'Mate' and four other infuriating things bosses call you

WE’RE not their pal, buddy or anything else, but bosses still insist on being massively overfamiliar. Here are some of the most annoying workplace nicknames.


You’re not actually mates. Being in the same building to earn money and sharing a photocopier is not a deep bond of friendship. Even worse if the person you’re addressing actively dislikes you, in which case a more honest exchange would be: “Hello, employee” “Good morning, arsehole.”


You might as well be patting someone on the head while saying this. If you’re a male boss who says this regularly to female staff, just go ‘full 70s sitcom’ and ask them to sit on your knee while you dictate a letter and crack cringeworthy double entendres.

‘Big guy’

Just strange, particularly if the person is of average size or less. It might be intended as a confidence boost, but just suggests your boss has gone mad and thinks he’s in a Western and is about to ask you to head off some Cherokees at the pass. Which, admittedly, would make a change from Pret at lunchtime.


Again, weird because you’re not an extremely popular celebrity. In fact drinking tepid vending machine coffee while tapping numbers into spreadsheets is about as far from the life of Beyonce as it is possible be. Usually used by a massively patronising woman boss trying to be cool and young.


People called this one don’t do boxing and are not being referred to as an actual champion. Usually used by balding middle-aged bosses to reassure themselves they’re a dynamic businessman surrounded by other high-achievers, and haven’t wasted their life with a career selling carpet tiles.

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We don't need Nissan because we'll be rolling in fish, and four other Brexiter delusions

PEOPLE who believe Brexit is going to be a massive success seem to live in a highly imaginative parallel universe. Here are some of their favourite delusions.

Fish will solve all our problems

Britain will be as rich as Saudi Arabia thanks to all our fish. It doesn’t matter if industrial supply chains break down – we’ll just make cars out of dried fish powered by fish oil, which is probably like petrol. It’s no wonder foreigners are so scared of British ingenuity.

The NHS will be amazing

Once Brussels stops stealing all our money, our hospitals will be swish and futuristic. No matter that our own government keeps cocking up relatively simple projects like ‘Operation Moonshot’ – in 2021 NHS patients will be tended to by high-tech robot nurses, like in sci-fi films. Only they’ll be sexy. 

Joe Biden wants to take our Brexit away

Were it not for the Good Friday Agreement, Joe Biden probably wouldn’t give a toss about Brexit. However, Brexiters won’t let that stop them pretending it’s at the very top of his list, because they think everyone’s as rabidly obsessed with it as they are.

‘Global Britain’ will be a huge success

Brexiters keep banging on about ‘Global Britain’, but that’s understandable because they’ve yet to progress from ‘simple slogans’ to ‘discussing reality’. At the moment all it seems to mean is that we’ve got a so-so trade deal with Japan. Well, Japan is on the globe, so it’s technically ‘global’.

Britain will remain a pleasant place to live

Kent won’t be a concrete plain of lorries, portaloos and misery. Deprived post-industrial regions won’t get even more depressing. No, all of Britain will be a sunlit upland of lovely villages – like the ones in war films. All it takes is a bit of imagination.