(cue James Bond theme song)
Today’s post is perhaps the most immediately relevant I’ve ever written, as I am doing the issue in question right now: I am eating lunch in a place where eating lunch is not allowed.
And yes, I am aware that I’m going to Hell for this.
I’m doing this out of practical need and laziness: I want to eat lunch, but am already in this building, and I find it (perhaps incorrectly) less stressful to eat ducking behind a computer screen than walking for literally one minute to reach our Sixth Form café. I’m not even making that up, by the way.
My decision is also helped by the fact that said café is often full of the sort of narrow-mindedly aspirational fools who think an overpriced polystyrene cup of instant coffee consumed at a circular table slightly too small to accommodate all of the people drinking said beverage is in any way reflective of the sort of ideological freedom and respect for discourse on the continent that this facility attempts to imitate purely for economic gain, a crowd of people I am all too eager to avoid.
My primary method of sandwich-based attack is to sit by a computer whose back faces the teacher’s desk at the front, bend my head down to the level of the desk and try to shove the mixture of bread, mayonnaise, lettuce and ham down my windpipe without choking loudly enough to attract the attention of said teacher; it usually works, potential heart attacks aside.
Also, the computer helps in that I can open a blank Word document to create a convincing rouse that I am actually working, and so have a valid reason to be there beyond daredevil food-consumption, and I can stash the half-eaten sandwich behind the screen when a teacher walks around to check if we’re doing anything untoward like eating, so it is both hidden and easily accessible for when the coast is again clear to eat: essentially, speed is of the essence.
There’s also the perpetual fall-back that ‘I have diabetes, and need to eat’, an excuse which I don’t like using, as it plays on people’s limited understanding of my life-threatening medical condition as something to do with eating certain foods at certain times (which is wrong), so most people will accept my falsified justification, for fear out of being ‘the one who screwed with that kid’s diabetes’. This excuse does make me feel like a bit of a bastard, and I abused it to high Hell back in year nine, so I try to cut back on it now.
This safety net means I can perform such illegal activities with no real fear of being punished: I get the thrill of breaking a rule, without the potential loss for breaking it. That being said, the ‘punishment’ consists exclusively of being told not to do it again, and the inevitable dismissal of this reprimanding with the continuation of eating, so non-Diabetics have nothing to lose here too.
And this is what interests me: there is no real danger in these hijinks, but they are ‘edgy’ and ‘exciting’ because I choose them to be; this is hardly the greatest thrill of my life, but it’s a bit of pointless rebellion against a power that, honestly, doesn’t really care – schools are generally more concerned with running the school anywho.
While I’m not advocating this as a legitimate pastime, I would advocate making one’s life interesting, whether in significant ways, such as forming meaningful relationships with people and sharing ideas with them, or in stupid ways, like eating a sandwich in a place where sandwiches are not to be eaten; occasionally it can help to break rules that have no real meaning, if anything just to liven up an otherwise monotonous lunch hour.