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Am I Becoming an Old Fuddy-Duddy?

11th May 2016
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Society at large would argue that every accountant is prone to becoming reactionary at the kind of early age normally relished only by Tory MPs. We should therefore all be wary of becoming old before our time.

Showing a marked reluctance to use those hackneyed words “things ain’t what they used to be”, your columnist believes himself to be determinedly young at heart and in spirit. However, some recent experiences have put fear into his heart.

As the London Editor for British Theatre Guide (strapline “the leading independent web site for British theatre”), he has the good fortune to see everything from Shakespeare to musicals and light comedy.

As a general rule, this is a delightful way to end a fun day helping clients with their tax problems with remarkably few productions disappointing. However, in the early part of 2016 a fair amount of comedy that was clearly making younger viewers fall about with laughter proved completely baffling to this deeply disappointed critic.

A trip to Shakespeare’s Globe for A Midsummer Night’s Dream on a glorious summer’s day should have been the perfect start to the tenure of its new Artistic Director, Emma Rice and surely could not fail to please. In fact, it managed to be all of Shakespeare, musicals and light comedy rolled into a very long three hours, though light on the first and most important of those three elements.

As a result, the man from AccountingWEB was left huffing and puffing like some 80-year-old (great-) uncle on learning that the next Prime Minister would come from the moderate wing of the Conservative Party rather than the hard right. The review summarising the production’s perceived weaknesses is readily accessible for those that are interested.

As the opening paragraph suggests, the world at large believes that each and every accountant is humourless with not a single radical hair on his or her body.

We all know that, in truth, members of the profession come in every shape and size, even if the more realistic will accept that there will be fewer hippies, tearaways or free-thinkers amongst our number than say the artistic community.

For many readers, the underlying concern will not be with regard to the world’s belief that we are deeply conservative but rather a worry about doing something untoward and getting a bad name that might harm a hard-won and deeply worthy professional reputation.

It would be great if readers could respond to this column by angrily setting out their stall as wild children for whom bad behaviour is second nature.

More practically, somebody might wish to help the writer to understand certain veins of modern comedy as seen on stage, film and TV.

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By tom123
11th May 2016 19:08

Good comments! I think the problem with accountancy is that, in the media, it is a cypher for 'generic office based work no-one really likes', without the glamour of the law - but possibly a bit less dull than insurance.

There are, of course, countless other ways to fill time in an office (project management, HR) - it's just that accountancy and to some extent Monty Python got there first.

Of course, today's headlines about a female receptionist at PWC having to wear high heeled shoes don't really help with getting rid of the stuffy and fussy image.

Can't say much on the bad behaviour front, personally. Having been to friends on Sunday afternoon, with large wine glasses and sunny weather, I still felt rough at my gym session on Tuesday evening.. There's no hope...

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By carnmores
18th May 2016 14:51

go and see Kinky Boots , its a blast courtesy of Cindy Lauper

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