Local man, Clive McNeish, revealed today how fortunate he feels being paid a reasonable annual salary for just two hours work a week as a professional squash player. This leaves a full 38 hours a week free for McNeish to indulge himself in his unusual hobby of data entry at Drudge Corp.
“I’m just so lucky that I’ve been able to reach a level of athleticism where I can get paid to play the game I love,” boasted McNeish. “$20K a year is pretty good for my region’s pro-am, over 30, blended-gender, Harrow rules, natural rubber player,” said McNeish, “and I get what most people earn in their full-time employment for a 2-hour work day. Sometimes I have to pinch myself!”
The clearly overjoyed McNeish then explained what he does with the rest of his time. “Working such a short period each week leaves me with a lot of time on my hands. I figured what better way to utilize that time than by entering numbers into spreadsheets in a neutral, featureless office. Maybe it’s not everyone’s idea of a relaxing hobby but I find it the perfect way to prepare for my next squash match.
“The pressure of the next big game really melts away as I type endless figures [into Microsoft Excel].” Different athletes use their spare time in different ways, of course. Roger Federer might relax on his yacht off St. Tropez or by skiing in the Alps. John McEnroe used to frequent the glamorous nightspots of Las Vegas and punch bus boys for asking for an autograph, or not asking for one.
McNeish prefers to sit amongst a team of twenty data entry clerks and process balance sheet information in his free time, from around 9 in the morning until roughly 5 in the evening, on non-game days such as Monday through Friday.
Unlike Federer or McEnroe, however, McNeish does not play in top tournaments around the world. Instead, all his games are played at the Drudge Corp gymnasium, located in the basement of the Drudge Corp head office in Newark, New Jersey–the Irvine, California of New England quasi-sponsored squash.
His opponents are consistently drawn from the pool of Drudge Corp employees that McNeish spends so much time with whilst indulging his hobby. The matches are regularly played from 12.30 -1.15 on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and he is careful to ensure that he is back at his desk no later than 1.30, so that he can get right back to his past-time.
When asked how he actually earns the $20K salary from his squash career, he explained it was through Drudge Corp’s generous sponsorship, and not from any tournament winnings as such.
Acknowledging this generosity, McNeish offered, “[Drudge Corp] has been the ideal sponsor for me. They don’t seem to mind if I actually win the matches or not. For them, in politics as in sport, it’s not about aligning themselves with an actual winner, but instead it’s about players that are ‘right’ and I’m right-handed.”
He added, “They want to promote squash and political leanings across all levels of ability, and all they ask in return for their sponsorship is that I clock in at 9am each Monday to Friday and stay in their office entering data for a minimum of 8 hours a day, with a one hour lunch-break.”
When asked about his future hopes and aspirations as a professional athlete McNeish replied, “I can see myself continuing playing squash professionally for some time yet. Providing that the sponsorship money keeps rolling in, there’s no reason for me to hang up my racket until I reach, say, 65 or 67. That’s a career way longer than most professional athletes could ever dream of.”
McNeish had to cut the interview short as the supervisor of his hobby asked that he quit wasting company time and get back to entering “the damn numbers already.”