This weekend marks six years since I left my friends and stopped earning money at Barclays Global Investors (now BlackRock), and two and half years since leaving my friends and spending money at The Purley Arms (still The Purley Arms). Roughly speaking I have now spent a quarter of my working life not working, not in any paid sense anyway. Recently I’ve been getting this crazy notion that I should get myself back into some sort of employment, or something infinitely more attractive like self-employment.

What ?!?!?!?! AM I MAD !!!! Sitting around all day sunning myself in the tropics without a care in the world, sipping on my Fiji Bitter, watching the clouds go by and thinking about W – O -R – K !!!! Well, that idealised scenario might be accurate if I was on holiday, but I live here, and living somewhere (anywhere) is a whole lot different to being on holiday, even if you’re “retired”. And living here for the next 146 years (my life expectancy is 192) without having something one could tentatively class as a job, career, or paid hobby then I might actually really go mad. It happens to people here. Mr Bonkers is never too far away. Or Mrs Bonkers for that matter.

So, what options for a relatively lazy toe-rag such as myself ? The internet always seems like a good place to start – must be able to make some money there by doing not a lot. Google search “making money online”  and there are over 6 billion pages telling you how to do it. I suspect though those 6 billion pages are making money online for other lazy toe-rags rather than helping anyone make any money online, and keeping Google busy of course. But, of course – there are plenty of ways to make money online. I’ve got an idea how do some animal exploitation and use Coco, our dog, to do it. It’s an idea that ticks a few boxes: niche market, easily scalable, low costs, and critically important it’s a niche market for odd customers. Find 100 of those on a planet of 7 billion and you can earn a few quid. If Coco was purebred I could change her name to “Income Stream Number One”.

But, she’s not.

And the idea doesn’t tick all the boxes – a critically important one being “Am I interested in dogs?”.


But my sister is – she runs “Wilkins Walkies”, Pudsey’s premier dog walking, pet sitting and pet transport service.

She’s online too.

Making money.

From dogs.

With small legs.

My sister, that is – small legs.

So, for the time being I’m taking lots of showers to increase my odds of having that moment of genius and coming up with a surefire goldmine of an idea, and decrease the odds of contracting some strange dog disease that could force me to manage my life expectancy forecasts downwards somewhat.

And I have this blog now too. A useful tool to monitor my madness over time, and consciously divert myself from the road that terminates at Troppo Central. There’s a few here who have taken that route already, and the return bus doesn’t run very often.

Photo credit: Nicholas A. Tonelli

Probably best not to get on it in the first place.



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