9 to 5, work friends, working life, office friends, office life, dolly parton, lily tomlin, jane fonda

Work friends

Work friends. They see you at your worst. They see you at your most defeated. They lie for you, cover for you, laugh with you and stand by you. And they come in all flavours.

The drinking one

When you’ve had a shit day because your email crashed and your clients are behaving like dicks, the Drinking Work Friend will come to your rescue by insisting on an after work debrief. In a bar. With what turns into three bottles of wine. The DWF is tirelessly supportive, has the constitution of a battleship and always knows exactly what to say to make you feel better. Even if you can’t understand half of it because they’re slurring and you’re borderline unconscious.

The cry-in-the-loo one

Your boss just shouted at you. You’ve got way too much to do. You can’t concentrate because you slept for twelve minutes last night and now the tears are brimming. The CITL work friend is a finely tuned human being, so emotionally evolved that they can almost hear tears forming. These humans should be working for MI6, such is their deftness at identifying stressful situations and displaying no emotion as they calmly guide you into the loo, so you can howl and thrash, while they help you scrape mascara off your face and tell you you’re amazing.

The one who entertains you during meetings

What you really need during a conference call with the US is someone who will draw penises on your copy of the agenda or appear to be taking notes on their phone, but actually be texting you about Cheer.

The work wife/husband

The near-perfect relationship, unmarred by incompatible sex drives, emotional complication, competitiveness or conflicting values. Just someone you get on spectacularly well with – and who you probably speak to more than your actual husband/wife.

The one who makes you cry with laughter

ALWAYS during a meeting with your most senior bosses. The beautiful bastard.

The one who always gives you sweets

You open your drawer and there are the Twirl Bites or the Haribo, lovingly placed there as a surprise, which you can eat guilt-free because you didn’t buy them. Thank you, sweet-giving work friend. I feel a bit sick, but it was worth it.

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