a Mill update.
Last day of the Free Lunch. (except for special occasions like Fridays, when fewer people are on the job, and more prone to disappear into town on a warm sunny day. if we ever have one of those.)
It was October when this chapter began. All pools on how long the soup line would last were blown away long ago. I stuck to my guns on standing in line for handouts when disaster had not actually struck, but daily que'ing became a fact of our mill life.
If we had passed a rule that said at the sound of a bell all workers will leave their stations and assemble for baked potato bar, there might have been a rebellion, but since it was a benny and not a duty, you couldn't keep the crowds away.
Some meals were not a hit, and quickly scuttled.
Fried Chicken (or "mouse," as one of my co-workers named it) proved to be messy and unmanageable, and the white meat/dark meat people could not work out their differences. naturally, the dark meat eaters felt they should get two-for-one against the breast eaters, and no one wanted the wings.
Ziti and red sauce was reluctantly eaten, and everyone griped, as they mounded their plates with it. The Boss ate hers standing, while asking who was ordering in.
The pizza was bad, and the Pizza boxes worse. There was a movement to provide crackers on soup day -- a movement that was successful, I might add. Crackers are very hard to come by.
I couldn't get a read on baked potato bar, but it came around often in the rotation.
The most popular menu turned out to be pulled pork. And I haven't known an odder smell in my workday since I attended 7th grade next door to the Brown & Williamson factory. Oh, but how the folk went mad for they po'k. "Pulled pork day" became a common excuse for not doing whatever was requested of you. Not only did it mean you certainly weren't going out for lunch, or a walk, or a pharmacy run, but you had to miss a meeting so you could stand in line. So you shrug to your team, "well, it was pulled pork day..." and they nod as if you had said (as we used to in Texas) "then the train pulled in, and...."
Here are the rules of pulled pork day:
1) You must always say "pulled pork." Never call it barbecue, because you are a Yankee, and never just say "pork," because somehow a "pork sandwich" sounds common, and a "pulled pork sandwich" sounds like a restaurant.
2) Make sure all your co-workers are alerted that it is pulled pork day. They may have anosmia. I looked that up for you. You're welcome.
3) Insist that they must stay for the pulled pork. Forget you know pronouns or synonyms, and say "pulled pork" about 50 times in this conversation. Stand right next to me while you do.
4) Be unapolgetic to anyone who does not eat pork -- pulled or otherwise.
5) (if you are me) Call it "Pig Pickin'."
May 9th is the day no pigs would die. The cafeteria has re-opened, the caterers have moved into it, and the line you will stand in now is to pay them. Boss of Bosses takes full credit for the redesign. He told us in a recent company meeting that we pay "real dollars" in rent, and should get good services. He meant to thank the crew who was cleaning our common room every day. I am sure he meant to.