'Any plans for the weekend?': Six workplace questions that might be a trap

CONVERSATIONS with colleagues can be fun, or you may start to suspect you’re being quietly interrogated for nefarious purposes. Here are six questions that should set off alarm bells.

‘Any plans for the weekend?’

They might be genuinely interested in what you’re up to. But they may be thinking of hassling you to come in on Saturday. Always claim to be busy, but keep it plausible, ie. not spending the 15th consecutive weekend on a remote island with no electricity.

‘How do you think you’re getting on here?’

Any answer to this could go disastrously. Too positive and they’ll think you’re blind to your faults, too negative and you’ve just admitted those faults like a simpleton. Stick to vague business-speak, eg. ‘I’m really getting across things in the team framework.’ It’s an office, so this sort of bullshit is fine.

‘Do you have any feedback for me?’

Do not succumb to temptation. No matter how many times they say they don’t mind, they absolutely do mind any criticism whatsoever. Even the most reasonable thing like wanting a bit more notice of meetings will mark you down as a psycho with a personal vendetta who’ll push them out of a 10th floor window if no one’s looking.

‘What do you do for fun?’

Sounds like harmless chit-chat. But the person asking you will be a joyless robot who lives for work and silently despises your debauched lifestyle of going to the cinema or a restaurant. Or they might be the office Billy No-mates who’s angling to do it with you.

‘How much progress have you made on this?’

None. That’s the honest answer. But don’t assume honesty is valued or your boss finds it useful to have a true picture because they can plan ahead. Also do not tell people you finished something early, because that’s like wearing a sign saying ‘Give me extra chores please because I am a f**king mug’. 

‘What’s your favourite karaoke song?’

Clearly you’re being lined up for a shit karaoke night or Patricia’s hen party. Unfortunately you have never heard of music before and cannot name a single song. Also did you mention you’re living on a remote Scottish island that weekend?

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Being a musician only cool until you're 30 after which your life is a failure

THE ability to play an instrument is only cool until you turn 30, after which point it is a sign you have failed at life, it has been confirmed.

Individuals who can strum a few chords or hammer out a song on a keyboard should enjoy their street cred while they can, because the second they turn 30 they will be regarded as tragic failures and a detriment to society.

Donna Sheridan, partner of guitarist Tom Booker, said: “I instantly fell in love with Tom when we were teenagers because he could play ‘Wonderwall’. But he’s 29 now and shows no sign of moving on so I’m starting to panic.

“Unless he puts his guitar away and starts applying for proper jobs I’m going to have to dump him. Even if he makes it big in the next few months, which he won’t, I’m walking. It’s too little too late.”

Booker said: “Being a musician over 30 is fine. You can still play in pubs or form a cover band with your recently chucked friends. Sure, all of these options are deeply embarrassing, but it would be a shame to waste my talent.

“And I can give music lessons to kids. I could be nurturing the next Jimmy Page, if my two pupils weren’t such talentless f**kers. And there’s busking. I can easily earn a cool 24 quid a day doing ‘A Groovy Kind of Love’ in the shopping precinct.”

Reflecting on his life, Booker added: “Oh who am I kidding, I wish I was in the 27 Club.”