Friday, April 06, 2007

I'm done with organizing the lunches

At my office, there's a mix of people who bring lunches from home or who go out for lunch. For years now, we would order lunch on Fridays to be delivered or I'd run an pick up a big order for everyone in the office so we could eat together in the conference room and catch up with each other. We switched it to Thursdays when one of the people changed her schedule so that she never works on Fridays now.

However, as of this week, I'm done. I'm done with organizing, taking the orders, calling it in, handling all the money, picking it up, etc. I'm done with all of it. First of all, the lunches have deteriorated to just being an ordering/delivery service. We used to sit together and talk while we ate. We'd catch up on life events, family, friends, etc. However, over the last six months of so, people have started just picking up their food and going back to their offices without hanging around to chat!

Another office tradition revolving around our lunches: Anytime it's someone's birthday, I always organize lunch for that day (or a day close to it). Sometimes I even make sure we have cake or cupcakes (homemade or store bought).

My birthday was last Saturday, but because I was really busy at work last Thursday and Friday, we pushed my birthday lunch to be on this past Monday. Since I'm usually the one who handles all the lunches, fine... I took everyone's order and collected the money. Usually, everyone usually chips in a couple extra bucks to cover the cost of the birthday boy/girl's lunch. So, of the four people who ate lunch with me on Monday...

1. One person gave me the exact amount for his lunch, not one dollar extra. He's the one who can most afford it and the one who is constantly offering to or actually buying my assistant's lunch throughout the year.

2. One person offered and actually gave me $2 dollars to contribute towards my lunch.

3. One person said he'd contribute towards my lunch, but then realized that he didn't have enough cash on him to cover his own lunch and had to borrow money from person #4 who...

4. Also said she'd contribute towards my lunch, but didn't have enough for both her lunch and to let person #3 borrow money, so I ended up putting in money to help cover the deficit.

Both #3 and #4 said they'd pay me back. So far, nothing.

So, it was my birthday lunch, which person #2 contributed $2 towards and I *still* paid $8 out of my pocket. The total cost of my lunch was $8.50!

Do I care about $8 out of my pocket? No, it's not the money. It's the fact that it's CONSTANTLY like this. People don't have enough money, they'll pay me back. No one else wants to go pick up the lunches. If I weren't the one spearheading the Thursday lunch, I don't think it would exist. So I'm letting it die. I'm tired of getting stiffed for a few dollars each week and not being appreciated.

When did I decide I was *done* with this? When person #1 came to me yesterday and said, "Is anyone ordering food for Thursday lunch?" and I said, "Nope, I'm not and I'm done with it." I hadn't consciously thought about it before he asked the question. It just popped out of my mouth. This person never brings his lunch and hates to drive anywhere for lunch, so everyday he asks if anyone's going out to pick up lunch so that he can give them money to pick him up lunch too. He doesn't want a Thursday lunch, he just wants food. He's one of the ones that gets his food and disappears into his office. I'm not his lackey.

So, after the fiasco with my birthday on Monday and him not offering one single dollar, I decided that is it. I'm through. They can all take care of ordering their own damn lunches. At this point, I don't want to eat with them.


Dawn said...

Yeah, people can suck. I've been lucky enough to have the opposite experience this week, tho. My friend asked me to help her pack and clean her old and new apartments this week. But, she's paying me and has fed me both times I've been over. I'm cheap when it comes to feeding me, but it is definitely the thought that counts! And while I might've helped her move anyways (a little), the money makes it so much easier. I just go and work hard and earn what I take home and everyone is happy!

Living Almost Large said...

Why is it like this. Why not just pay to go out and chip in for the b-day person? No. DH orders an $8 lunch, no beer, no soda and pays $20 to cover people who ordered booze and more expensive meal, and the b-day person? With 10 people out should be $2 a head and that's a $20 lunch right there. Don't get me started on the rant.

Carolyn said...

Back when I used to work in an office (seems like ages ago) we used to walk next door (great place) and eat together, chat, have a good time. And we used to have birthday lunches that the bosses paid for and everyone made an effort to go. The last several months I worked there though, no one wanted to go to lunch, the bosses decided not to do the b-day lunches any more (our 8 person office grew to 12 and it got too expensive/hard to schedule). I can understand dropping the b-day lunches, but I was sad to lose the company. I still occasionally meet one or two former coworkers for lunch, but even though I message them all about lunch I rarely have more than the one or two takers. Screw 'em. If they don't enjoy hanging out with me any more, I'll just find others who want to! As a matter of fact, I have a lunch date tomorrow with two gals.
I'm sorry your birthday work lunch sucked. I hope you had a great birthday though! I missed it, so happy belated birthday from your MS pal!