Dear Office Diary,
In a dark attic somewhere, there is some cine-film footage of a much younger, blonder version of myself, standing halfway down my parents’ garden in a pair of red shorts (they were my favourites).
As my dad zooms the camera in, you can see my eyes dart left and right to check that the coast is clear of any older siblings before my hand slips in to my pocket to retrieve a sugary. The hand then whips out and into my mouth in a blur, too fast for the siblings to notice anything untoward and arouse suspicions.
‘Why would your siblings be interested?’ I hear you cry! ‘Surely they have their own?’. ‘What sort of parents only treat their favourite, youngest, brightest child and leave the elders sugar-free!’.
Well, the truth is we always had the same sweets. But while my brother and sister would greedily scoff theirs down in five minutes and spend the next 30 minutes charging around in a glucose fuelled frenzy, I used to take it slowly, one sweet at a time, ensuring I had treats to myself long after the sibling’s sugar high had subsided.
Now there was always a risk to this. If the siblings discovered the stash, then I knew I was done for. They would simply hang my by my ankles or duct tape me to the wall and up their own share of the booty leaving me short-handed and in tears.
But then that’s the game you play right? We all know the rules.
And it was with this in mind that I smiled and helped myself to a custard cream biscuit the other morning when I discovered the office-hoarder’s secret stash.
Having cycled in to work that morning, I decided to reward myself with a cup of tea and a pack of biscuits.
While we’re pretty lucky in this office to have an almost endless supply of biscuits, you cannot always be guaranteed a custard cream treat. They don’t hang around for long, and if you do find a biscuit box that still rattles, then it is often just full of digestives.
On this one day however, there wasn’t even a digestive to be seen, and so I began hunting through the cupboards in desperation and increasing disappointment, until I found them… there, in the first-aid cupboard no less, three pristine packets of Crawford’s custard cream triple-packs.
And so, remembering back to those sunny days and thinking ‘what would my brother and sister do?’, I took all three packs. And enjoyed every single one of them.
Now I must admit, looking back on it, I do feel a tinge of guilt.
Did I really need all three packs? What if they were genuinely there for a first aid emergency? What sort of first aid emergency requires custard creams?
But then what choice did I have?
If you find a hoarder’s secret stash, you devour the spoils.
That’s the rule, right?
Who am I to argue?
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