Do you enjoy eating lunch? Me too. I’m a big fan of eating food. It just gets me through the workday. Sometimes it gets me through the workday. Actually, it rarely gets me through the workday, because roughly 75 percent of the time, lunch blows.
I never eat the quintessential breakfast. I’m a greek yogurt, banana, and CLIF bar kind of guy. I can throw that back in less than 5 minutes, and I’m yuppie trash. Perfect. Guess what, though? I’m not full. From roughly 9:30 a.m. onward, I think about lunch. I think about the four or five options I have to choose from, each one sounding more spare than the next. It would be six or seven options, but now that school is back in session, traffic is a nightmare. God forbid I take a 1 hour and 3 minute lunch. The world would surely stop rotating.
I enjoy eating lunch with my friends. I work with a few friends, so naturally, we eat lunch together. You’d think that eating lunch with people you’re well acquainted with would be ideal. It’s not ideal. Every day, I get a Gchat from Coworker A asking if I have lunch plans. He knows the answer to this question, but he still sends the message anyway. I respond with something snarky, because I’m a prick, and he retorts. It happens every day. Other than the fact that we are going to eat lunch together, nothing is settled from this Gchat conversation.
After this conversation establishing that we will, in fact, be enjoying lunch together, we will both reach out to other coworkers to join us. It’s very important that we do this, because nobody wants to enjoy lunch with just one other person. It’s too personal. We don’t want personal. When it’s go time, we all gather in one person’s office and begin to think. “What sounds good today?” I hate that question.
It’s a necessary question, but I still hate it. Nothing sounds good. If I eat barbecue, I will be drowsy and do nothing the rest of the day. If I eat a burger, I will feel disgusting for hours and do nothing the rest of the day. If I eat Tex-Mex, I will wait for the inevitable gut bomb to detonate and do nothing for the rest of the day. Naturally, everyone else hates this question, too. This makes the entire process so much easier. Kidding. It makes it awful. Now everyone is in a negative mood. Great.
For the next 7 minutes, we will stand there until one person says, “Let’s just do Chipotle.” Okay. I don’t love it, but I don’t hate it. Now comes the real fun: Who will drive? Who doesn’t have a baby seat taking up half of the back seat? Whose vehicle isn’t on E? Whose vehicle doesn’t smell like gym clothes? Fuck it. I’ll drive. 17 minutes later, we’ll be off to lunch.
I love music, but I hate listening to music in front of coworkers. Someone will question my jams, and I hate it when people question my jams. That’s why I put it on Top 40. It’s safe. Every day, we’ll discuss Taylor Swift, Rihanna, or The Weeknd. “Did you know The Weeknd is just one guy? And he’s Canadian.” We talked about that last week, so yes, I did.
When we arrive, there will be a long line. Someone will say, “Look at the line” as if they expected Chipotle to be empty at 12:05 p.m. “Wanna go somewhere else?” Valid question. But there is nowhere else. We’ll toss around a few options, but none will be viable. When you burn a fifth of your break pondering lunch, you marry yourself to the original plan. As such, you go stand in line and look down at your phone for the next 11 minutes.
Then you order. You drink water because you’re watching your sugar intake, and you’re on a budget. You find a table that has water rings and rice all over it, but it will have to do. You eat quickly, because time is of the essence. You talk about work for a few minutes, and then you load up into the car. One of your coworkers will call shotgun, because he’s an asshole.
The ride home is silent. The song playing is Selena Gomez. It’s annoying and weird for a car full of dudes to listen to. You arrive back at the office with 2 minutes to spare. Everyone looks miserable. Everyone is miserable. You will do the same thing tomorrow. .
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