As I was wondering how Schapelle Corby managed to put on weight while serving time in an Indonesian prison, it struck me that suffering is subjective.

I myself am struggling through a severe freelance journo drought. I suppose that would place me within the battler realm. My professional description is casual sub, which sounds like I get fucked a lot, but I’m nonchalant about it. In reality, it’s a lot less glamorous.

I contend with erratic payment schedules and constant reminders that people who can barely string a sentence together are being paid more than me.

These people are called writers even though the only use they have for a semicolon is in a winky face at the end of a text message.

Working from home means I am also subjected to endless ads for farting ape ringtones -“ you try to conjure a snappy headline with that stuck in your head.

The truth is sub-editors, we keepers of nuance and punctuation, whose pedantry keeps our journalistic shores safe from illegal apostrophes, are being left to fend for ourselves.

Given the perilous new industrial relations situation, I’ve decided to cover my bases and am shamelessly using this column to hawk my sub-editing services to anyone. Instant grammatical satisfaction.

Need to jazz up that eulogy? No worries, sunshine. I’ll have that miserable old bastard glowing like a candle at the Vatican. Labouring over those Christmas cards? Not only will

I remember all those objectionable distant relatives, I’ll concoct suitable clich?to render further contact unnecessary.

If you’ve just committed to the love of your life, I can ensure you avoid any uncomfortable tattoo-related misspellings.

I can make your phone message a Wildean treat and transform any shopping list into an enchanting literary stroll -“ with Manhattan-style views.

It would seem my future is rosy.

Sadly, the life of a sub, casual or otherwise, is one of typographical torment.

I carry a red pen everywhere, just in case I’m confronted at the urinal by an ad for a sexual-enhancement product containing guerana.

I have to turn off the footy every time there’s a refs call.

Even my sense of patriotism is tested by calls to Free Shappelle. Come to think of it, I’ve become unbearable.
I’m still available for work though.

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