Deborah Ross: Running a bath is a good start for an intern

If you ask me...

Share
Related Topics

If you ask me, this business of unpaid internships is as much a Fleet Street thing as a Whitehall thing and, amazingly, considering I work from home and am a total loser, I'm still often viewed as a portal to exciting and glamourous media opportunities, and cornered on behalf of Lucy who would just love to work on the fashion desk for two weeks this summer. (Look at me! I wear fatty jeans! If the fashion desk ever saw me coming at them, don't you think they'd pretend to be out?)

Still, it's good to have it all out in the open, and should anyone still wish to pursue "work experience" through me then I think it's fair I'm clear about what I'd expect them to do, as follows:

* Help with my "research" by clearing out the hall cupboard and the sticky one in the kitchen where the honey spilled in 1976 and which I still can't face.

* If not given a specific task, make an impression by re-landscaping the garden to incorporate a fountain, a tree house, a croquet lawn and a softly illuminated raised deck for cocktails on balmy evenings.

* Show you are an asset to any team by shovelling my front path in winter and de-icing the car. (The candidate who also sits in the driver's seat for an hour to warm it up may be invited back to provide unpaid labour on a more permanent basis at some point.)

* Hunt down tip-top stories and supply first-rate column ideas while I take full credit and you run my bath.

* Prove you are enterprising and enthusiastic by amusing me when I am bored. To this end, you may wish to do a small embarrassing dance or put a funny hat on the dog.( A yarmulke always works for me.) If you fail to amuse, you must ask yourself this: should I ever get a placement in an office, am I even fit to change the toner in a photocopier?

* Expect to be ignored for a long stretch, sent out for sandwiches, and then ignored again because, basically, I just can't be bothered with you. Had you been a self-starter, you'd have been too busy landscaping and softly illuminating to notice anyhow.

* Should you ever ask: "What did your last slave die of?" I will probably bluster: "What do you mean? This is an exciting and glamourous media opportunity!" even though, in truth, she fell from the tree house mid-construction. That was both a shame and a tragedy, especially because she'd yet to get the coffees in, pick up the dry cleaning, or raise the kids.

React Now

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Senior Accounts Assistant - Accounts Payable - St. Albans

£26000 - £28000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: Senior Accounts Assistan...

Ashdown Group: Treasury Assistant - Accounts Assistant - London, Old Street

£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...

Recruitment Genius: Installation and Service / Security Engineer

£22000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is part of a Group...

Recruitment Genius: Service Charge Accounts Assistant

£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you a a young, dynamic pers...

Day In a Page

Read Next
A Gold Ferrari sits outside Chanel on Sloane Street  

Sunday Times Rich List: We are no longer in thrall to very rich people

Terence Blacker
David Cameron was openly emotional at the prospect of Scotland leaving the union before the referendum  

Remember when David Cameron almost cried over Scotland because he loved it so much?

Matthew Norman
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions