I am searching for a good idiom for the following situation.

Consider international politics. There are two poles at this moment:(1) the Western pole; (2) the Non-western pole. Every country is one way or another are part of those poles (even though some are trying futilely to balance).

I take the examples of Serbia and Croatia, both of which were part of the former Yugoslavia, and both of them started from a similar political and economic situation. Serbia has been traditionally a Russian ally. When Russia became weak, the USA bombed Serbia, and curved Kosovo out of Serbia, Serbia is in a dismal situation in terms of economy, etc. On the other hand, Croatia is a very prosperous country.

Therefore, can I say

Croatia is on the good side of the Western radar.


The following definitions make it difficult for me to understand if this is the best idiom. For example,

Cambridge Dictionary says to be on someone's radar means

If someone or something is on your radar, you are aware of, or have thought about, them or it.

The Free Dictionary explains

Considered by one as important or noteworthy; within the spectrum of one's awareness, attention, or consideration.

And Longman defines the idiom as

if something is on your radar, you have noticed it and are giving it some attention

But I want to say that the boss is continually rewarding an employee whose performance is unexceptional.

Can you suggest a better idiom?

  • 2
    Duplicate of Is there a term ... for a boss's favorite employee?. Apr 15, 2022 at 14:44
  • 2
    Does this answer your question? Is there a term I can use for a boss's favorite employee?
    – Joachim
    Apr 16, 2022 at 7:53
  • 1
    @Joachim - the supposed duplicate has little to do with the idiomatic expression the OP is looking for, which, as a matter of fact is not present in any of the answers posted.
    – user 66974
    Apr 17, 2022 at 5:55
  • 1
    "on the good side of the boss's radar" is a mixed metaphor--bad. Radar doesn't have anything characterizable as a side. So it doesn't mean anything to be on a side of their radar. You could reasonably say they are on the boss's radar in a good way. You could metaphorically say the situation of being on their radar has a side, so that they are on the good side of the boss having them on their radar, but this is still a mixed metaphor & hence becoming rather abstract--both metaphors get in the way of the meaning & each other--why aren't you just saying, their boss thinks favourable of them.
    – philipxy
    Apr 17, 2022 at 7:19
  • @user66974 I realize that, but answers can be merged, and duplicates should not be based on answers to begin with. I agree the titles are not similar at all, but the title of the question here doesn't really seem to convey the actual question of the OP. Shall I propose an alternative title to this question to start with?
    – Joachim
    Apr 17, 2022 at 9:53

4 Answers 4


The idiom is:

be in (someone's) good graces

liked and thought highly of by someone in authority

  • He works late to stay in his boss's good graces.

(Merriam Webster)


Some others:

  • He's the apple of the boss's eye
  • He's the golden boy
  • 4
    I think 'golden boy' has the connotation that that person is actually very talented or skilled. In any case, it would be good if you were to give definitions of these expressions. Please take the Tour to familiarize yourself more with our platform. Welcome to ELU!
    – Joachim
    Apr 15, 2022 at 4:49

The OP asked

Can you suggest a better idiom?

Here are a few, but they are not commonly heard today

  1. make fish of one and fowl of another
    make fish of one and flesh of another

This was used when a person unashamedly favoured one person over another. In the OP's case an employer who shows partiality and favoritism.

It alludes to the practice of dividing meat into the categories of fish, flesh, and fowl.

Thus, to make fish of one and flesh or fowl of another is to discriminate unnecessarily and unfairly between basically similar things or persons, to show partiality. Use of this expression, rarely heard today, dates from the early 18th century.
(Picturesque Expressions: A Thematic Dictionary, 1st Edition. © 1980)

  1. to make chalk of one and cheese of the other

In other words, one person is valued worthless while the other is highly valued.

Paine would not hear of it, determined to give the boys equal education and “not make chalk of one and cheese of the other.” When he insisted that “they must both come or both stay away,” Mme Bonneville gave in…

(Man of Reason: The Life of Thomas Paine) By Alfred Owen Aldridge


To be Teflon coated.

The meaning being that nothing bad sticks to the person in question.

Tony Blair was sometimes referred to as Teflon Tony because of his escaping all responsibility for the Iraq war and its consequences.

  • Interesting, is this a new expression?
    – Gio
    Apr 15, 2022 at 16:16
  • Tony Blair was sometimes referred to as Teflon Tony because of his escaping all responsibility for the Iraq war and its consequences. I had a lodger friend who was alcoholic but worked and was very popular and was called 'graphite Gaz' in a similar vein. (his name being Gaz)
    – Glyn
    Apr 15, 2022 at 16:17
  • It goes back further than Tony Blair. Ronald Reagan was known as a Teflon-coated president back in the early 1980s: politicaldictionary.com/words/teflon-president
    – Flydog57
    Apr 15, 2022 at 23:31

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