Things I’ll Never Understand #1

I like to think of myself as intelligent. I don’t have an IQ of two hundred or anything like that, but last I checked it was a little above average. This brain thing also comes with an intense desire to learn new things, research things, mentally take things apart and put them back together again. And above all, it comes with a level of humility and modesty that can only be described as enviable.

But in all my self-enrichment over the years, one thing has become clearer and clearer: the more I know, the more I find I don’t know. And the more things I find that I don’t know, a larger and larger percentage of them are things I’ll never understand.

Which seems like the perfect topic for a series of blog posts.

So! With a seemingly infinite number of things in this category, it’s kind of hard to know where to start. Might even be harder than trying to figure out what I like best about the fall season. To help wrangle this, I wrote up a list of twenty seven thousand things that I’ll never understand, cut them into little slips of paper, and pulled one at random out of hat.

Here we go!

Things I’ll Never Understand #1. People stealing other people’s food out of a common area fridge.

I like to joke and keep things light around here. I enjoy both exaggeration and self-deprecation in measured doses. But I’m flat out serious when I’m telling you: I will never understand this. The neurons in my head are simply not wired in a way that will ever allow me to comprehend this behavior.

Who does that? I think to myself, every single time it happens to me. I try to put myself in that person’s shoes. This is one scenario:

Boy, I’m hungry! I wonder what’s for lunch? Let’s see, I could go out for a bite. There are a half dozen places around here within a five minute radius. There’s the cafeteria. Or maybe something quick out of the vending machine. Hmmm. Let’s see.

Ah! Here we go. A large, rectangular box. With two doors. What are these doors? Hmmm. I’ll just pull open the top one. BRRR! What is that!? That was freezing. Let’s try the door below it. Hmmm. Cold, but definitely not as much as that other door. But . . . but . . . what is this? It’s full of food! Let’s see what we have.

Well, there’s a package of Doug. There’s a container of Julie. I see a thermos or something full of Steve. Oh! This Tupperware item named Tina looks good. I’ll just eat that.

So maybe that’s one possibility: people just don’t even recognize the food as belonging to others. A variation on that is:

It’s that big rectangular box again! I bet I could get more food out of that. Although, when I ate that Tina Tupperware, it was weird. Because we also have a Tina in the office and she seemed pretty upset the rest of the day. I don’t know if that’s related, but I’ll just grab something without a name on it to be safe.

“Hey!” I hear someone yell as I pull the unlabeled container out of the microwave. “That’s mine!” Doug is walking over to me and he doesn’t look happy.

“I didn’t think it belonged to anybody,” I explain.

“But you know YOU didn’t bring it, right?”

Not following you.

And these are just the benign scenarios. After that, things go south. There’s just outright theft. Like, “I know that’s not mine, but I’m going to take it anyway.” And then worst of all (yes, there’s something worse than outright theft), is the person who knows the food who isn’t theirs but for whatever reason they feel entitled to it.

I’m the CEO of this twenty-person firm. Therefore, everything in here is mine. All the food in the fridge? Mine. All the snacks on your desk? Mine. Those leftovers you just brought in from your lunch outing? Yep, mine too.

I’ll never understand it.

3 Comments for “Things I’ll Never Understand #1”


Yep, when I worked at a large law firm this happened all the time. And well, you know how my old boss thought the food in my desk belonged to her. And when I called her out on it she would reply “but I worked late and wanted something salty!” Gah!


I stand in solidarity with you. A sense of entitlement is the quickest way to tick me off. Like, I want to be funny here but I’m so ticked off at the thought of someone stealing my delicious pineapple chicken, I can’t be.

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