Comedian, novelist, stadium announcer … Caimh McDonnell finds his many jobs never seem to impress banks or insurance firms
Hi, my name is Caimh, and I have a portfolio career problem. There should be a support group for people like me. I am a comedian, novelist, stadium announcer and writer for TV. Experience has taught me, when asked what I do for a living, lying is definitely the best way to go. There are only so many times a taxi driver can ask “have I heard of you?” before you start telling them you work in IT. Even lying has its drawbacks – I had to swap barbers when my face appeared on a poster for a show in their window.
My own mother is inherently distrustful of my collection of employments. In Irish Mammy logic, having four jobs means that none of them can be going very well. To be fair, my mother’s concerns are shared by every financial institution in Britain, and I myself have wondered if life might be easier if I still worked in IT. I got my first hint of the troubles ahead when, just after going full-time as a comedian, I ended up talking to a bank’s India-based call centre. Standup comedy is now becoming more popular there, but at the time, the lovely fella honestly had no idea what my job was. After 20 minutes of explanation, I think the closest we’d got was somewhere between preacher and village idiot.