Titles, Explained

Dictator: A president you disagree with—or agree with, if you’re into that.

Doctor: A person dedicating their lives to saving the sick, a dork who spent years analyzing someone else’s poems, or a celebrity who wanted to give a speech at their alma mater.

Viscount: I’m not sure, but I don’t think you pronounce the “s.”

Detective: Just about the only one who’s isn’t afraid to find out what’s really going on here.

Vice Principal: Head disciplinarian at a school and therefore not recommended for anyone with a name that could be manipulated by children to sound inappropriate—so anyone at all, really.

Judge: A fair, impartial arbiter of justice, who also happens to be running for reelection and would believe in pretty much anything if it means you’ll vote for them.

General: A high-ranking commanding officer in the military whom 90% of men think they relate to.

Consigliere: A mafia boss’s most trusted advisor whom the remaining 10% of men think they relate to.

Sergeant: Someone on your side, detective, but you really painted me into a corner on this one—we have a chain of command and that’s that. And if you pull a stunt like this again, it’ll mean your badge.

Intern: An overqualified, often unpaid recent graduate who owes over a quarter of a million dollars for a degree in an unrelated field.

Entrepreneur: Everyone, if you think about it.

Esquire: A lawyer who thinks their job is impressive.

Chief People Officer: The lone person at a start-up who actually cares about the company.

Nominee: An honor.

Content Creator: An unemployed 43-year-old writer willing to do ad copy.

Cupcake: An adorable baby or an adult man you’re goading into a fight.

Lieutenant: A company man who started out as a good cop (sure, maybe too much of an idealist back then, but who wasn’t? Those were different times.) yet now understands that you have to play their game to make captain—and if that means turning a blind eye to some of the stuff that goes on around here, so be it.

Director: The person whose carefully crafted vision defines a film, unlike a cinematographer, whose carefully crafted vision defines a film.

The Iliad: Homer’s ancient Greek epic poem about the rage of Achilles at Ilium, more commonly known as Troy. So it would be more aptly named ‘The Achilliad,’ at least according to my freshman Great Books professor.

Commissioner: Dear god, this thing goes all the way to the top. No wonder they were able to cover up Santiago’s disappearance so easily… There’s no telling who else is involved—maybe even the mayor. Make copies of everything and send it to Robertson at the paper in case anything happens. He might be the only reporter not too scared to touch this thing. There’s no time to argue, just do it!

Kookymagoopy: A title I invented for someone who changes lanes without signaling.

Countess: The feminine form of Earl, apparently.