Remember the days you were a doe-eyed xiao di di (young dude) or xiao mei mei (young chick) fresh out of school, when colleagues used the words “cute” and “adorable” to gush about your hair and your outfits? Then as the years go past, “cute” became “smart”, priorities shifted, and congrats, you’ve climbed the ladder. But here’s the trade-off: You’re no longer the youngest chick in the office!

And if you’re wondering, here are five signs to help you figure out whether you’re still the youngest chick in the office:

1) Heads no longer turn when you walk into the room

Walk into the room in a miniskirt and watch heads turn – the other way – in shock and disgust. Face it, only the 19-year-old with foal-like legs can pull it off and get away with it. When you ask your male boss why she’s allowed to dress skimpily, he says with a shrug: “Our policy disallows denim, not short skirts.” Men fall all over themselves just to show her how to use the photocopier. In order to command that amount of attention, you realise you’d probably have to walk in naked, or have a seizure.

2) Your birthday is not a big deal anymore

Birthday girl at work Photo credit:

Birthday girl at work
Photo credit:

The youngest chick in the office usually has a boyfriend (he’s the guy she calls “Baby” on Facebook) who sends flowers to her desk at work on her “special day”. She is dizzy with excitement, probably comes in an extra special outfit and gets excited about a night out after work to celebrate her “significant” birthday milestone. She just turned 21. As for you, the person you call “Baby” is your actual infant/toddler; you have “special days” (plural, not singular), and they come at around the same time every month, not once a year.

3) You’re not fussed about your phone model

While everyone else is constantly upgrading their mobile phones every six months to a year, and eagerly anticipating the new iPhone launch or lusting over the Samsung Galaxy Edge… You see no need to upgrade your iPhone 4 because it still works fine, and also… Your two-year mobile contract is not up for renewal yet.

4) You dress differently

High waisted print pants vs. Boring black trousers Photo credit:

High-waisted print pants vs. Boring black trousers
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You can’t believe that your younger colleagues are wearing high-waisted pants and round tortoiseshell spectacle frames because it’s hip to be old school. You argue that everything in your wardrobe is authentically old school. Take low-rise trousers for example – that was trendy in the 90’s. While everyone else is having fun with prints, your clothes are the usual staple colours, or on a particularly “trendy” day for you…. it’s floral.

5) You don’t get invited to Ladies’ Night

There’s a clique of young women in the office who head out for free drinks on Wednesday nights after work. They don’t hate you, but they just never thought to invite you. Secretly, you’re thankful because you would feel so out of place, you’re exhausted after work and you need to get home to watch TV and go to bed early.

One day, we will all find ourselves sticking out like sore thumbs in our offices full of 20-somethings. And this is exactly why I find the new movie The Intern so relatable and current.

Credit: Warner Brothers

Jules Ostin (Anne Hathaway) hires Ben Whittaker (Robert De Niro) as a senior intern at her fashion e-commerce company. Credit: Warner Brothers

In The Intern, Ben Whittaker (Robert De Niro) is a 70-year-old widower who comes out of retirement. He seizes an opportunity to get back in the game by becoming a senior intern at an online fashion site, founded and run by a young and dynamic Jules Ostin (Anne Hathaway).

Ben Whittaker (Robert De Niro) meets Fiona (Rene Russo) a possible love interest at his new office in The Intern. Photo credit:

Ben Whittaker (Robert De Niro) meets Fiona (Rene Russo) a possible love interest at his new office in The Intern.
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Jules is initially skeptical of bringing an old-timer like Ben into the mix, especially since Jules is juggling her business with a demanding home life that includes husband Matt and daughter Paige. But Ben proves invaluable and wins her over with his hard-earned wisdom and his guidance.

The Intern opens in cinemas on 24th September Photo credit:

The Intern opens in cinemas on September 24.
Photo credit:

Yes, if you remember, when you were a doe-eyed xiao di di or xiao mei mei, you probably drained yourself jumping through hoops for your boss and you hated how stupid you felt every time you needed help from your colleagues. Truth be told, every intern wishes they were you. OK well, maybe not Robert De Niro. The Intern opens on September 24.