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Charlie’s Soap box: Joining the ranks of the living dead


By Charlie Charalambous

When people ask me what job I do I am always reluctant to say that I’m a journalist. When you tell people this they either respond by suggesting that hacks fabricate the news or are experts in lying.

While others might think it is an endlessly fascinating job with perks and privilege.

For me journalists simply tell stories – I would like to believe of the non-fiction variety.

Those stories should have structure and validity but they are stories all the same.

Like most things in life you are either good at it or you are not.

For nearly half my life I have been a journalist – I’m not sure how it happened it just did.

After nearly three decades of writing about other people’s misery, joy or misfortune, it is hard not to become cynical about the establishment and a system of backhanders and rule bending.

It seems nobody wants to read newspapers anymore in a society that is obsessed with tweets and text messaging.

Younger generations have the attention span of snap chat or an instagram post.



As a dinosaur of the printed word my services are no longer required.

As a relic of the written word I have gone the same way as video stores and record shops.

I will soon become part of the walking dead – a fifty-something geezer joining the ranks of the unemployed. I’m not sure when I go down the dole office seeking gainful employment there will be too many openings for storytellers.

You could say there is nothing more useless than an out-of-work journalist, so I’m not expecting invites to fun parties or social gatherings.

This will help me avoid telling people what I don’t do or strangers advising me that when one door shuts another door opens.

Or that it could be “a blessing in disguise” that will give me plenty of time to find what I’m looking for.

I’m more interested in finding a job than trying to find my true self.

And usually when one door shuts, it stays shut. End of.

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  1. Sorry to hear your being “released” Charlie. I always enjoyed your articles, despite my team wearing a different colour (and yours with purportedly Russian mafia financial backing).
    Ray N17

  2. There has to be a journalist post for you somewhere
    It is a sad day I have enjoyed your writing for 12 years for which I thank you.
    You could try the My Weekly xxx
    Good luck ck