Purveyors of fine sarcasm

Newspaper Columns

Watson, Holmes and some other bloke reading Benign to Five

Between 2012 and 2019 I wrote a column in the MyCareer section of The Age and the Sydney Morning Herald. It was called Benign to Five.

The brief? “Do your blog thing, but make it about work”.

Heree’s some of what I wrote:

On Leonard Cohen

He traipsed through this “lost illusions boulevard” in his trilby and his double-breasted suit, smiling knowingly, perhaps ruefully. There was no pretence or charade.
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The Haught guide to learning fast

…the restaurant manager, a man I once found in the men’s toilets vehemently accusing a whole defrosted turkey of cheating at Texas hold ‘em. (He …
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How good words turn bad

The items that we now categorise as weasel words, wank language and corporate buzzwords weren’t always the indefensible, indecipherable brain-slop of desk-shackled keyboard tappers. Almost …
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Is Mondayitis real?

Is Mondayitis an actual, serious psychophysiological illness or just a throwaway malady akin to man flu and hose buttock? To find out, I asked former …
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Regrets? Surely you have a few

Some people ask me while I’m signing autographs or they’re basking in the fresh-baked-bread warmth of my celebrity, “Jonathan, have you ever written something you …
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What made the 1980s great

The subtext is dance like nobody will remember your lycra-clad thrusting because they’ll all be dead. Love like humiliating rejection doesn’t feel so bad in …
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How to become a thought leader

My new year resolution was to become a thought leader. I’ve already achieved it. I got my accreditation from the Society for the Promotion of Integrated Thought …
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What is content?

“Content” is one of those words that gained popularity so quickly, people fell over themselves, and the bodies of others – some dead from suffocation …
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The Haught guide to “downsizing”

One day, in the not too distant future people will be coming home from work telling their partners “Love – I was permanently de-salaried today …
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The Haught guide to lying

Lying during job interviews is now par for the course. Well, it might be par. It might also be an excellent sub par round, replete …
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The Haught guide to competition

To be truly competitive in a professional setting you must see each of your colleagues as brick walls blocking the road joining the towns of …
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The Haught guide to meetings

…What ensued was a kind of Stalinist purge, but instead of people vanishing, it was working time that was systematically liquidated or sent to the …
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Chucking a spickie

Is it OK to let a weekend’s sport result affect your mood at work? Absolutely not. It’s unprofessional, unfair on colleagues and morally wrong. You …
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  1. Re Benign to five
    23-24 May 2015
    “The curious case of the columnist who cried wolf”

    from my experience – “socialise” means to circulate a document in draft or to float an idea, at noblest to seek comment and criticism from outside one’s silo and at basest to stifle opposition and to identify opponents within one’s silo before proceeding to “authorise”

    Thanks for your education and smiles

    • Thanks Peter. I’ll now socialise your definition around the Haught office (my head).

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