20 February 2010

Soup nipper

I only have one Joniffer story to add today, but I have another story involving a familiar co-worker for your enjoyment too.

As you would expect from co-dependent co-workers, we spent the majority of Friday together. This included "secondsies" - our 10-ish am coffee run. And when I decided to take a short walk around lunch time to drop off my dry cleaning, Jon came with me. A little later when I decided to eat lunch in the lunchroom, getting away from my desk for awhile, Jon did likewise, even though he had already used all of his lunch break going on our walk. While we sat at the table chatting, our tummies full, our manager walked in. My first reaction was slight panic. Was she wondering why we were just sitting in the lunchroom? Especially at 2:30 pm? Would she notice our lunch paraphenalia and know we were legitimately away from our desks? She then started laughing and mentioned, "You two make me laugh! Don't you ever get tired of each other?" We simultaneously answered, "No." with a shrug of our shoulders. Jon's answer may have been more of an "eh" but that means "no," right?

As for my other story, it involves a character mentioned previously who likes to steal my coffee mug, let's just call her "Old Lady Lips" or Ollie for short, to protect her identity.

For the greater part of January the company sponsored a food drive to benefit the Oregon Food Bank. There was good friendly competition between floors; sadly the third floor lost the Golden Plate award this year. The food donation spot was on a table in the lunchroom. One day a case of soup showed up on the table. I noticed it only because I had just bought one can of the same soup at the market and it triggered an idea to bring it in for lunch the next day. The food sat in the lunchroom for many weeks, even after the food drive was over. Some brazen co-worker about two weeks ago must have forgotten lunch and decided to appropriate the case of soup for their lunch. At that time the case went from being part of the donations for the Food Bank to sitting open on the counter next to the microwave. I was stunned that someone was so bold as to take food from the donation pile.

Now fast-forward a few weeks to yesterday. I walked into the lunch room to heat up my stew (yes, more stew.) and was shortly joined by Ollie. While I spooned my barley turkey stew into a bowl, Ollie took a can of soup out the box and started to open it up! I was gobsmacked! She was the one who had taken the soup from the needy? As I tried to process what I was witnessing, she said, "Do you know who brought in this soup? It's really good." WHAT!? I abruptly tell her, "It was originally part of the donations for the Food Bank." Ollie may have picked up on the disapproval in my voice as she attempted to come up with an excuse, "Oh, it must have come in too late to be picked up." Having to duke it out with her for my mug two days before had not left me in a generous mood. "Actually the food was only picked up this week and the soup has been on the counter for a few weeks, and was on the donation table for several weeks before that." She remained quiet for almost a minute. Instead of offering yet another excuse, she said "It's good soup. I wonder where you can find a box like that." I informed her it was from Costco. "Really??" she responded in that annoying high pitched nasal voice of hers. I simply made a "um-hum" sound instead of giving voice to the thoughts in my head - 'no, not really. I'm lying about where you can find soup in some plan to trick you to make a visit to Costco to find soup only to come up empty. Why would you question and doubt me over something so trivial?'

While I would be mortified and ashamed to be caught eating the soup, Ollie didn't even seem flustered. She didn't seem bothered by the fact the soup was intended for the needy and poor, or that the food was counted as part of the donation of the third floor to the Food Bank, and she was eating it. Nor did she seem to recognize the boundaries she had crossed, she was blissfully ignorant of the rules of community office life. I don't know why this surprised me after the incident earlier this week. And I don't know why I guffawed when she put her bowl of soup in the microwave before me, even though I had been there first. I couldn't handle being in the lunchroom with her anymore. I left my bowl on the counter under the microwave and went back to my desk to wait it out. I know it's petty on my part, but I had had my fill of insipidity for the day.

No comments: