You pissed about on your phone a lot: an honest end-of-year performance review

IT’S time for your annual performance review and your boss can’t be arsed lying. Here are the facts: 


Mostly you were here. That’s grudgingly treated as a positive. You did pioneer a new leave-early-return-late lunch-break system, and there were a fair few absences before HR explained that a positive Covid test no longer meant ten days off, especially if it was from someone else’s Instagram.


Problem solving

We’re still not seeing any breakthroughs on remembering to include the f**king attachment before you send the f**king email.


Organisation and time management

File names like ‘ks6 final draft FINAL 1’ and folders called ‘Work stuff’ seem a perfectly clear system to you. Apart from when you need to find something and spend an afternoon checking every file one by one. Excellent timewasting.


Customer experience

Those outside of the organisation were taken aback with just how well you juggled achieving the bare minimum with looking completely dead behind the eyes. Customers didn’t even complain. They knew it wouldn’t get through.



This was the year you were a beacon of creativity, constantly making more with less. Who else could have crunched the numbers and realised that nobody answers emails after 3.20pm, so if they’re sent then you’re unable to complete tasks until the following day?



Your opinion carries weight in this company. When you turned down post-work karaoke because of ‘an early start’ more than a dozen other employees followed suit with similarly shit excuses, preventing a truly tragic evening and saving management hundreds of pounds.



We logged 284 conversations about the weather, 258 about how tired you were, and the maximum 48 ‘thank f**k it’s Friday’. You’re incredibly dull. Nobody wants to talk in case you chip in. Huge productivity boost.


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How not to see a pregnant woman on a train

SICK and bloody tired of doing the right thing? Just want to get to work in comfort? Here’s how to not even see that pregnant lady right in your sightline: 

Pretend to sleep

All the obliviousness of actual sleep but no dribbling, having your bag nicked, or missing your stop. Puts you firmly in the right: how could anyone, morning sickness or not, oust you from your seat when you are clearly so defiantly exhausted? Her who’s about to drop should be ashamed.

Pretend to read

Keeping laser-fixed on your phone works fine, but an impressive paperback is even more foolproof. Nobody, whether their waters are about to break or not, will dare to interrupt a freak reading Infinite Jest at 7am. They don’t know you’re staring blankly while you blast a sneaky podcast.

Pretend it’s not true

You can’t be sure whether the woman is pregnant or just overweight in an unusually concentrated way. Offering up your seat would be fat-shaming. So what if she looks like she’s just swallowed a watermelon and is clutching a book about hypnobirthing: you don’t want to embarrass her.

Pretend you’re pregnant

You have zero responsibility to look around thoughtfully if you’re up the duff yourself. So get a ‘Baby on Board’ badge and hope none of your fellow commuters think to count the months. It could conceivably be ironic. They don’t know.

Pretend you’re a hero

Or actively scour the carriage for any sign of poor, vulnerable, pregnant women, then rush to their rescue even if they don’t appear to welcome it. Ideal if you don’t have a seat yourself so you can shame others into giving up theirs. What a good person you are.