I doubt my intern even owns a tie.
Have you ever realised something ludicrously simple and obvious that has a profound effect on your life, work or relationships and, while you happily adopt it, you can't help wondering why you didn't think of it years before?
I don't want to bore long-time readers of this blog, but this idea was pretty much the basis of my 2006 book, No Tattoos Before You're Thirty ... What I'll Tell My Children.
"Ever been given a particularly resonant piece of advice, sat back and thought, 'Happy days, why didn't somebody tell me that 10 years ago?'
"Like, you have to remove the poo tube from prawns, learn a second language before your brain starts to shrink from alcohol and caffeine, and never play poker with a guy who has the same name as an American city ... " and so on and so forth, the introduction to the book says.
Recently, however, I had an epiphany when it came to this blog and the column I write for The Sunday Age in Melbourne and The Sun-Herald in Sydney.
One of the hardest things I find about writing a column/blog over a number of years is staying fresh and relevant, which I have done with varying degrees of success.
My worst nightmare is becoming one of those stodgy old dipshits who seem to plague AM radio, tut-tutting about every person who is younger than they are.
The problem is how to keep in touch with the "younger generation".
I used to just shag them, but even that's getting a bit creepy as I head into my 40s.
So what to do?
The answer came in the form of an email from a university student named Marlo Begsley, who asked me if he could be my intern.
I've had these requests many times before and always replied: "Ahh, there's nothing to do, unless you wanna watch me writing blog posts in my underpants at home," which really is creepy.
Anyway, I still met up with Marlo for a coffee, and he seemed like a good enough young man.
However, it was about five minutes into our conversation when I realised ... "Wait a minute! I got a 19-year-old reservoir of relevance sitting right in front of me!"
So now Marlo is my intern, which basically means he's tasked with coming up with blog ideas about his age group, telling me how the world looks through his and his friends' eyes and writing the occasional blog post that I can put live when I'm hung-over and can't move.
He's already given me some cracker ideas but, more than that, just listening to him talk about his life gives me a new perspective on a lot of well-worn topics, so bear with me while I jump back into some oldies but goodies with a slightly different skew.
In fact, one of his ideas was to write about interns. He said to me: "I was talking to my uncle and he said he'd recently had his first intern and how weird a feeling it was to realise what you are doing is appreciated by people."
It is a weird feeling, but very rewarding as well, especially when I get emails from you dear readers and from people like Marlo.
Hopefully, he will learn a little from me, if not about journalism, at least about the craft of writing a topical column/blog and how to sniff a good idea out of a pile of shitty ones.
I also want him to switch on to the patterns of behaviour, thought and speech we all display because they're fun to observe and the raw material of any writer.
Anyway, it also got me thinking about how y'all have probably had a similar type of epiphany in your job or at home, and I wonder what they were, and if they helped you much.
Care to share?