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May 26, 2008 | by  | in Opinion |
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Big City Life

There are two things I never knew existed until I moved to Wellington. Food elitism and regional discrimination. In my place of work these two prejudices go hand in hand.

About a month ago on one boozy weekend I did three things: fell asleep wrapped around a toilet bowl (some would say passed out but I don’t think that’s fair); made myself spew in a petrol station garden; and made a Liquid Cocaine with Ayala.

Olly and Ollie (two out of four) looked on in horror as I helped myself to their French champagne and poured it into my vodka Red Bull. This incident is deemed worth mentioning at least once a week and is more often than not followed with “you’re SO Napier!” or something along those lines.

The next anecdote involves stealing, and since stealing is a real crime (as opposed to a food crime such as using Ayala as a mixer or dining at Lone Star) names or other details that could be identified have been changed.

At (blank), we work across from a (blank) (blank), where we (usually) buy ice. (Blank) sells ice for a ridiculous $4 per bag (although when you see their (blank) prices it makes sense, not that I care about (blank)). Before my first ice trip (Blank) tells me that we normally just take two bags. “I can’t steal!” I exclaimed, to which (Blank) replied, “sure you can, you’re from Hawke’s Bay.”

At what point did you become a thief based on the position of your hometown? Are there prejudices like this for other regions? Being called a JAFA doesn’t count. That’s not an insult; it’s merely a statement on where you’re from. Anyone could be another fucking person from anyplace.

And on the food side of things, when did Lone Star become a bad place to go? Because their plates are full of food instead of pretension? Maybe it’s just my work, and food elitism doesn’t exist.

That said, I do work in a highly judgmental environment. If you use the Entertainment Card you’re cheap. If you make a poor set of coffees you’re making “Napier coffees”. If you ask for a takeaway and consume in house you’re ruining the environment. I get that though. In fact, I hate that. Are you SO pressed for time that you can’t drink out of porcelain? Are you so cheap that you’ve realised a takeaway cup holds more than a normal one? Or are you so overindulgent that you order a large coffee, knowing by the time you get halfway through it’ll be cold, and think you’re so clever by asking for a takeaway because surely that man-made, unrecyclable material will keep your coffee hotter for longer. Well I’ve got news for you- it DOESN’T.

I need to spend 40 hours a week doing something else.

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