Black Lining

So I love my new job. It’s not like me to feel this way, but I really do wake up every day excited to go to work, eager to learn all that needs learning and do all that needs doing. My newfound joy is so encompassing, in fact, that it’s breached the bounds of the office and seeped into other areas of my life. to wit: this weekend I completed my list of resolutions (ie, bought the coffee grinder, drank top-shelf vodka), washed the floors, and started addressing envelopes for wedding invitations. Since a normal weekend would only have involved one of the three (drinking vodka, albeit not top-shelf), I am feeling pretty good about things.

Most things.

The black lining to the new gig is the staff cafeteria. At my previous jobs, I actively avoided buying lunch. When in the service of the film producer, I actually had a fully functional kitchen, so cooking was never a problem. (Except for that one time his ex-wife left salmon on the George Foreman for six hours, then nobody was doing any cooking for several weeks.) At the last job there was no kitchen, but there was a microwave in the office, as well as a full-sized refrigerator. Here, at the dawn of my enlightenment, I have a beer fridge and a water cooler, and thus am daily forced into the cafeteria to pay for my food. Which, frankly, blows.

There are no “cheap” options at the cafeteria. it’s an extra charge to get cheese on your sandwich, and I calculated the other day that the cost of dressing on the side from the bulk salad bar works out to approximately 75 cents. So like it or not, you’re paying five bucks for lunch, give or take. Today, I got a cheese quesadilla, a bargain at $3.75. Not the healthiest lunch on the planet, but right now I’m more concerned about my wallet than my waistline. On the way to the register, I snagged some mushrooms from the salad bar, figuring the tortilla could use some extra oomph.

My lunch rang in at %5.25.

“But it’s just a cheese quesadilla!” I protested. “There’s not even any chicken on there!!”

“You got the mushrooms” the cashier said, pointing dryly. “They charge you for everything ’round here.”

I should have negotiated better when we were talking salary. This lunch thing is total BS.

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