Like its Tuscan three bean soup (provenance at a push) and ‘freshly packed sushi’ (a leap of faith by any standards), the work cafeteria is a place of questionable quality.
Yes, it’s cheap, subsidised, ‘buzzy’ (read many suits) and well, very convenient, but it’s also pretty nasty. It’s not that I don’t eat there – I do, often – but it is just not what you’d choose if the weather was good, the soup wasn’t such tantalisingly excellent value and the location weren’t a few metres below your desk.
But there’s another canteenational pull besides the ever-irksome convenience factor: the talent. And by that I don’t mean the wonderful ability to construct a perfectly formed sonnet, a useful wicker basket, or even a Yorkshire dry-stone wall. You know what I’m talking about.
We have new building blood and it must be sniffed out. Not that I am at all interested in anything other than ogling – this is simply a question of self-preservation in the office environment. In this monochrome minefield of urban tans (grey pallour) and black, black and more black (womens’ fashion), a fresh, pleasing visage is a boost to morale and a reminding blast of out-of-office life.
Anything – be it a lovely face, a lovely dress or a lovely pair of shoes will suffice – newness and change, even dodgy newness and dowdy change, is a good thing. Not that my standards are mirrored throughout the glass-lifted edifice, but then that is the point, really.
Suddenly the chinese spice soup doesn’t seem quite so dishwatery afterall. But sorry, that sushi won’t tempt me in a month of days off in lieu.