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Food, glorious food

by Christy Chalmers

As objective as we are here at The Record-Courier, there is one topic on which we never miss a chance to pass judgment: Food.

We don’t do restaurant reviews, but we don’t need to, considering all the food that comes to us.

Instead, we have established our own Food Court.

The Food Court is located almost in the center of the office, within easy snatching range of anyone who moves.

Like any court, all kinds of cases get tried there. Cases of candy, cookies, popcorn, nuts and any other edible thing. We are not partial. We try them all, swiftly and publicly.

Sometimes we take a mob-like approach, contributing food we want to quietly disappear. Over the course of a morning, it does – a bit at a time, snagged surreptitiously by an army of discreet locusts.

With this abundance of food, something had to give. I thought that something might be my buttons and decided to try impose a new Food Court rule on myself. I decided I would be discriminating and go after only the really decadent and unique foods, the ones that don’t just show up every day. I would be disciplined and strong. I would defy the chocolate chip cookies and the taco chips set invitingly about the Food Court. It would be a test, like probation.

The main problem with this theory is that most of the foods that show up appear to be really decadent and unique. Nothing brought this home like the cakes that showed up on successive days one recent week.

I managed to avoid the first cake by not investigating the rumor that it was topped with cream cheese frosting. By the time I remembered the cake’s presence, all that remained were a few chocolate crumbs and some of those heart-shaped Valentine’s Day candies.

I was no match for the next cake, though.

This cake was a work of art. Someone must have put hours into it; how they just surrendered it to The Record-Courier Food Court will always be a mystery to me.

The cake was two layers of chocolate, garnished with chocolate frosting and almonds.

It grew throughout the day. The first time I saw it, it was maybe six inches tall. By the time I attacked, it looked like it had grown to about a foot, maybe more.

The battle did not last long. After vanquishing the cake, I needed a rest. I repaired to my desk to contemplate the penalties for violating this food probation term yet again.

Actually, I felt no remorse. The cake had it coming. Why else would it have been accompanied by a large knife and a stack of plates and forks?

Still, I knew my transgression would not go unpunished. It’s not that I worry about whispers from coworkers who see me gorging on cake – that conceit went by the wayside a very long time ago – but the Food Court has a way of giving me many times over what I take from it.

This means that for the blissful 10 minutes I got out of that cake, I will have to put in about10 not-so-blissful hours of hard labor on the treadmill or whatever other exercise device is handy.

While that’s happening, I will be repentant and strong and disciplined. I will be good, and avoid all that the Food Court has to offer.

Unless it’s double chocolate cake bearing almonds and an attitude.