raving lefty but I think it is - and I am - fairly modern and open minded these days and, even if it (and I) wasn't, I really wouldn't care. Look at the above photograph; There is only one word for it - A-mazing; Any newspaper supplement which can dedicate its front page to my very favourite activity is certainly all right by me!
In actual fact, I love the G2 more than the paper - let's face it, a lot more. Whilst I aim to be a 'serious' news journalist (perhaps crime correspondant?) I aim to be a 'serious' news journalist wearing Chanel. All I really care about outside of 'work' is fashion, clothing and style. Since the age of about 11, I have devoted my every waking moment to planning outfits and dreaming of Paris Fashion Week...
To me, the G2 section of The Guardian combine hard(ish) news with the 'frivilous' (not my word, ever) world of fashion perfectly. And so I was absolutely thrilled to be able to intern at the Fashion Desk for the University Christmas holidays.
The experience was varied, tiring, stylish (ha) but mostly it completely and utterly backed up my thoughts for the last decade - that I was, quite simply, born to be a reporter. I might not be God's gift to journalism but the absolute rush of excitement that comes from seeing your name in print / face on the 'news' (as, clearly, I know so well (or not) thanks to my many and varied 'journalistic' activities at University) simply cannot be beaten. My Mother, who was a journalist for 40 years tells me that it is 'the very best job in the world' and I am inclined to believe her.
It is, in my opinion, an absolute tragedy that newspapers are dying out... One of the happiest activities in my life is sitting down with the G2 and a cup of Earl Grey (the ultimate tea) and just being peaceful and content. You certainly can't feel like that whilst reading articles on a laptop.
The Guardian is so lively and vibrant and I hope it continues for as long as it possibly can - long enough, anyway, for me to get a column for it. I doubt that would happen but life aims are important!
During my time there, I went on a fashion shoot, hairdryed a model (so embarrassing but rather hilarious for all concerned, I'm sure!), sorted out an entire cupboard of lookbooks (sorting out is something that I would never, ever do in my own daily life so I feel that that definitely shows commitment to my career!), opened quite literally 2,000 pieces of post - including a number of fan letters to Hadley Freeman (I think she is fabulous, but I'm officially jealous), made various embarrassing phone calls, sent back hundreds of beautiful pieces of clothing etc etc etc. But, my top three Guardian highlights are as follows...
1) Seeing hundreds of hardened hacks 'oohing' and 'aahing' at the falling snow on foggy London town
2) Dropping 20 very heavy metal clothes rails on top of each other, causing an unbelievable racket and seeing said hundreds of hardened hacks staring at my idiocy in disbelief. Oops.
3) My absolute favourite aspect of my time there, however, was my impressive feat of dropping (there is clearly a theme here...) a LOT of look books right on to the Obituary Editor's head... How ironic it would have been had I killed the Obituary Editor! The whole Obits department moved floor the next day; I, apparently, 'put the final nail in the coffin'.