The Ultimate Guide to Workplace Food Vulturing

til-vultures-640The thing about being at home is that you’re always around your food. As soon as your stomach sends a little message to your brain that says “Want to grab a bite?” you instantly oblige, because why debate a snack while it’s so readily available? You think it and you get it.

But at work, it’s a jungle. When your brain gets the message for food, you are often left with few options.

Should you gather provisions like a pre-hibernating varmint and stuff a bunch of snacks in your cube? Very dangerous proposition.

Should you leave goodies in the cold storage of a break room fridge? Not unless you want others to claim it, or worse discard it as refuse.

No, you need a guide. A guide to find food in your building. Free food that costs you nothing but a little hard work.

So here is the Ultimate Guide to Workplace Food Vulturing, with methods that have proved great success for many a hungry office man.

1) The Prowl Around– What do you do when there’s apparently no food around? You get off Uranus and find it. You aren’t some regal jungle ape like King Louie who can just expect the other monkeys to bring you bananas. Heck no, you are a prowling liger on the hunt for the culinary kill. No one has spoken of food; you’re just anticipating it using your primal instincts.

Your best bet is going to public areas where food is often left out. Oftentimes, it’s left out as goodwill. Most of the time, it’s just nature’s way of getting rid of food. Folks are counting on famished beasts like you to locate the quarry and finish it off. Don’t disappoint them.

2) The Boss Meeting Linger- So the whole liger thing didn’t work out. You must adapt with wild of the office, young grasshopper. The real lions, the bosses, have made a kill with their bottomless wallets and ordered lunch in while they discuss important stuff. What’s crazy is they always order too much. Maybe they’re sorry for us and just want to fortify us least of these- but that doesn’t matter. You go seize those greasy chips and warm pickle like they were especially boxed for you.

Not sure when the goodies become available? Check the bosses’ calendars and see when the meeting ends. Find some excuse for being in the area, like adding the nearby printer to your computer, just in case they ask. Now it’s possible that you’ve already had lunch. So? What are you waiting for? Proceed to the place and pounce on that packaged provender. Remember, you’re a hunter and a gatherer. Take your spoils to the break room fridge and write your name on it. That’s lunch tomorrow.

3) The Herd Mentality– Let’s face it. You can’t solely rely upon your own power to vulture work vittles. You need the pride. Invest in spending time with the group’s goody givers. If they’ve brought in food before, consider them prime targets. Ask for recipes and show genuine interest in their delectables. Say things like, “Golly those sticky buns you brought in that time were slammin'” and “Who knew we had a natural Barefoot Contessa on our team?” Just the right number of these utterances will have synapses fire in their brain that they’re due for whippin’ up some lip-smackerin’ office snacks. And not a moment too soon. That belly noise is bubbling up to a real growl.

4) The Gatherer Request- Never forget the worth of a good gatherer. Sometimes, the hunt goes cold and you return home with clean spears and humiliation. Or in your case, an empty stomach and a ravenous appetite for anything resembling food.

But take heart gentle warrior, you have a gatherer who is quite capable of producing her own tasty treats. Just tell her how everyone brings stuff in all the time, and you think it’s your turn to give back. She’ll smile lovingly and make whatever you want to bring in to the office next day.

After a few acts of providing like this, you’ll shed your vulture reputation and be deservedly lionized by the rest of the office.

Well, there’s the guide. I feel great. Give a man a fish, he’ll eat for a day. Teach a man to vulture, he’ll eat well at work for the rest of his life.

A Call to Hold Cranky Coaches Accountable

ROYThe NCAA tourney has come and gone, with the beloved Tarheels having their hearts crushed by a buzzer beater for the ages.

Their coach, Roy Williams, has seen his fair share of tough losses. For some, losses temper and humble. For others, the personality remains, well, same as it ever was.

I really get a kick out of watching coaches act like maniacs. And not to single out good ‘ol Roy, but let’s single him out. If you took a video tape of this guy and showed it to a village in Africa, they would conclude this is the angriest man alive. And if they didn’t know he was a basketball coach, they would probably guess he was a dictator whose country was falling apart.

But it’s not just Roy. Most college basketball coaches are like this, from Coach K to Bill Self. They yell and scream like children the whole game and we excuse it because “that’s what coaches do.”

But it’s not what anyone else does. If we acted like that in any other professional setting, we would be promptly fired.

A manager at a company will tactfully tell their employee what they need to work on. A college basketball coach will berate their pupil for throwing an errant ball. They’ll ream on their team during a timeout as if the guys were guilty of grand larceny, when in fact all they’ve done is allowed a 10-2 run.

And how about the ruleskeepers and their treatment? When an auditor reports a foul, we humbly ask what we can can do to resolve it. A referee calls a foul and the coach screams at him like a sailor being devoured by a shark.

Every year I watch college basketball coaches throw tantrums like seven-year-olds. What if I did that at work when I didn’t get my way?

We told Carson this morning the project wasn’t going to move forward, and you should’ve seen him react. He got all red, started to stomp, and then he called Pete a bleeping dingaling. But what are you gonna do? Carson’s the content guy, and that’s what content guys do. And he’s a solid content guy.

Whatever. In 10 minutes I’d have a security guard at my cube with a file box. My workplace would not excuse a grownup for acting like a boy.

So why do we excuse college basketball coaches, or any coach for that matter, for showing zero professional tact and displaying an unending series of juvenile conniptions? The fact that “they’re good coaches and that’s what they do” now sounds so foolish that I’m a man and don’t expect people to take me seriously when I’m cranky and explode uncontrollably.

Alright, the diatribe is over. Should I just give in and say this is sports and people in that arena can do whatever they want?