"And what do you do?" asked the man sat next to me at the Chinese restaurant on Friday evening as we ate camels' eyeballs. I thought for a moment and replied truthfully, "I don't know". This wasn't me trying to be clever, or funny or erecting a smokescreen to disguise the fact that I was pushing my camel's eyeball into my serviette. As soon as I said it I realised - this was the stark truth.
Six months ago I had more identities than your average credit-card fraudster. I worked part-time helping to determine the strategic direction of the local health service and I worked full-time managing, writing and running a European information service. And then things began to change - some of it was self-induced and some of it was not. The result was the discovery on Friday evening that I didn't know what I did. If there appears to be an undercoat of self-pity about all this - this is not my intention. One of the great secrets of life, I believe, is recognising when one chapter has come to a natural conclusion and therefore it is time for another to open. Nor is it my intention to canvass suggestions as to what I should do with myself : I have more than enough ideas already floating around inside my head. I have always wanted to operate one of those machines that paints the white lines down the centre of roads - is it too late to retrain? As I have mentioned in this blog on several occasions : nobody has yet attempted a definitive history of Internet spam and if ever a job needed tackling that is it. I might expand my collection of man-hole cover images and there again I might devote my life to creating Internet icons.
The purpose of this posting is merely to announce to the world that I am now officially in search of a new identity. And to explain why there is so little hard information on my profile at the moment. In the new Internet age, the great transitions in life can be measured by changes in blog author profiles and e-mail signature files. The Alan Burnett of old has left the building, we must wait and see who comes back in.