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Tuesday, April 11, 2006

The lunch vs. the briefcase

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Being the virtuous little soul that I am, I almost always bring my lunch to work. Every night when I make dinner, I always make sure that I make enough for us to have lunch the next day. It saves an enormous amount of money, doesn’t really take any more time, and generally just means that I have a yummy, healthy lunch all ready to go in the morning. All that’s left to do is grab a yogourt or two and some fruit.

Now, three years ago when I graduated university, I was a chronic backpack wearer. I had just got a spiffy *new* backpack, so this is what I brought to and from work every day. It was a great size, and perfect for carrying lunch, extra shoes, bottle of water, the odd work-related thing (seriously, who was I kidding this that whole schtick) and just random girly crap. I could load it up on the off chance I was going to the gym (though that was a squeeze), and it made it super easy to just randomly stop and get heavy groceries on my way home, etc. (I take the bus so am forced to carry everything I buy).

Hubs decided that my beloved backpack was juvenile and bought me a beautiful burgundy leather briefcase. It is a really really nice bag – not too old, not too young, and makes me look far more professional than I really deserve. :) But you know what….briefcases suck for carrying anything other than paper. They seriously do. They are also inconvenient for carrying heavier things – I have a semi-permanent patch of miniscule broken capillaries on my right shoulder from carrying it. Of course, I’m not certain that you’re supposed to walk nearly so much with your briefcase (I walk the last 25 minutes to work, and vice-versa in the afternoons). But that said...a briefcase can handily hold up to three bottles of wine. More if you buy gewurtstraminer (long skinny bottle).

So that brings me to my issue….my freaking lunch will only go in my briefcase sideways. There is not a plastic storage container on the market that will fit right-side-up in my briefcase. The issue with this is that with all the bouncing around from walking and racing after busses….I end up with my lunch leaking. :( Sometimes it just leaks a bit within its bag….other times it makes a royal mess and gets all over everything. So what’s a girl to do? I have cheap plastic containers – they leak. But so do the pricier ones that I have. I don’t want to start carrying a thermos (and you know what, they leak too! And they’re too heavy). So should I go back to the backpack? And risk the scorn and derision of all who see me, a purported professional, traipsing about with a juvenile backpack. Meh. I do not know.

Anyone know of super-duper containers that DON’T leak when put on their side for prolonged periods of time (like, say, 2 hours)? Thx.

On a domestic note, I’ve really been exploring my masochistic tendencies lately….as if it wasn’t enough to have two ‘mega’ dinner parties coming up, I have also randomly invited over a couple of friends for more casual dinners on a couple of week nights. I’m becoming such a home-body….my friends suggest going out for dinner…I look at my bank account and suggest they come over instead….

Dinner tonight is a casual curried vegetable stew with fresh baguette. Hope it’s tasty – it has sweet potato, zucchini, beans, etc. and is spiced with curry and chili powders, as well as saffron and then sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds. Very different combination. I guess I shall have to boot my butt into gear because I invited a friend over for dinner tomorrow night and she hasn’t even seen my house before….so I’m going to have to do an all-over tidy tonight. Bleaaaaaaaaah.


Torie and Erik said...

I vote for the backpack! Give your shoulder a break. I do like how you managed to find a practical use for the briefcase carrier :) Maybe you're bringing the wrong thing for lunch? :)

I would love to know if you find a leak proof container. I double bag things now if I think they might leak.

And the curried vegetable stew sounds yummy! Would you mind sharing the recipe?

Torie :)

Anonymous said...

If you still want to use the beautiful briefcase... what about buying a cute little separate lunch bag? Not sure if it would work for you or not, but that's what I do!

Anonymous said...

p.s. that anonymous comment was from marlene! :p

Anonymous said...

Sometimes I put my food inside a zip lock baggie, then put the entire baggie inside my rubbermaid container. That way I have an extra layer of leak protection, plus something to reheat the food and double as a plate/bowl.

Alternately, you could put the zip lock baggie around the outside of your rubbermaid container. Then you could reuse the bags - but this would require a larger size bag.

(mstgt91 from Wedding Bells)

UptownGal said...

Tupperware... isn't tupperware supposed to solve these leaks?

QLC said...

This is a super old post and I found it while looking for a solution to the same problem (lunch making a mess everywhere in my bag). I found a solution that perhaps did not exist in 2006....Yumbox. Just search for it on Amazon. $30 is not cheap, but it is leak proof and it works.

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