How to eat for free forever at your office

coffee mateBY ALEX RUSSELL

One of the big issues with working in an office is that a lot of people are in close proximity while they’re working. Even if everyone gets along, this creates natural problems. There’s a scarcity of bathrooms. There’s no way to regulate the temperature. There’s constant distractions.

Above all else, though, is the kitchen situation. There are a million people in the world complaining about the guy that microwaved fish because he’s never had to deal with the feelings of another person, somehow. This is about something more important.

If you’re like me, you don’t like packing a lunch. It always has a bit of sadness associated with it. As an adult, you aren’t allowed to bring in the two sandwiches, box of Milk Duds, half jar of salsa, full bag of Tostitos, and three ice cream sandwiches that you would normally have for lunch if you were in your disgusting apartment, eating like a troll that can’t be seen in the outside world. You have to bring the (much, much smaller than you usually eat) container of leftover pasta from the one day last week when you cooked for yourself. Then you go to the vending machine and eat a 4,000 calorie package of dessert cakes.

That’s no way to live. The only alternatives are to pay $14 for an artisanal taco that comes with shaved platinum queso or going to Subway. Those are literally the only options. Don’t factcheck me.

There has to be a better way to eat in the office, right? There is, friend.

For my money, you can’t beat office supplies. It’s an old canard that people “make their money back” at work by stealing office supplies, but those jokers never thought to replace their diet with them. A scientific study performed by the researchers at Yahoo! Answers found that paper “is loaded with protein” and “uum paper isn’t for eating.” Not all diets are going to be universally accepted, but you can’t go cheaper.

Or can you? The cheapest, of course, is free food you collect. If you work somewhere especially suited to foraging for food outside, that can provide both a solid workout and a free source of lunch. If you work in Chicago like I do, that can provide frostbite and an unsettling chemical smell. I mean that you should collect and consume anything you ever find that does not have a name on it. People that tell you “that’s for the meeting” are clearly not going to be around there long. Don’t listen to them. Be the meeting member you wish to see in the world. Eat everything you see at all times, for strength.

Creamer is food, you just have to have enough of it. Coffee-Mate has vegetable oil in it. Game, set, match. Note: you will think you are full far before you are. You are going to need a lot of Coffee-Mate. (So far this isn’t a paid endorsement, but Nestle, if you wanna throw me some bucks for suggesting that people can live entirely on your chemical powder I’ll take it.)

I can’t recommend outright theft, but then again, who can define true ownership in this modern world. If you feel like that’s your Thai food, who am I to say it isn’t? You have to answer that question for yourself.

I hope that these tips save you from the $10 sandwich restaurant in your building, but you really need to make them your own. Mix and match depending on your situation! Maybe a smash-and-grab in the lunchroom mixed in with people seeing you eating creamer all day is just the go-getter move that management has been waiting for from you.

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