Lucy Mangan

Lucy Mangan: Welcome to this year’s Mangan Awards

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Lucy Mangan
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Lucy Mangan awards

“May the flatmate of your dreams be in your stocking soon”

Greetings, dear readers, and welcome to the last column of 2018, wherein (as is now tradition) I take the opportunity to hand out a plethora of coveted awards for achievements I determine have been neglected by the wider world. Take a glass of prosecco from my tray and let us begin the opening of the envelopes!

The Piers Morgan Award For Most Gratuitously Dickish Attention-Seeking Move

Piers Morgan's attack on Daniel Craig's baby papoose was pathetic – but it is symptomatic of a world that still polices what it means to be a man.

Piers Morgan

Very hotly contested this year, not least by Piers Morgan himself for, well, everything he’s uttered between 1 January and today. But really, there was only ever one contender and that was the Dutch TV personality and “positivity guru” Emile Ratelband, who began a legal battle to reduce his age by 20 years to improve his chances on Tinder. I could say more, but why bother? It’s all in the award’s title.

Word Of The Year Award

Via Sofie Hagen, Danish comedian and host of podcasts Comedians Telling Stuff and Made Of Human: ‘overskud’. It literally means ‘profit’ or ‘surplus’ but Danes use it to describe the feeling of not having the emotional energy or resources to meet someone or do something.

This is my permanent state and I do not know how I got so far through life without this word. I’d move to Denmark but worry about this conundrum: if I live among people so thoroughly attuned to my personality that they have this word, I may always have the mental resources to do everything and then never have occasion to use ‘overskud’ again. I intend to ponder this until Brexit forces my hand.

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Piers Morgan is symptomatic of a culture that still uses so-called masculinity to shame men

Most Exhausting Copy/Most Exhausted Copywriter Award  

Loaf's Soot side table

Loaf’s side table was described as a “scuff-kneed character”

To whoever described Loaf’s ‘Soot’ side table – I reiterate: a side table – thus: “the sort of scuff-kneed character that would have been amazing at conker fights in school. We think we’d have got on with him just brilliantly.” Take this award, a tablet and a soothing hot drink and go and have a long lie down.

Most Strangely Pleasing Fact Learned While Pootling Around On The Internet (PAOTI)  

Bette Davis’ husband divorced her because she read too much

The husband of legendary movie star Bette Davis divorced her partly on the grounds that he felt she read “to an unnecessary degree”. #2019goals.

Most Unstrangely Displeasing Fact Learned While PAOTI  

Among FTSE 100 companies there are more chairmen called John than there are women called anything at all.

Unsung Hero/Heroine Award


“I will not cease my efforts to have her recognised as the last bastion of civilisation in a failing world”

A hard choice this year. It was nearly Great British Bake Off illustrator Tom Hovey. No fuss was made about his migration with the show from BBC One to Channel 4 despite him being 10 times more crucial to its success than numpty Paul Hollywood. 

But, in the end, it had to be the anonymous woman who was viciously set upon after a post she wrote describing what kind of flatmate she was looking for went viral. She said she wanted someone who used door handles rather than just pushing doors closed with a bang, for example, and who didn’t have friends round three or more times a week or spend hours in the kitchen cooking. 

She was ABSOLUTELY RIGHT IN EVERYTHING SHE SAID and I will not cease my efforts to have her recognised as the last bastion of civilisation in a failing world. A very merry Christmas to you all, but especially to her. May the flatmate of your dreams be in your stocking soon.

Images: Unsplash