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  • Nicole Sherwin

Green Flags Or Body Bags?

If in love, work and life you're not spotting these green flags, that relationship belongs in a body bag.

This segment is from the podcast episode 'Green Flags or Body Bags'.

We’ve spoken about Red Flags, but the opposite of red on the colour spectrum is a green flag.

We asked you in our Facebook group , what are the signs someone is worth keeping around in love, life and work?

Fans, I have to confess that I underestimated you and I am ashamed to say it, so much so that when borders open up I will gladly get on a plane to Croatia and walk naked down the streets of King's Landing so you can throw food at me.

You don't deserve it. Source: GiPHY

Now, because the fuckboi species is a pest in the world, more rampant than possums and cane toads, when men do something like buying you tampons without asking, we celebrate it like we’re Cathy Freeman winning gold at Sydney. So I thought this segment might turn into a celebration of men doing the bare minimum, but fans, I was so wrong. You know a garbage human when you see one, but you also know a golden one.

Now, caveat time. I know there are those of you out there who will look for any ‘but’ to cancel out a red flag. You’re the kind of people who call your friends in tears telling them you did the exact opposite of the advice they gave you and, ironically you’re actually a ‘red flag’ friend yourself. You’re actually going to pop up throughout this segment as an example of what kind of human not to be, so we’ll give you a name. Tiffany.

So to confirm, a green flag does not cancel out a red flag. Red and green make yellow. And contrary to popular belief, if you see a yellow traffic light, it does not mean speed up and go, it means stop. If they’re still reading your text messages, still spreading their peen around like it’s coronavirus or insisting you have zero male friends, they belong in the garbage. No ‘buts.’ If in love, work and life, you're not spotting these green flags, that relationship belongs in a body bag.

It’s a known fact that serial killers generally harm animals before they harm humans, so it’s no surprise that the opposite of a serial killer, an elite human, is a lover of animals. This was in a landslide victory, your number one green flag. Our number one fan Polina said she knew her baby daddy was going to impregnate her when they were courting and this guy wanted her to come over for a ‘date’, but she’d been away from her French bulldog Percy all day and he was like, ‘That’s okay, bring him.’ When she got there, he’d already bought him a water and food bowl and some toys. Cute, but Percy was not as grateful for the gesture. He was a complete only child, jealous of the new man in his mum’s life. He jumped on the coffee table, smashing it, then retreated into the corner to chew on the TV remote - and this guy still wanted to see her again after that.

If you don't make squealing noises at this, you're a psycho. Source: GiPHY

To counter that, I once had a real shit friend, a Tiffany, who was texting some guy, (probably a red flag) and my other friend's dog came up to give her a sniff and a lick. She kept nudging him away and he kept coming back for more, then eventually she shoved him so hard he flew across the room. Don’t worry, he was a stocky good boy and he was totally fine, but had I seen the sign that literally flew past my face, I may have saved myself the years of a toxic friendship.

It’s not only when humans love animals, it’s the converse. An animal that loves a human is the ultimate sign of a good person (note: this does not include tigers who are so drugged up in an animal park that they will willingly snuggle you). Fan Carly knew her boyfriend was the one when he met her cat and the feline immediately fell in love with him. My dog isn’t as obsessed with me as I would like, but I think that’s because I force him to cuddle me so often against his will, not because I’m a rubbish person.

Manners are also big on the green flag list. Again, I feel like good manners shouldn’t need to be a green flag because learning good manners is as essential to childhood development as learning to walk, but I guess approximately 88% of humanity missed the memo, because as we discussed in the Bad Manners’ episode, boorish behaviour is rife in our society. There are so many discourteous pigs out there that can't even raise a finger to say thanks when you give way to them in a one-way street, so I guess it really does need to be here. Fan Georgia nicely summed this up as, ‘Anyone who is not a solid gold asshole.’ That’s a low bar Georgia.

Nope. Source: GiPHY

I think the absence of garbage human traits gets you a nice pastel green flag, maybe a lime, like, congratulations you cleaned up after yourself. But to get a deep olive green flag, you need to be highly courteous. Incredibly charitable, great respect for your parents and fans, the big one for you is kindness to waiters. Fans Madeline and John both attribute this feature to strong boner game.

I think this is because as millennials, we have all worked in the service industry, whether it’s hospitality or retail, so we know shit that people fling at service workers. I once had a big derro threaten to break both my legs during my third shift at McDonald's. Honestly, we could probably have a whole episode dedicated to the treatment of service workers, but I think that it makes it more like a sick joke to see one of us passing on that treatment. And conversely, a person immediately becomes a tasty snack when they treat them well, and maybe even tickle our gold-digging radar if they throw them a tidy tip.

There’s a big green flag with friends, and that is that they genuinely care for you. If your friends aren’t genuinely invested in you, the only reason you’re in their life is so you can be their therapist. Like Tiffany who calls you to complain about the guy they slept with on the weekend and got chlamydia from when you specifically told them on Friday to not see him because he looked infected.

A genuine friend will ask you to text them when they get home safe, says fan Grace. Which in this case, my mum is legit my best friend. Half the time I feel like we definitely forget to do this, or pass out with half a Big Mac hanging out of my mouth, but if I don’t text my mum, she will message and message and call to make sure I’m home. A genuine friend also uses their ears. There is nothing worse than that friend who asks you how you’re going so they can find the moment to hook on something you say and start talking about themselves. Fan Jess says that green flag friends remember the things you tell them and then ask you about them when they see you next. They ask after your family, they’re there for your highs and lows. Jess even says they remember your birthday, which I feel is like gold-star level. That’s a lot.

For mine, the ultimate friend green flag is when they’re willing to share their vibrator with you. I have three friends that live together. For this purpose let’s call them Marcia, Jan and Cindy. Marcia had a Tinder sleepover in lockdown. He came over and he was...really weird. They were watching a movie and he put his bare feet on the coffee table and he had long toenails. So she sent him home before the Melbourne 8pm curfew. Bear in mind that everyone is pretty emotional in lockdown. Jan comes out of her bedroom and is like, “Omg, his toiletry bag is gone, did he go?!” Marcia’s like, “Yeah, I sent him home" and starts crying. Jan asks, “What’s wrong, what did he do?” and Jan, through sobs, says, “I just want some dick.” They both start crying together and Jan goes and grabs her vibrator and says, “I’m going to put this in the dishwasher so you can borrow it.” Cindy intervenes at this point and just suggests another bottle of wine instead.

Yes. Source: GiPHY

You’ve also got strong work ‘green flags.’ What I loved about this was that none of you were like, “Omg my workplace is so cool, we have a fully stocked fridge and a table tennis table.” Those perks are great, but usually, they’re just the icing on the cake to hide the fact the cake is made from your own blood, sweat and tears. That you’re working 18 hours a day with no break or overtime pay. Oh, great would you rather! Would you rather work in a place with all the ‘fun perks’ but hate your actual job, or love your job but work in the blandest office in the deep suburbs?

Yeah, no. Source: GiPHY

So, no, you weren’t fooled by the frills. Your workplace green flags are ones that legitimately benefit your health and career. And before I share yours, I’ll say obviously the number one workplace green flag is the four day workweek. This article shows how it’s better for your health and business productivity. Win-Win.

Fan Bridget’s workplace green flag is when they adopt a mental health strategy. And not like when they say we want to be better about mental health and host yoga at lunch one time, but then make half the workforce redundant and you now have to do two people’s job on the same salary. Like actual ongoing implementation. Monthly massages or when they have a doctor come in every few weeks, which I love. Can you imagine if you had an in-house therapist at work? They would be more popular than Prince nightclub on a Saturday night in 2006. Our #1 fan Polina appreciates when her boss actually listens to her and gives her feedback that matters. A good boss is so hard to find, so cling on to that shit when you find one. I think fan Anthony summed a workplace green flag so nicely. ‘When you don’t have the anxious feeling on Sunday night before work, you know you’re on to a good thing.’

Me with a free therapist at work. Source: GiPHY

There you go, the ultimate guide to green flags. And if you found yourself strongly relating to Tiffany, slide into my DMs for the names of some good therapists.

Thirst for more? Listen to a new ep of the Large Almond Latte Podcast every Tuesday.


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