News from the Tennessee Valley Columnists


Eat first, ask questions later

I made lunch at night and Regina was to bring it to work the next day.

She calls that sharing responsibility.

Friday noon, Regina said she must have left the thermal carrying case in the car. It would take her only a minute to fetch it.

No carrying case. No South Beach diet chicken.

"I left it sitting on the chopping block at home," she said, as we headed toward City Café a block away.

She was still at work when I called from home that afternoon to report the butcher block empty.

She'd look around the newsroom for it, she said.

No luck. She came back to the office Saturday morning and searched again after looking at home, in the truck, the trunk of the car, the refrigerator and the garbage can.

"It's the beginning," she lamented.

"Beginning of what?" I asked.

"The end. It's not just anybody who can lose their lunch."

Meanwhile, DAILY writer Ronnie Thomas wasn't having a whoopee Friday, either. His wife backed their new car into the garage door. It wouldn't open so she could take her sister to the airport for her flight to Oregon. And his truck wouldn't start.

He was late for work and under pressure to get a Sunday piece finished, so the lunch for two he found sitting on his desk didn't take priority.

But it worried him. Was the food for him? If not, why would someone leave it on his desk?

Nobody claimed the chicken so Ronnie took the plates home, washed them and brought them back Saturday afternoon, after Regina completed her search.

Monday morning, I found the case at the receptionist's desk with a note that said "for pickup."

Ronnie, aside from messing with his editors' lunch, violated the oldest tenet of journalism: We eat and then ask, "Who brought the food?"

Tom Wright Tom Wright
DAILY Executive Editor

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