Thursday, June 25, 2009


7525 Granger Rd
Valley View OH 44125

by Reuben Dagwood

Working in an office located directly above a Subway restaurant first seemed to be an unbelievable convenience. So much so, that we based our decision on the office itself in part on this fact. How much time is stolen from a productive work day by the insidious workings of the “quick” lunch break that invariably leads to a twenty minute conversation about where to go, followed by the lovely just one more quick drink philosophy that our office so readily adheres to? Yes, being mere steps from a Subway is going to make for convenience and increased productivity, not to mention the amazing health benefit. We’ll all be perfect physical specimens, rolling in the proceeds from the reclaimed lunch hour, and we’ll be doing it at home an hour earlier than we ever have before!

Fast forward two years and let’s take another look. It’s hard to really remember clearly the love that I first had for Subway when I got here. I have blurry images of a “joyous” feeling of looking forward to the mixing, the matching. A haze of memory tells me about how I once had some sort of enjoyment resulting from the invasive, ever present aroma of bland bread. I have fleeting glimpses of the excitement I felt when I was told by Frank that they were planning to come out with a spinach asiago spread.

Remembering the hatred that has grown inside of me toward the Subway is not nearly as hard. Rubber chicken, Grade F lunch meat, the spinach asiago spread, and a gaping lack of hot sauce and swiss cheese are just side issues. Sure, the food is anything but gourmet, but it is fast food after all. But where is the convenience? Where is the saved time? Where is the health? They don’t exist.

The restaurant is a mere twenty steps away from my office door, but I cannot remember the last time that I was able to wait in line for less than 10 minutes for a sandwich. What this means to me is that I actually lose convenience, mainly because I’m an irrational, impatient man. At least 4 times a day, I’ll walk downstairs, solely with the intention of grabbing a sub, only to see that the line is forever, and instead just pop outside for a quick smoke, instead. Super health, here I come!

And speaking of health, it’s out the window in regard to the food itself. I know that this chain is a Jared reducing master diet, but it’s just not having that effect on me. The problem is that I’m a complete tightwad. I simply cannot pass a deal up for a costlier alternative. This may sound like rational thinking, but I assure you it is not. The best example here is that a 6 inch chicken breast sub is four dollars, whereas a 12 inch sub is only one dollar more. What this translates to is my never having bought a six inch sub in the entirety of my Subway experience. This, in and of itself, would not be such a bad thing, if not for another small neurosis of mine, which is to say that I absolutely cannot do doggy bags. Moreover, it’s easier for me to decide to pass up a camping trip with pals in order to stay home and spend the weekend listening to light jazz and catching up on Oprah’s book club than it is for me to stop eating at the six inch mark and just wrap the other darned half up and put it in the fridge.

So, I don’t know the exact moral of the story here. Is it “be careful what you wish for?” Is it “the grass is always greener on the other side?” Or is something more along the lines of, “Reuben, it’s time to wake up and get back to the heart of American office ritual: the two hour lunch?” Only time will tell. I’ll keep you posted.

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